United Airlines has announced the they are starting direct flights from Havana on November 29, 2016. They are launching daily non-stop service from Newark, with a direct flight from Houston every Saturday.
United’s Newark-Havana Service
From Newark, the flight departs at 10:18 am, arriving at 1:53 pm. The outbound clocks in at 3 hours and 35 minutes. The plane essentially stays on the ground for an hour, leaving at 2:53 pm from Havana. It lands in Newark 3 hours and 20 minutes later, at 6:13 pm.
United is operating a 737-800 on this route, featuring 16 United First seats and 138 Economy seats.
The lowest round-trip fare I was able to find was $387.16 in Economy. As of this writing, the inaugural flight is still half empty. If you want to get in on the inaugural flight action, there is still time! Also as of this writing, it does not look like award seats on United or flights to/from Houston are available yet.
As part of the embargo, Regularly scheduled flights between the US and Cuba have been banned for almost 50 years. In June 2016, the Department of Transportation approved 6 airlines for routes to cities in Cuba other than Havana. JetBlue became the first airline to launch service to Cuba. The inaugural flight took off on August 31 from Fort Lauderdale to Santa Clara.
In July 2016, the DOT further approved 14 direct flights to Havana. In fact, United is actually not the first one to the party; Spirit Airlines and Delta have already announced their inaugural flights to Havana, both starting on December 1, 2016.