How Can I Send Money Overseas Instantly? Your Full Guide [2023]

If you need to get a payment to someone overseas fast, you’re probably wondering how to transfer money internationally instantly. The fact is that instant international bank transfers don’t really exist. If you choose to send a payment abroad with your normal bank it could well take 3 to 5 working days to arrive. Don’t panic though – there are alternatives  which are far closer to an instant overseas money transfer.

To get your money where it needs to be in double quick time, check out specialist online transfer providers such as  Wise, Western Union or WorldRemit,, which can offer a fast – and often, near instant – money transfer service. More on that coming right up.

5 ways to send money internationally fast

Let’s dive right into some smart ways to arrange a same day international transfer – or if you’re in a real hurry, the best options for an almost instant international money transfer through a specialist provider.

1. Wise

Wise is a specialist in international money transfers which are deposited into the recipient’s bank account directly. Wise has built its own payment network to speed up the delivery times available – 45% of payments arrive instantly, and the vast majority arrive within 24 hours. You’ll be able to see a delivery time estimate when you set up your payment, and you can track your transfer in the Wise app or desktop site.

Wise international money transfers use the mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees. This can make them one of the cheapest – if not the cheapest – service available on the market.

With Wise, payments can arrive in seconds when you pay by card or PayID – or a few hours to overnight if you use a bank transfer. The exact time taken depends on the currency and payment methods – here are a few examples to build a picture:

Sending money to: Paid for with: Payment received by: Estimated delivery speed
United Kingdom PayID or bank card Direct bank deposit Seconds
Eurozone countries Bank transfer Direct bank deposit 9 hours
New Zealand PayID or bank card Direct bank deposit 5 hours

Go to Wise

2. OFX

OFX is a currency specialist which offers a personal service through brokers you can contact by phone, as well as an online international transfer option. OFX payments are funded with BPay or electronic bank transfer, and sent direct to the recipient’s bank account in their preferred currency.

OFX offers same day payments on some currency routes, with most other major currencies arriving within 1 or 2 days. Because you’ll be able to set up your payment by phone you’ll be able to talk through your options and find the fastest way to get your money where it needs to be, too.

There’s a 15 AUD fee for transfers under 10,000 AUD in value, with the transfer fee waived for higher value payments. OFX also adds a markup to the exchange rate used, although this is still likely to represent a better rate than you’ll get with your regular bank, making it a good option for customers sending high value amounts by phone.

OFX delivery times vary by currency type – here are some examples:

Sending money to: Paid for with: Payment received by: Estimated delivery speed
USA BPay or electronic bank transfer Direct bank deposit Same day
Most major currencies like GBP or EUR BPay or electronic bank transfer Direct bank deposit 1 – 2 days
Exotic currencies BPay or electronic bank transfer Direct bank deposit 3 – 5 days

Go to OFX

3. WorldRemit

WorldRemit offers payments set up online or in the WorldRemit app, which can be delivered to bank accounts, as airtime top up, or for cash collection around the world. Costs and exchange rates vary based on the specific service you need.

The services available from WorldRemit vary based on where you’re sending to. In many cases, payments sent for cash collection can be made available immediately. However, it’s important to check the expected delivery times when you model your payment, as some cash collection services may take a day or two to be processed. Here are a few examples of different currency routes and payment types:

Sending money to: Paid for with: Payment received by: Estimated delivery speed
United Kingdom Card, POLI or Apple Pay Direct bank deposit Next working day
Philippines Card, POLI or Apple Pay Cash collection Within minutes
Indonesia Card, POLI or Apple Pay Cash collection Within 3 working days

Go to WorldRemit

4. TorFX

Currency specialist TorFX offers international payments which can arrive on the same day – or within 1 to 2 working days on some more exotic currency routes. You can create an account online and then get a quote for the costs and delivery times for your specific payment either online or by calling the TorFX team of brokers. There are no upfront transfer fees for TorFX international transfers. TorFX exchange rates are competitive, but do include a markup on the mid-market exchange rate.

It’s not possible to generate instant quotes for TorFX delivery times without creating an account – get set up online or in the TorFX app to learn more.

Go to TorFX

5. Western Union

Western Union is one of the biggest money transfer providers on the planet, with an impressive range of ways to pay in and receive transfers. In many cases, if you’re sending money for cash collection, and paying with a card, POLI, or cash at an agent location, your funds could be received in minutes. If you want to send to a bank account directly this is still often faster than using a regular bank wire transfer – funds may be received overnight or in a day or two. You’ll see an estimated delivery time when you arrange your transfer.

