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How to send money to New Zealand
Take advantage of low fees and competitive exchange rates when sending money to New Zealand.
Our pick: OFX
OFX offers flexible transfer options, 24/7 customer support and no maximum limit. Send a minimum of $1,000 per year.
- $0 transfer fees. Send fee-free transfers to over 195 countries worldwide.
- Transfers in 55 currencies. OFX supports major, minor and exotic currencies.
- Flexible options. Choose from forward contracts to scheduled transfers for convenience and flexibility.
- Great customer support. Larger transfers get personalized service over the phone.
How do international money transfers work?
International money transfers allow you to send money to someone in a different country and to convert your currency to theirs. Many people often go to their bank to do this, but there are more options available that can save you money. These companies perform dedicated money transfers that keep your costs low while offering you an exchange rate close to market value. And when the transfer is complete, your recipient can have their funds deposited into their bank account or made ready to be picked up at a nearby location.
Compare international money transfers to New Zealand
Our comparison calculator lets you compare current fees, exchange rates, transfer speeds and other details about sending your money overseas. Enter the amount you’re transferring, and see how much will arrive to New Zealand.
Banks vs. money transfer providers
Think the obvious way to send money abroad is through your bank? It may also be the slowest and priciest. With high fees and weak exchange rates means your recipient will get less New Zealand dollars. You can save time and money by using money transfer companies that specialize in transferring money all over the world. They offer low fees, and most take a minimal cut of the exchange rate. You pay less upfront, and your recipient may get more money.
Case Study: Samantha sends money to New Zealand
Samantha lives in Oregon and wants to send $500 to Dunedin to help her nephew Liam fix his car. She calls her bank and is stunned by their fees and exchange rates for a wire transfer. After searching online, she finds a money transfer company that will let her help Liam for less.
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 1.31 NZD||1 USD = 1.41 NZD|
|Transfer method||Bank account withdrawal||Bank account withdrawal|
|Transfer time||2 business days||1 business day|
|Total NZD received||655 NZD||705 NZD|
As the table shows, Samantha can send Liam an extra 50 NZD on the exchange rate alone by using the transfer company. And she’ll save the $45 transfer fee on her end.
Find the best provider for your transfer
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How safe is a money transfer?When processed through a reputable provider, your funds are safely tracked until in the hands of your recipient. When sending money internationally, federal protections are in place that require banks, credit unions and money transfer companies to, for example, disclose all fees upfront and give you 30 minutes to cancel a transfer, assuming it hasn’t yet been picked up or deposited.
How to compare transfer companies when transferring money to New Zealand
You’ll want to consider costs, of course. But other factors can also affect your choice.
- Exchange rates. Nearly all providers skew exchange rates for a profit. Compare the rate you’re offered to the mid-market rate — the rate banks and transfer services use when they trade among themselves — and look for the smallest margin between them.
- Transfer fees. 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.
- Payment and delivery options. Some transfer companies allow you to pay with a credit card online, by phone or through an app. Others offer agent locations for cash payments and pickups. Also ask how your recipient can receive your funds: bank account, cash pickup, mobile wallet and more.
- Transfer speeds. If it needs to be there fast, companies like Western Union and MoneyGram allow for quick cash pickups, often in minutes. If you have more time, you’ll get better rates and fees with an independent provider.
- Transfer limits. Your best option might depend on how much you want to send. For large transfers, weigh the best exchange rate —especially since providers encourage large transfers by offering low fees. For smaller amounts, consider the fees you’ll pay on top of the exchange rate.
- Flexible transfer options. Ask whether you can schedule payments ahead of time or protect your transfer against market fluctuations with a limit order or forward contract.
- Customer support. Most companies offer customer service by Internet chat, phone, in person or by email. Make sure help will be available if you need it.
Foreign exchange rates explained
When you need to transfer money from the US to New Zealand, you’ll need to keep an eye on the exchange rate: the amount of New Zealand dollars you’ll get per one American dollar you send. The US dollar is a strong currency when compared to the New Zealand dollar. This means you’ll get more New Zealand dollars for every American dollar.
This amount changes daily due to fluctuation in interest rates, inflation and the global economy. You should check back frequently to see if you’ll be able to get more bang for your buck, especially if you plan on making multiple transfers.
How to send money to New Zealand
- Compare your money transfer options in the table above.
- Click Go to site and register with the provider.
- Start a transfer then enter your recipient’s information and how much you want to send.
- Pay for your transfer.
- Save your tracking number.
If your recipient hasn’t received their cash by the estimated arrival date, use your tracking number to check the status of the transfer and make sure it hasn’t run into any errors.
Ways to send money to New Zealand from the US
- Bank transfers. Many major US banks will allow you to send money to New Zealand.
- Money transfer providers. Providers like Ria and TransferWise can help you quickly and easily transfer your money online.
- Providers with cash pickup. Western Union and MoneyGram allow you to send funds for cash pickup at agent locations.
- PayPal. Electronic payment giant PayPal allows you to send money from the US to New Zealand.
- Checks and money orders. Although not a quick option, you could send an international check overseas, obtained from your bank or US Postal Service.
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Sending emergency money to New Zealand
With such a wide variety of money transfer options to choose from, an emergency transfer to New Zealand is possible. However, it may also be your most expensive option. You may face more fees and a worse exchange rate for the quick speed. Take a little extra time to compare your rates in this situation — you may be able to save if you spend some time researching your options before transferring funds to your recipient.
Picking up cash at a money transfer branch
Picking up cash is risky in any city. Take a few precautions no matter where you live in New Zealand to avoid making yourself a target for theft.
- Call ahead. Learn the company’s business hours and choose a safe time to pick up your cash. Daylight hours are best.
- Bring a friend. Carrying money when alone can be dangerous. Ask a friend to come along.
- Deposit your money immediately. The likelihood of losing your money to theft or simple carelessness grows the longer you have it with you. Go straight to a bank and deposit your cash as soon as possible.
- Keep your cash hidden. Place your money in your purse or wallet before leaving the office. Carrying cash out in the open could make you a target.
Overseas money transfers are easy, no matter which method you choose. But knowing how to compare your options gives you a leg up in terms of cost, rates and transfer speeds. An informed choice is your better choice.
Cash pickup locations in New Zealand
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