There are many reasons people decide to move abroad, whether it be to work, study or retire. However, no matter your reason for relocating, you will always need to be comfortable in handling your finances abroad. With differences in exchanges rates, interest rates, hidden fees -- expat finances can be overwhelming.
Before you can begin to manage your finances, you’ll need to send your finances over to your destination. Listed below are our top tips on sending money abroad safely and seamlessly.
Money Transfer Company or Bank?
Banks generally have high transfer fees -- for both processing and receiving -- and poor exchange rates. Additionally, the process of transferring funds can take 4-6 days, unless you pay for an express transaction. Using a bank is a safe and reliable way of transferring finances; however, with technological advances, easier methods of transferring money overseas have been developed.
With the rise of global travel and many people opting for the expat lifestyle, FinTech companies have developed innovative solutions to sending money abroad. These companies allow expats to transfer funds overseas in an affordable, quick and safe way -- dodging the complicated process and high fees of local banks.
Several FinTech companies, such as TransferWise or OFX, allow you to transfer money into foreign bank accounts with just a few clicks. All you need is the name of the recipient and their account details, and your money can be easily transferred online with a small transfer fee.
Sending Money Safely Online
While there are several safe methods of sending money abroad there is also, unfortunately, a wide network of scammers waiting to take advantage of new expats.
Some top safety tips:
- If an offer seems too good to be true, it most likely is.
- Never give out your bank details unless you’re certain of who you’re providing them for.
- If an email is worded poorly, has bad spelling or grammatical errors, and is from a vague sender, it is likely a scam email.
- Choose a well-known financial company or bank, with positive reviews, to handle your finances.
Remember: when using a money transfer company, you may not be protected should the company go bust. Ask questions and be sure to find a company with a thorough protection policy.
What You Should Look For
- Payment method - most companies allow you to transfer money via bank transfers - it's easy and not a lot of information is needed.
- Low transfer fees and exchange rates - banks generally offer poorer rates and high fees for sending, receiving or exchanging money to a foreign bank account. Money transfer companies operate with generous rates and small fees or no fees at all.
- Transfer speed - most online transfers take a maximum of 2 days to complete. Some services may even transfer your money in a few hours or less.
- Customer support - as sending money can be a worrying process, it’s important to ensure the company or bank you choose has a strong customer services department. Most reliable companies will offer assistance through phone calls, emails, or live chat.
- Protection policy - find out what the company does to keep your transactions safe and how it avoids fraudulent interactions.
Sending money abroad can be a daunting part of the relocation process. But by following the correct guidelines and safety precautions the process can be quick and straightforward - leaving you more time to focus on the exciting stuff…
Need some more assistance with sending money abroad? Download the Avvinue all-in-one moving app to get started.