Western Union international transfers have varying fees depending on how you pay, how you want the money to be received, and where you’re sending to. The exchange rates offered include a markup and can vary depending on how you arrange your specific transfer. To build a picture of the possible delivery times with Western Union, here are a few examples of payments on common currency routes.

Sending money to: Paid for with: Payment received by: Estimated delivery speed
United Kingdom Card or POLI Direct bank deposit 0 – 1 business day
New Zealand Card or POLI Cash collection In minutes
USA Card or POLI Direct bank deposit Next banking day

Go to Western Union

How do I compare the fastest ways to transfer money internationally?

The good news is that it’s usually pretty easy to compare the delivery times with specialist international money transfer services, simply by looking at their desktop sites or apps.

In most cases, providers offer a calculator tool which lets you enter the details of the payment you want to make, and see the fees, exchange rate and delivery times available. Compare a few different options to find the perfect one for you.

Compare international money transfer providers

How to transfer money internationally instantly

While an instant overseas money transfer with your bank is often impossible, there are specialist providers who might be able to get your money where it needs to be nearly instantlyor certainly within 24 hours. Because most specialist services recognise that what’s important to customers are the cost, speed and safety of their payment, they’ll usually offer a transfer calculator tool which gives an instant quote for how much your payment will cost, and when it’ll arrive if you choose them.

6 Tips for transferring money instantly

If you’re looking to use a specialist provider to get an almost instant international transfer, check out these tips first.

1. Register before you transferring money

You’ll usually need to register an account with your preferred provider before you can make a transfer. This is typically done online or in the provider app – although some international payment services do also have physical branch locations where you can register in person.

2. Make sure your account is verified

To comply with legislation and keep customers safe, you’ll often need to complete a verification step before you can use your account. This is often instant – or at least pretty fast – and can be done online by uploading images of a proof of address and a proof of ID. The provider you choose will give you more details about acceptable documents and the timelines involved.

3. Choose a payment method

Most international transfer services offer a few choices of how to pay. Using a bank transfer is often the cheapest options, but might not be the fastest, depending on the provider you select. Usually paying with a card or cash is the fastest – but you might have to accept a higher fee in exchange for speed. Remember that payments with a credit card might also incur a cash advance charge from your card issuer.

4. Make sure you have funds in your account

No matter how you choose to pay, make sure you have funds available to cover the transfer amount and fees. If you find there’s not enough in the nominated account, your international payment may be delayed or declined entirely.

5. Enter the recipient details and confirm the amount

Once you’re all set up with your preferred provider, you’ll just need to add details of the person you’re sending to, the currency and amount. The exact information you need depends on the payment you’re making – normally you need a full name for a cash collection payment, and a bank account number or IBAN, and SWIFT code for direct bank transfers.

6. Double check all the details and send

Before you confirm your payment you’ll want to double check all the details to make sure your transfer goes through smoothly. As soon as everything looks OK, hit send and you’re done. You’ll be able to track your transfer on the provider website or in their app.

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What are my international money transfer options?

Whenever you need to send money abroad you’ll have a few different options to consider. All different banks and specialist providers offer a range of services – and features, fees and exchange rates can vary significantly. You’ll normally want to weigh up a few different alternatives including:

  • Making a payment from your normal bank
  • Using a specialist online service with an international money transfer provider
  • Sending your payment as a cash transfer – for home delivery or in-store collection

If you’re not sure which will work best for you, compare a few of the services we’ve set out above, against the costs and delivery times you’ll get from your regular bank. Be sure to look carefully at bank fees and exchange rates too – banks often add a big markup to the exchange rates they pass on to customers, which is an extra fee and tricky to spot.

What are same day international money transfers?

If you send a same day international money transfer you’ll expect your payment to be received – either in cash for collection or as a direct bank transfer – on the same working day, or within 24 hours, depending on the specific service you choose.

Same day international transfers are offered by some regular banks, but beware of cut off times. In most cases you’ll need to have your payment arranged before a specific time – mid afternoon or earlier, depending on the provider and destination. Miss this deadline and your payment won’t be processed until the following day.

How much does a same day transfer cost?

The costs of same day or instant international money transfers varies widely by provider, destination and payment type. It’s worth comparing a few options, looking at both the upfront fees and exchange rates – and also taking into account any third party fees that may apply and push up the overall cost.

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Oscar Murray
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Last updated
November 3rd, 2023