The Best Ways To Send Money Overseas: A Complete Guide

Students want to know the best ways to transfer money overseas from Australia.

 

Every day, millions of dollars are transferred between people and businesses worldwide. As technology has eased how businesses transact, many companies have also started offering international money transfer services in Australia.

 

These online money transfer companies in Australia are superior to banks as they offer more convenience, lower fees, and high transfer speed. Considering these benefits, people no longer rely on expensive banks for overseas money transfers and are slowly turning to online services.

 

This comprehensive guide discusses the best ways to transfer money overseas and answers commonly asked questions on international money transfers and money transfer companies in Australia.

 

 

1. What Is An International Wire Transfer?

 

International Wire Transfer is a process to send money from your bank account in Australia to other people or businesses in other countries. People use this transfer option to send money to their friends, family, and others worldwide.

 

To send money overseas to another country, you will require the assistance of a bank or a specialist money transfer service to convert the funds to the recipient’s currency.

 

Based on your chosen money transfer service, you can send funds online, through a mobile app, in person, or over the phone. Let's discuss the best way to transfer money overseas from Australia.

 

 

2. What Is The Best Way To Transfer Money Overseas From Australia?

 

Here are our top websites and apps that you can consider for overseas money transfers:

 

 

Wise (formerly called TransferWise)

 

Wise is the most trusted and transparent money transfer company worldwide. It is best known for its outstanding customer service and minimal fees for exchange rates and transaction fees.

 

General Overview

 

  • Year of Establishment - 2011

  • Client Served - Global

  • Global Presence - 50+ supported countries

  • Currencies - 20+ provided

  • Regulation - Registered with the FinCEN and authorized by the FCA as an Electronic Money Institution.

  • Rating - Excellent 4.6/5 rating on Trust Pilot

  • Fees - Transparent and low fees

  • Transfer time - 1 to 3 business days

 

 

Pros

 

  • It is the best money transfer service for people wanting to know what is the cheapest way to transfer money internationally. In comparison to banks, Wise charges a low and very transparent fee with zero hidden charges and clear exchange rate margins 

  • Offer guaranteed rates for 24 to 48 hours

  • Highly transparent with its exchange rates

  • Fast transfer times. Users can receive funds in just 24 to 48 hours

  • Trusted and recognized brand with more than ten years of experience

 

Cons

 

  • Only allows for bank-to-bank transfers are permissible

  • Only online mode is available to perform transactions

  • No facility for cash pickups

  • Lack of specialized assistance, particularly for larger transactions

 

 

SENDFX

 

Based in Australia, SendFX is among the largest international companies that provide services to their clients for transferring money reliably, internationally, and securely.

 

Overview:

 

  • Year of Establishment 2017

  • Clients Served: Worldwide

  • Currencies Offered: 50+ provided

  • Location: Gold Coast, Sydney, Melbourne

  • Platforms Offered: Retail presence, phone service, online service

  • Regulation: Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) holder

  • Transfer Time: 1-2 days

  • Reviews: 4.7 on Trust Pilot

  • Trading Volume: 11,000 payments and trading $270 million in currency in 2021

 

 

Pros

 

  • A dedicated personal manager onsite to discuss your requirements

  • 24*7 multi-currency payments platform 

  • Same-day payment to more than 200 countries

  • Zero Transfer Fee 

 

Cons

 

  • Debit card or Credit card payments are not accepted

 

 

TORFX

 

TorFX is an experienced money transfer company specializing in international money transfers and corporate financial exchanges. It has its offices in the United Kingdom and Australia.

 

General Overview

 

  • Year of Establishment: 2004

  • Clients Served: Global

  • Currencies Offered: 59 different international currencies

  • Location: Elkhorn Avenue Surfers Paradise Queensland 

  • Platforms Offered: Phone service, Email, and Website

  • Transfer Modes: Bank transfers, debit cards, credit cards, etc. 

