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Hello FOH'ers I know traveling to Cuba with usd currency is cheap as you lose money from the 3% exchange fee and the 10% USA penalty. I have found a new way to get your bang for your buck while there and may help other countries currency as well. 

I just recently sent my driver/friend that lives in Cuba a money transfer via Western Union and found out that WU charges very small fee plus you get USD $0.97 cents to the usd dollar compared to the $0.87 cent per dollar after penalty and exchange fee. 

Just an fyi

Robert Rogers

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On 2/19/2018 at 6:57 PM, JohnnyO said:

Ya but WU has limits on this, I think you can only send $300-$500 per person every 3 months. As an emergency (while in Cuba) someone could send to you more but not much more. At least that's the rules for US WU. John

I transfer 4000 CUC each transaction. 

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17 minutes ago, madandana said:

Stone gate CC works. They are out of Florida. You can use a CC for regular production but not customs.

Stonegate was bought by Centennial Bank several months back (my bank) all the local FL branches have now changed the name. They issue the only CC with US origin that works in Cuba.

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Going back to currency exchange, I would just get Euros before going down and exchange them.  There is only an additional 10% surcharge on US dollars; 3% standard charge on all other currencies.  Plus, if you have any CUCs left, you can exchange them back to dollars without any fees at the airport. 

FYI, if you have a business account with Wells Fargo, they charge no exchange fee to convert dollars to Euros. 

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11 hours ago, smokealot said:

So i can not use USD to buy cigars? Do i need to change to CUC to buy the cigars and if i bring USD to cuba shops how much they charge to exchange it to CUC?

 No USD to buy cigars. You will need to exchange USD to CUC at a money exchange located in most hotels, at a bank, or in the airport. The cigars shops will not exchange USD for CUC, you need to have the CUCs. There is a 10% fee + 3% exchange rate for converting USDs to CUCs. $1000 USD = 870 CUC

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Oh this just occurred to me, since I'm in the US and have to convert dollars, does it make more sense to change US dollars to Canadian since the rate is better or into Euro? I'm 2 weeks out from my trip so I'm just trying to put the finishing details on everything.
Thanks again all. 

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5 hours ago, n0s4atu said:

Oh this just occurred to me, since I'm in the US and have to convert dollars, does it make more sense to change US dollars to Canadian since the rate is better or into Euro? I'm 2 weeks out from my trip so I'm just trying to put the finishing details on everything.
Thanks again all. 

Look up the currency conversions and decide which is the best deal. Literally just about any of the major world currencies will be fine.

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On 7/16/2018 at 6:18 AM, n0s4atu said:

Oh this just occurred to me, since I'm in the US and have to convert dollars, does it make more sense to change US dollars to Canadian since the rate is better or into Euro? I'm 2 weeks out from my trip so I'm just trying to put the finishing details on everything.
Thanks again all. 

If you have a TD Bank near you then you can get a good exchange rate for Canadian dollars as they are based in Canada. I took Canadian dollars and USD as a back up when I went.

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On 7/16/2018 at 11:32 AM, n0s4atu said:

For anyone interested it looks like right now the US dollar gets you 1.31 Canadian and .85 Euro. When converted to CUC both are 1 CUC.

It’s not one to one with those currencies. You will get the the exchange rate based on the USD. 

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I seem like the only person who does U.K. pounds.  They are worth the most, therefore you physically have to take less money.  I kept the money on me and exchanged only as much as I needed.  I didn't feel safe leaving so much money in my room.  Carrying 4,000 or so is really hard to hide on your body.  The less of it the better.

Someone mentioned above that WF does not charge you fees to change money.  This is NOT true.  Sure, there is not straight fee, but the fee is in the exchange rate.  Hidden fee.

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2 hours ago, Monterey said:

I seem like the only person who does U.K. pounds.  They are worth the most, therefore you physically have to take less money.  I kept the money on me and exchanged only as much as I needed.  I didn't feel safe leaving so much money in my room.  Carrying 4,000 or so is really hard to hide on your body.  The less of it the better.

Someone mentioned above that WF does not charge you fees to change money.  This is NOT true.  Sure, there is not straight fee, but the fee is in the exchange rate.  Hidden fee.

I've done Euro and CAD. Its purely exchange rate based for me. I don't care if its .1%, I work out the math to determine which is currently the best deal. Its a pain in the ass, but worth it for 4%-6% on several grand.

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