Can I meet regular Cuban citizens who speak English?

Question: I will be traveling to Havana for a week in March next year with my university. We will be staying at the University of Havana. I have very minimal Spanish language skills. I still am curious about how many people in Havana speak English. Would I be able to meet regular Cuban citizens who know some English?

Answer: Many visitors to Cuba do not speak Spanish, not even minimally. And yet they have a wonderful time, meet people and have interesting discussions. Although it’s hard to estimate how many people in Havana speak English, it is not hard to find people with whom one can talk. And especially in a university environment, it is not difficult to find Cuban students who speak English with varying degrees of proficiency, from excellent to being able to say a few words. But one thing you can count on: those Cubans – whether university students or people on the street – who speak even a little bit of English will be very keen to practice on you.

At the University itself, you might want to check out the Foreign Language Faculty, where among the languages that are taught is English. Cuban students studying English are always interested to meet and speak with native English speakers. You could ask at the University for directions of how to get to the Facultad de Lenguas Extranjeras and take it from there.