Skift Take

Cuba was betting on the return of visitors to drive its economic recovery this year. But a late reopening and continued U.S. travel restrictions could leave the Caribbean nation high and dry.

Cuba is struggling to reawaken its tourism industry after months of pandemic-induced slumber as travelers stay away, threatening to derail the government's plan to haul the economy out of a deepening crisis. The communist-run island, long a popular Caribbean destination, has been betting on tourism to power 4 percent economic growth this year after the coronavirus pandemic slashed output, resulting in food and medicine shortages and power outages, and contributing to the largest anti-government protests since Fidel Castro's 1959 revolution. Unlike many regional neighbors, some analysts believe Cuba erred on the side of caution in response to Covid-19. It kept its borders largely shuttered, with a few exceptions, until mid-November 2021, when it had vaccinated the majority of its