Send money to Botswana
Compare fees and exchange rates to get the best deal on your next money transfer to Botswana.
Botswana has come a long way since its independence in 1966, with Real GDP growth between 4% to 8% that has been consistent above worldwide averages despite a history of low Real GDP per capita.
This country has a small population, loosely packed around the 581,739 square kilometres that contain cities, Bushveld and Kalahari.
The UK is Botswana’s main importer of goods, importing 56% of Botswana’s total produce, predominantly diamonds, copper, nickel, beef and textiles.
Compare services that send money to Botswana from the UK
Should you use a bank or money transfer company for sending money to Botswana?
Before studying further, Bongi wants to take a gap and think about where he is headed in life. He has decided to visit his grandparents in Gaborone, Botswana, and lodge there whilst doing some part-time work and figuring life out.
Bongi draws up the following comparison table to visualise the differences in using different money transfer companies when sending £1,000 in preparation of his trip. He couldn’t find any data for sending money through his bank but plans on visiting his local bank to see what it would work out to.
|International Money Transfer||British Bank|
|Exchange rate||1 GBP= 12.687 BWP||1 GBP = 12.544 BWP|
|Transfer fee||£10 if amount is under £10,000.||£5 AUD|
|Amount of BWP received in Botswana for £1,000||12,687 BWP||12,544 BWP|
|Transfer time||1-4 Working days||10 Minutes|
|Transfer options||Phone, online, mobile app||Phone, online, agent|
|Difference in X||143 BWP|
Bongi uses the following variable when comparing services to send and receive money between Botswana and the UK
- Exchange Rates. Botswana has one of the more competitive exchange rates in Africa when compared to the USD and GBP. It is possible to receive USD as well and at a later stage exchange it for BWP at a local exchange bureau in Gaborone and Francistown.
- Pickup Methods. International transfers can be made to a bank account or to an agent location for cash pickup. See below in the article for tips on picking up cash.
- Fees. The fees for sending lower amounts tend to be higher than the fees for sending bigger amounts due to standard setup costs for money transfer companies. The fees will be lower in sending money for a cash pickup to Botswana than some other countries.
- Bank to Bank Benefits. Barclays and Standard Chartered operate both in the UK and Botswana. A visit to a branch near you will reveal more details about bank to bank transfers and benefits.
- Turnaround Time. The turnaround time with the available services can range from a couple of minutes with a higher cost, to a couple of days with a lower cost. Fees range less than in sending to some other countries, so the quicker turnaround time can be worth the marginal extra cost.
- Transfer Methods. For the available services, transfer methods range from phone, online accounts, agent or branches, bank to bank account and internet banking.
- Transfer Options. Bongi’s parents will benefit from booking rates in advance and setting up recurring payments. They can also use once-off payments for emergency transfers.
- Minimum/Maximum Transfer Amounts. Each company has its own minimums and maximums, with some of them not having either or not one. Western Union in some cases can have maximums up to 100,000 GBP.
- Customer Service. With so many available services, customer service will help you choose the one you want. Three of the companies do cash pickups but only one does live chat support that can be vital in the case of an emergency.
How can you send money to Botswana from the UK?
- Money transfer services – you can use the following services when sending money to Botswana: Compass Global Markets, HiFX, Moneygram, TorFX, Western Union, World First Foreign Exchange and Xpress Money.
- Banks – Barclays stretches into the Botswana regions with its banking solutions. Western Union and Moneygram can send money to a bank account as well once Bongi has set up a bank account in Botswana.
What options do you have to receive money from Botswana in the UK?
- Money transfer services – visit a local Moneygram or Western Union agent in Botswana to send money for cash pickup in the UK.
- Banks – receive money in your Barclays and Standard Chartered account by using a local agent or online money transfer services that will send money from Botswana to the UK.
How will Bongi receive an emergency cash transfers in Botswana?
Bongi will need to visit an agent location of either Moneygram, Western Union or Xpress Money. All three of these companies will allow Bongi’s parents to send him cash.
As mentioned above, the fees are also lower than in some other countries where sending money with a cash pickup can easily amount to 50 GBP.
This, along with the short amount of time it takes to transfer, means the cash pickups are an attractive option for Bongi to receive money in cases where there is an emergency.Back to top
Tips for picking up cash in the hubs of activity in Botswana
Sending money to Botswana is fairly simple as much of the economic buzz is situated around Gaborone and some of it around Francistown.
Botswana has a reputation for being one of the most peaceful countries in Africa, but it is still advised to double-check the area in which you will be picking up money.
The country might be fairly peaceful compared to the wildlife in the Kalahari districts in Botswana, but it is never smart to wave around your fresh wads of cash you just picked up. Take along a tracking number and photo ID when you pick up cash and don’t forget the copy or original transaction receipt for added safety.Back to top
What are the steps Bongi and his parents will follow to send and receive money between Botswana and the UK?
Sending money for a cash pickup:
- Have the correct details of the recipient in the form of a photo or government ID
- Address of the agent location where the cash will be picket up
- Capture the transaction details and send it along with the receipt and tracking or reference number.
Sending money to a bank account:
- It is important to specify the bank (if it is supported) along with the SWIFT BIC
- Full details of the recipient
- Bank account number and branch number
- Currency and amounts for the transfer
Ask an Expert