The concise guide to international bank drafts | finder.com
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The concise guide to international bank drafts

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Send money overseas safely and inexpensively with a bank draft.

If you’re looking for a safe, secure and reasonably affordable way to transfer money overseas, you may wish to look into the possibility of taking out an international bank draft. Also known as a bank check, bank drafts are accepted in most countries and are created in the currency of the destination where they are sent.

Although there are much quicker methods of sending money overseas, international bank drafts still offer several benefits to consumers. If time is not a factor when you’re transferring money to someone overseas, bank drafts can be perfect.

How does a bank draft work?

A bank draft is effectively a check from a financial institution, which means the funds for the transaction are withdrawn from the institution rather than from the check drawer’s account.

This offers an important benefit over an ordinary check from an individual. The funds from a normal check are not withdrawn from the drawer’s account until the check is cleared, which means there may not be sufficient funds available when the check is cashed and it may therefore bounce.

With a bank draft, however, when a person requests one they must immediately transfer the funds from their account to cover the amount of the check. This adds a crucial extra level of security over a normal check.

Drafts can be drawn in the foreign currency you choose and are available for personal or business use.

Make your comparison of bank drafts that much more effective

  • Fees. This is the most important factor to look at when comparing bank drafts. Look at the different fees charged for obtaining a draft and see if you could save money with a different provider.
  • Available currencies and countries. Speak to your bank or financial institution about the currencies in which you can obtain a bank draft and the countries to which you can send them.
  • Processing time. Once you apply for a draft, how long will it take for your financial institution to process it?
  • Application options. It’s also a good idea to compare the different methods available when applying for a bank draft. You’ll typically need to visit a branch or apply in writing.

Weigh up the pros and cons of a bank draft

Pros

  • Accepted in most parts of the world. International bank drafts are accepted in the majority of countries around the globe.
  • Inexpensive. Although you will have to pay a fee when you apply for an international bank draft, drafts are still a relatively cost-effective method of sending funds overseas.
  • In local currency. As the check is made out in the local currency where it will be sent, it does not require conversion and is therefore able to be banked quicker than a check written in USD.
  • Secure. Bank drafts must be deposited into a bank account and cannot be cashed.

Cons

  • Slow. Bank drafts typically take several weeks to process, so they’re only a viable option where the speed of the transaction is not a concern.

What are the risks?

Keep an eye out for the following risks when it comes to bank drafts.

  • Funds not arriving in time. As mentioned, international bank drafts are quite a slow method of sending money overseas. If you need to send funds urgently, do not bother applying for a bank draft.
  • Fees. As with any financial product or service, it’s important that you’re aware of the fees and charges that apply to your bank draft. This can save you a lot of money in the long run.
  • Your country of choice may be unavailable. Make sure to check which countries and currencies your bank will allow you to send a draft in and to.

Need to send money quickly?

The transfer services below are not bank drafts, but rather allow you to make bank transfers which can be received by your recipient in their bank account or as cash.

I want to send

to

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
USD 0 3 - 5 days USD 0.00 0.877 EUR 4,384 Transfer up to $500,000 with no minimums and no fees. Go to site Show details
USD 1,000 1 day USD 0.00 0.876 EUR 4,382 No maximum limit, no fees and competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies. Go to site Show details
USD 1 1 - 2 days USD 7.00 0.877 EUR
4,380
Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks. Go to site Show details
USD 1 Within an hour USD 3.99 0.875 EUR 4,374 Use promo code FINDER to send your first transfer with no fee.
Send to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up.
Go to site Show details
1 - 2 days USD 0.00 0.875 EUR 4,373 Get live quotes on exchange rates and take advantage of no transaction fees with no limits on transfers. Go to site Show details
1 - 2 days - - RemitMoney specializes in transfers to India, offering 24/7 customer support and easy tracking. Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Read answers to your most common questions about bank drafts

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US International Money Transfers Offers

Important Information*
XE Money Transfer

Transfer up to $500,000 with no minimums and no fees.

WorldRemit International Money Transfers

Use promo code FINDER to send your first transfer with no fee.
Send to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up.

World First

No maximum limit, no fees and competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies.

TransferWise

Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks.

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4 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    SUDHEERNovember 24, 2018

    Kindly inform validity period of an Italian Bankers Draft

    • finder Customer Care
      nikkiangcoNovember 30, 2018Staff

      Hi Sudheer,

      Thanks for getting in touch! Bank draft validity dates are set by each bank upon the date of issuance. If you are issuing or receiving a bank draft, take note of the validity set that will be found on the cheque itself. Hope this helps!

      Best,
      Nikki

  2. Default Gravatar
    patriciaAugust 28, 2018

    I want to buy a USD international bank draft for my nephew and his bride to be who are moving to the States. AS the draft will not be lodged for at least 6 weeks is there a time limit on the draft.

    • finder Customer Care
      johnbasanesAugust 29, 2018Staff

      Hi Patricia,

      Thank you for leaving a question.

      Generally, a bank draft does not expire since the bank draft has been purchased by either cash or cleared funds. But you may want to confirm this with the bank you are taking out the bank draft because some banks may have a time limit that they set on this. Hope this helps!

      Cheers,
      Reggie

US International Money Transfers Offers

Important Information*
XE Money Transfer

Transfer up to $500,000 with no minimums and no fees.

WorldRemit International Money Transfers

Use promo code FINDER to send your first transfer with no fee.
Send to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up.

World First

No maximum limit, no fees and competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies.

TransferWise

Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks.

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