  • Regulation: Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) holder

  • Fees: No transfer fees

  • Transfer Time: 1-2 days

  • Average Mark up: 1 to 3%

  • Reviews: 3,000 reviews and a 4.6/5-star rating on Trustpilot

 

 

Pros

 

  • Customers can send money via phone or the internet

  • Great customer service experience

  • Presence in several physical locations to facilitate face-to-face customer support

  • Serves more than 50,000 clients internationally

  • Expat awards

  • Unmatched exchange rates

  • The simple and hassle-free transfer process

  • Quick processing of transfers 

  • User-friendly and easy-to-use website

  • Zero debt company with a Level 1 credit rating

 

 

Cons

 

  • Some exotic currencies aren’t supported

  • Offices are only in the UK and Australia

  • Relatively smaller trading volumes 

  • There are instances when the online system is down

 

 

XE Money Transfer

 

Established in 1993, XE Money Transfer has a reputation for reliable authority in the overseas exchange space for the last 30 years of trading.

 

It has its overseas exchange service providing a wealth of trusted currency exchange information to financial institutions. The company works with more than 200 leading global brands, like Apple, Google, Amazon, and Walmart, to name a few.

 

Instead of making profits by charging a money transfer fee, they offer a higher exchange rate than the base rate to realize their profit goals.

 

General Overviews:

 

  • Global Presence: The company has offices in more than 170 countries, including Canada, the US, and New Zealand. 

  • XE is authorized by the FCA and holds an AFSL license. It is protected by Norton Security. 

  • Transfer fees: AUD 0.00

  • Transfer time: 2-3 Days

  • Almost 50,000 reviews on Trustpilot and an overall rating of ‘Excellent’.

 

 

Pros

 

  • Globally recognized name in international money transfers with over three decades of experience

  • Provides a facility to do same-day transfers to around 170 nations

  • A massive customer base of over 285 million visitors each year 

  • Over 65 million app downloads since its launch date.  

  • Capable of transferring currency into any other available currency. 

  • Consistent provider of the best exchange rates on the market

  • It offers 24-hour tracking of customers’ money transfers.

  • Quick and easy-to-use website

  • No transfer fees and competitive exchange rates

 

 

Cons

 

  • Payment isn’t acceptable via cheque/ cash.

  • Limited customer support over the weekend.

  • Do not support all global currencies.

  • Limited pay-out options

 

 

OFX

 

OFX is another well-known Australian-based money transfer company. It has been in the money transfer business for over 20 years. The company is good for small to medium size businesses as it helps them reduce the cost of their overseas payments.

 

General Overview

 

  • More than two decades of experience in providing money transfer services abroad 

  • It has a wide disbursement network, with eight operation offices in Australia, the UK, New Zealand, San Francisco, Singapore, Canada, Hong Kong, and Ireland 

  • 50+ currencies 

  • Make transfers to over 170 countries.

  • Transfer time/speed: 1 -3 days 

  • Transfer fees: AUD 0.00

  • Exchange rate margins: 1.5% above the mid-market rate

  • Average Trustpilot score: 4.4

  • Trading Volume: Handled transactions totalling more than A$117 billion to date 

 

Pros

 

  • Competitive exchange rates for larger amounts

  • Lock in exchange rates using a forward exchange contract

  • Intuitive mobile app and online platform 

  • Several physical offices worldwide make it easier for people to get a one-on-one customer experience

  • Integration with Xero

  • Premier 24/7 customer services

  • Low fees and exchange rate markups

 

 

Cons

 

  • The minimum transfer amount through this platform is USD 1,000

  • Not as competitive when transferring amounts below $2,000

  • Transfer using cheque, cash, or credit card isn’t acceptable

  • Foreign currency accounts are limited to online sellers

  • Payment through bank transfer only

 

 

3. How Can You Transfer Money Overseas?

 

There are various transfer methods available to transfer money overseas.

 

The most common ones include:

 

 

Money Transfer Companies

 

These companies specialize in moving funds overseas. They can operate in person or online and will allow fund transfer funds directly to a bank account.

 

Money transfer companies offer speedy money transfers at a competitive exchange rate. As companies charge differently, you must check the fees and terms and conditions before finalizing the provider. Wise is a transparent, safe, and fully regulated money transfer service provider in Australia.

 

 

Peer-To-Peer Transfer Services

 

A peer-to-peer transfer is a decentralized platform where the sender and the receiver directly interact via the internet or mobile network without involving a third party.

 

The funds are sent and received between reliable contacts, including friends, family, acquaintances, and colleagues. Examples of Peer-Peer transfer services are Wise and PayPal.

