Cuba raises state prices for cigars by 20%?


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I was wrong.  A Gaceta Oficial was published  YESTERDAY.   FINANZAS Y PRECIOS GOC-2020-689-O77 RESOLUCIÓN NO. 258/2020 I have put the new price list into a Google Sheet.  SEE IT HERE. R

Air service between Russia and Cuba has been resumed since November. Our friends have flown to the island and are sending unpleasant news from there. One of the Directors of LCDH said that the governm

Maybe possible in airlines from countries with corrupt customs officials. Generally crewmembers have a smaller allowance than passengers as they constantly fly in & out. In my 35 yr airl

Questions for the experts here--I will make it multiple choice:

(1) These prices are totally decoupled from future international prices.

(2) This definitely means there will be similar increases in international prices in the near future.

(3) These prices will have some affect on international prices (please describe).

(4) No clue.

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4 minutes ago, Cairo said:

(3) These prices will have some affect on international prices (please describe).

International prices, at least from certain online vendors are now in a supply and demand mode. Supply is low, demand is high, prices go up on hot items (and generally across the board). If cheap supply out of Cuba drops off as an alternative source of cigars (long term, short term that has already happened with the fall in travel), that will bring more demand to online sales, resulting in higher prices, even if distributors don't raise their prices (which may also happen).

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9 minutes ago, Cairo said:

Questions for the experts here--I will make it multiple choice:

(1) These prices are totally decoupled from future international prices.

(2) This definitely means there will be similar increases in international prices in the near future.

(3) These prices will have some affect on international prices (please describe).

(4) No clue.

Official price increases occur internationally each May.  

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In general, the decision is expected and correct. I think it was not without pressure Habanos S. A.
Counterbanda reached a serious scale, even large European LCDHs trading online did not hesitate to sell cigars from cuban stores.

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6 hours ago, nKostyan said:


Pilots and flight attendants involved in contrabando

Maybe possible in airlines from countries with corrupt customs officials.

Generally crewmembers have a smaller allowance than passengers as they constantly fly in & out.

In my 35 yr airline career the allowance was always either 10 cigars or 2 packs of cigarettes only.
And if you are caught smuggling anything over 450€ value you go to court, get a hefty fine plus an "customs area ban" and are automatically fired by your airline as all German airports are considered "customs areas" ...

More profitable to smuggle drugs if you are that desperate for a side job... ?

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8 hours ago, Bijan said:

International prices, at least from certain online vendors are now in a supply and demand mode. Supply is low, demand is high, prices go up on hot items (and generally across the board). If cheap supply out of Cuba drops off as an alternative source of cigars (long term, short term that has already happened with the fall in travel), that will bring more demand to online sales, resulting in higher prices, even if distributors don't raise their prices (which may also happen).

I think this is true for the low end.  For the high end, not so much.  High end cigars were pretty scarce just 2 or 3 years ago. I had to search pretty hard for Siglo VI, Esplendidos,  Trinidads, etc.  But between then and now, the market priced out a lot of buyers with price increases of nearly $100 per box every year, and now you can find them just about everywhere.  Plus you can find bargains if you are willing to make bulk purchases, which tells me that there is a lot of stock  of cigars they want to unload, which are cigars that were difficult to find not too long ago.

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3 hours ago, SigmundChurchill said:

I think this is true for the low end.  For the high end, not so much.  High end cigars were pretty scarce just 2 or 3 years ago. I had to search pretty hard for Siglo VI, Esplendidos,  Trinidads, etc.  But between then and now, the market priced out a lot of buyers with price increases of nearly $100 per box every year, and now you can find them just about everywhere.  Plus you can find bargains if you are willing to make bulk purchases, which tells me that there is a lot of stock  of cigars they want to unload, which are cigars that were difficult to find not too long ago.

I think you're right, but the gap between what vendors charge and Cuba prices is largest on those high end products (at least some vendors, not all). Also Siglo VI, Esplendidos, Trinidad, etc. instantly sell out on 24:24 (though FOH is one of those vendors that doesn't gauge on them). But I didn't know about the discounts on bulk purchases.

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3 hours ago, nino said:

Maybe possible in airlines from countries with corrupt customs officials.

Generally crewmembers have a smaller allowance than passengers as they constantly fly in & out.

In my 35 yr airline career the allowance was always either 10 cigars or 2 packs of cigarettes only.
And if you are caught smuggling anything over 450€ value you go to court, get a hefty fine plus an "customs area ban" and are automatically fired by your airline as all German airports are considered "customs areas" ...

More profitable to smuggle drugs if you are that desperate for a side job... ?

