True or False?

How well do you know Cuba? Take this quick quiz to find out!

By Jeff Hartman

(Scroll down to see the answer to each True/False question)

1. Women in the United States are better represented in government than in Cuba.

2. A person living in Cuba will live longer than a person in the United States.

3. Cuba has dominated the summer Olympics, winning either gold or silver medals in baseball at every Olympics in which baseball was an official sport.

4. The United States has a higher literacy rate than Cuba.

5. Christmas is one of the most celebrated holidays in Cuba.

6. It is just as expensive to buy a car in Cuba as it is in the United States.

7. Picking up hitchhikers is mandatory in Cuba.

8. Since 1992, Cuba has dominated the Olympic boxing scene winning more gold medals than the US.

9. One of the last items purchased by the United States government from Cuba before the embargo was imposed were cigars.

10. With an estimated 60,000 American and Russian vintage cars from the 1950’s and 60’s still in Cuba, the country’s import of auto parts is one of the highest in the world.

11. The Cuban government used cacti to prevent Cubans from defecting to the United States.



1. FALSE Women in Cuba hold 45% of parliament seats compared to 19% in the US.

2. FALSE Cuba and the United States both have average life expectancies of about 79 years.

3. TRUE Cuba has won a medal at every Olympics since 1992 and has 3 gold and 2 silver medals to prove it.

4. FALSE Cuba boasts a 99.8% literacy rate compared to 99% in the US.

5. FALSE Christmas was banned soon after the Revolution and only became recognized in 1997.

6. FALSE Purchasing cars only became possible this year but mark-up is as high as 400%-1000%. A Peugeot 508 is listed at $262,000 in Cuba compared to $55,000 in the US.

7. TRUE Hitchhiking was established by the government as a necessary means of transportation during the ‘special period’ in the early 90’s. Picking up hitchhikers is mandatory for state-owned vehicles, and lines can be seen throughout the country with official traffic supervisors managing the process.

8. TRUE Since 1992, Cuba has won 22 gold medals in boxing, compared to only 4 for the US.

9. TRUE According to President John F. Kennedy’s press secretary, President Kennedy ordered 1,200 Cuban Cigars and signed an executive order putting the embargo in effect the morning after they arrived.

10. FALSE No new parts have been shipped to Cuba since the Revolution. Cubans must manufacture their own parts from household items or repurpose them from other vehicles.

11. TRUE Soon after the Revolution, Fidel Castro had his troops plant an 8-mile barrier of cacti called the “cactus curtain” along the border of the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in eastern Cuba to prevent Cubans from taking refuge in the United States territory.