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Cameroon - Central African Franc - Currency Guide

 

Foreign exchange guide to Cameroon and the Central African Franc (XAF)

   

General Currency Info - Central African Franc

The Central African CFA franc (XAF) is the currency of six independent states in Central Africa - Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. The currency was introduced to the previously French colonies in Equatorial Africa in 1945, replacing the French Equatorial African franc. The currency continued in use when these colonies gained their independence. Equatorial Guinea, the only former Spanish colony in the zone, adopted the CFA franc in 1984.

In several west African states the West African CFA franc (currency code XOF) is in circulation, such as Benin - West African CFA franc. The West African CFA franc is of equal value to the Central African CFA franc.

Both XAF and XOF currencies are referred to as the CFA franc.

   

XAF News, Forecasts and Trends

The Central African CFA franc has a fixed rate of exchange with the euro (and previously the French franc) set at 1 euro = 655.957 CFA francs.

The CFA franc is characterised as a credible and stable currency, a significant virtue given the experience of most currency-issuing African nations.

The below interactive chart shows the USD to XAF exchange rate, trend and recent alerts for the last 90 days.

   
Recent USD to XAF 90-day trend
 
ALERT:14-DAY LOWS |
USD/XAF at 577.8 was trading 2.7% below AVG:593.85 with LO:576.64 and HI:608.63 (90 days). ALERT: USD/XAF dropped to 14-DAY LOWS.

US Dollar to Central African Franc - Historical Rates

USD/XAF rateChangePeriod
03 Jul 2020 : 583.21140.5% ▼1 Week
10 Jun 2020 : 577.07030.6% ▲30 Days
11 Apr 2020 : 599.84183.2% ▼90 Days
11 Jul 2019 : 583.08330.4% ▼1 Year
12 Jul 2015 : 588.79891.4% ▼5 Years
13 Jul 2010 : 513.992412.9% ▲10 Years
USD/XAF 10 year historic rates & changes to 10-Jul-2020 : 580.4621
 

U$1,000 USD
=
FCFA577,973 XAF

Converted at USD/XAF wholesale exchange rate, compare foreign transfer and spend/travel exchange rates.

 
 

US Dollar to Central African Franc - Quick Conversions

USD XAF
U$ 1 FCFA 577.97
U$ 5 FCFA 2,890
U$ 10 FCFA 5,780
U$ 20 FCFA 11,559
U$ 50 FCFA 28,899
U$ 100 FCFA 57,797
U$ 250 FCFA 144,493
U$ 500 FCFA 288,985
U$ 1,000 FCFA 577,970
U$ 2,000 FCFA 1,155,940
U$ 5,000 FCFA 2,889,850
U$ 10,000 FCFA 5,779,700
U$ 50,000 FCFA 28,898,500
U$ 100,000 FCFA 57,797,000
More amounts
USD XAF
U$ 0.0017 FCFA 1
U$ 0.0087 FCFA 5
U$ 0.0173 FCFA 10
U$ 0.0346 FCFA 20
U$ 0.0865 FCFA 50
U$ 0.1730 FCFA 100
U$ 0.4325 FCFA 250
U$ 0.8650 FCFA 500
U$ 1.7300 FCFA 1,000
U$ 3.4600 FCFA 2,000
U$ 8.6500 FCFA 5,000
U$ 17.30 FCFA 10,000
U$ 86.50 FCFA 50,000
U$ 173.00 FCFA 100,000
More amounts

Frequently Asked Questions

 

What currency should I use in Cameroon?

The domestic currency in Cameroon is the Central African Franc.

What is the Central African Franc currency code and symbol?

The three letter currency code for the Central African Franc is XAF — symbol is FCFA.

Which countries use the Central African Franc?

It is the domestic currency in    Cameroon,   Central African Republic,   Chad,   Congo,   Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.

Is the Central African Franc a closed currency?

No, the Central African Franc is freely available and convertible. See guide: What is a closed currency?

 

Travel, Currency and Money saving tips for Cameroon

Often referred to as “Africa in Miniature,” this California-size country offers plenty to do within its borders. Cameroon’s largest city, Douala, is one of the most important economic centers in Central Africa, and Yaoundé, Cameroon’s capital, is over 100 years old and full of stories. In addition, Cameroon has a diverse landscape ranging from gorgeous tropical beaches to breathtaking mountain vistas.

With reasonable road infrastructure, travel is a lot easier here than in many parts of Africa. Still, you'll miss none of those indicators that you're in the middle of this fascinating continent: everyone seems to be carrying something on their heads, makossa music sets the rhythm, the street smells like roasting plantains and African bliss is just a piece of grilled fish and a sweating beer away.

