What you need to know in 60 seconds
Bank transfers and Western Union are more common ways to send money overseas, but they’re also the most expensive.
New online transfer specialists can be faster and cheaper.
Check currency availability before sending to ensure that your recipient can receive your funds.
Scroll down to read the full guide to sending money overseas.
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Based on your answers, check out:
WorldRemit International Money Transfers
Send money to 110+ countries for bank deposit, instant e-wallet, mobile top-up or cash pickup at 30,000+ agent locations worldwide. Your first transfer is free with the code FREE.
- Low upfront fees and exchange rates.
- Easy to use with round-the-clock help.
- Get cash to family and friends in minutes.
TransferWise International Money Transfers
When you need to send money overseas, benefit from competitive exchange rates and low transfer fees with TransferWise.
- Fair service fees and mid-market rates — a major market differentiator.
- Next-day delivery to your loved ones and businesses.
- Trusted the world over, with five-star ratings on Trustpilot.
World First International Money Transfers
Special offer for finder.com readers Because World First is a trusted partner of finder.com, you can send your money transfer overseas for free. No fees: There is a $0 online transfer fee for all finder.com customers.
- Enjoy competitive exchange rates.
- Take advantage of spot contracts, forward contracts and limit orders.
- Receive weekly updates on market exchange rates.
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Use the currency transfer calculator below by entering the amount you want to send and choose the currency you are sending to.
Save money on your personal or business international money transfer today. Fill in the form and you’ll be contacted by a foreign exchange expert to have an obligation-free discussion about your options. With over 17 years of foreign exchange expertise and over $100 billion transferred, OFX can help with all your currency exchange needs, including:
Save money on your personal or business international money transfer today. Fill in the form and you’ll be contacted by a foreign exchange expert to have an obligation-free discussion about your options.
With over 17 years of foreign exchange expertise and over $100 billion transferred, OFX can help with all your currency exchange needs, including:
There are two ways that a provider makes money on your transfer. The obvious one is the transaction fee. But the sneakier one is what your bank or transfer service marks up on the exchange rate.
Most providers either charge a set fee per transaction or they charge a percentage of your total transfer amount. To safe on fees, keep an eye out for special deals. For example, WorldFirst charges a flat fee of $10 on transfers up to $10,000 and no fee on transfers over that amount. But because WorldFirst is a trusted partner of finder.com, you can avoid the fee entirely. Keep in mind that a lower fee doesn’t necessarily translate to the biggest savings. A lower fee might be accompanied by a poor exchange rate, negating any savings from the low fee.
The exchange rate determines how much one country’s currency is worth in another currency. Most countries’ exchange rates are flexible, which means it can change from moment to moment. Factors that influence the exchange rate include interest rates, economic stability and inflation. Most transfer services will advertise the real exchange rate, or “mid-market rate” — the mid-point between the buy and sell prices of two currencies on the global market. But when it comes time to make your transfer, you’ll notice you almost never get this rate. The provider will mark up the exchange rate — and pocket the difference. Using a provider that offers the most competative exchange rate could save you hundreds on your transaction.
There’s no one best way to transfer funds overseas. It depends on how much you’re sending, how soon you need it to be made available and the exchange rates at the time. Below are a few tips you can use when sending money overseas.
- Know your transfer currency’s mid-market rate. This rate is the midpoint between worldwide supply and demand for that currency — and the rate banks and transfer services use when they trade among themselves. Use it as a baseline to compare against the rates you’re being offered. The company that’s closest is offering you the best rate.
- Send more money per transfer. Many services discount the fees or waive them altogether when you send larger transfers. WorldFirst, for example, World First waives fees for all transfers above $10,000. Sending less comes with a $10 fee.
- Use forward contracts and limit orders if sending money regularly. A forward contract allows you to lock in a favorable exchange rate for future transfers. This means you avoid unpredictable movements in exchange rates. A limit order allows you to wait until a favorable exchange rate is found, and then lock it in for your transfer.
