Fly American First Class To Cuba For Less Than The Price Of Economy

Many U.S. airlines have started flying to Cuba within the past few weeks, and they’re not performing especially well. So while airfare to Cuba was initially very expensive, we’ve seen some great fare sales lately. For example, I’ve seen roundtrip tickets between Fort Lauderdale and Havana on JetBlue for ~$135, and roundtrip tickets between Los Angeles and Havana on Alaska for ~$330, both of which are great deals.

However, if you’d like to travel to Cuba in comfort, there’s an incredible deal on American at the moment. American has published ~$500 roundtrip first class fares between Seattle and Havana. That’s actually cheaper than most economy fares in the market.


There’s no minimum stay required, and there’s availability through the end of the schedule on virtually all dates. You’re best off using Google Flights to search routings, as usual.


It’s only American that has such low first class fares, though do keep in mind that American and Alaska have a frequent flyer partnership. Since this flight is out of Seattle, I imagine there are a lot of Alaska loyalists who might be interested in this fare, as it’s a great way to earn Alaska Mileage Plan miles (you’d earn both elite qualifying and redeemable miles at the rate of 150% of distance flown).

Keep in mind that while travel restrictions between the U.S. and Cuba have been eased, technically U.S. citizens are only allowed to visit Cuba for one of 12 approved reasons, include the following:

family visits; official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments, and certain intergovernmental organizations; journalistic activity; professional research and professional meetings; educational activities; religious activities; public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions; support for the Cuban people; humanitarian projects; activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes; exportation, importation, or transmission of information or information materials; and certain authorized export transactions.

The most popular reason to use to visit Cuba is “support of the Cuban people.” As far as most people are concerned, spending money in Cuba constitutes “support of the Cuban people,” and is perfectly acceptable. The categories are intentionally vague, as they seem to have no issue with tourists visiting (and I know dozens of people who have visited using that reason).

I’ve been wanting to visit Cuba, and a fare like this is super tempting. I’d recommend booking soon, as I can’t imagine this fare will stick around very long.

Anyone considering taking advantage of this great American first class fare to Cuba?

(Tip of the hat to tomasdev)


  1. funny you mention that, cuz yesterday i just booked my first ticket to HAV, and used the “support for cuban people” reason.

  2. Lucky, are the immigration officers really OK with tourist visits or they are simply not asking too many questions? FAQ on the department of treasury web page defines quite well what they mean by “support for the Cuban people”:

    OFAC has issued a general license that incorporates prior specific licensing policy and
    authorizes, subject to conditions, travel-related transactions and other transactions that are
    intended to provide support for the Cuban people, which include activities of recognized human
    rights organizations; independent organizations designed to promote a rapid, peaceful transition
    to democracy; and individuals and non-governmental organizations that promote independent
    activity intended to strengthen civil society in Cuba. The traveler’s schedule of activities must
    not include free time or recreation in excess of that consistent with a full-time schedule in Cuba.
    For a complete description of what this general license authorizes and the restrictions that apply,
    see 31 CFR § 515.574.

  3. @ FIdel
    GF and I just got back from Havana. When the CBP officer asked where we were coming from I said Havana, he simply said welcome back, handed back our passports and sent us on our way.

  4. I can see Obama giving Americans a hard time for flYing to Cuba for other than the 12 reasons listed while giving work authorizations to illegals.

    Stupid hypocrites.

  5. The main thing that makes me uncertain about going there is where to stay? I understand there are “particolares” or something where you stay in someone’s guesthouse, etc. But I would rather have a simple basic hotel option. If there’s any information about options like that I would love to find out.

  6. @erick allen
    There are good, simple hotels – the Iberostar-operated Parque Central might be what you’re after.

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