Planning on bringing a few (ie- 5 or 10) Cuban cigars back to the US. What are the risks?
After months of looking foward to this trip, it has finally arrived. I am traveling to cuba on November 21st to participate in Earthwatch's Crocodiles of Cuba. This means that I am an American leagally traveling to Cuba- and the US government is well aware that I will be there. (I am flying to Havana via Miami).
So, would it be very ill advised to even try to bring cigars back with me? I read an OFAC site,stating that the US threatens a heafty fine if caught. But, since I am just a 'little, innocent, 17 yr old girl, bring back some cigars for my daddy' would I still be severely punished? I'm not worried about the cigars being confiscated, I'm just worried about getting in legal trouble. Any words of advice?
pease, any info would be appriciated
US security, immigration and customs have a reputation for being hard nosed insensitive brutes - I can't recommend that you bring anything restricted into the US... they're also probably immune to the batting eyelids and sweet smile routine 😉
Do you remember the innocent 21 year old girl who joked about a bomb at US security
Are you traveling through the third country (Mexico or Canada)? I don't think there is any direct flight off Miami to Havana.
I wouldn't recommend it to smuggle back some Cubans to the States with you, but you could try to send them by mail via Canada or Mexico to the States when you're having the layover there. DO NOT send anything from Cuba; it is a guarantee that the Custom will tear it apart to see what's inside.
If you have offical clearance, you've got nothing to worry about. Bring back whatever customs allows. I brought back two bottles of rum and a few cigars coming through Miami. You go through customs with people coming through from all over the world, and the agent seemed utterly nonplussed when he asked where I'd been and I said "Cuba." I was basically waved through with no inspection.
You can try mailing then true an express courier like DHL, or FED-EX, but there is still a risk.