Explore the best ways to transfer money internationally

In the digital age we're all living in, transferring money to different parts of the world is becoming easier, and quicker, and there are numerous ways to do it.

For a regular person, navigating through the different services on offer for international money transfers can be quite confusing and time-consuming.

Luckily, at EasyFX, we're experts in foreign exchange, so we've put together this blog which will go through the best ways you can transfer your money internationally, making the process, easy.

Let's get started!

Different currency coins from all around the world placed together including the pound, euro, dime and others.

Table of contents: 

International bank wire transfers (using your bank to transfer money internationally)

Bank wire transfers are one of the most traditional and widely used methods for transferring money internationally.

Put simply, it involves the electronic movement of funds between banks across different countries.

When initiating a wire transfer, you will need to provide your bank with the recipient's banking information, including the recipient's:

  • Account number

  • Account name

  • Bank name

  • SWIFT/BIC code

  • International Bank Account Number (if applicable)

Your bank will then transmit a message via a secure system, such as SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) or SEPA (Single Euro Payments Area), instructing the recipient's bank to credit them with the specified amount. 

This amount will then be transferred into their account in another country.

Pros of using your bank to transfer money internationally

  • Security: Bank wire transfers are highly secure, as banks use robust security measures.

  • Wide reach: Banks have extensive global networks which makes it possible to send money to nearly every country.

Cons of using your bank to transfer money internationally

  • High fees: Bank wire transfers often come with high fees, These include fees to send, and fees to receive. You may want to compare fees from different banks when choosing how to transfer your funds.

  • Slow processing times: Transfers may take several days to complete. If you choose this method of international money transfer, you will need to take this into account.

  • Exchange rates: Banks will not usually offer competitive exchange rates, especially when you compare them against other money transfer services. This could add to the overall cost of the transfer especially for larger amounts.

Using online services to transfer money internationally

Online money transfer services are online digital platforms that facilitate the transfer of money across international borders quickly and efficiently, through bypassing traditional banking systems.

Online services use a combination of the internet and advanced financial technology to offer a convenient, user-friendly experience, allowing individuals or businesses to send funds quickly and easily. 

Best online international money transfer services

Note: These services vary in fees, exchange rates, transfer speeds, and available countries. Our list is put together from our own research, services that are commonly used worldwide, and available customer reviews. Compare them based on your specific needs before choosing the best one for your international money transfer.

Send money abroad in 3 easy steps with EasyFX

Pros of using an online money transfer service

  • Lower transfer fees: Online money transfer services generally offer lower fees than banks. 

    These services often provide more transparent fee structures, ensuring that you are fully aware of the involved before making a transaction.

    At EasyFX, we do not add any transfer fees for our customers to send money internationally.

  • Better exchange rates: Online services will usually provide more competitive exchange rates (as the market is more saturated, more competition).

  • Faster transfers: Transfers are usually faster, often within minutes (be wary of extra costs!) - and no more than a few days. 

  • Convenience: Most online money transfer services have easy-to-use software or an associated app that makes them easy and convenient to use from anywhere. 

Cons of using an online money transfer service

  • Limits: There may be limits on the amount of money you can transfer using online money transfer services. 

    Choosing to transfer money internationally with EasyFX allows you to send however much you want, all in one go, we do not put limits on transfers for our customers. 

  • Recipient accessibility: Some services may mean that your recipient also needs an account to receive the funds, this can add complications. 

Peer-to-peer international money transfer services

Peer-to-peer (P2P) transfer services are apps/platforms that facilitate the direct exchange of currencies between one person and another. 

These services act as intermediaries that match users looking to exchange different currencies at much more competitive rates than banks and other traditional money transfer services. 

This process usually involves the service holding local currency pools in various countries.

When you want to send money abroad, the service will debit the amount from your account and credit the equivalent amount in the recipient's local currency from its pool. 

Avoiding the need for cross-border movement of funds. 

This method of international money transfer has gained popularity for smaller amounts as it reduces transfer fees and minimises the exchange rate markup, providing a cost-effective and efficient alternative for money transfers abroad.

Pros of peer-to-peer international money transfers

  • Cost-effective: Peer-to-peer services match users looking to exchange currencies, which often results in lower fees. 

  • Transparent fees: Clear and upfront fee structures. 

  • Competitive rates: These services usually offer close to the mid-market exchange rates (rates that banks use to trade with each other) 

Cons of peer-to-peer international money transfers

  • Limited availability: Peer-to-peer services aren't available in all countries.

  • Complexity: Setting up an account for peer-to-peer transfers can be more complex to set up, compared to other methods.

Using an international money order for your transfer

What is an international money order? 

International money orders are a secure and reliable method for transferring money across borders and are most commonly used when other electronic means are not accessible or preferred. 

International money orders function similarly to domestic money orders but are specifically designed for international transactions. 

To obtain an international money order you will need to visit a bank, post office, or other financial institution that offers this service.

You will then be asked to pay the amount you wish to transfer, plus an additional fee. A physical money order document will then be mailed to the intended recipient. 

Once received, the recipient can then cash the money order at their local bank or other financial institution.

At this point, they will need to provide a valid form of identification to complete the transaction.

Pros of international money orders

  • Security: International money orders are a secure way to send money without a bank account. 

