Combine the ease of travel with the fact that over 28% of Australians were born overseas, and you have an ever increasing demand for sending money from Australia to other countries around the world.

Whether it be for a holiday, overseas bills on your property, or helping friends or family overseas – whatever your reason, there’s whole host of choices for you to send money abroad. These choices generally fall into the larger categories of:

 

    1. Banks
    2. Money Transfer Providers

how to transfer $5000 overseas article

We know that with all the various methods to transfer your money, it can be overwhelming choosing the right one for you and your circumstances. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive article with all the methods and corresponding fees explained, along with how much money you would get for your $5000 AUD.

 


Table of contents

  1. The general costs to consider when transferring your money overseas
  2. How much you would get in exchange for $5000 AUD in USD
  3. Security of different methods
  4. FAQs

 

What are the general costs to consider when transferring money overseas?

Whatever method you choose to transfer your money, unfortunately they will most likely come with fees attached. It’s our job to highlight these for you, big or small.

Cost of sending money overseas

  1. The baseline exchange rate
  2. The exchange rate margin
  3. A commission fee
  4. A flat fee

1 — The baseline exchange rate

Otherwise known as the ‘mid-market’ or ‘interbank’ rate, the baseline exchange rate indicates how much money one currency is worth when you exchange it to another. These rates fluctuate constantly based on outside factors like the financial market, global events etc.

In early 2017, $5000 AUD would get you roughly $3832 USD through the baseline exchange rate

 

 

2 — The exchange rate margin

This is essentially the difference between the baseline exchange rate and the rate you are offered. This margin will differ with each method you choose. Banks tend to make more profit from the margin, whereas other companies will take a smaller cut.

3 — A commission fee

Some providers and banks will charge this additional commission fee on top of their other fees and exchange rates. This can vary between 1-5% so beware of this before transferring your money, as it could reduce the amount you ultimately get at the end.

 

4 — A flat fee

Nearly all providers and banks will charge a flat rate fee for transferring your money overseas. In the grand scheme of things, this fee will not break the bank but if you have to make regular payments then it can add up, resulting in you paying a lot more money than you originally planned.

  • Banks: $18-$40 per transfer
  • Currency providers: $10-$15 per transfer


 

How Much USD Would You Get In Exchange For $5000 AUD?

The general rule is that you will get more value for your money if you go through dedicated currency providers after their exchange is applied, and their fees deducted, than a bank. This is because they take a smaller margin than banks.

In February 2017, the rates are as follows:

  • 0.766 — Mid-market exchange rate or Interbank rate

Currency providers and banks make their profit on the margin they choose to add to the mid-market exchange rate (the rate you would find on Google, or xe.com). As a general rule, banks will inflict a larger margin and currency providers a smaller one, allowing you to get more value for your money.

 

On average, the rates for currency providers and banks are as follows:

  • 0.755 — Currency provider exchange rate
  • 0.735 — Bank exchange rate

We’ve put together a table below that show some of the most major companies and banks out there and an estimated figure for what you get for $5000 AUD-USD.

However, although cheaper than banks, note that some currency exchange providers will not allow you to see a quote based on their own customer rates (rather than the baseline exchange rate) until you sign up with them and obtain a quote. In these cases, we have put the baseline rate offered on their websites.

 

AUD Fees in AUD Total Received in USD 
OFX $5000 $10 $3738.75
HiFX $5000 $15 $3,750.13
TorFX $5000 $0 $3,736.75
WorldFirst $5000 $10 $3,755.78 (Cheapest)
Westpac $5000 $20 – $32** $3,569.66
ANZ $5000 $18 – $32** $3,609.96
NAB $5000 $22 – $30** $3,575.00
Commonwealth Bank $5000 $22 – $30** $3,565.74 (Most expensive)

**When there are two fees shown, this means the two fees for online and in-branch.

 


 

How to Find the Cheapest Way to Transfer Money Overseas

Compare The Total Cost

The total cost of the transfer comes down to 2 things:

Money transfer fees

1. Transfer Fees

Every Australian bank and money transfer company will charge you a different fee to send money overseas. Usually it’s between $10 and $32.

Exchange rate margin fees

2. Exchange Rate Margin

There is no “standard” exchange rate. Each bank will offer you a different exchange rate based on the currency you want to send overseas and the amount you need to send.

Provider Exchange
Rate
Transfer
Fee
Transfer
Time
Total (AUD) Rates last updated September 19 2018
TransferwiseRead Review 0.7264 $63.45 1-2 Days $13,829.97Lowest Cost Option Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7264 will cost you $13,829.97 which includes a fee of $63.45

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 0.7228 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,835.70$5.73 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7228 will cost you $13,835.70 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 0.7225 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,841.26$11.29 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7225 will cost you $13,841.26 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 0.7220 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,849.62$19.65 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7220 will cost you $13,849.62 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 0.7220 $0.00 2-3 Days $13,849.62$19.65 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7220 will cost you $13,849.62 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
WorldRemitRead Review 0.7187 $3.99 1-2 Days $13,917.61$87.64 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7187 will cost you $13,917.61 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.
OFXRead Review 0.7166 $0.00 1-3 Days $13,954.79$124.82 more expensive Go to site Read Review
So, sending USD 10,000 to United States at an exchange rate of 0.7166 will cost you $13,954.79 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

ANZRead Review 0.6963 $0.00 1-2 Days $14,361.63$531.66 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$765.67 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$1025.64 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

 

Case Study

 

lady enquiring how to transfer $5000 overseasKirstin is from Florida, USA and landed in Australia over six months ago. She has been working for an IT start-up company in Melbourne, and is really enjoying gaining some international work experience while away from home. When her mum calls to tell her that she needs to pay her car insurance back in Florida, Kirstin must suddenly find a way to transfer her mum money safely, securely and quickly.

As she banks with ANZ, she thought it would be the quickest way and organised the transfer straight away. However, to her dismay Kirstin found her mum received around $200 less than the amount she needed, as Kirstin hadn’t looked around to find the best deal.

Luckily, her mum covered the cost for her but a lesson learnt for Kirstin to always check the exchange rates and fees before transferring money abroad.

 

 


 

 

FAQs

We know currency exchange can be a confusing process, especially filled with jargon and permanently fluctuating rates, meaning the information you look at is never set for very long.

Should i compare currency providers before transferring my money?

Yes. Nearly all currency providers offer competitive rates, but these rates usually reflect the details of your transfer i.e. how much you are transferring, where you are transferring to and what payment method. Some providers will charge a flat rate fee, which is usually taken off with transfers over $10,000, while others will charge a rate that fluctuates. Some will charge less, while others will charge more so it’s important to look around and compare before you transfer.

Do some currency providers offer fee-free transfers

Yes. Some providers will offer you a fee-free first transfer such as OFX, while others will offer no fees over a certain amount.

How quickly will my money take to transfer?

Money will usually take between 2-4 working days depending on when you transfer during the day, and whether you choose to transfer through a provider or a bank.

 

What other charges should i look out for?

If you are transferring money overseas, the main additional charge you should watch out for is the receiving bank. They will usually take their own cut, so you will need to research this beforehand.

Are there minimum and maximum limits to transferring money overseas?

Yes. These limits will vary with each company or bank, for instance OFX have recently lowered their minimum transfer amount to $250 AUD. In comparison though, HiFX only have a $50 minimum amount, so depending on how much you want to transfer, it is worth researching.


Security

All currency providers listed in this article hold Australian Financial Services Licenses and are members of the Australia Financial Ombudsman Service.

 

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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.