What currency should I use in Cameroon?

The currency is the Central African franc (CFA), ATMs are still a rarity in Cameroon. They're at the banks and hotels in Yaounde and Douala, but more difficult to find in other towns. The most acceptable credit card is Visa, then Mastercard, and AMEX. Cameroon has a cash economy, most businesses don't accept credit cards or travelers checks. Take Euro's as these are most easily changed. American dollars and travellers cheques are much more difficult to exchange, but Euro's can be exchange in places around the country, especially main cities. Euro travelers' cheques, from Visa/Mastercard are the most widely used  and strongly recommended. Most of the main banks will exchange these, however service is slow, and plenty of time needs to be allowed for service. The quickest way to transfer money in an emergency is by Western Union, which has offices in Douala, and Yaounde.

Remember to keep CFA 10,000 or US$20  for departure tax at the airport. Departure tax on internal flights is CFA500, or US$1.00. Due to the exchange rate, it is cheaper to pay in CFA.

How should I travel in Cameroon?

There are three major airports in Cameroon: Douala International Airport (DLA), Nsimalen International Airport (NSI), and Yaounde International Airport (YAO). The one you are most likely to use is the Doula International Airport, as it is located in the economic capital of the country and is the busiest in the nation. Domestically, there is regular daily service between Douala, Yaounde, and other smaller towns.

Agences de voyages (agency buses, running from depots also called agences) run along all major and many minor routes in Cameroon. Prices are low and fixed, and on some bus lines you can even reserve a seat. From Yaoundé to Douala it costs anywhere between CFA3000 and CFA6000, depending on the class of bus you take: so-called VIP services have air-conditioning and aren't quite so cramped. However, some drivers are extremely reckless, and bus accidents occur all too frequently.

Cameroon's rail system (Camrail) operates three main lines: Yaoundé to N'Gaoundéré; Yaoundé to Douala; and Douala to Kumba. In 2016 a tragic derailment between Douala and Yaoundé killed 70 passengers and injured many more. Check locally about the current state of train safety.

Travel tips for Cameroon.

French and English are the official languages of Cameroon. Several native languages are spoken as well.

Recommended immunizations include yellow fever, hepatitis A and B, typhoid, and meningitis. Plan to pack antimalarial medications, insect repellent, and loose, long-sleeved clothing to protect yourself from mosquito bites.

The country is broken up into ten regions: Adamaoua, Centre, East, Extrême-Nord (Extreme North), Littoral, North, Northwest, West, South, and Southwest.

In most cases, you will need a visa to enter Cameroon. If you’re flying into the country, arrange your visa with your local embassy before your trip. If you’re traveling by land, it might be possible to arrange a visa with Cameroon’s neighboring countries, but we do advise taking care of this matter before you hit the road.

 

Travel money for Cameroon

Save money and time by Ordering your Central African Franc online from Travelex, you get better rates and can pick up the XAF cash locally or even on travel day at the airport.

Another popular option is to use a Pre-paid Travel Card. Your Debit/Credit Card provider will charge you 2% from market mid-rate, but your bank may also charge an extra 3% as an “Overseas Transaction Charge” plus “Overseas ATM” fees for withdrawing cash.

For card purchases if offered a choice of currencies always select to Pay in Central African Franc otherwise you may get much worst exchange rates.

 

Sending money to Cameroon

When searching around for information on how to get a good exchange rate when sending money to Cameroon you need to start with finding out the latest Central African Franc exchange rate for foreign-transfers, which can be very different to the wholesale rate.

Then compare your bank's exchange rates to several licensed FX providers exchange rate and fees to see how much you can save - we make that calculation easy in the below table.


Get a better deal for foreign transfers to Cameroon

When sending money to Cameroon it’s important to compare your bank’s rates & fees with those we have negotiated with our partner money transfer providers. To get a better deal you should follow these 4 simple steps :

  1. Open an account with a BER reviewed FX provider (id docs may be required)
  2. You specify the local or Central African Franc amount you want to transfer
  3. Make a local currency domestic transfer for the requested amount to the provider's bank account in your country
  4. Once your funds are received by the provider the converted XAF amount will be transfered to the recipient account you specify in Cameroon.

Use the above Send to Central African Franc calculator to compare the exchange rates of FX specialist providers rates versus your bank's standard rates you can hopefully save around 5% and maybe more - end result is more Central African Franc deposited into the recipient bank account and less margins and fees kept by the banks!


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