  • Reliability: International money orders are widely recognised and accepted. 

Cons of international money orders

  • Inconvenience: Requires a physical visit to a bank or post office. 

  • Slow transfer times: Can take much longer to process and deliver. 

  • Fees: International money orders will also involve purchasing fees and mailing costs, unlike other methods to transfer money internationally.

Women using her laptop, sat on a step, smiling, making an international money transfer.

Using international cash transfer services 

A cash transfer service is a method of transferring money internationally that allows you to send and receive cash quickly and securely across borders, without the need for a bank account. 

Companies like Western Union dominate this space, providing extensive networks of agent locations worldwide, allowing customers to send money from one country and have it available for pick-up in another, within minutes.

If you choose this method of money transfer, you will need to visit an agent's location and provide the necessary identification and recipient details.

You will have to pay the transfer amount, and extra fees, and then the service will process the transaction.

The person you are sending the money (which is now in their local currency) to can then collect from an agent location in their country. 

Despite their cons, cash transfer services remain a vital resource for many individuals needing rapid and reliable money transfers across international borders.

Pros of using international cash transfers

  • Speed: Cash transfers can be instant, or within minutes.

  • Accessibility: Available in numerous locations globally.

  • Cash pickup: Recipients can pick up cash without a bank account needed.

Cons of using international cash transfers

  • High fees: Cash transfer services typically have higher fees, especially for instant transfers.

  • Security: Risk of loss or theft if the cash is not handled properly and securely.

  • Exchange rates: Cash transfer agencies often have less favourable exchange rates. 

Key factors to consider when transferring money internationally

  • Fees: Some services will have hidden fees. At EasyFX, there are no transfer fees, which will help you budget more smoothly. 

  • Exchange rates: A significant factor when sending money abroad. Exchange rates move every second of the day, which will impact how much money you or your recipient will receive.

    Our team of expert brokers can help guide you through this process and advise when the best time to transfer your money will be. 

  • Speed: If you need to transfer money quickly, make sure to choose a method that will transfer funds in time. 

  • Convenience: Some services will be more convenient for both the sender and the recipient. Make sure the method you use is convenient for your unique situation. 

  • Transfer limits: Be aware of any limits on the amount you can send. Especially for large amounts, not being able to send your money in full, at once, is a pain, and will mean more costs each time you transfer. Try to find a service that doesn't place limits on their service or add extra fees to send more. 

What is the least expensive way to send money internationally? 

Peer-to-peer (P2P) services and online money transfer services are recognised as the most cost-effective way to send money internationally for small amounts quickly. For larger international money transfers, currency exchange brokers will allow you to save even more money by utilising their expertise and finding you the best exchange rate available. 

With more than 20 years of market knowledge, EasyFX has helped over 40,000 people send money internationally successfully and securely.

With no transfer fees and a team of expert brokers to find you the best exchange rate, you can save thousands on your international money transfer to over 100+ destinations, with EasyFX. 

Get in touch today for a free quote.

How can I make regular international payments? 

When it comes to regular international payments, the cost of bank fees and exchange rate fluctuations may add a significant amount to your overall costs. 

At EasyFX we will not only give you great rates, without the usual large mark-up that comes with other international money transfer services. 

We can also aid you in avoiding unnecessary bank fees, meaning you have more money to send overseas! 

EasyFX is here to help you avoid high costs for money transfers and navigate them much more easily. 

Need to make regular international payments

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Best ways to transfer money internationally: A summary

There are various ways to send money internationally these days, but it can be difficult to know which is the right one for you and your money transfer requirements. 

Let's summarise it quickly:

  1. For small international money transfers, services like Peer-to-peer and online money transfer providers are recommended, they provide quick transfer times and add on lower fees than a traditional bank. 

  2. For large international money transfers, it is best to use a service that provides guidance, support, and a human element. Transfer providers like ourselves at EasyFX, who have a team of currency brokers are recommended here, they can support and work to find you great exchange rates, and you're not left on your own.

  3. If you decide to use an independent provider, make sure they're authorised and regulated by relevant financial authorities, like we are at EasyFX, by the FCA and FINTRAC. 

  4. Using your bank may seem convenient, but be careful of the higher fees they charge for international money transfers. They can add up very quickly.
What is the best way to send money internationally?
Explore the best ways to send money abroad. Learn about their pros and cons!
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Let us make your money transfer abroad, easy.

At EasyFX, our goal is to make international money transfers affordable, smooth, and easy, for everyone. Whether a small transfer or large transaction, we can cater to all types through our money transfer app, or our expert brokers, who are ready to find you the best rate available, saving you money.

If you'd like to receive a free transfer quote, please contact our team today!

Get a free transfer quote
See the best ways to transfer money internationally in 2024
Your guide to the different and best ways to transfer money internationally in 2024, explore the pros and cons of each one and find the way to suit your needs.
7 minute read

Let us make your money transfer abroad, easy.

At EasyFX, our goal is to make international money transfers affordable, smooth, and easy, for everyone. Whether a small transfer or large transaction, we can cater to all types through our money transfer app, or our expert brokers, who are ready to find you the best rate available, saving you money.

If you'd like to receive a free transfer quote, please contact our team today!

Get a free transfer quote
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