As a member of the United Nations Security Council, Canada is required to maintain certain sanctions on Sudan. However, you can still send money to friends and family in Sudan so long as funds are not used to support any prohibited activities. Before you initiate any transfers, check the government of Canada website to find out which types activities are prohibited.
How to send money to Sudan
Many banks and money transfers services in Canada don’t support transfers in Sudanese pounds (SDG), but that doesn’t mean you’re out of options.
As of July 6, 2020, you can transfer money online through Western Union for cash pickup in Sudan. The maximum transfer amount varies from the usual $7,500 CAD limit Western Union places on online transfers. When we checked, you could send up to $3,902 CAD to Sudan (roughly 154,000 SDG), and Western Union’s markup on the exchange rate was 3.23%. Note that this margin is likely to change over time.
Fees vary based on how much you’re sending, but you can expect to pay anywhere between $5 and $85 per transfer. Transactions can be paid for by credit or Visa debit.
Visa Direct through TD Canada Trust
Visa Direct is a service that lets you send money to over 170 countries (including Sudan) in over 150 currencies to any recipient who has a Visa credit, debit or prepaid card. All you need is his or her first and last name, address and Visa card number. Funds are usually available in 24-48 hours but can arrive as soon as 30 minutes if your recipient has a Fast Funds-enabled Visa card.
Transfer fees start at $8.95 CAD, although foreign currency conversion fees may also apply. Enjoy peace of mind knowing your funds are protected against unauthorized transactions through the TD Online and Mobile Security Guarantee (terms and conditions apply).
Do other Canadian banks support money transfers to Sudan?
You’ll have a hard time finding a bank that will let you send money in SDG. TD’s Visa Direct option is one of the rare exceptions.
Interestingly, TD provides access to Western Union money transfer services through EasyWeb, TD’s online banking platform. But, even though you can transfer to Sudan through Western Union’s website, this option is unavailable when sending a Western Union money transfer on EasyWeb. So, if you want to send money to Sudan through Western Union, you can only do so by visiting westernunion.com/ca.
Other money transfer services that most banks provide include wire transfers, cheques and money orders. Speak with a representative of your bank to find out which transfer options (if any) will allow you to send money to Sudan.
What you should know about Sudan’s currency
Sudan has changed currencies several times throughout its history. The Sudanese pound (SDG) is currently recognized as the country’s domestic currency and is pegged to the US dollar. The Sudanese Dinar (SDD) was used until 2007 when it was replaced by the pound.
The Sudanese pound is a “closed currency,” which means it’s not available for purchase outside of the country. This is one of the reasons why it’s difficult to find a financial services provider who will exchange your Canadian dollars for SDG. Western Union can do so, likely because it has physical branches located in Sudan.
Your international money transfer options in Canada
While services that send money to Sudan might be limited, you can send money from Canada to many other countries around the world.