GUIDE: 7 Smarter Ways of Sending Money to the USA

The Best Way to Safely Transfer Money to USA:

1. Compare your local banks and money transfer services

2. Set-up an account with the bank or service you’ve chosen. Most of the time it can be done online but you will need to have some I.D. available

3. Transfer the money by confirming the exchange rate and fees. You’ll need the bank details of the person you want to pay in USA. You also may need to pay for the transfer before the money is sent abroad


Exchange Rate Comparison Tool

 
 

USA Money Transfer Guide

Transferring large amounts of currency

Transfering a Large Amount of USD

If you are sending more that $10,000 between Australia and USA, you should examine

1. Banks and money transfer companies that are regulated with a strong history of international payments

2. The exchange rate being offered

3. Any extra fees they charge


Our Verdict: For larger transfers, consider Transferwise. They give you the same exchange rate as you see on xe.com. They also offer a lower fee for amounts over $10,000.

Winner: Transferwise
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Moving from USA to Australia

It's no secret that banks impose a high international money transfer fee and it's seldom you'll receive the best possible exchange rate. Every Australian bank lets you transfer money to and from USA, but not all will accept US Dollars (USD).

The best possible exchange rate is unlikely to be offered at banks. On top of that, a high international money transfer fee will be imposed.

In this situation, an online money transfer service is one way to avoid these hefty fees. This is especially helpful if you prefer having the freedom to pick and choose your transfer provider.

Transfer service providers that allow you to transfer money from Australia to USA include OFX, HiFx, torfx, WorldFirst, Commonwealth Bank, Westpac and ANZ.


Our Verdict: OFX for great exchange rates on AUD and USD transfers to USA. Particularly for payments under $10,000.

Winner: OFX
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family

Friends and Family

Perhaps you have been away from home for quite some time and would like to send a gift to your family. A transfer service like Western Union is a fantastic choice for transferring small amounts. On the other hand, there are other providers that will also offer to waive transfer fees if the amount is larger.

That’s why it is important to shortlist providers that suits your needs, and discuss your options with a currency exchange and money transfer specialist.


Our Verdict: With the right foreign exchange specialist, such as OFX it is possible to achieve a spread of 1% - and even lower, reduce or remove fees, create a strategy for purchasing currency and also access hedging tools.

Winner: OFX
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Buying or Selling Property

Select a provider with a strong presense in Australia and USA. This will provide you with the support and flexibility you may require when purchasing a property.


Our Verdict: TorFX is an ideal choice for property settlement transfers. A local account manager will be appointed to guide you through each step. They are fully licensed in Australia and also offer a global support network.

Winner: TorFX
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Transferring currency for business

Business Currency Transfers

Transferring money for your business? Find the best option with these 2 key points:

1. The exchange rate margin - this is the difference between the wholesale exchange rate you can see on xe.com and the rate you get

2. The business products they offer like forward exchange contracts, foreign currency accounts and limit orders


Our verdict: TransferWise. Their borderless account is the best product for transferring money in and out of France. It's almost fee free and they have no exchange rate margin.

Winner: Transferwise
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Studying Overseas

Tuition fees have become steep and ever-increasing. As an international student, you would expect to pay between $15 000 to $50 000 annually, depending on your course. Bring in accommodation, bills and living expenses to the equation and you'll be dreading the escalating numbers.

For large payments like tuition, make sure you hunt down the best exchange rate.

Taking a part time course? With smaller payments, look out for the transfer fee that is being charged.


Our Verdict: Worldfirst. This is perfect for students and their parents paying the bills to save on hefty transfer costs.

Winner: World first
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How much will it cost to transfer money to or from USA?

Calculating the cost of your transfer can be tricky. Depending on how you send the money, the fees, charges and margins aren't always obvious. Here are the most common charges to transfer money from one bank account to another

1. Standard Fees

These are the most common fee types.

Money transfer fees

Transfer Fees

Also known as a TT, Telegraphic Transfer, Wire or Remittance fee. This is the fee that banks and providers charge to transfer your money across to another country.

Exchange rate margin fees

Exchange Rate Margin

This is the difference between the wholesale exchange rate you can see on xe.com and the rate you receive.

2. Bank Surcharges

These are fees that your bank may or may not charge you for.

Money transfer bank fees

Corrospondent Bank Fees

This is a bank charge for transferring money to an international account. The fee is deducted from the amount that you transfer to your receipient. Note: This fee is not always charged by your bank.

Money transfer receiving bank fee

Recieving Bank Fee

If you are paying foreign currency into an account, the receiving bank will charge you for it. For instance, if you send Chinese Yuan to your Australian bank account, your Australian bank will charge you to convert it.


OFX offer

Offer

Ready to go?

Get your first two transfers to USA with OFX for free

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How To Transfer Money Online


Frequently Asked Questions

Paypal and Western Union (cash pick-up) are the fastest options. The transfer can be done in minutes.
If you are sending the money to a bank account, it will take 1-2 days if you are using a bank.
Or 2-3 days if you are using a money transfer company.

Sending money using a money transfer company is similar to using a bank but there are some important differences. Here are the main steps to do it online:


Setting things up (only has to be done once)
  • Log on to their website and register your details. You'll need to have some I.D handy
  • Once your account has been approved, you'll get a login and password
  • Enter the banking details of where you are sending the money. They are usually called the "Beneficiary" or "Recipient"

Tranferring Money
  • Get a quote for the amount you want to send
  • Confirm the details including the rate and how much it is in Australian dollars
  • You'll get a deal confirmation. Finally you'll need to pay them the Australian dollars before the money is sent.

1. A Bank

Banks in Australia have higher fees and uncompetitve exchange rates compared to US Banks. But this doesn't mean you should never use an Australian Bank. They are still the quickest way to transfer between bank accounts.
 

2. Paypal

This is a great option for anyone sending smaller amounts under $1000. The exchange rate you'll get are comparable to a bank but the fees are significantly lower. It is particularly handy when the person you are paying has a Paypal account.
 

3. A Money Transfer Company

Money Transfer Companies like OFX and HiFX are often the cheapest option when you are sending between $1000 and $1,000,000 at a time. This is because they offer better exchange rates and lower (and sometimes no) fees. The downside to using a transfer company outside of a bank is that you'll have to set up an account with them first. This can take between 10 minutes and 2 days depending on how much information they need from you. Also, the transfer itself will usually take 1 day longer than using a bank.
The banks and Paypal don't have a minimum transfer amount but most money transfer companies do. If you are sending less than $500 to USA and intend to use a money transfer company, make sure you check their minimum transfer amount.
To send money overeas, you'll need the following information of the bank account you are sending the money to:

Beneficiary or Recipient Details
  1. The Account Name of your Recipient (person/business you are paying)
  2. Their ABA and Account Number
  3. The SWIFT Code of their bank
 

A note about sending money to USA:

It is particularly important to make sure ALL the bank details you use are correct. Banks are picky and will reject a payment even if a single digit is wrong or a single letter is out of place.


ABA numbers

An ABA number is a 9 digit number that identifies the bank in the US. It's similar to a BSB

Here is a list of SWIFT codes for the biggest banks in USA:

JPMorgan Chase : CHASUS33

Bank of America : BOFAUS6S

Citibank : CITIUS33

Wells Fargo : WFBIUS6S

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