What is an international money transfer?
An international money transfer is a safe and secure way to make international payments that may be better value and faster than using your bank.
The exchange rates offered by money transfer companies (brokers) can be better than the exchange rates offered by banks. The transfer fees they charge can often be cheaper than banks too – with some money transfer companies offering free transfers.
You can use an international money transfer company to make one-off or regular international payments. This might include sending money abroad as a gift or as a purchase, or regularly sending a salary or pension if you’re moving abroad. You might also need to send a larger amount to cover a deposit for a foreign property.
How does an international money transfer work?
There are normally three ways to transfer money internationally:
- Transfer at the current exchange rate: sometimes called a spot deal, a transfer at the current exchange rate is the quickest and most straightforward option as you simply send the funds immediately at today’s rate of exchange
- Forward contract: lets you lock-in today’s exchange rate, but allows you to transfer money at a chosen date in the future. This can often be any time up to 12 months in the future.
- Limit Order: this is when you nominate your ideal exchange rate, and as soon as the rate is reached, the funds are transferred. There will be a minimum transaction for a limit order, which can be around £30,000 (or the currency equivalent). You can set an expiry date for your Limit Order, and this can often be any time up to 12 months in the future
You’ll need to sign-up with an international money transfer company and create an account.
You’ll then be able to book a rate online or over the phone, pay by debit card or bank transfer into the account you’ve created. Once they’ve received the money, the broker will then transfer the sum to your recipient on the best day for you.