Better Ways To Send Money to Serbia

SerbiaIf you’re looking for ways to send money to Serbia, start by comparing exchange rates, transfer fees and speeds that best meet your needs.

Bordered by Hungary, Romania, Bosnia and Croatia, Serbia is a small country with a population of just over seven million. As a result of several waves of immigration, Serbian-Canadians number around 40,000.

Whether you’re of Serbian decent and want to transfer money back, or planning to visit as a tourist, here are some tips for sending money from Canada.

Banks versus money transfer companies

Andrej’s parents decided to move back to Belgrade after 25 years in Toronto. They’ll be moving back to the family house, but it needs extensive renovation. Andrej, his sisters and their cousins want to help with expenses, so they’re looking for a quick, cheap way to send money back home to Serbia.

Money transfer service 1Money transfer service 2
Exchange rate$1 CAD = 76.75 RSD$1 CAD = 76.42 RSD
Transfer fee$30$20
Amount received for $500RSD38,378.57RSD38,212.88
Transfer timeWithin minutesWithin minutes
Transfer optionsBy phone, online, in personOnline, in person
DifferenceRSD165.69

Although money transfer service 1 allows RSD165.69 more to arrive, the transfer fee is $10 higher than money transfer service 2, which means its more expensive. A $10 saving is actually RSD789.04, meaning that it makes more financial sense to send the money using money transfer service 2. This is why it is important to consider all factors before simply settling for a money transfer service.

How do I compare transfer companies when transferring and receiving money via Serbia?

When considering money transfer options, it’s important to keep the following factors in mind:

  • Exchange rates. Beside what you pay for the transfer service, it’s important to choose a service that offers a competitive exchange rate. Compare the offered exchange rate to the fees that the company will charge, since some companies will hide high fees to focus on a competitive exchange rate.
  • Pick-up methods. Check with your recipient to see which pick-up method would suit them best, especially if they are not able to travel to the nearest branch location or they are far from a pick-up point.
  • Fees. Even if a service offers a competitive exchange rate, make sure that you aren’t being charged service or conversion fees for the transfer. As mentioned above, sometimes a good exchange rate is negated by additional fees. If you send a large amount of money at once, some companies will waive fees altogether.
  • Bank-to-bank transfers. If your recipient has a bank account with the same bank, you can send a same-bank transfer, usually for no fee.
  • Turnaround time. Depending on how urgently your recipient needs the money, you can choose between services that offer instantaneous delivery (Western Union, for example) or those that make money available within one to three working days. Keep in mind that faster turnaround times usually attract higher fees.
  • Transfer methods. The quickest way to send money is usually via online transfer, but you can also choose transactions handled over the phone, in person or through your bank.
  • Transfer options. Besides just one-off transfers, you can also choose to set up regularly scheduled payments, forwards contracts and market orders.
  • Minimum transfer amounts. Some services require that you send a minimum amount of money, usually between $10 and $50. In some cases, fees are waived for transfers over a certain amount as mentioned above. These amounts are usually quite high, around $2,500 or more.
  • Customer service. It’s imperative that the money transfer service has a reliable and efficient customer service. Some companies will offer 24/7 customer service, while others may only be available a few hours a day.

How do I send money to Serbia from Canada?

Below are a few money-sending options to consider when sending money to Serbia.

  • MoneyGram. Only cash pick-up is available with MoneyGram when sending money between Canada and Serbia.
  • Western Union. Your recipient can collect the deposit at a Western Union agent or withdraw it from his or her bank account.
  • Banks. Sending money between banks usually implies higher fees, but if your recipient has a bank account with the same bank, the transfer will be sent without a fee.
  • HiFX. This services facilitates bank-to-bank transfers for low fees. Be sure to compare exchange rates and delivery times, as most transfers with this company generally take three to five business days.

How do I receive money from Serbia in Canada?

In the same way that recipients in Serbia can access their deposits quickly and easily, sending money from Serbia to Canada is facilitated by a number of online transfer services.

  • WorldRemit. This transfer service allows you to receive a transfer in Canada within 10 minutes of the transaction being initiated. Recipients can collect their money at a designated pick-up point.
  • PayPal. One of the most recognizable and reliable money transfer services, PayPal facilitates instantaneous transfers between PayPal accounts and bank accounts.

Emergency cash transfers in Serbia

If you find yourself in an emergency while in Serbia, there are a few ways to have money sent to where you are.

  • Pick-up options. Transfer companies like Western Union and MoneyGram have pick-up points from which you can collect your deposit. Money is usually available within minutes of the transaction being initiated.
  • Online transfers. These money transfer companies facilitate quick transfers between bank accounts, usually within one to three business days.
  • Travel insurance. Your travel insurance policy should cover you for loss and theft while on vacation. Get in touch with your insurer, but make sure you’re eligible for coverage before submitting a claim. You will likely need a police report for proof, so keep that in mind.

Cash pickup locations in Serbia

If you’re sending money via Western Union or MoneyGram, check out below some of the most popular pick-up locations from which to collect your deposit in Serbia.

Western Union

  • Banca Intensa

    Vase Pelagica 48b
    Belgrade 11000
    +381 11 3300300
    Open Monday to Friday 9am to 4:30pm

  • Posta Srbije

    Vase Pelagica 48b
    Belgrade 11000
    +381 11 3300300
    Open Monday to Friday 8am to 2pm

  • Erste Bank AD

    Bul Oslobodjenja 76
    Bulevar Oslobodjenja Br 5
    Novi Sad 21000
    +381-11-3341190
    Open Monday to Friday 7:30am to 7pm,
    Saturday 8am to 1pm

  • Eldorado 6

    Bulevar Oslobodjenja 27
    Novi Sad
    +381-11-3334999
    Open Monday to Sunday 7am to 11pm

MoneyGram

  • Alpha Bank 106

    Vojvode Stepe 112
    Belgrade, 11010
    +381 11 2492880
    Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

  • Sberbank Belgrade Ustanicka

    Ustanicka 264
    Belgrade, 11000
    +381 11 3049579
    Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm,
    Saturday 10am to 1pm

  • Alpha Bank 300

    Bulevar Oslobodijenja 30
    Novi Sad, 21000
    +381 21 4770248
    Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

  • EFG 203
    TC Dalton Bul.oslobodjenja 95
    Novi Sad – Dalton, 21101
    +381 21 4725516
    Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Tips for picking up cash in Serbia

It’s always helpful to know the the country. Serbia is a member of the United Nations and is currently a candidate for entry into the European Union. Serbian immigration to Canada occurred in waves throughout the 20th century, particularly during and after the Second World War and the Yugoslav Wars. As the home of a large Serbian population, Canada has many communities that focus on teaching and maintaining Serbian traditions, culture and food. most of whom are concentrated in and around Toronto. The Serbian population in Toronto is the third largest in the world, after Vienna and Chicago, outside of Serbia itself.

While the Canadian Government advises a normal degree of caution while travelling Serbia, the number of migrants entering the country can lead to delays on public transport and at the borders. While crime is relatively low, you should still be vigilant while travelling, especially if you’re collecting money from a pick-up point. Be sure to get there during opening hours and try to take a friend along with you. As in any country, you should be vigilant when picking up large sums of money from ATM’s or branch locations.

What are the steps to send money to Serbia?

Some online services require that you open an account before initiating a transfer. You’ll be asked to supply the following information:

    • Your contact details
    • Email address
    • Bank account information
    • Your recipient’s personal details and bank account information

Once the transfer has been completed, you’ll receive a tracking number to use as a reference when making enquiries.

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