If you’re a U.S. citizen and diving the waters off Cuba has been on your bucket list, the U.S. government this week made it even harder to even take an “educational trip.”

On April 17th, the U.S. government announced it is “holding the Cuban regime accountable for repressing the Cuban people and supporting the Maduro regime in Venezuela through multiple actions, including by restricting non-family travel to Cuba, or in other words, ‘veiled tourism.’

This week, the U.S. Commerce Department issued a rule that pretty much ends “group people-to-people educational travel” to Cuba. Unless you purchased a flight or reserved accommodation in Cuba before this week, you won’t be able to do so moving forward.

According to the U.S. government:

“Restricting non-family travel to Cuba will limit aircraft and vessel traffic, thus steering money away from the Cuban regime and its military and security services who control the tourism industry in Cuba.”

So as beautiful as the dive sites off the island nation are, U.S. citizens and dive travel companies will have to wait for a thaw in relations between the two countries before dive trips can resume.

John Liang
John Liang is the News Editor at DeeperBlue.com. He first got the diving bug while in High School in Cairo, Egypt, where he earned his PADI Open Water Diver certification in the Red Sea off the Sinai Peninsula. Since then, John has dived in a volcanic lake in Guatemala, among white-tipped sharks off the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, and other places including a pool in Las Vegas helping to break the world record for the largest underwater press conference.

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