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Your debt doesn’t just disappear when you cross an ocean. So if you’re ready to live life in another country, you may need to jump through a few extra hoops to get your finances in order first.
Sending money overseas to your creditors is actually quite easy.
To get the necessary funds back to your home country you’ll need to send an international money transfer. There are three main ways to do this:
Send the money from your foreign bank account to an account in your home country. This is usually the most convenient option (because you’ll already have an account set up and ready to go) but in many cases will also be the most expensive.
Companies such as Western Union and MoneyGram offer fast cash transfers from the US to hundreds of thousands of agent locations around the world. These are good options if cash is an accepted form of payment and if you need to pay off your debt as quickly as possible.
These companies, such as OFX and Wise, specialize in sending international money transfers. They tend to offer the best exchange rates and lowest transfer fees.
If you want to find the most cost-effective way to transfer money overseas, specialist online transfer companies will usually win out. However, you’ll need to compare international money transfer providers to find the best exchange rates and lowest transfer fees.
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
There are several factors you need to consider when choosing a company to handle your international money transfer, including:
Because debt is such a widespread part of life for many, it’s not unusual for people to owe money when they plan to move overseas. Some of the most common outstanding debts you might be facing include:
But despite the fact that you still owe money, sometimes life changes and you decide you want to move abroad. Whether it’s your career, romance or even a simple desire for adventure that prompts you to move to Australia, you can still do so even if you are in debt.
In many cases, your debt won’t stop you from leaving your home country and heading somewhere else, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to leave those old debts behind and start over with a clean slate. Of course, what happens to your debt will vary depending on a wide range of factors, including the amount you owe, who you owe it to and the laws in your home country surrounding debt repayment.
There are several potential outcomes, including:
Dealing with debt collectors can be a worrying and intimidating experience for many, but it’s something you may have to do if you want to get your finances back on track. The best approach is to be proactive and work out a reasonable and affordable agreement to help you pay back the money you owe.
By showing that you are willing to work to pay off your debt as quickly as possible, you’ll take some of the sting out of the situation. It’s also important to remember that you have rights when dealing with debt collectors to ensure that you are not harassed, intimidated or treated unfairly
Managing debt while you’re overseas is a little more complicated, but it’s not insurmountable. If you need to transfer money to creditors internationally, do your research to find the most competitive exchange rates and the lowest fees — and then relax knowing that even if it’ll take a while to pay your debt down, you’ve got it under control.
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What are the details on paying my creditor with a credit card?
We don’t recommend it. If you have an active credit card in your home country, you can use that to pay your creditors as long as they accept credit cards. However, you’ll still need to pay off your credit card, which leaves you right back where you started.
If you have a US credit card that you can easily pay off from your bank account, you may be able to use it to pay your overseas creditors, but it’s likely to come with an unfavorable exchange rate.
How will my credit score affect me abroad?
It depends. Every country has their own unique credit scoring system. However, your current credit file will remain in your home country if you ever return.
When can a creditor take money out of my savings account?
Laws concerning debt vary wildly by country. To find out if your overseas creditor can take money out of your savings account in your home country, you’ll need to look up your country’s laws.
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