I just arrived in Havana having flown Iberia airlines (part of the Oneworld alliance) from London Heathrow via Madrid. Some delay landing at Madrid as only one runway was in operation but they got all of us travelling onto Havana to the gate with 1 minute to spare!! Flights uneventful. On arrival I was through immigration very quickly – they were polite and welcoming. I had only hand luggage so was then out into the arrivals lounge in no time. Some chaos as so many people were there to welcome relatives home or to greet visitors.
As instructed by our hosts I went to find the Havanatur Office. It is across a pedestrian crossing outside the main airport building where there are a small group of offices – just about 20 metres away from the arrivals hall. The Havantur Office is marked and the staff were expecting me and said ‘Prader-Willi’. They immediately arranged a taxi, which I had paid for in advance, to take me to the hotel. Very pleasant taxi driver.
I arrived at the Hotel Nacional and again it was very efficient and welcoming. I had booked the hotel in advance from the UK through Havantur and paid by credit card through a link they sent. After checking in I arranged connection to the internet to send this blog post. They have given me a small suite – perhaps an advantage being President of IPWSO! The space is great – clean, air conditioning, etc. Tomorrow we meet with our Cuban hosts and I will write more in the evening.
Professor Tony Holland