Whether you are charged for Australia tax on money transfers to Australia depends on your residency status, the source of the money and the Australian Taxation Office rules.

Here we cover the most common situations where overseas money transfers are made to Australia:

 

Moving to Australia for the First Time

If you are moving to Australia for the first time, any sum of money that you bring into the country will not be taxable, according to the ATO. Once you become a resident of Australia, you may be taxed on money you transfer into your Australian account.

When bringing cash A$10,000 and above, it must be declared at customs. Bearer negotiable instruments like Traveller’s cheques, money orders, promissory notes, postal order, personal cheques must also be declared when asked, regardless of their value.

See: Transferring Money Back to Australia from Overseas

 

Income Earned from Overseas Sources

If you are resident of Australia, you will be taxed on income earned overseas. This includes business income, international investment income, overseas employment income, foreign pension and annuities, or capital gains on overseas assets.

Also, bear in mind that certain countries may require you to pay tax in two countries. Australia has double tax agreements with more than 40 nations. This ensures that taxation is imposed only once, regardless of the amount of income. Find out if you are affected by the tax treaty.

 

Inheriting Money from Overseas

Transferring an inheritance from overseas is generally not taxable. If you are the executor of an estate or will, you become responsible for the deceased individual’s tax affair.

Should you put the inherited money towards an investment, then any earnings will be taxable.

See: Receiving Inheritance Money from Abroad

 

Monetary Gift from Overseas

Money transferred from international sources such as a telegraphic transfer as a gift is not taxed in Australia. Since a gift is a one-time occurrence it is not taxed. However, the ATO says that not all payments made by your donors are gifts.

It is advised that you check the rules that apply to any money you receive from foreign sources into your Australian bank account. The taxation responsibilities you need to be aware of are clearly outlined on the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) website. If you need more assistance, call the ATO or talk to an accountant.

 


 

Compare The Total Cost to Transfer Money Overseas

Find the Cheapest Way to Transfer Money and Save

Provider Exchange
Rate
Transfer
Fee
Transfer
Time
Total (AUD) Rates last updated September 19 2018
TransferwiseRead Review 0.7246 $63.60 1-2 Days $13,864.32Lowest Cost Option Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7246 will cost you $13,864.32 which includes a fee of $63.60

About TransferWise

Transparency and an easy online experience are the 2 things that set TransferWise apart from the banks and other money transfer companies. If you prefer to bank online, you'll like TransferWise. Setting up an account and making a transfer is very easy. They are also very clear on the exchange rate and fees you'll pay before you make a transfer. Click here for the full review

Pros

  • Clear and transparent exchange rates fees
  • The online experience is first class
  • Like the banks, they are regulated by ASIC and registered with AFSL
  • Constantly bringing out new innovative products

Cons

  • There are currently a number of global currencies they do not currently support
  • Limited support based in Australia
  • Percentage based fee can add up on very large transfers

TorFXRead Review 0.7210 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,870.07$5.75 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7210 will cost you $13,870.07 with no fees.

About TorFX

TorFX are particularly good taking care of customers over the phone but using their website isn't the easiest to use. They don't charge a flat fee which is great but it's important to consider their exchange rates. While, they don't offer fantastic rates for small amounts under $2000 , TorFX offer exceptionally good exchange rates for larger transfers to the UK, New Zealand, South Africa and Europe.

Pros

  • No transfer fees
  • Highly competitive exchange rates
  • Secure transfers with authorised
  • Assigned account manager
  • 24 / 7 Assistance
  • Available range of transfer options

Cons

  • Limited exotic currencies available
  • Exchange rates on small transfers aren't great
  • Website experience could be better

XERead Review 0.7207 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,875.65$11.33 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7207 will cost you $13,875.65 with no fees.

About XE

XE is a well known and trusted name in the money transfer industry. With over twenty years experience, they now help 33,000 people and 2,000 businesses make transfers each year. Over 60 currencies can be transferred with XE and they pride themselves on the free tools and transparent rates they offer. Click here to read the full review

Pros

  • Well known and trusted brand.
  • Very informative website. Extensive information on currency and money transfers.
  • XE App is available on both iOS and Android. It allows you to see the interbank rate for over 100 currencies.
  • XE themselves charge no fees for international money transfers.
  • Offers support for both individuals and businesses when it comes to international money transfers.

Cons

  • Cannot pay via cash or cheque. Must pay via bank transfer, BPay is also accepted in Australia.
  • Maximum transfer amount is $500,000USD.
  • While XE compares more than 100 currencies, there are only 60 that are available for money transfers.

WorldFirstRead Review 0.7203 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,884.02$19.70 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7203 will cost you $13,884.02 with no fees.

