Receive Money from Overseas with a Wire Transfer

Here’s what you need to do to receive a secure international money transfer.

Thanks to modern technology, it’s easy for everyday Brits to send and receive international money transfers. Not only are there a range of transfer providers from which to choose, but also a wealth of transfer options available to ensure that you can conveniently and affordably move money overseas. But when you’re receiving or sending money overseas, shop around for the best deal and you can enjoy significant savings.

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Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Services Amount Received Description CTA Details
GBP 50 GBP 0.00 1.115 Online EUR
Start your low cost money transfer with Travelex Wire, at an average of 3 times cheaper than leading money transfer providers. Travelex Wire is provided by Travelex Europe Limited, FCA regulated (FRN 900537) . Go to site Show details
GBP 2,500 1 day GBP 0.00 1.114 Online, Phone EUR
TorFX guarantee to beat any competitor's exchange rate for a transaction (conditions apply)
(Conditions apply)
Go to site Show details
GBP 10 2 days GBP 0.00 1.119 Online, Phone, Agent, Cash Transfer EUR
Take control of your money transfers with Lebara - send money in 3 steps and lock in rates for 30 days. Zero fees for all new and existing transfers. Zero Fees plus £10 off your first transfer over £100. Go to site Show details
GBP 50 2 days GBP 0.00 1.114 Online, Phone EUR
Transfer money between 142 currencies to over 170 countries and enjoy scheduled regular transfers with no fees for transfers over £3,000. Go to site Show details
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How does receiving money work?

Receiving money sent via international money transfer is quite a simple process, but the exact method will vary depending on the company that handles the transfer. Transfers are most commonly sent in two ways: via bank account transfer directly to your UK account, or by a transfer that allows you to pick up the cash from a transfer agent.

Before the recipient can send the funds, they’ll need to know your legal name (the one that’s on your photo ID), address and contact information. Your bank account details will also be required if the funds are being sent by bank account deposit.

You won’t need to do anything if the funds are going straight to your bank account, other than accessing the money in your account the same way you usually would. If you’re picking up a cash transfer, however, you’ll usually need to take along a transaction reference number and photo ID when you go to collect the funds.

Other international money transfer receiving options include having the money sent to your mobile wallet or loaded onto a prepaid card.

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What types of money transfers are available?

  • Online transfers. Offered by specialist transfer companies such as Currency Fair, this option usually allows you to access better exchange rates and lower fees than are craged by banks.
  • Bank transfers. Ask your bank about sending and/or receiving international wire transfers, the fees they charge and the exchange rates they offer.
  • Cash transfers. MoneyGram and Western Union are the two best-known providers of this service. The funds you receive can be picked up as cash from thousands of branches across the UK, often within 10 minutes of the sender placing a transfer.
  • Prepaid card. Some companies allow the sender to load funds onto your prepaid card, allowing you to access the funds from any ATM that accepts your card.
  • Mobile wallet. With this option, the funds can be sent and received entirely from the smartphone, and the funds in your wallet can then be used for fast and convenient purchases.
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How do I compare transfer services to receive money from?

Regardless of whether you’re sending or receiving funds, choosing the right company to handle your international money transfer can be a difficult task. Keep the following factors in mind to help make your decision easier:

  • Exchange rates. The exchange rate determines how much of the money the sender transfers that you will actually receive. Compare exchange rates between a number of providers to see which company regularly offers the highest rates.
  • Fees. Fees are a consideration with any international money transfer, sometimes just for the sender but other times also for the recipient.
  • Accessibility. If you need to visit a transfer branch in person to collect the funds, how convenient will it be for you to do so? Are there locations close by that you can access? If the funds are being loaded onto a prepaid card, do you have easy access to an ATM that won’t charge you any transaction fees?
  • Currencies. Does the provider allow you to pick up the cash transfer in Pounds only or are other currencies available?
  • Tracking. Consider the ease with which you can check up on the status of a transfer. In addition to online tracking services, some companies also offer email or SMS notifications when the funds are ready for you to collect.
  • Customer support. If you ever experience difficulties with a transaction, how and when can you access customer support? Is it offered over the phone only or is there also an online option?
  • Reputation. Do your research to determine whether a company has a good reputation for delivering transfers on time and for the price promised. Recommendations from customers who have used a company to send a similar transaction to the one you have planned can also be invaluable.
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What are the pros and cons of receiving money from overseas?


  • Fast transfers. Some transfer providers allow you to access cash that has been sent from overseas within the space of 10 minutes, which can be a huge relief when you need urgent financial assistance.
  • Plenty of choice. There are multiple transfer companies to choose from when you need to send money overseas or receive an international money transfer.
  • Safe and secure. Choose a reputable transfer provider and you can rest assured that you will receive the funds promptly.


  • Transfer fees. Be warned that fees apply to many international money transfers, so it’s important to make sure those charges are both fair and affordable before agreeing to pay them.

Frequently asked questions

Your name, address and contact information will be required, while transfers to your bank account will require you to supply your full account details. If you’re picking up a cash transfer, a transaction reference number and a valid form of photo ID will also be required.

This depends on the transfer provider. The sender will be responsible for paying any transfer fees in most cases, but other banks and transfer companies pay charge you a penalty for receiving the funds.

Western Union (500,000 branches worldwide) and MoneyGram (approximately 350,000 branches) operate the two largest transfer networks in the world.

You can do this by using the ‘find a location’ tool on each provider’s respective website.

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4 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    JeslaOctober 18, 2017

    Can you send funds state by state using HiFX

    • Staff
      JonathanOctober 19, 2017Staff

      Hi Jesla,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      HiFX is a transfer platform for sending money overseas.

      Hope this clarifies.


  2. Default Gravatar
    LesleyMay 30, 2017

    How can i receive western union money transfer into my account or credit card because i cannot go to the agent location to do so

    • Staff
      AnndyJuly 21, 2017Staff

      Hi Lesley,

      Thanks for the question.

      With Western Union, the recipient could receive the funds via cash pick up or deposit to a bank account. But the sender needs to specify this at the time of transfer. Kindly note that there is no option to receive the funds in your credit card account.