It’s about to get easier for U.S. citizens to fly to Cuba.
The United States and Cuba have reached an agreement to allow commercial flights to operate between the two countries for the first time in decades, with major U.S. airlines possibly set to take off for the island next year.
The agreement was made official on Thursday to mark the one-year anniversary of the announcements by Presidents Obama and Castro that their countries were restoring diplomatic ties.
Charter flights are currently the only way to fly directly from the United States to Cuba. Those flights can run upwards of $500 round-trip for a less than an hour flight from Miami to Havana. And travelers have frequently complained about lengthy check-in procedures.
The new arrangement means you might finally be able to buy a plane ticket online.
At least one major carrier, JetBlue, is now flying charter flights to Cuba. Other carriers, including American Airlines and United Airlines, have expressed interest in starting commercial flights as soon as they get permission.
But don't book your island vacation just yet.
U.S. regulations still prohibit travel to Cuba for tourism. Americans are, however, allowed to legally visit the island for one of 12 specific purposes, ranging from visiting family in Cuba to traveling for business, government or educational purposes.
Let's hope that'll change soon too.