 

 

Bank Transfers

 

An international bank transfer involves transferring funds from your bank account to an international account via the bank’s mobile app or in person at a branch.

 

However, when you do a bank-to-bank overseas transfer, you will incur high fees compared to a money transfer company. The exchange rate is less competitive, and the process may take up to 5 business days for the funds to arrive at the recipient.

 

“Wire transfer” is often the simplest way to send funds to an overseas bank. Once you have activated “overseas fund transfer”, your bank can transfer funds to the chosen person overseas.

 

When choosing a bank transfer, compare the exchange rate and transfer fee at different banks before making the decision. Generally, banks require 2 - 3 business days to execute wire transfers.

 

 

4. How Much Does An International Money Transfer Cost?

 

The cost of transfer depends on various factors such as:

 

  • Which company do you use for funds transfer?

  • Which country you are transferring the money to or from? 

  • How you are paying for the transfer (cash, credit card, debit card, etc.)?

  • The exchange rate between countries

 

 

5. What Factors Do You Need To Consider When Transferring Funds Overseas?

 

You can find a wide range of money transfer service providers online. To choose the best one, you must compare them on the following factors:

 

 

Security And Safety

 

The online money transfer industry is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, which assures peace of mind that your money is safe and stored in a low-risk financial institution.

 

 

The Exchange Rate

 

It is the conversion of the currency of one country to another. The exchange rate can have a more significant impact on fund transfers when they are large. Even a slightly better rate can save you thousands of dollars.

 

The exchange rates offered by different banks and credit unions can be different. Look for companies that offer promotions such as “locked-in”, or fixed exchange rates. Many companies offer the best price guarantees to secure the exchange rate.

 

Follow the market trends for the country where you are sending money.

 

Check if there are any times or patterns of the month/ year where the rate is better. You should avoid sending money when exchange rates are not in your favour.

 

 

The Amount Of Money You Are Transferring

 

Several companies can help you send small amounts of money. However, when transferring larger amounts of money, you must choose a company specializing in large-scale business transfers.

 

In that case, avoid using banks, as they add higher fees to transfer those amounts of money overseas.

 

 

Transfer Fees

 

It is the fee when making a fund transfer from one currency to another. Depending on your chosen service, it could be a flat fee or a percentage based on the transfer amount.

 

The transfer fee also depends on the method of the transfer you are using. For example, you incur a higher fee when making a credit card transfer. Shop around and see which financial institutions, banks, or money transfer companies give the best rate on transfer fees. 

 

 

Receiving Fee

 

Besides international money transfer rates, some companies also charge a receiving fee. This way, they make a profit from the person who is sending the money and also the recipient of the money.

 

 

User Experience

 

Assess companies based on the ease of use and a proven track record of outstanding customer service. Check whether their services are held to as high a standard as marketed.

 

 

Accessibility

 

Since not all companies offer their services to all countries, this is a factor in shortlisting a range of service providers. Check that the fund transfer provider allows sending money to your chosen country.

 

 

Acceptable Payment Modes

 

Check beforehand what kinds of payment methods a fund transfer service provider accepts. It is necessary because not all companies accept payments through credit cards.

 

You must check that you can make the transaction in your preferred payment mode.

 

 

Features Offered

 

Compare different international money transfers based on the features and facilities offered:

 

  • Mode of fund transfer: branch, online, app, or phone-based transfers

  • Account loading options

  • The processing and transfer time. Where banks take between 0 to 5+ working days to make the transfer, some online money transfer companies offer fast transfer speeds. They either do transfers instantly or between 0 to 3 days on average. So, find the duration that works best for you and the recipient. 

  • Whether the money in your account is protected by the Australian Government’s Financial Claims Scheme

  • The acceptable range of currencies 

  • Customer service and support

  • Transaction cancellation option and charges 

 

 

Customer Reviews

 

Finally, check customer reviews about the companies for their credibility, reputation, and customer service satisfaction.

 

Use online comparison tools to compare the overall security, reliability, accessibility, and transfer speed to make the correct selection.

 

 

6. What Makes Money Transfer Services Superior To Banks For International Money Transfer?

 

Money transfer service providers specialize in transferring money as it is their business. These companies have years of experience to ensure they provide the best value for money and a hassle-free money transfer experience. They strive to ensure their customers receive the best exchange rate at the lowest price possible.

