Bellissimo! Find the best exchange rates and the lowest fees when you want to send money to Italy from the U.S.
When you need to get money to a loved one overseas, the last thing you want to have to deal with is navigating a potentially complicated and expensive process. Sending money from the United States to Itay doesn’t have to be expensive. Compare the transfer fees and exchange rates of the options available to you to get the most euros for your dollar.
From bank transfers and online transactions to options that allow recipients to collect your funds within minutes, sending an international money transfer to Italy is easy. However, do your research and shop around for the best available deal.
Compare International Money Transfers
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- Buying property abroad
- Regular overseas payments
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How do international money transfers work?
An international money transfer allows you to send money to a recipient overseas. Generally, a transfer involves you providing funds to a bank or an independent transfer provider, which then sends the money to your recipient in another country — in this case, Italy. This can be done in person, over the phone, through a mobile app or online. You can use cash, a credit or debit card, or transfer funds from your bank account, which will then either be deposited into your recipient’s bank account or mobile wallet, or made available as cash for them to pick up at a location in their country.
Banks versus money transfer companies
You might think the best place to go when you need to send an international money transfer is to your bank. While your bank can certainly help you send money to Italy, however, they won’t do it cheaply. High fees and low exchange rates are hallmarks of international transfers through banks, so you’re better off looking elsewhere for a more cost-effective solution.
Specialist money transfer companies are the best place to start. These companies, such as OFX and WorldRemit, offer fast, secure and much more affordable transfers to Italy and around the world. Their fees are usually lower than the banks’, their exchange rates higher and the transactions can be handled from the comfort of your own home.
Filippo is a professional soccer player in the MLS. He wants to send a $1,000 gift to his sister back home in Florence for her 30th birthday, but the idea of paying his bank’s $50 transfer fee is too much to bear. He compares two money transfer companies in the hope of finding a more affordable solution.
|Money transfer company 1||Money transfer company 2|
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 0.89 EUR||1 USD = 0.87 EUR|
|Transfer method||Bank account deposit||Bank account deposit|
|Processing time||3 business days||1-3 business days|
|Amount received (in EUR)||890 EUR||870 EUR|
As you can see, Filippo can send an extra 20 euros to his sister if he uses the second transfer company.
How to compare transfer companies when transferring money to Italy
- Exchange rates. A better exchange rate means more money for your recipient, so look for a company that offers attractive exchange rates.
- Fees. A hefty transfer fee can easily turn an affordable transaction into an astronomically expensive one, so check how much each provider will charge for handling your transfer.
- Transfer methods. Can you send your transfers online, through a mobile app, by calling the company or visiting one of its branches?
- Transfer options. Can you lock in an ideal exchange rate now and transfer the money later, known as a forward contract? Does the institution offer limit orders, which allows you to take advantage of changing market conditions by executing the money transfer when a certain exchange rate is met? Can you schedule recurring payments?
- Turnaround time. How long will it take for your money to arrive? Processing times can vary from a few minutes to several days.
- Minimum limit. Some companies will impose a high minimum limit on all transfers, a fact that can be quite restricting if you don’t want to transfer very much money.
- Pickup methods. Can the cash you send be collected from a branch in Italy, and if so, how many branches does the provider have? Alternatively, can you send funds via bank account transfer.
- Customer service. If you ever have a question or a problem, when will customer support be available and how can you access it?
How to send money to Italy from America
- Bank transfers. A transfer from your bank account to an Italian bank account is a secure option but will typically cost you more.
- Online money transfer providers. Send money all around the world and enjoy cost-effective transfers when you use a specialist online transfer company.
- Money transfer companies with cash pickup options. Ria, MoneyGram and Western Union all offer this convenient service.
- PayPal. PayPal allows its customers to use their accounts to send international money transfers.
- Checks. An international check from your bank can be sent to your recipient in Italy.
Emergency cash transfers in Italy
There are certain circumstances where you may need to send a transfer urgently, for example, if your son or daughter is traveling through Italy and has their wallet stolen. When this happens, there are companies that can get the funds to your recipient in minutes, but you’ll have to pay extra for the privilege of a rapid transfer. Higher fees and lower exchange rates may apply, so check the fine print to determine the total cost of your transfer first.Back to topFind a money transfer location near youBack to top
How to send money to Italy
In most cases, you will need to sign up for an account with a money transfer company before you can send any funds. This usually means you’ll need to provide your full name, your contact details and a valid form of ID.
You’ll also need to supply your recipient’s name and contact info and the full details of your proposed transaction. Once your transfer has been accepted, make a note of any tracking number you receive so you can check up on the progress of your funds.