charter flight

I'm traveling alone on the 13 November tour and eagerly preparing for the trip. I'm looking forward to meeting many fun people on the tour. I've been fortunate to enjoy many Tauck tours over the past years and know that this will be as much fun as the others.

Question... are the charter flights similar to the Tauck ones in Australia and New Zealand in terms of less stringent security?....Can I only being small bottles of liquids in my carry-on bag? I'm not checking a bag since it is such a short trip. Has there been any serious damage in Cuba due to the recent storms?

Hoping to hear from others on the trip.
MEH

Comments

  • Hello MEH,

    To travel between Miami and Havana you will be taking a Cuba Travel Services (CTS) charter flight on a certified U.S. air carrier or permitted foreign air carrier such as American Eagle, Continental or Sky King. CTS is licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control as an authorized Carrier Service Provider (CSP). Although these flights are chartered, they are not exclusive to Tauck. They will be shared with other passengers - generally Cuban-Americans visiting relatives in Cuba or other groups traveling to Cuba.

    The most commonly used plane is a ATR-72 Super that seats 64 people.

    I will check with our tour manager in regards to the liquids in your carry-on.

    There have been no reports of any damages or power outages from our suppliers in Cuba.

    Hope this helps,
    Emily

  • Thank you Emily...I hope you are surviving the storm. I'm originally from CT and have many friends suffering right now.

    I'm driving to Miami for my tour from northern FL and hope I can get a deal at the hotel for parking...I'm arriving a day early and staying an extra day at the end, plus I am a Hilton Honors member....Are you aware of any special rates for those on the Tauck tour?

    Thanks again for you assistance...MEH
  • Yes, we do have a special pre-tour rate at the Hilton. If you call our Reservations center at 800-788-7885 they will be more than happy to help.
  • Hello MEH,

    Thank you for your concern we survived the storm fine, just some minor inconveniences. I can't complain since there are people who are going through so much more.

    In regards to the liquids in your carry-on, if anything,it is significantly more strict than what you would have faced in Australia/New Zealand. We do not recommend that guests carry-on containers larger than 3.4 oz, or more of these than can be carried in a single quart bag zip-locked bag.

    In regards to parking, Hilton has informed us that due to liability reasons, cars cannot be left in the parking lot of the Hilton Miami Airport Hotel while guests travel to Cuba, only while you are a guest at the hotel. However, please feel free to reach out to the hotel, since you are a Hilton Honors member. There are parking facilities available at the Miami International Airport.

    Since you are pre-staying in Miami, you can perhaps park your car at the airport and take the Blue taxi (or Yellow if Blue is unavailable) from the taxi stand outside of baggage claim to the Hilton Miami Airport Hotel. Taxi fare is approximately $15 plus tip and a credit card fee, if used. Save your receipt and submit it to the Tauck Director for reimbursement. The drive to the hotel is approximately 5 minutes. Upon arrival at the hotel, check in as a member of the Tauck journey.

    Hope this helps!
    Emily
  • MEH - Hope you get this before you go. I just got back from this wonderful tour.

    The only thing that was different at the Miami airport was that we didn't check-in and get boarding passes in the regular American area. We had special counters for that and luggage check. After that, next stop was TSA and it was all business as usual. We did have to get the the airport almost 3 hours ahead of the flight - this day is your earliest wake-up day - and you have plenty of time to grab some coffee, get to know some of your tourmates, send those last text messages, etc.

    Our first flight was on an American Eagle prop plane and only our group of 20 was on the flight. Carry-ons were as you'd experience on any other US flight except they will offer to stow them in cargo area as overhead bins are a bit smaller on props. Coming back, it was still a charter with Sky King but bigger plane (737 I think) and passengers weren't limited to Tauck. The plane was about 3/4 full. Both flights are quick, under 11 hour.

    I had also gone to FL ahead of the trip. The afternoon the trip started, I brought rental car back to airport, went to main arrival area and took a cab to the Hilton. Just find the taxi captain and tell him you need a blue cab. It was $15 plus tip. The ride from airport to Hilton via cab is 5 - 10 minutes. You will get reimbursed in cash when you check in for the tour with Ulla or whoever the tour director is. Easy button on that one!

    This trip really is a unique experience. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
  • Emily...Sorry I didn't get back to thank you for your info sooner.
    Everything was fantastic in Cuba. It was certainly one of the best trips I've ever taken and I've traveled almost everywhere around the world. The tour director, Wendy was one of the best Tauck directors and Nayla and Manuel were also great...knowledgeable, helpful, courteous and fun.
    Hope the contract is renewed...I want to go back. I would also like to work towards removing the US sanctions...they are pointless and the island should be permitted to grow and thrive.
    Pleas pass this to those wanting info on the trip.....Thanks again...Mary Ellen
    PS..No more Cuba Forum?
  • Hi Mary Ellen,

    Glad you had a wonderful time. Everyone who has been there loves it. The Cuba forum is still available.

    Best,
    Emily
This discussion has been closed.