Can a foreigner ship a car to Cuba for use by Cuban friends.

Question: Is it legally possible for a foreigner to ship a personal vehicle to Cuba for use by Cuban friends?

Answer: Aduana General de la República de Cuba (General Customs of the Republic of Cuba) has a website, called AduaCuba, which is available in both Spanish and English – although the English section is less detailed – and which can be found at .  To access the English language section, go to the site’s homepage and, on the right-hand side of the thin blue banner, click on “English” (written in red). This takes you to the “Cuban Customs” page.

On the AduaCuba homepage, there is a relatively new document available, only in Spanish, entitled Normas, Aduana – 2011, Repúbica de Cuba (Norms, Customs – 2011, Republic of Cuba). It is the first edition of the main custom regulations currently in use and can be downloaded as a PDF document. Because so many people – both visitors to Cuba and Cubans travelling abroad – do not know much about Cuban customs regulations, this document is intended as a corrective to this situation and, by implication, to facilitate and speed up entry into the country.

Under the section entitled Vehículos, Motores y Carrocerías (Vehicles, Engines and Chassis), there is a detailed discussion about what groups of people are authorized to import light automotive vehicles into Cuba. These groups include foreign business associations, travel agencies, bank and financial representatives, foreign technicians working in Cuba on contract, foreign journalists accredited in the country, etc.  In each case, authorization must first be obtained from an official Cuban ministry or national organization.

People coming into Cuba as tourists can temporarily import a vehicle under the following conditions: it’s authorized by Cuban customs (for a maximum of 30 days), and the tourist is obliged to re-export the vehicle within the time granted, or when s/he leaves the country if it’s sooner.

For tourists who enter Cuba on Cruise Ships or other “recreational ships,” a vehicle – which must come on board the boat with the tourist – can be temporarily imported for up to six months, but it must be re-exported at the end of the allowed period.

No other category of individual can import (or export) vehicles.

You might want to explore with your friends the possibility of helping them obtain a vehicle that’s already in Cuba. Following from the April 2011 Sixth Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba, there has been a certain flexibility introduced into the procedures for Cubans to buy and sell vehicles from each other. Your friends could orient you about these changes.


13 thoughts on “Can a foreigner ship a car to Cuba for use by Cuban friends.

  • Interested in transporting a car to Cuba. Also buying one there to ship back.

  • Hello my name is Alexander,I have an open line to sell and import cars directly to any destination in Cuba and also I am selling my cars only in the price of united states dollars and convention can be done in cuba pesos, if you need any car shipped or want to buy a car from United states to Cuba do message me on whatsapp +1(614) 398-0184

  • How can an RV be transported in and out of Cuba on a cruise ship? As I understand sea ferries
    have been put on hold due to embargo still in place? Have the importing a vehicle regulations
    changed lately? Who are the ship lines that would do it for individuals? I keep an older motor home
    in Mexico, hoping to bring it to Cuba for the six months that they allow, as I learnt here. Is that
    possible? From Mexico, the U.S. or Canada ? As long it make economical sense. Thank you Peter

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