Must be a rule specific to Germany. My partner recently left her job as a flight attendant and they have always had the full allowance on every trip; i.e. 1 litre of spirits and either 200 cigarrettes or 50 cigars. Of course that was only available when she flew to non-EU destinations, usually Switzerland, Jersey, Turkey, North Africa etc.

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6 minutes ago, amberleaf said:

Must be a rule specific to Germany. My partner recently left her job as a flight attendant and they have always had the full allowance on every trip; i.e. 1 litre of spirits and either 200 cigarrettes or 50 cigars. Of course that was only available when she flew to non-EU destinations, usually Switzerland, Jersey, Turkey, North Africa etc.

Good for her - wish I had enjoyed that rule ... ?

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6 minutes ago, Bijan said:

I think you're right, but the gap between what vendors charge and Cuba prices is largest on those high end products (at least some vendors, not all). Also Siglo VI, Esplendidos, Trinidad, etc. instantly sell out on 24:24 (though FOH is one of those vendors that doesn't gauge on them). But I didn't know about the discounts on bulk purchases.

They do sell out quickly on 24:24, but those boxes are in very limited supply.  I'm telling you as someone who buys mostly on the high end, that it is infinitely easier to purchase them then it was 2 or 3 years (and 2 or 3 hundred dollars) ago.  Back then I would have to constantly be on the lookout for the cigars I wanted, on most of the typical vendors that most of us know, and every 3 or 4 weeks they would pop up somewhere, and I would have to buy them immediately or they would be gone.  Now, every vendor has them, and as many as you buy, there are more to be bought.  Some vendors even give you an inventory list if you request it.  They are well stocked with these cigars, that were as hard to get as Grateful Dead New Years Eve tickets, just a few years ago.

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16 minutes ago, SigmundChurchill said:

 They are well stocked with these cigars, that were as hard to get as Grateful Dead New Years Eve tickets, just a few years ago.

Yes I just checked two vendors, one had 1 box of Esplendidos and 7 boxes of Siglo VI, the other had 2 boxes of Esplendidos and 29 boxes of Siglo VI!

I didn't buy much 2-3 years ago, and only buy maybe 10-20% high end stuff. So I mainly see movement in the prices and not the change in availability.

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1 hour ago, miamipadronsmoker said:

Could be raising the prices because of the devaluation of the CUC. 

That was my thinking as well.

I spoke with my friend in Havana this week and specifically asked about currency.  She claimed that bars, restaurants and the LCDH's still trade in CUC, and that people are buying USD for upwards of 1.5 CUC : 1 USD.  I'll be curious to see the 'real' USD prices.

I'm not exactly sure if she has the whole story.  

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That was my thinking as well.
I spoke with my friend in Havana this week and specifically asked about currency.  She claimed that bars, restaurants and the LCDH's still trade in CUC, and that people are buying USD for upwards of 1.5 CUC : 1 USD.  I'll be curious to see the 'real' USD prices.
I'm not exactly sure if she has the whole story.  

I’ve heard the same


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11 hours ago, miamipadronsmoker said:

Could be raising the prices because of the devaluation of the CUC. 

This must be it. The prices are in CUC. CUC is trading at 1.5:1. CUC is not even close to parity and most likely will never return to it. They ran that little scheme as long as they could. I don't think we have anything to worry about regarding these prices.

They'll probably be drooling over USD when it gets there, particularly after the remittance ban recently. 

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16 hours ago, NSXCIGAR said:

If the CUC is really at anything close to 1.5:1 then many of these "increases" are actually discounts! 

Again, use cash only...

Thanks. Was starting to go into another round of buying a few boxes every week for fear of price increases.
 

It does seem like Cuba will need hard currency however that can be obtained though 

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On 11/8/2020 at 5:15 AM, NSXCIGAR said:

If the CUC is really at anything close to 1.5:1 then many of these "increases" are actually discounts! 

Again, use cash only...

@NSXCIGAR Just checked today's "un-official" exchange rates for the US$ and the Euro in Havana - just read first page and it's 1,65 CUC for a greenback and 1,75 for the Euro ... not bad.

Here's the "official - unofficial" black market - all you need is a Cuban mobile and speaka da language and you are all set :

1786787432_Divisas_Compra_Venta_Cuba_Revolico1120.png.f9eeef927b948d004a14c3ecbb35bbe0.png

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On 11/7/2020 at 11:15 PM, NSXCIGAR said:

If the CUC is really at anything close to 1.5:1 then many of these "increases" are actually discounts! 

Again, use cash only...

Not sure how can you do that. Coming from Eastern Europe and having seen that gap between the black market and official exchange rate I can tell you, if you choose the BM you're exposed to all sort of scams. Unless you know your "guy" you can have a bunch of counterfeit CUC's or "newspaper money" and Cuba being a communist country it might be illegal. Just be careful. 

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