Question: I currently hold a Dominican Republic passport but I’m a resident (and live in) the United States. I would like to obtain a 3 or 6 month Cuban Visa. Is it possible to achieve this without having any family members that live in Cuba? Also how do I manage my money; I do not want to bring too much cash & would prefer to have a debit card.
Answer: Like all countries, Cuban immigration does not work based on one’s country of residence but based on one’s nationality. Since you hold a passport from the Dominican Republic, this is the passport you’ll need to present for soliciting a visa from Cuba.
Normally, Cuba issues one month tourist visas which can be extended, within the country, for a second month at the discretion of immigration authorities. The only exception are holders of a Canadian passport, who can come with a three-month visa which can be extended, within the country, for an additional three months – again, at the discretion of Cuban immigration authorities. This privilege is partly due to the uninterrupted relations between the two countries for over half a century.
For foreigners who work in Cuba but who are not permanent residents, (equivalent to a Green Card in the US or Landed Immigration Status in Canada), they are issued with a special visa status called temporary resident. This status is directly tied to one’s employment, and once the employment ends, the individual is expected to leave the country within a month.
You might want to contact the Cuban Consulate in Washington DC for additional information. You will find their contact information in the response to the question “From the U.S. how can I get additional information on visas for traveling to Cuba?” under the Cuban Laws section of the Havana Times page on Cuba Travel.
As for managing money and what kinds of debit cards, etc. are acceptable in Cuba, please consult the Currency section of the Cuba Travel page.