• Cuba
    • Havana
Fall, J-Term, Short Term, Spring, Summer
Merit-based funding, General grants/scholarships

Program Details

Program Type
Degree Level
Host Family


Price Details
See site for pricing inquiries.
What's Included
Accommodation Activities Classes Some Meals Travel Insurance
What's Included (Extra)

Orientation & Study Tours
Health & Evacuation Insurance
Spanish Studies Abroad transcript
Support of onsite staff
Breakfast and dinner

What's Not Included
Airfare Some Meals SIM cards
May 30, 2023
Feb 25, 2020
5 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

Immerse yourself in the beauty, culture, and history of Havana, Cuba. You will take classes in Spanish at University of Havana, alongside other international students. Advanced students may also include classes with Cuban students in their schedules. Spend a semester studying Spanish language and Cuban culture, and taking classes in literature, art, history, political science, linguistics, sociology, philosophy and more. SSA's on-site Resident Director provides ongoing support during your program, and cultural immersion through activities and study tours. Experience Cuban home life with a welcoming host family in a casa particular.

Video and Photos

Diversity & Inclusion

BIPOC Support

Race and ethnicity abroad are often perceived differently than in the U.S. While abroad, you may have different experiences with your racial and ethnic identity(ies) than you do at home.

You may experience being in the minority or majority for the first time, encounter different perspectives of what it means to be from the U.S., or have stereotypes (both positive and negative) placed upon you.

While everyone’s experience is different, preparing yourself ahead of time and knowing which resources are available can be helpful.

LGBTQIA+ Support

Understanding how your sexuality or gender expression is perceived in other countries is one of the first steps in preparing for your study abroad experience.

Every country perceives sexuality and gender expression differently and you should think about how your study abroad destination may react to your identity and how freely you’ll be able to express yourself when you’re abroad. While you should not feel pressured to closet yourself while you’re away, it’s important to have a grasp on how your expression can be perceived in a different cultural context.

In order to help prepare you to have the best time while abroad, here are some resources we have gathered to get you started.

Accessibility Support

Students with disabilities successfully attend study abroad programs all over the world each year. If you are a student with any type of disability — physical, learning or mental health — , we encourage you to contact us as early as possible to discuss accommodations and support. Planning ahead and communication are important to preparing for your experience abroad.

Please note that the location that you are applying to may have specific accessibility challenges such as uneven terrain, cobblestones, stairs, lack of specialized equipment, and differing attitudes and laws regarding accessibility. You also may find that medications typically prescribed in the U.S. may not be available or legal in your host country. It is important to allow extra time to plan the appropriate arrangements for your time abroad.

However, our team at Spanish Studies Abroad is here to help support you to the best of our ability in arranging necessary accommodations for your study abroad experience. We encourage you to tell your Admissions Advisor if you need any special arrangements.

Program Highlights

  • Semester and January Term programs for university students
  • Local speaking partner (intercambio)
  • "Spanish Only" policy
  • Local and overnight excursions to immerse yourself in the culture
  • Stay with a local host family to experience Cuba's tradition of hospitality

Program Reviews

4.50 Rating
based on 2 reviews
  • 5 rating 50%
  • 4 rating 50%
  • 3 rating 0%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Academics 3.5
  • Support 3
  • Fun 4.5
  • Housing 4
  • Safety 5
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Best January Term Ever

Cuba is so amazing, but you really have to be independent, flexible, and self-motivated. You'll have an amazing time if you're looking for one! Make sure you're ready for minimal access to internet and everything happening in Spanish. You 100% need to check out the Fabrica de Arte Cubano and all the cute little bars and restaurants. Fritura de malanga is a must eat well. SO TASTY. As for classes, Cultura Cubana and Literatura Cubana are so cool. If you like literature, I encourage you to read Cuban poetry.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Bring your money in cash and don't take a taxi from the airport (happened to someone on my trip)
75 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

mixed feelings, but an overall amazing experience

Spanish Studies Abroad in Cuba was a great experience for me overall, but I want to be extremely transparent for those that are thinking of going on the program. When it comes to staff support, the women working on the program do amazing work and work really hard to make us all feel like we are a part of one big family. This is especially true when we had some special events during the term.
However, having pre-existing mental health issues, I was not provided with help even after asking for it, unlike other programs that go to Cuba. Some of the bigger groups like IFSA had their own issues, but they did provide video-chat therapy for students that requested it. If they had followed up better with helping me, I probably would have had a much better experience, especially during the first half.
Our excursions went as planned even though Cuba was in a state of instability and all the students really enjoyed these trips and connected more deeply. It was also a great time to connect with our program director. I felt like some of the activities were very adventurous and completely out of my comfort zone, but overall they were worth it.
I liked that this program was the only one with a Spanish-only policy because it encouraged us to speak more Spanish than other groups did and my Spanish improved greatly while on this program.
My host family was great and the housing was way nicer than most people would ever experience in Cuba. I was hesitant about living in someone else's home, but I made some amazing connections during my host family interactions and this is where a lot of the language practicing occurred.
There were like over 50 American students in Cuba and there were Germans, and other Europeans, so don't think you are gonna be alone in Cuba because all the programs intermingle and you can find some friends who are like you if you feel like you don't fit in with the kids in your program.
Be prepared: Cuba is HOT and buggy, you will get catcalled many times if you are a woman and if you do not look stereotypically Latin@ then people will approach you for things all the time, assuming that you are rich since you are from the States.
The academics were interesting, but not very challenging so if you get bored easily maybe The Univerity of Havana won't be the place for you. Taking integrated classes with Cuban students helps with that a lot though. It wasn't as scary as it sounded.
Be aware that the internet is expensive and hard to come by and it might drive you a little crazy. Make sure you download a VPN before you get to Cuba because, if not, you will have to find a place to illegally put it in your phone if you wanna access stuff like Spotify, etc.
Cuba is an amazing country with beautiful and passionate people and this experience has shaped my entire life and I recommend that all people go there at some point in their life. Just remember to think about how a semester is a long time and make sure you truly think about it before you decide to embark on a semester abroad in Cuba.

73 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers