Receiving Money from Overseas: Taxes, Fees & More | Finder Canada

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Receiving a money transfer from overseas

The ins and outs of receiving money from an overseas sender.

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With the right tools at your disposal, you can find the best deal and have quick access to your funds when you receive a money transfer from abroad.

What is the best way to receive money from overseas?

The best way to receive money from overseas depends on your specific situation. For many people, receiving the money straight to their bank through an international wire transfer is the most convenient, even if it can be expensive. Typically it is cheaper to use a money transfer company since these types of companies specialize in sending money overseas and offer lower fees and stronger exchange rates than banks.

From cheapest to most expensive, the best way to receive money from overseas is:

  1. International money transfer company — Find a company that fits your needs by comparing a variety of companies before you receive your transfer.
  2. Money order – Sometimes called a bank draft, an international money order is an inexpensive and slow way to receive money.
  3. Mobile wallet – Having money delivered to a mobile wallet isn’t a popular option in Canada, but if it is available this option is convenient.
  4. Cash delivery Consider having your money sent to a local money transfer agent location so that you can pick it up in cash. Some services will even deliver it straight to your home.
  5. International wire transfer – International wires through the bank often get charged fees on both ends, both to send and to receive the transfer from abroad.

Compare international money transfer companies to receive money

Use our comparison table to see how much money you could receive through different money transfer companies. Enter the amount you’ll be receiving, the currency in which it will be sent, then click Calculate.

How to receive money using our comparison tool

  • View. Sort through different international money transfer providers and services by exchange rate, amount received, transfer speed and more.
  • Compare. Figure out your best option by comparing companies side-by-side.
  • Save. To read more about a product, click on the company’s logo. To start an application or transfer, click Go to Site.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
CAD 1 Same day CAD 0.00 0.796 USD
7,957
XE has fast transfers with no fees and a range of foreign currency tools. Go to site Show details
USD 150 1 day CAD 0.00 0.796 USD
7,965
Exclusive offer: Discounted exchange rates for your first and ongoing transactions. $0 transfer fee.
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
Go to site Show details
CAD 0 Within an hour CAD 3.99 0.796 USD
7,957
Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Conditions apply.
WorldRemit sends money to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposits, cash pick-ups or mobile top-ups.
Go to site Show details
USD 10,000 1 - 2 days CAD 0.00 0.793 USD
7,929
Dunbridge Financial offers diverse transfer options to more than 120 countries. Powered by Currencycloud. Go to site Show details
CAD 1 1 - 2 days CAD 90.00 0.8 USD
7,925
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies. Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 1 - 2 days CAD 0.00 0.796 USD
7,963
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace. Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

Bank information needed when receiving money from overseas

In order to receive money from overseas, you’ll need to provide specific details about your bank, including:

  • Bank institution number
  • Bank account number
  • Transit number
  • Full name
  • Street address

If you decide to pick the transfer up as cash or have it delivered to a digital wallet, the information you’ll need to provide will vary.

How does receiving money from overseas work?

The process may differ depending on the service provider used to send the funds. With some money transfer services, you need to request the transaction reference number from the sender and present the number along with your identification documents. You may also be required to fill out a receive form to access your funds.

With online transfers, the funds are deposited into your account, after which you can withdraw them. You can also receive funds through a prepaid card or mobile wallet.

What type of money transfer should I use to receive money?

Money transfers come in many varieties, all of which can be used to receive money from overseas.

  • Online transfer. You can use online payment services to transfer and receive funds. The funds are converted into the recipient’s currency.
  • Money transfer. Money transfer companies that offer cash pickup are an easy way to receive money. Just double-check that there’s an agent location near you before agreeing to receive a cash transfer.
  • Prepaid card. You can access your funds through an ATM when using a prepaid card to receive money.
  • Mobile wallet. Receive and send funds directly from your smartphone when using a mobile wallet.

How do I compare international money transfer services when receiving money?

  • Fees. This is one of the most essential considerations when comparing money transfer providers. Comparing fees allows you to find the most cost-effective option. But remember to find out about the fees that apply to both the sender and the recipient.
  • Accessibility. Make sure money transfer providers service your area. Find out if the funds are widely accessible in the areas and via the methods you need.
  • Exchange rates. As the funds are received in the recipient’s currency, you need to determine which of the providers you wish to use has the best rates. Exchange rates could work to greatly decrease the amount sent.
  • Reputation. You want your funds transfer to be handled by a reputable company. However, there are many money transfer companies to be found online, so the only way you can ensure that your funds are safe is by going with a trusted provider. Look at each company’s history and customer reviews before making a decision.

Do I have to pay taxes when receiving money from overseas?

No, there are no taxes simply for receiving a money transfer in Canada. However, an incoming transfer could trigger a tax if the money is earned or used in a taxable way. For example, if you receive money as profit from an overseas business venture, you’ll have to report this on your annual tax return as part of your income. Learn more about tax regulations for large international money transfers into Canada in our guide.

What are the pros and cons of receiving money from an international money transfer service, rather than a bank?

Pros

  • Simplicity. Most money transfer systems offer simplicity when it comes to sending and receiving money. You can also receive funds immediately once they’re transferred.
  • Variety. There are various methods one can use to receive money, so you’re not forced to work with one service provider.
  • Security. If you use a trusted money transfer provider, your transaction is safe and secure.

Cons

  • Fees. Most money transfer providers have applicable fees that could make their services costly.

Bottom line

Receiving money from overseas doesn’t have to be expensive or stressful. By comparing your options, you can make sure you aren’t paying too much in fees or losing money to a poor exchange rate. Before making a final decision, learn more about how to save money when sending and receiving money from overseas.

