Havana

Questions and Answers - Cuba


Q.

Is this a trip for couples?

A.

Absolutely not, most of our participants travel alone. But we've had couples join us a few times, and they are welcome.

Q.

Can I join alone? I do not have a dance partner.

A.

We provide dance partners for the Salsa lessons. Our dancers are for the most part from the Cuban National TV Ballet, although we also have a few professional dance teachers to either work with absolut beginners or with very advanced dancers. For our outings at night, we will also provide a sub-set of dance partners and instructors for the group so that we can practice what we learned to live music. Read more about our instructors and dance partners.

Q.

I typically travel independently and would never consider a tour. What should I expect?

A.

Most, if not all our participants fall into this category. Dancing is a social activity and can only be enjoyed with others, so there is nothing better than to join a small group of friends to travel together. Our trip to Havana is an Un-Tour, no days spent on a tour bus, no large groups, no hotels... You will stay with regular Cuban families and immerse fully into life in Havana, you will meet the dancers from the TV Ballet and explore the city together, you will not feel like a tourist at all.

Q.

I don't speak Spanish. Will this be a problem?

A.

We will always have at least one English speaking guide with you at all times, as well as the required Salsa Retreat representative. Our English speaking guide will be available to help with translations during all the lessons and workshops as well. For the homestay, it can be helpful to bring a Spanish phrase book, after all this is a great opportunity to practice some Spanish.

Q.

What is the typcial group size?

A.

Salsa Retreat groups range betweeen 10 and 15 participants. This way we can ensure optimal individual attention during all retreat activities and provide each guest with a unique experience.

Q.

What style of Salsa will be taught?

A.

Cuban Salsa

Q.

Why is the retreat in the city, and not on the beach?

A.

People-to-people cultural trips to Cuba do not allow for tourist activities, such as beach visits.

Q.

Do I have to participate in all the activities and meals?

A.

All retreats feature our complete dance & percussion program and delicious meals. The people-to-people license does not allow for personal explorations of the city and all participants are required to stay with the group at all times.


Q.

How far in advance should I book my retreat?

A.

Retreat dates can become sold out between 4 - 3 months in advance, and up to 6 months in advance for popular dates. As dates often fill up fast it is always best to reserve your place as soon you are sure you would like to attend that retreat.

Q.

When and where should I book my flight?

A.

We will book the flight from Cancun to Havana together with a travel agent in Canada. You will be responsible to book you own flight to Cancun and back home, but please wait with this until the trip is confirmed.

Q.

Do I need travel insurance and where can I get it?

A.

Salsa Retreat requires that you purchase third party travel insurance in order to receive a refund if you have to cancel your vacation. First you could check if your credit card includes travel insurance, and if yes see if the coverage fits your needs. For medical insurance during your stay in Cuba, you will be able to purchase this after you receive your authorization letter from World Nomads - Affordable travel insurance for the smart adventurer!

Q.

What type of dancing or Salsa experience is required?

A.

All levels are welcome, including absolute beginners. Participants will be matched with dance partners to accomodate an optimal learning experience for all levels. We will talk to you about your dancing background to find the best dance partner for you.

Q.

Is Salsa difficult to learn for someone with no dance experience?

A.

Salsa is fairly easy to pick up and make good progress on for absolute beginners, although reaching expert levels takes serious work. The one-week intensive format will be very effective and you will be able to dance in a social setting by the end of the week. Beginner follows will advance a lot faster than leads, which has caused some frustration in leads in the past. But regardless of how much you learn during dance class, you will have lots of fun!

Q.

I am an advanced dancer, what can I expect to learn?

A.

Afro-Cuban body movements and improved musicality! In addition, you will have lots of fun!

Q.

Do I need to bring a partner?

A.

No, all dance partners will be provided by the dance school. But if you want to bring your dance partner, that works as well.

Q.

Is it okay to come alone?

A.

Yes! Your Salsa Retreat experience is group-oriented, so there will be plenty of time to meet people and make new friends.

Q.

Can I travel with a group?

A.

Certainly! A Salsa Retreat is a great way to enjoy a vacation with friends and family members.

Q.

Will I have time to explore Havana on my own at night?

A.

We will offer opportunities to go out and explore the dance and music scene at night with our guides.

Q.

What should I pack?

A.

Excercise or workout clothes for the dance lessons. Something nice for nights. Bring comfortable walking shoes for the tours and city excursions.

Q.

Where do I fly to?

A.

Cancun. We will book the ticket from Cancun to Havana together as a group.

Q.

What official documentation is needed to get into Cuba?

A.

A valid U.S. passport to travel in and out of the U.S. along with a tourist visa for Cuba, which we will receive when we book the Havana flight. Your passport MUST have at least 6 months remaining before expiration to be considered valid. Please check with your airline or travel agent if you have additional questions regarding necessary documentation both for you and for minors. These requirements can change without notice. For the most up to date information please visit http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english.html

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