- Send same-currency transfers. It can sometimes be cheaper to transfer US dollars to your recipient, allowing them to transfer the dollars into their own currency when received. Depending on the situation, your recipient could pay lower fees overall.
Alex sends money to MexicoAlex wants to help his family in Mexico with bills and critical home improvements. He initially planned to transfer $1,000 through his local bank, but he’s decided to compare his bank to an independent service to see what his best option is.
|Bank transfer||Money transfer service|
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 19.61 MXN||1 USD = 19.95 MXN|
|Processing time||2 business days||Within minutes|
|Amount received in MXN||19,610 MXN||19,950 MXN|
Visiting his local bank, Alex learns that he’ll need to transfer money from his account to another bank account, which will take a few days. His bank offers a weaker exchange rate and a stiffer transaction fee than a money transfer service does. Overall, he’ll be out $1,035 for the transfer. Working with a money transfer service, Alex discovers it offers not only a stronger exchange rate but also a lower transaction fee. It charges a mere $4 for bank-to-bank transfers but offers quicker cash pickups for only $11 more. By going with a transfer service, Alex saves $20 in fees and his family can pick up the cash — and an additional 340 MXN — within minutes.
Consider the purpose of your transfer. Are you sending money to friends and family overseas, or are you a business looking to pay for goods and services, potentially regularly? For business owners, time is our greatest commodity. Without time to research our options, we often end up going with our bank. But a little planning can set you up for significant savings on your transfers. If you send transfers of $1,000 every week, you could save $40 each time. That’s a savings of $2,000 a year simply by choosing a competitive independent service over your bank.
- Save on business transfers
- Set up regular payments
- Sending an amount over $50,000? Compare four options
- How to send $1 million or more overseas safely
Many online money transfer providers allow you to send and receive funds almost instantly. Transferring the money into a bank account might take a few days. Bank-to-bank transfers also take a few days to clear. If you need to send a same-day or emergency transfer, there are providers that allow your recipient to pick up their funds quickly, often within an hour. How to safely make an emergency money transfer to a friend or family member. Larger payment networks allow for nearly instant transfers with cash pickup:
We’ve gathered today’s best rates to inform your foreign exchange decisions.
|1 USD =||1.0000||1.3204 Inverse: 0.7573||1.3259 Inverse: 0.7542||0.893202 Inverse: 1.1196||6.8387 Inverse: 0.1462||0.78472 Inverse: 1.2743||64.480003 Inverse: 0.0155||17.9945 Inverse: 0.0556||50.099998 Inverse: 0.0200|
|1 AUD =||0.7573 Inverse: 1.3204||1.0000||1.0042 Inverse: 0.9959||0.6765 Inverse: 1.4783||5.1792 Inverse: 0.1931||0.5943 Inverse: 1.6826||48.8335 Inverse: 0.0205||13.6280 Inverse: 0.0734||37.9429 Inverse: 0.0264|
|1 EUR =||1.1196 Inverse: 0.8932||1.4783 Inverse: 0.6765||1.4844 Inverse: 0.6737||1.0000||7.6564 Inverse: 0.1306||0.878547 Inverse: 1.1382||72.189724 Inverse: 0.0139||20.1461 Inverse: 0.0496||56.0903 Inverse: 0.0178|
|1 GBP =||1.2743 Inverse: 0.7847||1.6826 Inverse: 0.5943||1.6896 Inverse: 0.5918||1.1382 Inverse: 0.8785||8.7148 Inverse: 0.1147||1.0000||82.169427 Inverse: 0.0122||22.9311 Inverse: 0.0436||63.8444 Inverse: 0.0157|
We researched over 35 providers and sent money transfers to two countries to find out who offers the best products. Click to have a look at our in-depth research and testing to find out which providers won awards for Best User Experience, Most Convenient, Fastest Transfer, Most Trustworthy, Best Transfer Rates, and Most Outstanding Product.
