How to Send and Receive Money Internationally

Do you need to send and receive money internationally? If you transfer via your bank, you could be stung with massive fees.

Thankfully, a number of other options, including innovative startups are available.

These can save you money as well as the hassle of dealing with inefficient and expensive banks.

While it can seem complicated at first, sending and receiving money internationally can actually be a breeze when you know what to do.

Here are the methods to choose from.

Bank Transfers

By going to most banks’ branches or websites, you can send and receive money internationally. You’ll need a few more details than when you send money domestically though. And bank transfers can be quite expensive.

First, you’ll need the IBAN (International Bank Account Number) of the account you want to send money to. This is up to 34 digits long, depending on the country you’re sending money to.

Since it’s long, copy it in very carefully.

You’ll also need a SWIFT code. This helps your bank identify the destination bank.

Your bank can use this information to send money from your account to the recipient.

Wire Transfers

Wire transfers are provided by companies including Western Union, Moneygram, and Ria. To use these, it’s normal to pay cash in person at a branch.

The wire service will then send the money on. This can be a bit pricey, but taking cash to a shop is fairly convenient.


Paypal is one of the world’s largest payment providers, and you can send money using only an email address

Paypal may be one of the largest, but it is not always the cheapest way to send money. Challenger startups are worth looking into if you’re sending high-value payments.

In its favor, Paypal is very fast and very reliable.

It takes just minutes to open a new account.


UK-based company TransferWise is not very old but has successfully disrupted a sometimes complacent market. It uses “midmarket” rates, the same low-cost rates banks use to transfer money to each other.

It charges a fee, but this is a fraction of what a bank or wire transfer would cost.

If you’re looking to save money, it’s a good bet.


If you’d rather use a USA-based provider, OFX offers a similar service as TransferWise that doesn’t charge any fees whatsoever.

Instead, it uses rates which are ever-so-slightly in its own favor. This allows it to turn a reasonable profit on each transaction, which is fair enough.

You come out of the transaction much better too.

TransferWise and OFX are among the new generation of startups entering the foreign exchange market that are saving consumers lots of cash.

Send and Receive Money – More Advice

If you want to learn more about sending and receiving money, such as the safest provider to use online, check out our blog.

We’ve also got advice on how to send money anonymously if you need to make a hush-hush transfer, and much more.

We’re your center for sending money online.

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