 

One of the top reasons to choose a money transfer service is that it offers lower transfer costs than banks without sacrificing the level of security and reliability. It makes it the cheapest way to transfer money overseas.

 

To find out which money transfer gives the best rates, specialist companies charge differently depending on the current market rate, the transfer amount, the recipient bank, etc. 

 

  • The exchange rate offered by banks is not as competitive as you get from a transfer specialist. Banks also charge a wire transfer fee of up to $40 per transaction. Due to the high exchange rates and associated fund transfer fees. Specialist money transfer services are best suited for large money transfers.

  • Bank wire transfers are generally slower compared with online service providers.

  • Banks require you to be an existing account holder to make a wire transfer. If you don't have an account, you must go through lengthy paperwork to do a fund transfer.

  • Banks generally transfer to only other banks on the receiving end of the transaction. There is no such limitation in the case of online money transfer services. You can nominate any receiving account based on your choice.

 

A money transfer company does all the leg work for you and can save a lot of your valuable time and money. They have streamlined the whole process.

 

 

7. How To Do International Money Transfer From Australia?

 

Online international money transfer services are increasingly competitive with banks as they offer more flexible options and lower fees. Follow the below steps to send money abroad via a money transfer company.

 

  • Choose your money transfer provider (Wise is our No.1 recommended service)

  • Visit the official website of the company. Provide your basic contact details and register for an account online 

  • Upload your photo to confirm your identity to prevent fraud. 

  • You may also require to upload a scanned copy of your passport photo page or driver's license to qualify to transfer large sums of money. 

  • Select the currency you own, the currency you require, and the amount you want to send. Now, place your transfer order online. It often involves locking in the exchange rate, and the timeframe is called a “guarantee”. 

  • If you send money to another individual, you will need the contact details, including name, address, bank name, bank account number, bank branch number, or bank identifier code.

  • Link your preferred payment mode such as bank account, credit card, and debit card to your newly-created account to pay for transfers. 

  • Pay the requested fees to the money transfer company.

  • You can track the progress of your fund transfer via email or on the website.

  • The transaction completes when the recipient receives the funds in his account.

 

 

8. How to Transfer Money Abroad from an Australian Bank Account?

 

If you want to do overseas money transfers from your bank, then this 3-step guide will help you execute the process smoothly. 

 

  • Register with the bank by providing your personal information like name, contact number, residential address, and government-issued valid identity documents like your driver's license or passport. For larger transfers, you may also need to provide additional details for security purposes.

  • Log in to the online banking portal. 

  • Navigate to the overseas money transfers section of your account. It is better to check your bank's exchange rates before placing the transfer order. You can do this by providing the address and SWIFT code of the recipient's bank which helps to identify international banks. 

  • Provide money transfer details that include the currency, transfer amount, and the details of the person or business account to which you want to send money. 

  • Make payment for the transfer service. Your bank will convert the money and send it overseas. It is worth noting that money transfers above $10,000 get automatically reported to a regulatory body in Australia named “AUSTRAC”.

 

Besides banks, you can also take advantage of the money order facility at other financial institutions like post offices, large retailers, credit unions, specific convenience stores, and petrol stations.

 

 

9. Which Australian Bank Is Best For International Transfers?

 

Whether you are looking for the best bank for international transfers in Australia or want to find out which bank is the cheapest for international transfers, it is necessary to compare the features, pros, and cons of banks to arrive at the best decision.

 

Banks are generally not recommended for international transfers due to their higher charges than specialist providers. They add a 4 to 5% markup on the exchange rate compared to the average 1% money transfer providers charge.

 

However, banks offer more safety and reliability compared to other transfer modes. Among all other banks, CitiBank is the best option to consider if you like to exchange currency with a bank. It offers the best foreign exchange rates and charges the lowest transaction fees if you wish to make a bank transfer.

 

 

Advantages

 

  • Easier to send money internationally to a Citibank account or another bank account.

  • You get competitive exchange rates in comparison to other banks.

 

 

Drawbacks

 

  • The fee is relatively high compared to online money service providers. You incur a fixed fee of $25 for most international money transfers. Though this fee is higher than other banks, they offer much better exchange rates than others, provided that you transfer over AUD 1,000. 

