First U.S. Business in Cuba/Project
of Philip Agee, Author of Inside the Company: CIA Diary/A Virtual Travel Agency
Using Electronic Commerce on the Internet.
Begin Text: This week in Havana the first U.S.-owned enterprise to open for business
in Cuba since the establishment of the U.S. trade embargo nearly forty years ago
began operations. It is a travel agency called Cubalinda.com Inter-Active Travel.
Its founder is Philip Agee, the well-known former officer of the U.S. Central
Intelligence Agency (CIA) whose books and other writings criticizing covert operations
have been published worldwide.
The ambitious operation has been no less than three years in planning and execution,
and it is based in a Havana office that has the highest technologies in computing
and informatics.It consists of a global and inter-active catalog of the entire
Cuban offer for tourists and other visitors, presented to the 130,000,000 Internet
users through a World Wide website at www.cubalinda.com. Agee's project does
not begin with tourist poles as is conventional, but with the activities that
a foreigner can enjoy in Cuba. This approach is based on the belief that travelers
who prefer individualized and specialized tourism already know what they want
to do on a vacation. Users select an activity, and Cubalinda.com, with maps, texts
and images conducts them to the practice of that activity throughout the length
and breadth of Cuba.
The current opening offer of the site is limited to activities such as beach resorts,
snorkeling, scuba diving, game fishing, golf and tennis, but eventually the site
will offer a total of 21 different activities including cross-country cycling,
spelunking, horseback trekking, medical treatments, educational courses, cultural
events and nature walks.
The website is designed so that a user anywhere in the world can make all reservations
on-line: flights, activities, hotels, travel insurance, transportation in Cuba
and excursions, thus creating a personal Travel Pak. With a simple click of the
mouse the Travel Pak is sent to Cubalinda.com for confirmations and costs. Later
the user pays the invoice on-line with his or her credit card using a high security
payments gateway, and confirmation of payment appears in the same user's Travel
In order to develop Cubalinda.com Agee has gathered together an extraordinary team of professionals
in computing, design, commerce, research, marketing and administration. The number
on his team has already reached a dozen, and they are from several countries in
addition to Cuba.
For more information contact: Armando Tabío Aranda, tel. 553980 (Havana) email: