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Send money to Spain

Shop around for the best money transfer service when you need to send money to Spain.

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Online money transfer companies typically offer the lowest fees and the most competitive rates — often beating your local bank by a longshot – if you need to send money to Spain. You’ll need to send cash if your recipient doesn’t have an account with a supported bank, so compare options to find the best deal for your situation.

How to send money to Spain online

Sign up and send money with a digital money transfer specialist in four steps:

  1. Sign up for a free account. Pick a provider and sign up for a free online account using your contact information, proof of ID and preferred payment method.
  2. Provide transfer details. Submit your recipient’s contact information and pick a delivery method. If transferring to a bank, you’ll need their Spanish bank account details.
  3. Confirm transfer details. Double-check your payment method, expected fees and destination.
  4. Save your receipt. Record your receipt’s confirmation number to track the progress of your transfer to Spain. Some money transfer providers send a text or email when your transfer is complete.

What’s the best way to send money to Spain?

Online money transfer providers typically offer the lowest fees on money transfers to Spain. Some offer cash pickup in as little as a few minutes, while others transfer to bank accounts. Sending money through PayPal or your bank is also an option, but you’ll typically face higher fees when going that route.

Blue icon representing money transfers Image: Infogram

Digital money transfer services

Companies like XE and Transferwise specialise in foreign transfers, making them some of the most cost-effective way to send money. Most offer transfers directly to your recipient’s Spanish bank account, often in as little as a day or two.

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Cash transfers

Services like MoneyGram and Western Union allow you to transfer cash for pickup at a local branch in Spain – often in 15 minutes. While it’s a fast way to send money, you’ll pay for the convenience in weak exchange rates and high fees.

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Banks

The euro is the main currency in both Ireland and Spain, so your local bank will be able to send them. However, beware of high fees compared to digital and other options when sending a wire transfer to Spain.

Let’s crunch the numbers: Sending €1,000 to Spain

Let’s say you need to send €1,000 to family in Spain. Here’s what you might face as far as fees and exchange rates as of 18 November 2020.

Digital money transfer service Cash transfer Bank transfer
Fee €0.50 €3.90 €20 + additional correspondent bank fees
Exchange rate 1 EUR = 1 EUR 1 EUR = 1 EUR 1 EUR = 1 EUR
Transfer speed 1-2 days Same day 2-5 days
Amount received EUR 999.50 EUR 996.10 EUR 980
Verdict
  • Best value
  • Fastest
  • Slowest and most expensive

The bank option ends up being both the slowest and gets the smallest amount of money to your recipient in Spain. If you go with the digital money transfer service, your recipient ends up with EUR 19.50 more than the bank offers. If speed is crucial, or your recipient wants to pick up cash, a cash transfer can typically have your transfer to Spain in as little as an hour. But confirm that there’s a cash pickup location near your recipient before sending.

How to get the best deal when you send money to Spain

Weigh costs and fees against convenience to best compare money transfer providers that send to Spain. Consider:

  • Transfer fees. Transferring money overseas nearly always requires fees, but they might be hidden in the exchange rate. As there is no currency exchange, looking at the fees becomes even more important.
  • Transfer limits. How much you can send varies by company, and different amounts can attract higher or lower fees. Shop around for the best deal on the amount of euros you’re sending to Spain.
  • Turnaround. Transferring money through a local bank can take a business week or longer. If you need the funds delivered quickly, seek out a digital specialist that offers instant transfers to Spain.
  • Sending limits. Comparing prices for one large transfer instead of many small transfers is typically easier, so picking the service you use based on how much you’re sending is a valid strategy for saving money.
  • Transfer methods. Whether you want money sent to a Spanish bank account or picked up as cash at a local agent, narrow down a company that matches your preferred delivery method.

How to send an emergency cash transfer to Spain

When urgency trumps cost to get your money to Spain quickly, look for money transfer companies that support cash pickup in minutes. You can pay with a credit or debit card for fast pickup, but fees are higher than other methods.

How to send money to Spain without a bank account

If you don’t have a bank account, you can still use cash transfer services to send money to Spain. Similarly, a recipient can get the money with a cash transfer if they don’t have a bank account. These services are widely available around the world and although they’ll typically not be the cheapest available, they can be fast and convenient.

Spain’s exchange rates explained

The exchange rate determines how much one country’s currency is worth in another country’s currency. When a country’s currency is strong, it yields more money when exchanging it in a country with a weaker currency. Spain’s exchange rate is based on the euro, the same as in Ireland. So i this case, there will be no exchange rates involved in your money transfer.

Documents needed for sending to and receiving money in Spain

To send money to Spain from Ireland, you’ll need government-issued ID and other documents, while documents needed to pick up money in Spain may differ by company.

Documents to send money from Ireland

To send money to Spain from Ireland, you’ll need documentation and details that include:

  • Identification. Most services require a driver’s licence, passport or other government-issued ID.
  • Payment method. Your service may accept credit or debit cards, cash, bank accounts or cheques.
  • Recipient information. Submit your recipient’s name as it appears on their ID, along with their phone number and Spanish bank account information.

Documents to receive money in Spain

To pick up money in person, documentation can include:

  • Transfer number. The person sending you money can forward the transfer’s confirmation details – called a PIN, an MTCN, a reference number or a tracking number, depending on the company.
  • Government-issued ID. A Spanish passport, Spanish ID or similar official ID that is valid in the EU may be required to pick up your transfer.
  • Amount sent. You may need to know how much was sent, usually within 10% of the total.
  • Sender’s information. Take along your sender’s full name, the sending country and their address, if known.

Bottom line

It shouldn’t cost a fortune to send money to Spain. Compare money transfer companies that specialise in foreign transactions for the strongest rates, lowest fees and flexible delivery. For transfers to other countries, rely on our country-specific guides the next time you need to make a transfer.

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