This is the rate at which your money will be converted to your target currency. Some transfer providers offer lower fees but weaker exchange rates, while others charge no fees but profit from the margin between its rate and the mid-market rate. Compare the total cost of your transfer to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Your bank or transfer provider will usually charge a fee for making a transfer. Fees can vary widely depending on who you’re transferring with. Generally, fees come in the form of a flat fee (such as $5 for transfers up to $5,000) or a percentage of your transaction (such as 1% of your transfer amount).
Independent transfer services like OFX and World First offer competitive exchange rates and no fees. If you want to send and receive cash right away, compare options like WorldRemit, Ria, MoneyGram and Western Union. Bank-to-bank transfers are safe and convenient but typically not your cheapest or fastest option.
The best method for transferring money might depend on how much you want to send. If you’re making a transfer of five figures or more, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting the best exchange rate — especially since providers encourage large transfers by offering low fees. If you’re sending a small amount to friends or family, it’s wise to also consider any fees you’ll pay on top of the exchange rate.
Sending a one-time transfer differs from sending regular transfers, whether to pay for bills like an overseas mortgage payment or for goods and services. With a one-time transfer, you may put more weight on speed and flexibility in delivery, such as cash pickup. But if you’re sending recurring payments, you’ll want to set up regular transfers that can save you the most on rates and fees over the long term.
Sometimes you or a loved one is in an emergency and needs funds quickly — and in cash. Thankfully there are global money transfer providers with tons of agent locations that allow your recipient to pick up the funds in cash, often within minutes. If you have a little more time, however, consider an independent transfer provider that can get you much lower fees and stronger exchange rates.
The United States does business with just about every country worldwide. When it comes to money transfers, you have options to convert your dollars into Mexican pesos, Kenyan shillings and many currencies in between. Larger networks like Western Union will have the largest number of possible currencies, whereas smaller banks and other services usually limit their supported currencies to the most popular ones, including:
Don’t see your country listed?
Top 10 most popular money transfer companies
List of international money transfer services
Your best exchange options are online
The rise of online money transfer services gives you more options — and stronger rates — than ever before. These services specialize in safely moving money internationally, saving you frustration when making or receiving regular payments.
Whether you’re putting roots down in France, opening an office in Japan or spending while vacationing in Australia, compare to get the best exchange rates and lowest fees on sending money internationally.
Buying, selling or investing in a property abroad? Compare transfer services to make your purchase safely, whether closing on your dream home or scheduling recurring payments.
For larger international payments
Maybe you’re ready to buy that boat you’ve been eyeing. It could be time to pay off your child’s education abroad or support their destination wedding. Perhaps you’re coming into an inheritance that needs to be transferred to your US account. When transferring big money, it all comes down to the exchange rate.
How important is the exchange rate?
A solid exchange rate is crucial. When it comes to larger amounts, even two cents in your favor can save — or cost you — hundreds of dollars. If you have the luxury of time, you may be able to take advantage of a limit order. A limit order allows you to set a target exchange rate with a service or broker, which monitors the markets 24/7 to ensure you don’t miss that target. Once rates meet your what you’re looking for, you give the OK to complete the transfer. Services like OFX offer free limit orders for transfers of $35,000 and more.
|Service A||Service B|
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 0.93 EUR||1 USD = 0.92 EUR|
|Inverse exchange rate||1 EUR = 1.075 USD||1 EUR = 1.087 USD|
|500,000 euros in dollars||$537,500||$543,500|
Finding the inverse rate, you learn that the exchange rates are a mere 1 cent difference (0.012 cents, to be exact). Yet, when applying these rates to 500,000 euros, you’d lose $6,000 to the first money transfer service on the exchange rate alone. That’s a lot of rioja you could be sipping in Madrid. How do I find the inverse exchange rate? The world of finance can feel hopelessly complicated. But it’s easy to find the inverse exchange rate for your currency. If you think of an exchange rate as A = B, you’d simply divide the number 1 by B: 1/B Take 1 USD = 0.93 EUR. To find how much 1 euro is worth in dollars using this same exchange rate, divide 1 by 0.93: 1/0.93 = 1.075. With this exchange rate, 1 euro is worth $1.075.
