Businesses need to send money overseas for all manner of reasons, from paying international suppliers to buying stock or consolidating their financial strength in overseas markets. Luckily, there are more international money transfer options for businesses to choose from than ever before. This ensures that those who shop around for the best possible deal can find a fast, affordable method of moving funds across international borders.
Use the table below to sort through different money transfer services until you find one suitable for your business. Enter the amount you need to send and the destination to see the most suitable services. If you want to read more about a product, click “More”, or click “Go to Site” to register for a service and get a free quote.
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Why you should consider using an international money transfer provider instead of your bank
When you’re a small business owner, time is a precious quantity, which often means that many business owners simply opt to perform money transfers through their regular bank. Unfortunately, this is one of the least efficient and most costly ways to send money overseas.
Banks offer poor exchange rates, a lack of useful features and have high fees. Also, they might not offer the currency or destination you need.
One of the first things you’ll notice when comparing dedicated money transfer services to banks is that money transfer providers typically offer better exchange rates to their customers than banks do. Even a difference of a couple of cents in your favour can add up to a big saving when you transfer several thousands of dollars.
Money transfer companies also offer lower fees than banks, offering another way to keep more money in your pocket. Fees can add up quickly, especially when you’re setting up regular scheduled business transfers, so it pays to compare the hidden charges included with competing providers.
In addition, many money transfer companies offer to waive their transfer fee when you send more than a certain amount of money, so keep an eye out for this feature as well. Money transfer companies can also typically transfer your funds quicker than banks can, which is an important feature in the business world. Some companies offer transfers within 24 hours or even minutes, while banks can take up to five days to send your money.
Let’s look at an example below.
Should I use a specialist money transfer service or my bank?
Kevin is a small business owner who wants to send a one-off payment of €5,000 overseas to an important supplier in the United States. Although tempted to simply use his regular bank to perform the transaction, he decides to compare how much it will cost through his bank with the expense involved in transferring funds via a money transfer provider.
|Bank||Money transfer service|
|Exchange rate||€1 = 1.002 USD||€1 = 1.11 USD|
|Amount transferred||US$5,010 USD||US$5,550 USD|
As you can see, even though the transfer fee with the money transfer service is more than the fee that the bank charges, the exchange rate is much more competitive. Therefore, even with the higher transfer fee, Kevin can send an additional US$540 to his recipient by using a dedicated money transfer provider.
*You should always source a quote for current rates and fees.
Which services specialise in overseas money transfers for business?
It’s possible for businesses to send money overseas through many Irish banks. However, business owners can also conduct international money transfers through specialist companies such as OFX, TorFX, CurrencyFair, and others. In many cases, you can save money by using the services of a money transfer provider instead of a regular bank.
These companies usually offer better exchange rates and lower fees than banks. They also often offer a much faster processing time for transfers. In short, while banks focus on a wide range of financial products and services, international money transfer providers specialise in sending funds overseas.
Compare these features when comparing business transfer services
It’s important to consider the following factors when choosing a money transfer provider:
Competitive exchange rates
The higher the exchange rate, the more money will end up in your recipient’s bank account. It’s quick and easy to compare exchange rates online, and money transfer companies typically offer better rates than banks. Some companies will also offer better rates to business customers than personal customers, so compare this feature as well. However, remember to consider a company’s rates in conjunction with its fees.
Little or no fees
Read the fine print to discover any fees and charges which will be attached to your transaction as well as whether you can save money by lodging your transfer online instead of in a branch. Many online transfer providers will waive their transfer fee when you send more than a certain amount, so look into this feature as well.
Ability to schedule payments
Does your provider allow you to set up regular scheduled payments? This is convenient for business owners and can help you organise your budget more effectively.
A forward contract lets you lock in an exchange rate now for an international money transfer that will take place at a later date. Consider which providers offer this, how far in advance contracts can be set up and whether the providers attach extra fees for this service.
Customer service, contact methods and availability
Consider which provider has the best reputation for customer service. Is assistance available online, over the phone and via live chat? Between what hours can you contact customer support? This area is important to consider in case you ever have issues with one of your transfers that need to be resolved.
Different money transfer providers will offer to transfer funds to a range of different supported currencies. Most providers will let you send funds in a number of commonly traded currencies, for example the US dollar or the British pound, but depending on your business, you may need to trade more exotic currencies.
Limit orders let you take advantage of fluctuating market exchange rates, so check which providers offer this feature. Also, remember to establish whether this service comes with any fees. A limit order allows you to specify a target exchange rate for your international money transfer, and your money transfer provider will then monitor the market and perform your transfer when such a rate arises. This allows small business owners to take advantage of fluctuating exchange rates when sending money overseas.
Real questions about international business transfers
Are the application requirements different for businesses than for individuals?
If you wish to send money internationally on behalf of your business, you will need to register your business details for the account. This includes the business name and registered address, details of the company directors, owners and/or shareholders and a description of what the business does. You will also need to register a bank account that is in the same name as the business.
Are international money transfers safe?
Yes, international money transfers are safe. Money transfer providers operate under a financial licence, which you should be able to check via the provider’s website.
Is it cheaper to send funds overseas through my bank or a money transfer provider?
It is typically cheaper to send funds through a money transfer provider due to better exchange rates and lower fees.
Can I track the progress of my transfer?
Yes, your provider or bank will give you a tracking number so you can monitor the progress of your transaction.
In what currencies can I transfer funds?
This varies between providers. Certain currencies are staples on the international currency market, such as the US dollar or the euro, while other currencies are rarer. Contact your provider for a full list of the available currencies.
Got it – what do I do now?
Now that you understand how business international money transfers work, use the table above to compare providers. When you have chosen a couple that you believe will best meet your transfer needs, click the green “Go to Site” button to source quotes with current rates and fees specific to your transfer.
If you need to conduct an international business transfer, it really does make good financial sense to shop around and compare your transfer options. This will ensure you save money and that your transfers are processed fast. You can start the comparison process at Finder Ireland.