How to Transfer Money to (or From) Canada

. 5 min read

Canada's land mass is forty-one times as large as the UK, yet only half as many people live (t)here as do in Great Britain. You may be surprised to discover that Canadians drink less beer than Brits, and many say we Canucks aren't as nice as our reputation would have you believe. (Unless you go to Niagara-on-the-Lake, Port Coquitlam, or Newfoundland, the people in those places are the nicest in Canuckia.)

When people have their first look at Canadian dollar bank notes, many compare them to Monopoly money, with their vivid colours and patterns. Though modern Canadian notes are now made from a plastic polymer, to extend their life and prevent them from disintegrating when tossed in the laundry after a night at the hockey arena or the pub perhaps.

A traditional Ice Hockey Game. Canadians must first defeat a team of dogs before being allowed to play against other human players.

Yet much like other countries, Canadians are increasingly turning to online money transfers and electronic funds transfers as their preferred method of payment.

A 2018 Payments Canada report stated that between 2012 and 2017, online transfers increased from 41 million to 261 million. Remote transactions accounted for 91 percent of transaction value, but only a quarter of the total volume of transactions.

During a wedding shoot in the fall, I had the opportunity to take this shot of a beautiful maple leaf.
This is an actual maple leaf in the beloved Canadian season of Autumn which precedes the long harsh Winter. Winter often seems to last 6-8 months but is truly only five.

International Online Payments to Canada  

If you plan on sending money to a Canadian friend, relative or business associate, it helps to be informed of the value an international money transfer provider like XE provides, and the regulatory framework we operate under.

Six key potential benefits are:

  • Money savings opportunities on exchange rates and fee-avoidance relative to some banks or other service providers
  • Services like rate alerts and forward contracts to mitigate currency value fluctuation during turbulent times.
  • XE has implemented a highly secure, reliable payment transfer infrastructure, with encryption and security posture which meets digital banking standards
  • XE services support transactions in Canadian dollars and 59 other global currencies
  • Canadians can send money to, or receive money from over 127 countries. They are informed via email when their money leaves their account, or when money arrives in their account if they are the recipient.
  • Transactions can be settled by bank transfer, ACH (direct debit) from a local USD account or Pre-Authorized Debit from a local Canadian account.

Canada's Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre, (or FINTRAC), regulates foreign exchange brokers and money services businesses like XE. FINTRAC, much like the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the UK, provides oversight and compliance standards such as Know Your Customer. It ensures ongoing monitoring of transactions into, and out of Canada.

instagram.com_zurux
This female lumberjack (lumberjill) seems to be lost on her way home from a fancy dress ball in Northern Ontario. She is wearing what many call a Keswick or Kenora Dinner Jacket 

FINTRAC must review single transactions of over $10,000 Canadian, or multiple transfers within 24 hours which add up to that amount. The AMF (The Autorité des Marchés Financiers) oversees transactions to and from consumers and businesses in the Province of Québec.

Why Are Expats and Soon-to-Be Expats Transferring Money to Canada?

Canada is one of the leading emigration destinations for people from the UK that don't plan to return. In 2018, two-thousand more Americans than normal emigrated to Canada. The "Great White North" is the country of choice for a record number of Americans that want to leave the USA, including celebrities.

Many expats transfer money to recipients in Canada to invest in Canadian homes and properties, to pay tuition for Canadian universities, or to pay for destination weddings in places like Lake Louise, Québec City or the Northwest Territories.

Game of Thrones fans that want to add some "Winterfell" ambiance or the mystique of the Northern Lights to their wedding day or night, and you need to go as far as Norway or Iceland. (Though they are beautiful countries too, and will be featured in a future blog)

Good times in the wood, with the snow
This is a "Cabane au Sucre" or "Sugar Shack" where maple sugar, maple syrup, and many Quebecers are made 

Other compelling reasons to send money to Canada include:

  • For expats - paying taxes, or bills for expenses like monthly shipments of poutine or butter tarts.
  • Making salary transfers or payments to contract employees.  
  • Paying tuition and topping up your child's bank account as they attend university, college, or private school in Canada.
  • Buying collectible vehicles like a Dodge Charger Hellcat, Ford Frontenac or Pontiac Acadian which are (or were) made in the Land of Maple Syrup and Lumberjacks.
  • Investing in a Canadian startup company, in categories like technology, online retail or human capital management.

Many of these reasons for sending money to Canada translate to reasons to transfer money from Canada. Many Canadians do contract work abroad, own properties overseas, and send their sons and daughters to get an education at post-secondary institutions like Oxford, Cambridge, Yale or Princeton.  

Are you sending money to Canada for any of the scenarios mentioned above? Are there reasons we should have mentioned which are uniquely Canadian?

Sign up for an XE Money Transfer account, get a quote for a transfer, and complete your first transfer today.

Please Note:


The information, materials, accompanying literature and documentation available on our internet site is for information purposes only and is not intended as a solicitation for funds or a recommendation to trade. XE, its officers, employees and representatives accept no liability whatsoever for any loss or damages suffered through any act or omission taken as a result of reading or interpreting any of the above information.


For more information about XE, please click here: Regulatory Information