As relations between the United States and Cuba continue to improve, so too is cell phone service for American travelers looking to explore the island nation. Following in the footsteps of competitors T-Mobile and Verizon, AT&T has officially inked an agreement with Cuba that allows for roaming and direct interconnection with Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Cuba (ETECSA).
The news comes nearly a year after Verizon first made headway in this space, announcing in September of 2015 that their customers would be able to talk, text, and use data, by way of the company’s Pay-As-You-Go International Travel option. AT&T was also beat to the punch by T-Mobile, who announced a similar interconnect and roaming agreement with ETECSA in May.
“The historic opening of Cuba is a natural opportunity for us to take action, and we are,” T-Mobile president and CEO John Legere said at the time. “We have more customers of Cuban descent than any other wireless provider — so connecting them with family and friends in Cuba is a message we heard loud and clear!”
Still, more options in Cuba seem like a good thing, and Bill Hague, AT&T’s executive vice president of Global Connection Management noted, “Cuba is a growing international calling destination for our customers. With this agreement, AT&T customers soon will be able to seamlessly connect with talk, text and data while visiting Cuba.”
Thus far, AT&T has yet to announce the pricing for its Cuba-bound customers, simply stating that these details would be shared “at a later date.” And more importantly, while the deal has been officially signed, the date of actual wireless roaming availability hasn’t been confirmed either. So if you’re an AT&T customer, you may want to hold off on buying those tickets to Cuba. But rest assured that when you do (maybe a couple months down the line), you’ll be able to communicate with your friends and family back home.