As reported by the Associated Press, and carried by the Washington Post, one major move toward normalized relations between Cuba and the United States has been made not by diplomats, but by entrepreneurs. Airbnb has opened its crowd-sourced roomfinding service to Cubans and Americans, such that American tourists visiting Havana can book space in private homes
— as of today.
From the article:
“We believe that Cuba could become one of Airbnb’s biggest markets in Latin America,” said Kay Kuehne, regional director for Airbnb, the website and mobile app that allows users to book rooms in more than 1 million private homes around the world. “We are actually plugging into an existing culture of micro-enterprise in Cuba. The hosts in Cuba have been doing for decades what we just started doing seven years ago. ... Because of continuing restrictions under the U.S. embargo, the company’s Cuba listing will only be available to U.S. travelers visiting under one of 12 U.S.-government approved categories of legal travel, ranging from professional research to religious activities.”