What is a limit order?

Limit orders can help you get a better price on your currency transfer.

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If you have to make a transfer overseas, but the exact date is flexible, a well-placed limit order could get you a good deal.

What is a limit order?

With a limit order, you set instructions to carry out your transaction — a forex trade or money transfer, for example — once the market price reaches your specified exchange rate.

Why is a limit order useful?

Maybe you think a currency is overvalued right now, and want to wait for its price to go down. You could set up a rate alert, but you’d run the risk of your target exchange rate being reached at a time when you can do nothing about it (for example, you may be asleep).

With a limit order, once your goal rate becomes available, the transfer will be locked in and carried out automatically.

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Anika sends money to India

Anika’s nephew, who lives in India, is turning 21. As a gift, she wants to contribute £2,000 to his savings. However, the Rupee has recently gone up in price, with £1 being worth 82.0 INR, making her gift amount to 164,000 INR. Believing the Rupee will go back down, Anika places a limit order requesting an exchange rate of GBP/INR = 85.8. Nine days later, this rate is reached, and 171,600 INR is sent to her nephew’s account.

Thanks to the limit order, Anika managed to send an extra 7,600 INR to her nephew.

Compare providers

Table: sorted by a combination of service offering and the amount your recipient will receive

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
GBP 2,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
TorFX guarantee to beat any competitor's exchange rate for a transaction (conditions apply)
(Conditions apply)
Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 Same day GBP 0.00 1.129 EUR
Universal Partners FX offers competitive exchange rates and same-day transfers for 100+ currencies. Go to site Show details
GBP 3,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
Get no fees as a Finder customer when you transfer your money overseas with Global Reach. Go to site Show details
GBP 1 1 - 2 days GBP 0.00 1.129 EUR
Whatever amount you transfer, XE will not charge you a fee for using their service. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
Make transferring money abroad as simple and safe as possible with bank-beating exchange rates - online, via the app or over the phone. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,500 1 day GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
With 17 years of foreign exchange expertise, OFX know the money transfers business very well, offering facilities for one-off and recurring transfers. Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 Same day GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
Clear Capital specialises in sending over 150 currencies abroad for both individuals and businesses. Expect to receive a dedicated account manager and same-day transfers. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,500 Same day GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
Central FX’s dedicated private client team will guide you through the money transfer process from first call to final payment. Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.127 EUR
Take advantage of fee lock-ins and live bookable rates, helping you save up to 85% in hidden bank fees. Go to site Show details
GBP 1,000 1 - 2 days GBP 0.00 1.122 EUR
Better exchange rates for Finder customers.
Send 60+ currencies at competitive rates and no fees. If you find a better eligible quote, WorldFirst will beat it.
Go to site Show details
GBP 1 1 - 2 days GBP 1.99 1.119 EUR
Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Quick, affordable transfers around the world with both express and economy options.
Go to site Show details
GBP 5 2 days EUR 3.00 1.128 EUR
Special offer: Zero fees on your first 10 transfers.
Get bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
Go to site Show details
GBP 50 Same day GBP 2.99 1.128 EUR
Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Conditions apply.
An online money transfer service with cash pick-up, bank account to bank account and airtime transfers available.
Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

Are there any drawbacks?

Limit orders do not guarantee that your transfer will happen, as they rely on the exchange rate reaching the specified value.

For example, maybe you think the dollar will go down — but what if it keeps going up? If you placed a limit order hoping the dollar would go down, you may find yourself waiting endlessly.

Explore other risk management options

A limit order is one of many ways to lock in desirable exchange rates. Other methods include:

  • Stop-loss orders. Set a minimum acceptable exchange rate, to protect yourself should the mid-market rate drop too low.
  • Forward contracts. Lock in today’s exchange rate for a future transaction.
A common tactic, known as a one-cancels-the-other (OCO) order, is to combine a limit order with a stop-loss order. This means if the market goes in the opposite direction to what you had hoped, your losses are capped. As the name suggests, once either the limit or the stop-loss order is triggered, the other is cancelled.

Frequently asked questions

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