top of page

What to give to hotel staff and families

Currently, all hygiene and cleaning products, generic medicines and even dry or canned food are in great demand.

To bring gifts or not to bring them?

The answer is personal to everyone and it seems important to me to respect individual choices. I do it and yes, I also tip.

The difference ? The fact that residents can or cannot obtain certain items, some of which may be essential to a so-called “reasonable” quality of life. The embargo that Cubans are subject to prevents them from obtaining certain goods, even if they have the money to make the purchase. A good example is the chronic shortage of sanitary napkins (open the article in Chrome and click on the right to get the “Translate into French” option):

The embargo suffered by Cubans

Because of the embargo decreed by the United States and following the withdrawal of support from Russia, Cubans regularly experience very significant difficulties in obtaining certain goods or supplies.

History of the embargo:

And yet, there is trade between the United States and Cuba! :

What if I want to donate?

Several possibilities are available to you depending on your comfort level: leaving items on your pillow is a “code” for saying that it is a gift that you are leaving for your maid, hand-delivering gifts and tips to employees whose quality of service you want to highlight, travel around town to give gifts to families or children or even give donations to representatives of a church

If you need help making your donations in Cuba

Our representatives are there for you

You can contact them, they will be happy to guide you

A new, simpler and faster page to contact Cuban representatives

What to give to whom?

The first instinct of travelers is to ask themselves what they can offer the maids. You should know that with bar service staff, these are the people who receive the most tips and gifts. Unfortunately, we too often forget the staff that we do not “see” or less: the kitchen staff, the employees (they are usually women) who maintain public spaces, the people who maintain the swimming pools. , gardeners, etc.

Here are some suggestions:

Babies and children

“Children’s” medications (acetaminophen and ibuprofen, ointment for rash, vitamins, thermometer to measure fever, etc.), pacifiers, diapers (disposable or washable), wipes, toys, candy and gum, clothing and shoes, school supplies, barrettes or hair ties, lunch bags and backpacks, thermos containers for liquids, sports equipment (footballs, gloves and baseballs, etc.), sunglasses, sidewalk chalk, bibs for babies and toys.


Sanitary napkins or tampons, all hygiene products, nylon stockings (note the stockings from customs at the airport!), short stockings, underwear (it seems that large sizes are hard to find), perfume, cream the body with sun protection, jewelry, nail polish (red is difficult to find at times), nail files, reusable plastic bags (useful for shopping), Ziploc (a thousand and one uses!), sewing thread and needles, shoelaces, good quality aluminum foil (sought after by hairdressers), first aid kit with bandages, antibiotic cream, candles, hairbrushes, kitchen accessories (plastic dishes, oven mitts, etc.). ), dry foods (sauce packets, side kicks, small cans - follow the news to know what is missing when you leave), laundry detergent, etc.


Hygiene products such as deodorants, razors, beard cream, etc., anything that can be used for repairs such as tools (screwdriver kits, ropes, Duck Tape, Ty-Rap (plastic ties), stockings courses, caps, work gloves, matches, flashlights, guitar strings (nylon ones are particularly popular), bicycle tire repair kit, condoms, etc.


Gloves, knee pads, caps, lip balm, mosquito repellent lotions, long-sleeved t-shirts, thermos containers


Fishing line (minimum 10 lbs, ideally 25 or 30 lbs), caps, gloves with plastic interior, foldable cooler bags, Duck Tape, fishing equipment such as sinkers and hooks, thermos containers.

If you need help making your donations to

28 views0 comments

Related Posts

See All


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
bottom of page