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How to repatriate funds with an international money transfer

Secure, affordable ways to get your money back home to the US legally.

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  • Get cash to family and friends back home in minutes
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Repatriation of funds involves converting foreign currency into a different country’s currency. It’s a process that many US expats, companies and US workers in foreign countries have to go through. Major banks can help you with overseas payments, but their services can come with high fees that result in significant costs every time you repatriate your funds. Compare your options to discover how to repatriate funds with an international money transfer and save money.

Compare services to help repatriate your currency

Our table lets you compare the services you can use to send money abroad. Compare services on transfer speeds and fees, then click Go to site when you're ready to send.
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer) Learn More
OFX
24 hours
$0

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OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
Dunbridge Financial
Dunbridge Financial
24 hours
$0

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Dunbridge Financial offers competitive exchange rates and zero fees on transfers to more than 120 countries.
CurrencyTransfer
24 hours
$0
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Minimum transfer of $1,000 for Finder readers (normally £5,000)

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Exclusive: Minimum transfer of $1,000 for Finder readers (normally $5,000).
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace.
XE
Within minutes
$3

View details
XE has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
WorldRemit
Within an hour
From $1.99

View details
New customers send USD 20 to Lebanon and use code ADD10 for a USD 10 discount. Valid till 7 November 2021. T&Cs apply.
WorldRemit sends money to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposits, cash pick-ups or mobile top-ups.
Wise (TransferWise)
Within an hour
From $2.26

View details
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
Instarem
Within an hour
$1

View details
Exclusive: Use code GET60 to save 30 USD on each transaction over 200 USD. Valid for the first two transactions and till 30 November 2021. T&Cs apply.
Instarem offers zero transfer fees on all transfers.
Remitly
Within minutes
From $0
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers

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Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
Western Union
Within an hour
From $0

View details
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries around the world.
MoneyGram
Within an hour
From $0

View details
MoneyGram has fast cash pick-up transfers to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide.
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Compare up to 4 providers

How to repatriate funds to the US in six steps

Follow these steps for the repatriation of funds to the US after comparing your money transfer options:

  1. Visit your preferred money transfer provider’s website or physical branch.
  2. Provide your personal contact information and any required ID.
  3. Input details for your transfer, including your recipient’s information and how you’d like your money delivered.
  4. Pay for your transfer using cash, a credit or debit card or a bank account.
  5. Confirm your rate and fees, then complete your transfer.
  6. Keep all receipts to make it easier to pay taxes on your transfer.

How do I compare money transfer services?

Take these factors into account when weighing the strengths and weaknesses of transfer specialists and currency providers.

  • Exchange rates. Nearly all providers skew exchange rates for a profit. Finding the best rate can make a substantial difference, especially if you’re transferring large amounts of money. Compare the rates of a range of companies against the mid-market rate as a baseline to find the smallest margin among them.
  • Transfer fees. Most companies will charge you a fee when sending a transfer overseas. Find out whether the provider charges a flat fee or a percentage of your transfer. If you’re sending a large amount, ask whether you qualify for a fee-free transfer.
  • Flexible transfer options. Some companies will allow you to schedule payments ahead of time or protect your transfer against market fluctuations with a limit order or forward contract to make more cost-effective international transfers.
  • Pickup options and delivery speeds. Most providers offer online transfers directly to US bank accounts, while others also offer the convenience of cash pickup if you need your funds in a hurry. You may be able to deliver your funds in minutes, but if you have more time, you’ll save money on expedited fees.
  • Customer support. When you’re moving money overseas, especially large amounts, help whenever you need it is reassuring. Look for a company that offers multiple support options — Internet chat, phone, in person or by email — during convenient hours.
  • Reputation. Online research will reveal reviews for many transfer companies. Learn whether they’re trusted by consumers, and ask friends and family if they have any recommendations to help you make your final decision.
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Why might I need to repatriate funds?

Among the many reasons you might need to send money back to the United States:

  • You want to send money you’ve saved from working overseas back to your loved ones.
  • You’re moving to the US and need an affordable way to transfer your assets.
  • You receive a salary or pension into an overseas bank account.
  • You own rental property in another country that generates income.
  • You’re based overseas but need to make mortgage payments on a property in the US.
  • You have investments in assets overseas that you want to sell in exchange for foreign currency, convert that currency to US dollars, and then send to the States.

Our guide on international transfers for expats

Tax responsibilities of repatriated income

Repatriated income is income that is earned abroad and can be repatriated to avoid tax penalties. When it comes to money in general, repatriation is the process of converting foreign currency — regardless of how it’s acquired — into the currency of one’s home country. Some countries restrict how much you can repatriate, and you may need to pay taxes in the US on your repatriated income depending on how much you’re returning home.

If you operate a business in another country, you’ll typically need to periodically repatriate your profits into your company’s home currency. You can avoid losing some of those profits to a weak exchange rate by finding a money transfer specialist that provides strong rates, low fees and flexible options that can protect your regular transfers from market fluctuations.

The repatriation tax rate you’ll pay as a US-based multinationals is based on US corporate tax on foreign profits after those profits are repatriated to the United States. At that time, your income or profits are subject to a repatriation tax. The current US repatriation tax rate is 35%. However, the government periodically enacts repatriation tax holidays that sharply reduce the tax rate in an effort to encourage multinationals to repatriate their overseas profits.

In general, international taxation applies to people or businesses that owe under the tax laws of a foreign country. Repatriating your income from another country to the US could subject your profits to double taxation: once in the country you’ve earned it in and again in the US once it’s in your home currency. To compensate for this double taxation, the US typically provides a credit to US-based multinationals for the foreign income taxes they paid in the earning country.

What are the pros and cons of repatriating funds?

Pros

  • It’s safer than traveling with cash. Returning to the US with large amounts of cash to deposit into an account to pay your taxes may not be safe. Sending money through a reputable company can save you the stress and worry of your money possibly being stolen.
  • Small fees are better than high tax penalties. Paying taxes on time will save you the cost of penalties, and the cost of using international money transfer services is almost guaranteed to be lower than the potential fees of not paying taxes.
  • Diverse options keep costs low. Compare fees, rates and delivery options of the many trusted providers available to handle your transfer. Additionally, using sending options like limit orders or future contracts can help you exchange more foreign money for US dollars when traded at the right time.

Cons

  • Varying laws and regulations. Restrictions may apply to the amount of money you can send to the US. Abide by all laws and regulations before sending your funds.

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Frequently asked questions

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14 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    ShcolvickFebruary 10, 2020

    Need to get my cash from out my chime app but no card lost it..

      Default Gravatar
      nikkiangcoFebruary 10, 2020

      Hi Shcolvick!

      Thanks for your comment and I hope you are doing well.

      You are not able to withdraw or get cash out from your Chime app without a card. If you need to request for a card replacement, please see instructions below:

      How do I get a replacement card?

      1.Log in to the Chime mobile app
      2. Go to Settings
      3.Select Replace my Card

      Chime cards typically arrive in about a week. When you get the card, know how to activate it below:

      You can activate your card and set your PIN in two ways:

      1. Log in to your Chime Mobile App
      2. Click “Activate Card”, or
      3. Ask the Chatbot “Activate my card”
      Contact Chime should you have any difficulties with using the app.

      Hope this helps and feel free to reach out to us again for further assistance.

      Best,
      Nikki

    Default Gravatar
    AlkaliMay 2, 2019

    I made a transaction to Western Union using my bank account and the person can not pick it up. The question and answer is no longer used and I cancel my transaction for over 27 working days. Western Union please send my money back. I need a help here. Thanks.

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MaiMay 4, 2019Staff

      Hi Alkali,

      Thank you for reaching out.

      Since you mentioned that the cash was not picked up yet, you may need to contact Western Union directly to request for a refund of the money. As per their terms, transfers may be canceled for a refund of the principal amount, unless the funds have been picked up or deposited at the time Western Union receive.

      Hope this helps! 😊

      Kind Regards,
      Mai

    Default Gravatar
    dmf1961August 6, 2018

    My fiancé in the military has put money in an investment fund in Turkey while on active duty. He wants to send the money to me now to purchase a house here in the states. He wants me to set up the wire transfer. how do I go about this? and how much are taxes. If he sends 10,000 usd will it transfer without problems?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaAugust 13, 2018Staff

      Hi dmf1961,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      There are different ways to set up a wire transfer. These may include bank to bank, an in-office money transfer service or an online specialist. Depending on your chosen mode of a wire transfer, you basically need to follow different procedures. We have a guide which can help you learn more about wire transfers.

      Regarding your second question, there are various legal requirements you need to comply with when receiving a large amount of money. You need to fill up the right IRS form before you can receive the money. We do have a guide which will help you learn more about the tax implications of sending and receiving a large amount of money.

      On that page, it is mentioned that those who fail to report can expect fines of up to 5% of the asset value involved or $10,000 a year for up to six years. For those who wait until an investigation is launched, the penalty increases to up to 50 percent or $100,000 — whichever is greater. That amount can be applied to every year you fail to report for up to six years. You could also face criminal charges and up to 10 years in prison.

      Therefore, it is important to report to the IRS before sending or receiving a large amount of money.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

    Default Gravatar
    QasimJuly 12, 2018

    My question is that my brother is presently in saudi arabia can he send 800000INR from saudi to my account without any fraud

      Default Gravatar
      AshJuly 13, 2018

      Hi Qasim,

      Thank you for reaching out to Finder.

      Yes, your brother can send the large amount to the US though he or the financial institution that he will use in sending the money will need to declare it as it will exceed $10,000 once converted to USD. It is best if you know the tax implications of large money transfers so you could avoid future problems and penalties.

      I hope this helps. Let us know if there is anything else that I may assist you with.

      Cheers,
      Ash

    Default Gravatar
    B.RogersMarch 25, 2018

    I recently had a death in my family. My brother left a large sum of money in Federal Reserve Bank of India. They are saying I must pay $38,000 USD to get the tax code then will release the funds to be transfer to my bank account in U. S. Is that standard procedure for Federal Reserve Bank Income Tax dept.?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MayMarch 26, 2018Staff

      Hi B.Rogers,

      Thanks for you inquiry.

      I’m afraid that we don’t have information as to the standard procedures of the reserve bank. But the only way you can confirm if that procedure is legit or not is by verifying directly with Federal Reserve Bank of India. If indeed you’re to receive a large sum of money, then you must contact the bank for the correct procedures and ensure to have legal documents that serve as proof of your claim.

      Best,
      May

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