If you want to know the best ways to send money internationally, it can either be really quick and easy, or quite the opposite depending on where and how you decide to send it. While you can’t change where you need to send your international money transfer, you can definitely change how you’re doing it. That might be the difference between a pain-free experience and one that leads to quite a bit of anxiety.
Before we break down the best ways to send money internationally, let’s go over some of the most commonly used terms and asked questions.
Money Transfer Fees:
Unless you’re sending money via check or cash, you’re probably going to incur some transfer fees. If you’re looking to send money internationally, those fees can get pretty steep. Because of that, it’s important to keep an eye on how the following options manage their fees. There are two kinds of fees typically connected to international transfers.
- Transfer fees are typically a percentage of the total amount being sent. They can also be a flat fee, particularly if you are sending a small amount of money.
- Exchange rate markups is the other common way for money transfer companies to make money. The fee connected to this is based on the currencies being used, and their exchange rate.
It is also important to remember that the cheapest way to send money internationally isn’t always the best way. There are a lot of things to consider.
Time it Takes to Transfer Money Internationally:
In order to know which way is the best way to send money internationally, you’re going to need to know how long it’s going to take. The answer to this question varies depending on how much you need to send and on what company you are using to send it. It is best to get to answer to this question before you need to actually start sending money.
Countries Money Can Be Sent To:
Finally, you need to make sure that the company you want to use to transfer money can actually send your money to the country you need it to go. Not every service operates in every country, so you’ll want to get this information before beginning the process.
Now that we’ve covered those main questions and terms, let’s go over the different ways you can send money internationally.
Using Your Bank to Send Money Internationally
To start, let’s break down what is certainly the oldest way to send money internationally. Most U.S. banks offer money wire services, but they may be on their way to getting cornered out of the market. There are pretty good reasons why.
While banks are reliable and can typically transfer large sums of money, they are also quite slow and can demand hefty transfer fees and exchange rate markups. Beyond that, banks can usually only transfer money internationally from a bank account held with them to another bank account. So, if your recipient does not have an account in the country he or she is in, it could be rather difficult for them to actually get their money.
It’s definitely one route to consider, but it’s quite likely that there are better options at your fingertips.
If you want a name you can trust while also enjoying some of the benefits of 21st century technology, Western Union could very well be the place to go to transfer your money. Western Union may be one of the oldest way and best ways to quickly send money internationally, and it has definitely succeeded in keeping up with the times.
Now, you can send money through their website, their app, or by going to a brick and mortar store. If you need to send a large sum of cash (over $5,000), you can do so at their OnlineFX site. To make it even more attractive to users, you can use either your debit card, credit card, or cash for an international money transfer. Once you initiate the transfer, money can be deposited directly into the recipient’s bank account or picked up at a Western Union location.
Beyond these two established forms of sending money internationally, there are a multitude of new companies that can be your ticket to sending money across borders.
Trasnferwise is considered to be one of the best ways to send money internationally on the market today. The U.K. company is known for being as simple as can be. First off, they use actual exchange rates, so there are no markups on sending money to different countries. All you do is pay a fee for the transfer and then wait a couple days before the money appears in your recipient’s account. The pricing in straightforward, easy to use, and offers both online and mobile platforms.
The one downside of TransferWise comes if you are looking to transfer huge sums of money. For personal funds, the daily limit is $50,000, with a maximum of $250,000 per year. For a business fund, the limits increase to $250,000 with $1 million per year. Just something to keep in mind.
PayPal Money Transfer
Another company that has established itself as a trusted and easy way to transfer money internationally is PayPal. Perhaps the greatest benefit of this company is that PayPal makes it especially easy to use money sent using the service because users can link credit cards or bank accounts directly to their account.
PayPal is incredibly quick and easy, especially for smaller amounts of money. The only potential downsides of PayPal are that both the sender and the recipient have to have an account, and the amount that you are allowed to send may be restricted. Finally, PayPal fees can fluctuate depending on which country you want to send money to.
Still, because of its massive reach, PayPal is definitely one of the best ways to send money internationally.
OFX Sending Money
Another online-based company, OFX started in Sydney, Australia, but has since become available to users all over the globe. Unlike TransferWise, which charges a fee but does not take anything from the exchange rate, OFX takes a small margin on the exchange rate but charges no additional fees. This makes it a good option if you are looking to send money internationally in large quantities. On top of that, OFX also bases the rate they charge on how regularly you use the service. If you plan on making regular international transfers, OFX could definitely be the way to go.
OFX offers easy-to-use online and mobile platforms, no maximum transfer limit, and same-day service for many countries. Additionally, they offer 24-hour customer support.
Now that you have the basic facts, get to work at finding which option best works for you and your international recipient.