Tag Archives: havana

Travel News: State Dept says Renew your US Passport Now


State Dept. Says Renew Your Expiring US Passport Now!

In general, for regular applications, the State Department lists the turnaround time as 6-8 weeks (although wait times usually end up shorter than that), and by paying an extra fee you can have that cut down to 2-3 weeks. In urgent circumstances, travelers can get a same-day passport renewal at a local passport office, if they can prove they are traveling sooner than the normal wait time. While the State Department promises to do a better job of staying on top of the flood of applications than they did ten years ago, if your expiration date ends in a seven, better to get on it early–specially because applications tend to spike in spring and summer as people gear up for vacation. And remember, some countries require you to have six months of validity left to enter, not something you want to find out the hard way. On average, the State Department processes around 13 million passport applications a year–last year, it saw 16.8 applications-so while 20.5 million is out of the norm, the State Department has seemingly learned to expect major increases of this magnitude every ten years when that initial flood of passports is up for renewal.

machu picchu peru 

Goway lays out Peru’s new rules for visiting Machu Picchu

New admission rules for Machu Picchu, which (as of now) go into effect January 2018. Ticket sales will be divided into a morning ticket 8am to 12pm and an afternoon ticket 12pm to 5:30pm. Change in cost for a ticket has not been announced. Travelers can buy both to spend a full day at the site. “Initially this change was to begin mid-2017, but after consultations with tour operators locally and internationally the date has been unofficially moved to Jan 2018,” says Goway. The number of visitors has grown annually, from low hundred thousands in 1980s to a peak of 1.4 million tourists in 2014. The ticket changes are an attempt to ease the stress on the fragile ruins, and keep it in good shape and accessibility for future travelers.  

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Holland America Adds Cuba Calls

Holland America Line has received approval to begin sailing to Cuba from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, starting with the Dec. 22, 2017, 12-day holiday cruise aboard the Veendam, according to a statement from the company. The addition of Veendam itineraries will help meet the growing demand for premium cruise experiences to Cuba, the company said. Nine seven-day itineraries will feature the capital city Havana, and three of these will add another Cuba call at Cienfuegos. Depending on the departure day, cruises include the Cuba ports, as well as a combination of Caribbean ports, including Amber Cove, Dominican Republic; Belize City, Belize; Costa Maya and Cozumel, Mexico; George Town, Grand Cayman; Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos; Key West, Florida; and Montego Bay, Jamaica. The series of Cuban cruises will debut with the Dec. 22, 2017, 12-day holiday sailing roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale. In addition to the seven-day cruises, an 11-day spring cruise sails March 17, 2018, and also features the Cuban ports of Havana and Cienfuegos, as well as Key West, Cozumel, Montego Bay and Georgetown. The final seven-day Cuba sailing departs on April 18, 2018.



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NEW: Cuba!

Our preferred vendor General Tours has partnered up with Insight Cuba for some incredible (and legal) itineraries to Cuba. Dates on offer run through April 2014. If you are interested, please contact us at 503-224-0180 or 800-821-0401, or email us at info@wittravel.com. We can talk both wishlists or logistics!

General Tours

Explore, Engage and Discover the True Spirit of Cuba

Introducing 4 People-to-People Journeys in partnership with Insight Cuba


From the colorful streets of Havana and the Colonial-era charms of Trinidad to the tranquility of the western provinces and the artistic vibrancy of Santiago de Cuba, these unique programs are filled with authentic and engaging contacts with island residents!

Scenic Cuba
8 days featuring Havana and the Tobacco Country of Pinar del Río

Discover bustling Havana and the beautiful countryside on this memorable trip enriched by authentic encounters with island residents from all backgrounds. Visit art displays, musical performances, local schools and nature reserves. Learn about Cuban farmers at Vivero Organoponico and about education at La Escuela Taller Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos. Chat with students and chefs of the Culinary School over fresh lunches and learn about the history of Cuban Judaism.


Classic Cuba
8 days including the UNESCO World Heritage sites of Trinidad

Encounter the island’s warm spirit as the residents of Havana, Cienfuegos and Colonial Trinidad open their hearts and shed light on their fascinating lives. Meet with local experts on conservation, literacy, ballet, architecture, and medicine.


Cuban Music & Art
9 days showcasing the island’s pulsating sounds and vibrant colors

Cuba comes alive on this unique journey planned for music and art enthusiasts. Meet island residents who live and breathe artistic expression. Chat with professional photographers at a famous gallery, get to know local artists in their home studios, and hear musicians jam at La Zorra y El Cuervo.

cuba4NEW! Undiscovered Cuba
12 days featuring charming lesser-visited towns all across Cuba

This exclusive cross-island odyssey gets you behind the scenes and into the art and culture of smaller towns across Cuba usually missed by American travelers. Explore the incredible architecture of Old Havana and connect with residents, writers, artists, musicians, farmers, and dancers in the community. Immerse yourself in the island lifestyle and its thriving cultural scene.

cuba5    insight cuba

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