Four decades since it was set up, the Havantur Group is still the world’s leading promoter of travel to Cuba. Its high level professionalism has enabled its growth and strengthened its position as an expert tour operator known as the Cuba Specialist.
Renowned for the specialized design of its tourist products and services, its exceptional organizational culture, the professionalism of its staff, its strong on-the-ground operational logistics and above all its philosophy of client satisfaction, Havanatur has earned the international prestige it enjoys today.
A bit of history
In the 1950s tourism was not a notable economic sector in Cuba. In fact tourism to the island was declining since those who could afford those who could afford vacations preferred to take them elsewhere. From 1959, the situation declined further due to hostility from the United States, and the nascent Cuban state’s main aspiration was to prioritize national tourism.
Development plans were put in place and institutions were created to promote national tourism. From 1973 an idea emerged to start growing the international tourism sector, boosted by internal and external conditions more favourable to its development.
On December 19th 1978 Havanatur was founded, a small operation at the beginning but one with many responsibilities and great determination with just and humanitarian principles, as an initiative of the Commanderin- Chief Fidel Castro Ruz.
At the outset it was under the tutelage of the CIMEX corporation and its initial goal was to promote Cuba to tourists from the United States, with flights and services designed to reunite families and a view to growing Cuba’s image as an international tourist destination.
So Havanatur began, years ago, working in different parts of the world, expanding and consolidating its position as leader in the Cuban market through a network of tour operators - branches of its own as well as representative agents. Offering welcoming, personalized services Havanatur has ensured high client satisfaction and sustained growth in the numbers of tourists heading to Cuba.
Forty years on, the Havanatur brand has asserted itself globally in the principal markets, expanding its operations across twelve countries. It is growing consistently in developing markets while also rolling out new products and services aimed at various international sectors.
Currently the group is made up of fourteen individual agencies as well as its branches in the Americas, Europe and the Caribbean. It has two receiving agencies on the ground in Cuba. Havanatur Tour and Travel welcomes clients arriving in Cuba and looks after them in country, with eight branches in the principal tourist destinations around the island.
Havanatur Celimar is the leader in the US market, selling airline tickets to and from the US as well as developing specialized people-to-people programmes. Since it was founded, Havanatur’s fundamental purpose has been to win tourist business, attracting visitors to Cuba and other destinations, providing efficiency alongside welcoming and personalized customer services.
Today Havanatur boasts a broad portfolio of products, well recognized in the global tourist sector. It provides specialized programmes, it functions as a corporate events organizer and incentive tour provider, provides services to cruise ships particularly those from the US, and offers a wide array of excursions across the island for visitors to get to know Cuba better.
Havantur’s conscientious efforts are confirmed by the numbers. Some twenty per cent of all visitors to Cuba over these years have been Havantur clients. Its name invokes trust and holds prestige among its customers. Its staff are committed to making sure each visitor coming to Cuba through Havanatur has an incomparable experience in the hands of the Cuba Specialists.