Traveling To Cuba – Cigar Factories
If you have actually heard anything regarding Cuba along your travels there’s a great chance you’ve heard of Cuban stogies. Otherwise, I make sure you’ve seen the legendary photos. Fidel Castro, or Che Guevera, certainly blowing off the U.S with large 10″ cigars hanging out of their mouths, blowing away at interview or hanging out of an old Soviet tank.
cuban cigar manufacturing facility trips
Cuban stogies are without a doubt among Cuba’s most remarkable exports, together with top quality rum and also a big F.U to the Capitalist World. As a non-smoker I didn’t really see the big deal regarding cigars, until I reached Cuba. While I’m definitely not converted, I can state I enjoyed a number of the smoother Romeo y Julieta’s over a few rums.
While we were in Cuba we actually wanted to recognize the phenomenon behind these famous stogies, and also what better method to fully experience the cigar life than walking inside among the federal government ran manufacturing facilities. We took the opportunity while passing by Santa Clara, additionally popular for being the final resting area of Che Guevera.
cuban cigar manufacturing facility excursions
The stogie factory in Santa Clara is located only a brief stroll from the facility of town. Upon arrival we were satisfied by a pleasant receptionist that with confidence, and also authoratively, informed us to leave our bags and DSLRs behind a tiny front workdesk. “No fotos”, she stated, as well as took place to describe that federal government policies limit any type of casual media accessibility. Reluctantly we obliged, but we wondered if they would certainly still exist when we return. Not that we didn’t rely on the employees, but when our cameras integrated equivalent regarding 5 Cuban years of income it’s tough not to see the opportunist temptation.
The trip itself was pretty basic. Far from discovering the whole manufacturing facility, instead we were ushered into a huge hall near the entrance. Prior to we got in the hall we might listen to the same unsupported claims looping over the radio advertising the success of the change. When we stepped inside the hall we were promptly hit with a solid whiff of cigarette. Throughout the area rows upon rows of wooden workdesks were put together, with sturdy wooden chairs and also tougher employees.
cuban cigar factory scenic tours
Two hundred and also fifty Cubans of all ages, sizes and shapes were vigorously pumping out cigars. Fingers naturally working away like carefully tuned pianists. They babbled among the buzz of various other workers, yet constantly remained active. From any type of area in the factory socialist publicity posters could be seen. On the primary wall a huge poster of Fidel states, “Those without jobs, are the careless people letting the country down”. A straightforward pointer to the workers that being unemployed is not an option.
We asked our tourist guide a couple of questions about working hours, average pay and also the different types of stogies. From what we learned, a job in a cigar factory is amongst among the most effective in Cuba. Each worker is assigned a number, and every stogie can be tracked back to an individual employee for high quality screening. Cigar making is reward based, as well as if you’re good at your work you can anticipate to be rewarded for it. While the typical wage is around $25-$ 30 CUC a month, with the moneda nacional motivation bonus offer someone might make up to $45 a month.
Next we relocated onto several of the workers, inquiring concerns regarding their job, but careful not to pry excessive or to be offensive. The majority of employees appeared pretty pleased. They function Monday to Friday, as well as every second Saturday. Shifts begin at 7am and coating at 4pm, with a half hour break and also a hr lunch included. There’s likewise an on-site kitchen area where the employees are fed for 1MN (equivalent of 4c).
Obtaining a job at the manufacturing facility is typically via household recommendations or individuals you understand. After 9 months of training you’re ultimately ready to hit the floor. With over 100 different brands as well as sizes, the workers get educated exactly how to mix the cigarette delegates make certain cigars and also job that exact same dish for a month prior to changing.
After about half an hour of idle chitchat our guide ultimately called an end to the tour. We gave thanks to the employees we would certainly talked with and headed towards the departure. Right before we went to accumulate our bags a tiny feeling of anxiousness hit us. We would certainly failed to remember all about our video cameras being out in the open. Hurriedly we made our way back to the entry, just to discover a smiling guard monitoring our bags till we returned. “Todo bien”, he said, and also we could not agree more.
We left the stogie manufacturing facility pleased that our examination had actually been satisfied. For us it’s still an odd principle to believe that somebody resting on their butt throughout the day rolling cigars can make more than a physician, yet this is Cuba, and also points don’t constantly make sense.