State Department employees sent on temporary assignments to Havana are given a $316 daily allowance for lodging, meals and incidentals.
The daily allowance, known as a per diem, ranges from $149 to $244 outside the capital.
The latest federal guidelines show the rates for 895 cities. The top three were Valencia, Spain; $729; Edinburg, Scotland, $706; and Cannes, France, $637. See graphic.
Caracas ranked 8th at $575, just behind Paris.
The bottom three were:
- Antarctica Region Posts, $1
- Baghdad, Iraq, $11
- Tripoli, Libya, $21
The government’s average allowance among 895 cities was $285.54.
As I’ve reported, State Department employees based in Havana receive a 35 percent hardship allowance. Guidelines state:
A hardship differential is established for any place when, and only when, the place involves extraordinarily difficult living conditions, excessive physical hardship, or notably unhealthful conditions affecting the majority of employees officially stationed or detailed at that place.
Employees get a 35 percent increase in only 12 other countries:
Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Central African Republic, Chad, Iraq, Libya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Somalia, Syria and Uganda.