Originally Posted by CIGARGUY
I enjoy a good smoke, too (did some of you already figure that out? Lol.). I've been smoking them for the past 15 years, and have a lot of Cuban experience. There are some amazing copies out there right now. There have already been several ways to spot them listed, but to get a little more detailed...
1. All Cuban boxes will have a factory code stamped on the bottom.
2. All Cuban boxes will have a hologram sticker on top that reads "Habanos".
3. All Cuban boxes will have a sticker that is a "certificate of origin" wrapped around the opening end of the box (it actually has to be put on a very specific way).
4. The easiest way to spot a fake single stick is the cap. The trademark for Cuban cigars is a triple cap. Also, the filler will be folded in an accordian shape (you can view this from the foot, or open end). Most counterfeits will not take the time to construct this way.
+1 all of this as well. Man, I was going to post up a sort of pictorial tutorial regarding all this when my next shipment arrives, but between you and ferrarri335i, you're covering all the bases. A quick note on some of your comments:
1. The stamps ("Habanos s.a.", "HECHO EN CUBA", "Totalmente a mano") are actually burned into the bottom of the boxes. You should be able to physically feel them.
The factory stamp (NIVEL ACUSO for some, despite the fact that NIVEL ACUSO is outdated, many smokers will still call it that) should be done in ink.
2. The sticker should be placed diagonally across the top right for dress boxes and the lower left for cabs.
3. I think you're referring to the tax/warranty seal. This sticker is placed on the left side of the box vertically so that it wraps from the top of the box to the bottom. The first fold on the top edge of the box should bisect the shield on the sticker.
4. Nothing to add here.
Note there may also be more seals/or stickers on the box depending on the distributor and the boxes destination country.