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Before you send money to loved ones or colleagues in Russia, it’s important to research all of your options. Though you may be most familiar with your bank, expanding your search to include online money transfer specialists may save you money and time.
There are three main options you can use, each with their own pros and cons:
These offer some of the most cost-effective transfers, as they only trade in foreign currencies. You’ll also have a variety of options for your recipient to get the money — like to a mobile wallet or home delivery.
Services such as Western Union allow you to send cash transfers for immediate pickup by the recipient. While it’s a fast way to send money, it generally won’t match the rates or fees of dedicated money transfer services.
The Russian ruble is popular enough that your bank in Ireland may offer it, at least at major branches. But watch out for the higher fees and less competitive exchange rates banks offer compared to the other options.
To put this into perspective, let’s see what a transfer with each of these options looks like. This table uses real fees and exchange rates current as of 7 May 2020.
|Bank transfer||Cash transfer||Money transfer service|
|Fee||€20 + additional correspondent bank fees||€3.99||€28|
|Exchange rate||1 EUR = 75.127 RUB||1 EUR = 76.264 RUB||1 EUR = 80.017 RUB|
|Transfer speed||2-4 days+||Minutes||1-2 days|
The bank option ends up being both slow and getting the least amount of money to your recipient. If you go with the specialist money transfer service, your recipient ends up with more than RUB$5,500 more. However, if speed is what’s most important, the cash transfer can’t be beaten for instant transfers.
It depends on what method you choose, but the fastest one is instant and the slowest can take up to a week. Since banks need to transfer your money through several correspondent banks, it takes the longest. Cash transfers are the fastest and normally arrive in minutes, but typically cost more.
There may be times when you need to send money to Russia as quickly as possible. When you find yourself in such a situation, remember to check the exchange rate and any fees that apply to your transaction, as urgent transfers will usually cost more. Read the details of your transaction to prevent any nasty surprises.
Cash transfer services can also help if either you or your recipient is unbanked. If you don’t have a bank account, look for transfer services that have agent locations so you can go in and pay in cash. These cash transfer services will also have agent locations in other countries where your recipient can pick up the cash without needing a bank account.
Before initiating a transfer, have the following in place:
Keep all of the paperwork associated with your transfer in case you need proof that the money was sent.
When sending money to Russia, use the following list to compare banks, cash transfer and money transfer services to find the best deal:
The exchange rate is how much one country’s currency is worth in another country’s currency. With the EUR/RUB currency pairing, you’ll get more money when either the euro is strong or the Russian ruble is weak.
You’ll also see that the exchange rate you get quoted from money transfer companies differs. Compare what you get quoted with the mid-market rate below, which is what your money is actually worth.
The Russian ruble is popular enough that it should be carried by nearly all major money transfer companies, which is why you’ll have a lot of options when it comes to sending money to Russia. Be sure to compare the fees and exchange rates offered by many different money transfer providers to get the best deal.
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