1- Currency considered unavailable.
The Cuban Convertible Pesos (CUC) is the currency used in Cuba. The currency is considered unavailable because the only way to get it, is inside the country. Canadian banks do not exchange CUC as the Cuban government does not authorize the exportation of the currency. You will have to exchange directly in Cuba. Do not worry, you will easily find a currency exchange office either at the airport or your hotel.
2- Bring CAD, not USD.
Because CAD are not considered a major currency on the international scale, most of the time, we opt to bring USD with us during our travels. It is a good idea, except in Cuba. Because of the tense relationship between the USA and CUBA, exchanging USD for CUC automatically generates a 10% extra commission. Bring your CAD to exchange directly for CUC, it is the best way for you to get the most out of your exchange.
3- ICE might have some …
Before leaving for your vacations, come and see us. It is possible that one of our branches might have a bit of CUC on hand. A good amount of our customers have notified us that they would like to have a small amount of Pesos when they arrive to tip Cubans who help them with their luggages or transportations. We listened to those customers and we do buy the leftovers from travellers. We never keep a large amount, but if we do have some on hand at the moment of your departure, we will be happy to help you start your trip on the right foot!