|USD exchange rates|
|USD > AUD||USD > BRL||USD > CAD|
|USD > CNY||USD > CHF||USD > EUR|
|USD > GBP||USD > GTQ||USD > IDR|
|USD > INR||USD > JPY||USD > KRW|
|USD > MXN||USD > MYR||USD > NGN|
|USD > NZD||USD > PHP||USD > VND|
Compare minimum and maximum transfer limits
Minimum and maximum transfer limits can vary by provider, currencies and recipient country.
|Provider||Minimum transfer amount||Maximum transfer amount|
|World First||$1,000||No limit|
|Travelex International Payments||$500||No limit|
|Currency Online||$0||No limit|
|Western Union||$1||$5000 per transaction|
|TransferWise||$1||Private individual — $49,999 a day and $199,999 a year Business — $199,999 a day and $1 million a year|
|Xoom||Varies by country||$2,999 every 24 hours, up to $6,000 every 30 days and up to $9,999 every 180 days|
|MoneyGram||$1||$2,999 a day and up to $2,999 every 30 days|
|RIA||$1||$2,999 a day and up to $7,999 every 30 days|
Understand transfer limits:
Since 2013 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has enforced rules to keep US citizens safer when transferring money internationally. Federal law now requires many banks, credit unions and money transfer providers to disclose information both before and after a transfer. These rules apply to all international transfers of $15 or more. Before an international transfer, you have the right to know:
- The exact exchange rate you will pay.
- Fees and taxes collected from you.
- Fees charged by agents overseas and others involved in the process.
- The amount your recipient is expected to receive (excluding foreign taxes and any pickup fees).
You should also be provided details on:
- Your right to cancel the transfer. Unless the transfer has been picked up or deposited, you have 30 minutes (and sometimes more) to cancel at no charge.
- The bank or company’s process to investigate and fix any errors. It generally has 90 days to resolve any problems.
Should I be concerned about taxes?
There is so much attention on money leaving the country that whether you fail to report, don’t know you have to report or don’t report your taxes as required by law — it will likely be discovered. If you’re found not in compliance, you’re on the hook for some stiff penalties that include multi-year penalties and even jail time. To avoid a tax minefield, know the tax thresholds and how to report when you’ve met them. What are the tax requirements when sending a large transfer?
How to avoid a money transfer scam
You’ve undoubtedly heard about someone who’s fallen prey to a money transfer scam. Scammers are becoming more sophisticated, using increasingly elaborate plans in an effort to separate you from your money. Common scams to look out for include:
- Advance fee scams. Maybe you’re notified you’ve won a prize or the lottery, but you need to first pay a fee to receive it. Perhaps you’re “approved” for a loan but must wire a down payment. In both cases, you’re probably dealing with a scammer.
- Bogus check scams. You may have gotten a reply to your online auction with a check that’s for more than your item — all you need to do is wire back the difference. The check is likely fake, leaving you on the hook for both the money you wire and a bounced check fee from your bank.
- Wire payments only scams. If anybody online says you can pay only with a wire transfer, find another retailer to do your business with.
- Phishing scams. Be wary of unsolicited emails or calls asking you to re-send or confirm personal information or passwords. Instead, take down the name of the company and contact them directly with questions.
If you suspect you might be the victim of a scam, contact the Federal Trade Commission toll-free at 877-382-4357 or file a complaint at ftc.gov/complaint. How to keep your wallet safe from common money transfer scams.Back to top
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Compare the most popular providers to their competition
Common questions about money transfers
How can I track the progress of my money transfer?
What’s the maximum amount I can send overseas?
What’s the minimum amount I can send overseas?
- WorldRemit: $0 minimum
- World First: $1,000 minimum
- Travelex: $500 minimum
- TransferWise: $1 minimum
- OFX: $150 minimum
- TorFX: $200 minimum
- MoneyGram: $1 minimum
- HiFX: $50 minimum
- Currency Online: $0 minimum
- CurrencyFair: 8 EUR minimum