Last updated on April 26th, 2023 at 11:19 pm

You planned a gorgeous vacation and chose Cuba. Let’s be honest, you probably chose it because it looked stunning and was the cheapest. This is a large reason why I love Cuba too, so I get it.

That being said, in order to continue to create an enjoyable vacation spot for you and I, there can be a shortage of supplies for Cuban people. This can present a moral dilemma for a lot of people, as to whether or not they choose to visit Cuba. Ultimately, the decision is up to you, however, I strongly suggest finding a way to help out, if you do choose to visit. 

Some ways to help include; taking local tours, eating at off-resort restaurants and bringing gifts for Cubans. This blog post will highlight which supplies & gifts Cubans really need.

Playa Guardalavaca, Holguin, Cuba

What objects are hard to get in Cuba?

Most Cuban people you interact with have trouble accessing daily necessities. Their income/spending system is different than before the pandemic. They have to use a bank card that only accepts foreign currency. 

With that, purchasing everyday supplies has become a challenge. When I visited Cuba as a child, my mother would bring toiletries and clothes to the staff at the hotel and I took this into my practice as I continued to visit their beautiful country. Continue reading for what to bring to Cuba as gifts!

What to bring as gifts for Cubans?

Keep some space in your checked luggage for these items. If you are travelling with an all inclusive trip, you most likely have checked luggage included. Make sure all of your liquids are put into your checked bag so as not to get any liquids confiscated.

TIP: Purchase the resources or items you want to gift to Cubans, in CUBA. This can help support the economy and the people.

1. Medication/First Aid Supplies

  • Everyday over the counter medications ie. pain meds (Tylenol, Advil) & allergy meds
  • Polysporin, antibacterial creams, bandaids, gauze, medical tape
  • Prescription medications; (this is not something I advise getting involved in, unless you are a part of a health organization running a program).

2. Toiletries

  • Cream & moisturizers 
  • Shower supplies: Shampoos, conditioners, soap/body soaps
  • Dental: tooth paste, tooth brush, floss
  • Deodorant 
  • Razors

3. Baby Supplies

  • Diapers
  • Baby wipes
  • Creams & soaps
  • Formula 

4. Clothing

  • T-shirts, shorts
  • Shoes & sandals
  • Anything you can think of!

5. Food

  • Canned foods
  • Dried goods
  • Foods that won’t get spoilt in transit
Another way to help out, is to leave your left over products. For example, if you do not finish soap or shampoo while travelling there, give it to someone you feel is in need. Although these may seem like small things to you, they are helpful and appreciated by many people in Cuba. If you choose to visit Cuba, help out in some way. 
Bringing supplies & gifts for Cuban resort workers or locals is a great way to help out. Read my Caribbean packing list for more ideas on what to pack when visiting Caribbean countries.