Above: an Airbnb unit in Havana
By the Cuba Journal staff
What’s it like to rent an Airbnb unit in Cuba?
The Associated Press recently did just that, chronicling the various ways Airbnb listings in Cuba are “a little different.”
“For one thing, most Cubans don’t have easy email access. So it can take days to get booking confirmation,” writes Beth J. Harpaz. “For another, while Airbnb accommodations vary everywhere, it’s especially hard for Cuban hosts to get quality materials and skilled labor to spiff things up, and many neighborhoods suffer from decades of neglect. You might end up in a luxurious villa that looks like a magazine cover, or a rundown building reminiscent of the Lower East Side of Manhattan circa 1980.”
On the other hand, using Airbnb is a “great way to connect with locals and see daily life up close,” she writes.
While renting an Airbnb unit is legal, travel to Cuba by Americans remains restricted to one of 12 licensed categories — and not for pure tourism.
Airbnb made news by first launching operations in Cuba in April.
The Caribbean island is now Airbnb’s fastest-growing market.