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Ask an Expert

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20 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    LeonieAugust 10, 2016

    Hi I am currently working in California for 3months my pay will go into a western union acct can someone in Australia open an acct for me? And can I then transfer it to a.n.z. or commonwealth acct? As I don’t want to fly home with a bit of cash
    Thanks

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyAugust 11, 2016Staff

      Hi Leonie,

      Thanks for your question.

      You can set it up so someone in Australia can pick up the cash for you at a Western Union kiosk and then they can deposit it into your bank for you.

      Alternatively, you may want to consider an international money transfer service and have the funds directly deposited into your bank account here in Australia, this eliminates the need for someone to pick up the cash.

      I hope this has helped.

    Default Gravatar
    smngrffthJune 14, 2016

    Hi. Do you have a physical office in Thailand ?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyJune 14, 2016Staff

      Hi smngrffth,

      Thanks for your question.

      Since finder.com is an Australian third party comparison service, we don’t have any offices in Thailand.

      Western Union has a number of kiosks available in Thailand.

    Default Gravatar
    michaelMay 20, 2016

    Hi i am moving back to melbourne, and i will have a large sum of money transfering back to australia(over a mil AUD). so i dont trust these small transfer bank. So which is the best rate for bank? st george, westpac, commonwealth, or anz? thanks.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyMay 25, 2016Staff

      Hi Michael,

      Thanks for your question.

      Please note that the international money transfer services that we list are regulated in Australia by ASIC under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing Act 2006 and is regulated by the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre ‘AUSTRAC’.

      The exchange rates will depend on the currency you’re transferring from, so we’re unable to tell you immediately which bank is “best”. Please compare St.George rates here, Westpac rates here, CBA rates here and ANZ rates.

    Default Gravatar
    ColinMarch 28, 2016

    Hi,
    In order to receive funds from my U.S. e-trade account into australia, e-trade in the US can only transfer funds to a bank account that is in my name. The issue with this is that aussie banks offer poor exchange rates when receiving these funds.

    How can I receive funds from e-trade at more competitive exchange rates?

    Regards
    Colin

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      AdrianMarch 29, 2016Staff

      Hi Colin,

      Thanks for your question.

      If you want to earn a more competitive exchange rate, you could use a cash account that earns a competitive interest rate. The rate is more competitive depending on the amount you wish to deposit. Visit https://invest.etrade.com.au/InvestmentProducts/Cash/Default.aspx to find out more.

      I hope this helps,
      Harry

    Default Gravatar
    TheresaFebruary 15, 2016

    An American friend is about to send me some money. She will send US dollars, can I receive it in US dollars as we are about to go overseas and will need US dollars.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyFebruary 16, 2016Staff

      Hi Theresa,

      Thanks for your question.

      If your American friend sends money to your Australian bank account, the funds will automatically exchange to AUD as your bank account can only hold AUD.

      You may want to consider a multi-currency account – or asking your friend to hold the money in USD cash.

      Hope this helps.

    Default Gravatar
    WILSONJanuary 17, 2016

    I recently made a payment from INDIA to a commonwealth bank of Australia account.But when my bank transferred the funds it did via ANZ Bank. The funds were transferred to ANZ bank from where it was transferred to the beneficiary account at commonwealth

    What my question is what would be the charges applied for the remittance

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyJanuary 18, 2016Staff

      Hi Wilson,

      Thanks for your question.

      Generally the fees charged should be the fees involved with transferring from your Indian Bank to ANZ, as the transfer from ANZ to CommBank should be free of charge.

      For more information, please speak to the Indian Bank that processed the transfer for you.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

    Default Gravatar
    VeeJuly 19, 2015

    For migrants moving to Australia, generally, What are the tax implications of

    1. Sending funds across before we moved?

    For many migrants, we would be liquidating assets in our home country and moving it across to Australia.

    2. Receiving regular funds from overseas after we move?

    Thank you

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      BelindaJuly 22, 2015Staff

      Hi Vee,

      I’ve sent you an email to follow up with this enquiry.

      Thanks,
      Belinda

        Default Gravatar
        KatMay 20, 2016

        Hi, I have a similar question as Vee in July 2015. However, he got his reply by email, perhaps you can share it here?

        For migrants moving to Australia, generally, What are the tax implications of

        1. Sending funds across before we moved?

        For many migrants, we would be liquidating assets in our home country and moving it across to Australia.

        2. Receiving regular funds from overseas after we move?

        Thank you

          Avatarfinder Customer Care
          ShirleyMay 20, 2016Staff

          Hi Kat,

          Thanks for your question.

          Tax implications sending funds across before we moved
          There are no tax implications for receiving funds here in Australia. However, your home country may have tax regulations in place that implicates you.

          Receiving regular funds from overseas after we move
          Unless the income is from an employer, there are generally no tax implications.

          Hope this helps.

    Default Gravatar
    RenéApril 2, 2015

    Je dois envoyer de l’argent sur un compte chez vous.
    Il me manque votre SWIFT.
    Veuillez me le communiquer. svp.
    Avec mes meilleures salutations.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyApril 7, 2015Staff

      Hi René,

      Thanks for your question.

      Please note that finder.com is an online comparison and information service and is not a product issuer. You’ll need to speak to the institution directly to obtain their SWIFT code.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

    Default Gravatar
    WillJanuary 12, 2015

    Can you guys help us with bad credit in the US?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MarcJanuary 13, 2015Staff

      Hi Will,
      thanks for the question.

      Unfortunately at this current time we only compare lenders in Australia.

      Sorry we couldn’t help,
      Marc.

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