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Irina Pino: I was born in the middle of shortages in those sixties that marked so many patterns in the world. Although I currently live in Miramar, I miss the city center with its cinemas and theaters, and the bohemian atmosphere of Old Havana, where I often go. Writing is the essential thing in my life, be it poetry, fiction or articles, a communion of ideas that identifies me. With my family and my friends, I get my share of happiness.

Repatriation to Cuba and its Advantages

July 6, 2017 | Print Print |

By Irina Pino

Photo: Osei Casanova

HAVANA TIMES — Cuba is a tourist destination. A slogan says so. But nevertheless, it is also a long term business. Therefore, many Cubans in exile are seeking out the way to be “repatriated”. And what does that mean? Well, that there are certain facilities involved, which will then translate into benefits.

This situation is like having double residency. After receiving residency, the person will have an ID card. They can stay on the island for a certain amount of time. A relative or friend needs to support you financially and put a roof over your head, while you are unable to earn a steady income.

Among the requirements of the request is one whereby the applicant must explain the way they left the country and why they are requesting to reside again in Cuba.

On the other hand, after the exiled person leaves, they need to return within 2 years maximum. They also have the right to receive free healthcare.

When they arrive on the island, the taxes on their baggage will be charged in national currency at Customs.

The most foolproof thing you can do is to set your sights on a house or apartment – if you have money – (buying a property in Cuba is much cheaper than buying a property elsewhere). The apartment rental business brings in good money if it’s done properly; restaurants and private hair salons do too. Most of these businesses have had foreign investment.

Some people seek repatriation so as not to lose their family inheritances, because their relatives are still alive. There are many different cases. For example, I have an acquaintance who gave up her residency in Spain and applied to be repatriated. The reason: to spend her old age in Cuba and to live off of the rent of the apartment that she had bought.

Similarly, emigres who are currently serving sentences in state prisons in the US are able to put in an application for repatriation via a relative who still lives in Cuba.

Let’s see what happens with all of this. Because if Donald Trump sits down and thinks about it, he might think that these exiles are cheating him to make easy money, outside the country of the American Way of Life.


What's your opinion?

  • Moses Patterson

    The Castros are promoting repatriation for only one reason. .. $$$. Retired Cubans who seek repatriation bring the benefits of a lifelong working career with them. That means outside capital infusion. They also bring their own political preferences. But to a desperate, cash-strapped Castro dictatorship, this is a small price to pay for the chance to get at their savings accounts.

    • N.J. Marti

      It’s good business, that is for sure.

  • Hector Capote

    Any recommendations on who or where I go for this process in Havana when I visit as soon as I get my passport.

    • Moses Patterson

      The Cuban embassy in Washington DC or the consulate in Miami.

  • Frank dalton

    i have decided to retire in cuba….i am a canadian however i prefer to retire in cuba for many reasons.my income will be reduced to 30,000.00 when i retire and this amount is not sufficient for me to enjoy and maintain my present life style….i will have acess to the cuban health care system which is second to none in the world.i will be living in a country devoid of drugs (maybe a little in havana) gangs….violence and protests…..yes there is a strong police presence but i am quite prepared to give up my (so called rights) for security…at my age this is more important to me.i have nothing to fear from the police because i respect the laws of cuba.i look forward to the day(very soon) that i finally recieve my permanent residense card so i can then buy my retirement home in the beautifull peacefull country of cuba…viva cuba…god bless canada!!!

    • Carlyle MacDuff

      I wish you nothing but good luck Frank. I won’t try to give you advice other than to point out that the medium sized communities are perhaps preferable to the larger ones. Secondly in general it gets hotter the further east you go. Thirdly, inflation is now hitting tourist centres like Trinidad. By your Canadian standards, houses are very cheap, but check the supplies of water, electricity and the sewerage. Make your home secure!
      Good luck again and enjoy your retirement.

    • Moses Patterson

      What you have written makes sense for you. You obviously have no family that you will miss terribly. You expect you be in relatively good health and you have no problem living in a repressed society as long as you are living will. Good for you.

      • Frank dalton

        yes you are correct…i guess at my age i am so lucky to find this country and cant wait for my retirement..yes the people are oppressed then again so are the drug dealers and other criminals”..but moses its the perfect place to retire plus of course no more harsh cananadian winters….and moses one other thing….i have great faith in the very young cubans who will not tolerate the present system and they will change it….poco a poco..

        • Moses Patterson

          In all candor, I wish you the very best.

      • CErmle

        When are you going to wake up and realize Cuba is not a repressed society. People are returning in droves. They know life in Cuba is desirable.

        • Moses Patterson

          You write “Cuba is not repressed society”. Is that what you really believe? You also write “People are returning in droves”. The statistics don’t support that.

          • Carlyle MacDuff

            I don’t think that CErmle has ever visited Cuba Moses because he is unable to make any constructive comment.

          • Moses Patterson

            The only possible explanation.

    • Well done Frank, I will be joining you shortly, my income however will be lower than yours. Good luck and if I may, Camaguey is a wonderful city to retire to

    • bjmack

      Very interesting, Frank. Please follow up with your decision or perhaps a blog.

  • Frank dalton

    of course cuba is repressed and totally controlled….no sane person can deny it and thats what makes it the perfect retirement place…..much much better than florida..the two words together makes for security for us…..and yes moses there is a sunami of older people returning to thier now peacefull country…security. security security..the cubans who now own casa particulars are becoming the new rich (middle class) .cuba is changing”…poco a poco y the best is yet to be…

    • Carlyle MacDuff

      As one whose home is in Cuba Frank, you are certainly correct in indicating that there is much room for improvement. You will enjoy the country and its people, but beneath the ‘peaceful’ surface you speak of, there is much rising discontent. I have the privilege of spending time with the younger generation, many of whom now have cell-phones and the exchange of information
      is ever increasing. For the regime, public knowledge is a major problem.

  • Ruben Alberto

    People like to repatriate to Cuba because everything is peaceful, and there is no gangs, drug dealers, or violence, because of the need of Capital to go on living and have expensive things that you see on everyone else and want to have it even if you have to sell drugs, swindle someone for it, but not in Cuba, there is no gangs, or hundreds of different types of gang members, or multiple drug dealers, and the money greed and violence that comes with that need of the MEAN GREEN, THE FRN’S. Federal Reserved Notes, in the FREE World.
    Capitalist Do Not Care About the People or their health care…
    The right wing Republicans are caring only for the GIANT CORPORATIONS, THE RICH, AND ELITE, NOTHING ELSE MATTERS…
    It just business, nothing personal, peoples are just (“STRAWMAN”) for the Corporation.
    Birth Certificates, Social Security Cards, are government instruments to gain control over peoples transactions. That is Money, how do you pay a Debt with a Debt? FRN’S have no value. Its just paper, with no Gold backing it, is it legal to pay a debt with a debt?
    SUBJECTS, that is the people do not have rights, they have only privileges.
    You want to be Free, that is FREE DUMB…

    • Carlyle MacDuff

      People Ruben Alberto repatriate to Cuba because they love their country, their family and their culture. But having spent time in the capitalist world, they now have the financial resources to live in Cuba in comfort, something which they could not achieve had they remained in Cuba.