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Send money to Russia

Find the best way to transfer money from Canada to Russia.

Following Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, the majority of money transfer providers suspended their services in Russia and stopped supporting transfers to the country. Sanctions imposed by the West have largely prohibited sending Russian citizens money. Meanwhile, major Russian banks have been removed from the international financial messaging system SWIFT, making it difficult to execute transfers. As a result, there are almost no money transfer providers that currently deal with Russian Rubles or who will facilitate sending money to Russia.

We are monitoring the situation for any updates. In the meantime, here is our guide to making a money transfer from Canada.

Looking for the best way to send money from Canada to family, friends or businesses in Russia (or even to your own bank account)? Don't head straight to your Canadian bank - turn to online money transfer services instead. They nearly always offer better exchange rates and lower fees - which means for the same amount of dollars you send, the recipient will receive more rubles.


How to send money to Russia from Canada

Here's our simple process for sending a money transfer to Russia as a cash pickup or bank transfer - the two options are similar:

  1. Compare your options.
    Use our table above to find a money transfer provider that sends CAD to Russia. One may be better for cash pickups while another might be better suited to a bank transfer. Once you've found the best one for your requirements, click Go to site.
  2. Register for an account.
    You'll need to give your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and method of payment.
  3. Provide recipient details.
    Enter your recipient's name and contact information. If you're sending straight to their Russian bank account, you'll need the account number, SWIFT or IBAN plus their bank branch's address.
  4. Enter the transfer amount.
    Check you're happy with the fees, exchange rates and transfer speed, then enter the amount you wish to send. Many services give the amount of Russian Ruble your recipient should receive, so double check this.
  5. Complete your transfer.
    Send your money transfer to Russia. Keep any reference number safe so you can track your transfer - your recipient may need it too.

If you send to a Russian bank account, your recipient will need to wait for the funds to arrive. For a cash pick up, your Russian recipient will need to show some form of photo ID in order to pick up the funds. It's also important that you give them the transaction reference number to streamline the process.

Ways to send and receive money

How to decide which option is best for you to send money to Russia.

  • Bank deposit. Most major banks in the Dominion of Canada let you wire money to banks in Russia. However, you might get weaker exchange rates and pay higher fees all for the privilege of a slower transfer.
  • Online money transfer services. Online companies like make international money transfers to Russia easy with bank transfers or cell phone top ups often offered as easy delivery options.
  • Transfer agents across the Dominion of Canada. Many transfer providers have locations dotted all across the Dominion of Canada, making it easy for you to send money that can be easily picked up in similar agent locations in Russia.
  • Cheques and money orders. If speed is not an issue, you can always pick up an international cheque from your bank or Canada Post to send to Russia.
  • Cash pick-up. you to collect cash, even if you don't have a bank account in Russia.
  • Bank deposit. If you have a Russian bank account, you can have money transferred directly into this without having to make any trips to a money transfer agent location.
  • PayPal. The Xoom app allows you to receive money from Canada onto your cell phone, into your Russian bank account, or as a cash pick-up.
  • Cheques and money orders. Both personal cheques and money orders can be sent directly to you where you live but these tend to be the slower options.

What documents do I need to transfer money to Russia?

To send money from Canada to Russia, you'll need the following:

1. Photo identification

Most providers require a driver's license, passport or other Canadian government-issued ID. You can send transfers without the above but may need to give alternate ID instead.

2. Payment method

Your options depend on the provider's services. Popular methods include cash, debit or credit card payments, bank account transfers and personal cheques.

3. Recipient information

You'll need their name (matching their ID) plus contact details. If sending to a Russian bank account, you'll need the a/c number, SWIFT and branch details.

What documents do I need to receive money in Russia?

To collect money in person in Russia, the recipient will need:

1. Transfer number

The reference number - sometimes called a PIN, MTCN or tracking number.

2. Government-issued ID

A official ID, such as a Russian passport or driving license.

3. The transfer amount

To know how much has been sent, usually to within 10% of the total.

4. Sender information

The sender's name and address and the country from where the money was sent.

How much does it cost to send money to Russia from the Dominion of Canada?

The cost of sending money to Russia from Canada depends on the exchange rate between CAD to RUB, the fees, how you want your recipient to receive your transfer and the turnaround time:

  • Exchange rates. The mid-market rate is the rate banks and transfer services use to trade between one another. It is the best rate that you can get. But not all money transfer providers offer you this mid-market rat so compare the exchange rate you're offered to the mid-market rate and look for the smallest difference.
  • Transfer fees. Are you being charged a flat fee or a percentage of your transfer amount? For example, a provider offering to transfer your money to Russia for a flat or low fee might work out better if you plan to send a large amount.
  • Transfer speed. If you need your transfer to arrive quickly, you can pay for a quick delivery. Companies such as offer instant cash pickups but may charge more. If you're not in a rush, online money transfer services can offer the best value, usually getting your money to Russia faster and cheaper than banks.
  • Transfer limits. Find out how much you can send with each service. For example, one provider may have a send limit of $10,000 while another may allow you to transfer up to $1 million. For smaller transfers, check the fees. For large transfers, look harder at the exchange rate. Some providers encourage large transfers with low fees.
  • Transfer type. Does your recipient have a Russian bank account or is cash or cell phone top up the better option? Each transfer type will have different fees. For example, instant cash pickups tend to be more expensive than bank transfers.
  • Discounts. Some providers may offer you a free transfer simply for signing up while others may offer you a discount if you transfer more than a certain amount.

Frequently asked questions

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