About World First

World First was founded in 2004 in the UK and has grown rapidly with offices now in the U.S., Canada and throughout Asia. They consistently receive strong customer reviews and in a recent study, 98% of their clients said they would use them again.World First have a strong online offering, particular for businesses selling online. They do provide local support as well with offices in Sydney. Click here to read the full review

Pros

  • Low fees and great exchange rates
  • Safe and secure transfers
  • Regulated by ASIC and registered with AFSL
  • Great for personal and business payments

Cons

  • Does not accept BPAY, credit card, cheque or cash
  • Limited currencies available

HIFXRead Review 0.7203 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,884.02$19.70 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7203 will cost you $13,884.02 with no fees.

About HiFX

HiFX are one of the biggest money transfer companies in the world. Their parent company Euronet is listed on the NASDAQ and recently acquired Xe.com. They are particularly useful for individuals doing regular transfers overseas. HiFX provide competitive exchange rates no matter how much is being transacted. Their $50 minimum transaction size and flat fee makes them a great option for any international payment. Locally, HiFX have Australian offices in Sydney, Melbourne and are expanding to the remaining capital cities. Click here to read the full review

Pros

  • Fantastic bank - beating exchange rates
  • Low fees for transactions less than $10, 000
  • No fees for transactions of $10, 000 or more
  • High security transfers regulated by ASIC and FMA
  • Fast and easy for personal or business accounts

Cons

  • Only electronic bank transfers accepted
  • Limited exotic currencies
OFXRead Review 0.7149 $0.00 1-3 Days $13,987.97$123.65 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7149 will cost you $13,987.97 with no fees.

About OFX

OFX (formally known as Ozforex) is the largest Australian owned money transfer company. It launched in 1998 and grew rapidly until finally listing on the Australian Stock Exchange in 2013. OFX excels in 2 areas – Online experience and customer service. The company was born online and continues to develop easy, intuitive products. While OFX customers do most of their transactions online, they are backed up with exceptional customer service.

Pros

  • Better exchange rates compared to banks
  • Highly safe and secure transfers
  • 1 - 2 days delivery times for most countries
  • Quick response time
  • Fantastic customer service

Cons

  • Credit cards, cheques and cash are not accepted
  • Transfers to Thailand can take up to 4 days
  • Fees for transfers smaller transfers

WorldRemitRead Review 0.7150 $3.99 1-2 Days $13,990.59$126.27 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7150 will cost you $13,990.59 which includes a fee of $3.99

About WorldRemit

WorldRemit are particularly good for transfers under $10,000 to destinations across Asia, Africa and South America. Sending money online is significantly easier than using companies like Western Union or Moneygram and their exchange rates and fees are clear and transparent. With 2 million users, WorldRemit has a focus on improving access to remittances for the billions people worldwide who don’t have access to banking. Because of this, WorldRemit has a number of ways to both make and receive transfers. They concentrate on servicing individual needs as opposed to businesses. Click here for the full review

Pros

  • They have a great network in Asia and Africa and number of receiving options like cash-pick up or bank transfer.
  • They are clear about their exchange rates and fees
  • No minimum amount

Cons

  • Maximum transfer sizes for every transfer
  • No support for business customers
  • They are not licensed to provide financial advice.
ANZRead Review 0.6963 $0.00 1-2 Days $14,361.63$497.31 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.6963 will cost you $14,361.63 with no fees.
ANZ International Money Transfer is a secure and fast way to transfer money overseas.

Pros:

  • Fast transfers
  • Safe and secure
  • No fee for transfers under $10 000 via Internet banking

Cons

  • $12 fee for transfers under $10 000 via Internet banking
  • Poor exchange rates
  • 24 hour hotline not available

Commonwealth BankRead Review 0.6857 $12.00 1-2 Days $14,595.64$731.32 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.6857 will cost you $14,595.64 which includes a fee of $12.00
Commonwealth Bank provides secure and easy transfers to over 200 countries and more than 30 currencies.

Pros:

  • Fast transfers+ Easy transfers
  • Security guarantee covers any losses from unauthorised transactions

Cons

  • $6 fee for transfers under $1000 via Internet banking
  • $12 fee for transfers under $1000 via Internet banking
  • Poor exchange rates

WestpacRead Review 0.6736 $10.00 1-2 Days $14,855.61$991.29 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.6736 will cost you $14,855.61 which includes a fee of $10.00
Westpac is one of the big four banks in Australia offers speedy and secure transfers.

Pros:

  • Fast payment processing times
  • Secure transfers

Cons

  • Must be Westpac account holder
  • $20 fee for transfers via Internet or phone banking
  • $32 fee for transfers at an ANZ branch
  • Poor exchange rates

 


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Helping You Save Money on Currency

Buying travel money or transferring money overseas can be expensive and confusing. So how do you make the best choice and get the most out of your money?

An easy way is to use a comparison table for either international money transfers or currency exchange. These tables list and compare the banks with other large foreign exchange companies.

We’ve also put together tons of helpful videosguides and reviews that will help you make the right decision. You can work out a cheaper way of converting currency while still keeping your money safe.