Tampa-Cuba Ferry Proposed
Posted Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 05:03 pm
By Steve Newborn (Send E-Mail)
TAMPA (2011-3-15) –
President Obama recently allowed flights from Tampa to Cuba. Now, two
companies are vying to establish what would be the first
regularly-scheduled ferry service to the communist country.
But first, some hurdles have to be overcome. The biggest is getting
permission from the U.S. Treasury Department, which regulates contact
with the island nation. One of the companies is United Carribean Lines,
based in Orlando. Company president Bruce Nierenberg wants to take
advantage of newly-relaxed rules on cultural and educational tours in
Cuba for Americans.
"Since the Cuban-Americans who go quite often take a lot of stuff with
them – clothing, electronics, medicines, to friends and relatives in
Cuba, a ferry would make it much more capable for them to take as much
as they like, and without it costing a lot," he says.
Nierenberg says the cost of tickets without a cabin would be a fraction
of the cost of an airplane ticket. He hopes to start the ferry service
from the Port of Tampa early next year.