  • It may take up to 5 days to process the transfer transaction and receive the money.

 

 

10. Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

How to choose the best money transfer service to send money internationally?

 

The below comparison will help you find the best money transfer for your purpose:

 

 

Online Money Transfer Method

 

Method: Funds are transferred electronically via an online fund transfer service

 

Pros

  • Low cost than banks

  • Fast processing

  • Flexibility to do from anywhere via mobile apps

 

Cons

  • The cash payment facility is not available

 

 

In-Person Money Transfer

 

Method: You can visit the person and pay them by cash or send them money digitally

 

Pros:

  • Multiple transfer options are available

  • In-person customer support

 

 Cons:

  • Local travel is involved

  • You can also transfer the money within business hours

 

 

Bank

 

Method: International Money Transfer or Wire Transfer through a bank

 

Pros

Highly secure and reliable

 

Cons

  • Expensive

  • Can be funded through a bank account

 

 

Cheque

 

Method: Write a cheque and send it to the recipient

 

Pros:

  • No transaction fee is payable

  • You can cancel them in transit

  • Can be post-dated for delayed payment

 

Cons: 

  • Requires additional delivery time

  • Possibility of losing the cheque in transit

 

 

Money Order

 

Method: Visit a post office to get a money order and mail it to the recipient 

 

Pros:

  • Comparatively safer and less susceptible to fraud

  • You can cancel it anytime in transit

 

Cons:

  • Requires additional time for delivery

  • May get lost during transit

 

 

What is the best company to transfer money internationally?

 

Wise is the most preferred money transfer service for its commitment to bringing increased transparency to financial services, with a prime focus on zero hidden fees. The unique selling feature of this company is its transparency with its fee structure and exchange rates.

 

Over 12 million people use their services to transfer money worldwide. It is the best international money transfer app that offers a user-friendly interface to create and send a money transfer in less than 5 minutes.

 

Other reasons to choose this well-trusted and reliable brand:

 

  • Over 10 years of experience 

  • A wide range of payment modes are accepted, such as bank transfer, debit card, and credit 

  • The most loved company worldwide with 9/10 ratings on Trustpilot. 

  • No minimum transfer size.

  • Guaranteed rates for 24 to 48 hours

  • Fast transfer times 

 

 

Simple and Quick Money Transfer Process:

 

To send money through Wise, you must create an account by providing your address, contact number, email, bank account, date of birth, or credit card information. 

 

To do the transfer, you must provide the recipient’s name, address, bank account number, and International Bank Account Number. Once that is done, you need to enter the amount to be transferred and the currency.

 

The service will display fees and estimated transfer time for each payment method. Based on your requirements, you can make a transfer.

 

 

Are there any limits on international money transfers?

 

Legally, there are no minimum or maximum limits to the amount you can send outside Australia. However, it is worth noting that money transfers beyond $10,000 are automatically reported to AUSTRAC.

 

 

Are international money transfers taxed?

 

Tax laws depend on the country where the recipient lives. In Australia, overseas money transfers are not taxed.

 

 

When is the best time to transfer money?

 

It is best to transfer money on business days. You can submit transfers online outside of regular business hours. However, funds won’t get processed and received until the reopening of financial institutions. Avoid sending money on or right before weekends and holidays to avoid delays.

 

 

Is international money transfer safe?

 

Yes. Like banks, money transfer services also implement industry-standard measures to safeguard customers’ data and money. It includes data encryption, multi-factor authentication, SSL certificates, and regular monitoring to find and prevent fraudulent activity.

 

 

Is there an app to send money internationally?

 

Since people are more accustomed to using apps, they often prefer money transfer services that allow app-based transactions. Do you want to know which money transfer app is best in Australia? Consider the following money transfer apps along with their download links to send money abroad:

 

 

 

11. Conclusion

 

Today, it has become easier than ever to send money overseas. You have a significant selection available to find a reliable and economical international money transfer service to suit your needs.

 

Remember that the money transfer service best for one person might not be the best for another. So, to get the best deal for your transfer, make sure you use a free online money transfer comparison tool to compare your options and find the best company.

 

Useful Links to Explore:



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