WASHINGTON (AP) — Cuba's surprise decision to make it easier for citizens to leave the island isn't going to mean they can soon start booking tickets on commercial planes bound for Miami.
The U.S. government still has to give permission to would-be immigrants and tourists to come to America legally. And there's a multiyear wait for a visa, which means the average Cuban may not be leaving home any time soon.
The State Department says Cuban President Raul Castro's decision to end the much-hated exit visa program doesn't change U.S. visa rules. With entry visa requirements in most Latin American countries, including Mexico, it may be tough to find a place to go.
Cubans who sneak into the United States are generally allowed to stay.