I did not circle anything and still got through though I had to calculate the value of everything I was carrying even my headphones. As I did not write that much in that topic about the actual process I will do it here:
I was going through flights and my options where either flying with an European carrier which is ridiculously expensive for flights to Cuba or what I did which is flying Norwegian from CPH to FLL then American or Spirit to and from Cuba and later FLL to CPH. I had my Norwegian flight on the 24th of December where I only need an ESTA and a passport. As I never know when I will need to reach America I always have a valid ESTA just in case. As my Cuban/Swedish friends where coming on the 31st I got a week in South Florida which has since a long time been one of my favorite places. I stayed two nights in Ft Lauderdale and later took an Uber to Miami where I stayed five nights. I had previously bought a “Cuba Visa” from a travel agency in Copenhagen which needed no whatsoever check (they didn’t even look at my passport).
What surprised me was that 48 hours before departure with American Airlines from MIA to HAV American Airlines drastically tried calling me. I have flown a lot of times and never has an airline ever called me, the closest thing I have gotten to a call have been text messages. First I thought it was a scam so I didn’t answer but the second time I did while waiting to buy tickets a Sightseeing Bus. Then a very nice lady asked my reason for travel and I said “Tourism” which afterwards she started talking about 12 reason for travel to Cuba and tourism is not allowed almost like she was reading a page long monologue. During her Monologue I multiple times attempted to make her understand that I am not an American Citizen and I am Swedish. Finally she understood that I am not American Citizen and she asks me “Where do you then come from?” my Answer is “Sweden” then she says “That doesn’t exist”. My instinct at this point is attempting to describe my country so I describe how our flag is a yellow cross on a blue background and famous Swedish people. She still did not think my country existed. I told her to do a search and call me back when she found my country. After five minutes she calls back saying happily “I found your country and the 12 reasons dont matter in your circumstance”.
Afterwards she starts rambling on exactly what check in, what gate, that I need to get a couple of stamps at the airport, where they are, etc. I toold her that I am sorry but I cant remember all that please email it to my email address which I said. The email is as follows:
"Mr. Christian Palsson
Thank you for your time today regarding your upcoming trip to Cuba. The day of your flight, you will need check in with the American Airlines counter 8 in Terminal D. Once you receive your boarding pass, proceed to the Cuba Ready Station located before TSA Security Gate to receive a stamp on your boarding pass from our staff. Without this stamp, you will not be allowed in the plane. An additional Cuba Ready Station will be located near your boarding gate for your convenience between gates D12/D14 & D37. Your gate will be D14.
Check in Process
1) Check in with American Airlines to receive your boarding pass
2) Check in with Cuba Ready Station to receive your stamp
3) Proceed to boarding gate
4) Enjoy your trip!
When I arrived at the airport I went to the “Cuba section”. I immediately felt discriminated as I alerted help as my check in machine was broken but somehow every one who spoke spanish got higher priority than me. When boarding and deboarding I also got randomly pushed and multiple people being rude. Somehow I was the only person on that plane without a blood connection to Cuba. Anyways that did not continue and on Cuba everyone was extremely nice. I got a customs form and a healthcare form to fill in on the flight. The customs form was declaring whatever you are bringing in and how much it is worth and the healthcare form is whether you have various types of secretion or not. When I arrived at HAV there was this dark, warm horribly smelling control area where they took a picture of me using some 10$ webcam.
On my flight home (HAV - FLL with Spirit) there was nothing unusual except for that the ground crew where American and flew with us like they would in very remote places. As I had a short connection and the US has a stupid policy not allowing international passengers to connect I had to do all the immigration go out of the terminal and walk over to the Norwegian terminal. My Norwegian flight to CPH was completely normal. The flights this way cost only a third of what Air Berlin, Iberia or KLM would have charged me and I had a brilliant opportunity to revisit South Florida.