Even with the popularity of online payment services, wiring money overseas is still a viable option for some businesses and individuals. This is especially the case if you intend to send a sizable amount of money, and security is a concern. This can also be the case if the recipient individual or establishment does not have an account with online payment systems like PayPal.
Because modern banks are interconnected, if you need to remit money to another country, it only takes a few minutes of your time. The bigger delay here would be waiting for your money to clear through the banking system and finally arrive at its destination. Here are a few things you need to know when wiring money overseas.
Have all account information ready. When sending money overseas through a wire transfer, be sure you have on hand all the details pertinent to the receiving individual and bank. You would usually need the account name, account number, bank name and branch. For wire transfers, you should also have the receiving bank’s routing number, often called the SWIFT code or bank identifier code.
- Fill in a transfer form. You would usually have to approach the manager or a special counter at your bank for this form, as it’s not usually available from the same counter where you make deposits or withdrawals. Be sure to fill in this form with accurate information pertaining to the receiver, his bank, and the amount.
- Pay a small fee. Each wire transfer, whether local or international, would require a nominal fee from both the sender and receiver. If you are sending money, then you would have to pay the amount outright. The receiver can opt to have this amount deducted from the transfer that you will be sending him. This fee would range from $15 to $45, depending on the bank (banks usually charge lower for receiving than sending).
- Pay the amount. You will then be asked to deposit the amount to be sent with the teller. If the bank’s practices allow it, then the manager will be the one to handle the actual deposit. If you have an account with the bank, then you can instead instruct them to debit the amount to be wired overseas from your own savings or current account.
- Notify the receiver. Once you have completed the transaction at your bank, notify the receiving party that you have already initiated the transfer. He would usually have to wait anywhere from a few hours to two days for transfers to clear. International transfers might take longer than two days, depending on how well the sending and receiving banks are interconnected.
If you are sending funds to a person overseas who might not necessarily have a bank account, then you can try alternative services such as Western Union. These services would only require you to give the name and address of the recipient individual, and you will then be given a money transfer control number. You will then need to send this control number, along with your name and address to the receiver. The receiver can then accept the funds from any branch worldwide, for as long as he has identification that corresponds with the name and address that you filled in. The fee for this service usually depends on the size of the amount sent.
Wire transfers make it easy for anyone to send money to other people around the world. Just a word on sending funds, be sure that you are transmitting money to persons you already know. A lot of fraud and laundering schemes exist, and many of these target unsuspecting users of email and other messaging services.