Serrano Language to End Cuba Family Travel Restrictions Implemented

New Regulations Issued Immediately Easing Restrictions

March 12, 2009 – Washington DC – Today, Congressman José E. Serrano announced that the omnibus language he authored easing travel restrictions on Cuban-Americans’ family visits to Cuba had been implemented. In coming weeks, new agricultural and medical sales travel license guidelines will be issued as his language also directed.

“I’m very pleased to see the immediate implementation of the changes my section of the omnibus bill ordered to loosen restrictions on family travel for Cuban-Americans,” said Congressman Serrano. “There can now be no doubt that the days when the U.S. government tells Cuban-Americans they cannot see their families are over. That is a welcome change, and a move towards a humane and rational travel policy.”

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control issued the following guidance last night after the bill was signed:

Office of Foreign Assets Control


The Office of Foreign Assets Control has issued and posted on its website a general license for visits to close relatives in Cuba in response to section 621 of the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009. This general license reinstates the authorization for family travel to Cuba that existed prior to the June 16, 2004 amendments to sections 515.560 and 515.561 of 31 CFR chapter V. It authorizes persons subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to travel to Cuba to visit close relatives for an unlimited period of time once every 12 months and to engage in travel-related transactions at the “maximum per diem rate” in effect at the time of travel, as established by the State Department. For more information, please visit OFAC’s Guidance On Implementation Of Cuba Travel And Trade-Related Provisions Of The Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009