US bank offering debit card for American travelers to Cuba

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

HAVANA (AP) — American travelers who carry in wads of cash while visiting to Cuba will now have a debit card option.

Stonegate Bank of Pompano, Florida announced Thursday it is offering a debit MasterCard for use on the island.

The bank says U.S. travelers will be able to use the card at any of Cuba's 10,000 hotels, restaurants and other sites.

MasterCard announced in January it would begin handling U.S. card transactions in Cuba, but most credit-card issuers still prohibited transactions on the island, making the move largely symbolic.

Presidents Barack Obama and Raul Castro announced plans to restore relations between the former Cold War foes nearly a year ago. The U.S. lifted a ban on U.S. banks and credit card companies from doing business in Cuba as part of the normalization.