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American Travelers heading to Cuba will need cash, and a good bit of it.†Cuban Convertible Pesos CUC$
U.S. visitors suffer sticker shock at the island's lofty prices almost as fast as they notice Havana's colonial architecture.
Most of the basic needs of travelers: hotels, rental cars and restaurants are expensive, compared to other Latin American countries. However, there are alternatives for traveling on the cheap, such as casas particulares cost about CUC$ 35 to US$ 50 per night, private homes whose owners have government permission to rent rooms to visitors.
Hard-currency peso used mostly by tourists and foreign companies on the island is now be worth US$ 1. Each hard currency peso "Convertible Pesos" is worth 24 of the standard Cuban pesos with which most Cubans are paid in an unusual two-tiered currency system. Base exchange rate is US$ 1.00 to CUC$ 1.00
Do not change money on the street, is illegal.
Always bring only new notes, without any damage or marks, all the coins are useless.
Take cash to Cuba, exchange your money in the hotel are usually very expensive.
• ATMs Not widely available outside tourist areas.
• Travelerís Cheques banks charge high commission to cash them, not all the places accept them.
• Credit Cards you can get cash with any non US credit card. Bring your passport, banks charge extra commission
• Counterfeit Convertible Pesos CUC$ are quite common, do not change money on the street.
The best option for Americans is to purchase all-inclusive package from Canada, hotel and rent a car online.
Cuba has two currencies: the Cuban peso, known as moneda nacional, which Cubans typically get as salaries and use in routine purchases; and the Cuban convertible peso, which is called the CUC$ and informally known as the chavito by Cubans on the island.
A Cuban convertible peso is worth 24 Cuban Pesos, though most travelers have little use for the latter. Cuba officially sets the value of the CUC$ at $1.00, the currency charge a rate of $US 1.00 to CUC$ 1.00
Foreign Currency Accepted by Cuban Banks - Exchage Rates to Cuban Convertible Peso CUC $
Most people visit Cuba because of family ties, curiosity, business or low prices at seaside resorts, so the island isn't trying very hard to compete with other spots in the Caribbean. If you think you're going to spend $100 a day, take $150, because Cuba is expensive, and generally you're going to want to do something for someone.