Next Step in Normalization of Relations: U.S., Cuba Agree to Commercial Flights

Flights depature board
Boarding soon
Feb 16, 2016
WASHINGTON, DC -- The United States and Cuba signed an agreement this morning to resume commercial air traffic for the first time in five decades.  U.S. airlines can now start bidding on routes for as many as 110 U.S.-Cuba daily flights - more than five times the current number. All flights operating between the two countries today are charters.  

Tourism is still barred by law so Americans traveling to Cuba still need to meet one of 12 criteria authorized by the U.S. government.

“Air travel between the two countries will help facilitate tourism, business, and economic activity in Cuba,” said USA Rice President & CEO Betsy Ward.  “USA Rice has been at the forefront of the push to open up trade with Cuba because we know normal trade will get the Cuban economy moving to create capital that can be used to purchase the products they need, namely U.S. rice.”