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How do I transfer money overseas from my bank account?

It’s easy to send money overseas from your bank account, but make sure you shop around to find the most affordable transfer option.

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With the rise of online money transfer services, sending money internationally from your bank is no longer the best option. Other traditional options like sending cash, a check or even a money order are now outdated — and risky. Discover how to transfer money overseas for less, sometimes in as little as a few minutes.

How can I transfer money internationally from my bank?

There are three main ways to transfer money internationally from your bank account, and some of them offer additional options like delivery for cash pickup:

  1. International wire transfers. An online international wire transfer will be made through your bank to your recipient's bank.
  2. Online money transfer services. Services dedicated to sending money domestically and internationally can often beat the rates and fees offered by your bank.
  3. In-person international wire transfers. Physically going to the bank to transfer money may be the least convenient option, but it's an option nonetheless.

Making an international wire transfer online from your bank

  • Pro: Convenient transfers through a bank you already trust such as CommBank or NAB.
  • Con: You'll often lose money on fees and poor exchange rates. If you're moving a large amount of money, it could cost you thousands of dollars.
Depending on the bank you use, you may be able to avoid visiting a branch by making your international wire transfer online. If your bank offers online transfers, follow these steps to send your international bank transfer:

  1. Go to your bank's wire transfer section. This will usually be found by visiting your bank's main website, logging into your account and looking at the top of the page for Wire transfers, Send money, Transfer money or similar.
  2. Verify your sending limits. Banks often place limits on outgoing wire transfers, so confirm that your bank's limit is high enough for your transfer. When you need to send more than the limit, consider using a money transfer service instead.
  3. Enter your recipient's bank information. International bank transfers usually require:
    • Name and address of your recipient's bank
    • Recipient's name, address and account type
    • Recipient's account number or international bank account number (IBAN)
    • Recipient's SWIFT or BIC code, which can be found by asking the recipient's bank
  4. Enter sending amount and desired currency. Your bank will likely charge a currency exchange fee on top of a sending fee.
  5. Pay for the transfer and the fees. Most banks charge an outgoing international money transfer fee, and your recipient's bank will likely charge an incoming wire fee as well.
  6. Wait for your transfer to arrive. International money transfers can take anywhere from a few business days to over a week, depending on how many banks the money has to move through to get to its destination. Check with your bank to find out the status of your transfer.

Finder survey: What do people care about most with a money transfer?

ResponseFemaleMale
I do not send money overseas36.03%31.17%
Exchange rate29.17%30.24%
Fees28.65%27.27%
Transfer speed4.04%7.98%
Customer service1.23%2.23%
Simple sign up0.88%0.74%
Other0.37%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1110 Australians, December 2023

Using an online money transfer service

  • Pro: Save money by using a specialist service with bank beating rates and fees.
  • Con: Finding the best service for your situation will take some research.
There's a lot of competition between money transfer services — which should benefit you while looking for the best deal. The majority of providers will allow you to transfer money from one bank to another, as well as offering cash pickup or delivery straight to a mobile device.

More online money transfer services to help you send overseas from your bank account

Other notable mentions to help you move your money internationally include:

Compare money transfer services to send money from your bank account

Our table below lets you compare services you can use to send money abroad. Compare fees, exchange rates and discounts from different money transfer services, and when you have made your choice, click Go to site.
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer)
TorFX
24 hours
$0
TorFX sends money overseas in 40+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
Xe Large Transfers
24 hours
$0
Xe has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
OFX
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 50+ currencies.
Send Payments
24 hours
$0

Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
Revolut
Within minutes
$0
Sign up and get a AUD$15 top-up. For new customers only. T&Cs apply.
Send money with great rates and low fees in 30+ currencies.
Xe Money Transfers
Within minutes
$0
Xe has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
Instarem
Within minutes
From 0%
50% off first transaction fee from any country in APAC (outside India).
Minimum transfer of $250 and max transfer of $500,000
Wise (TransferWise)
Within minutes
From 0.43%
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 50+ currencies.
TorFX
24 hours
$0
TorFX sends money overseas in 40+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
Remitly
Within minutes
From $0
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
Rocket Remit
Within minutes
From $0 to $5
Send money instantly to friends and family in over 45 countries using just your mobile number.
MoneyGram
Within minutes
From $1.99
MoneyGram has fast cash pick-up transfers to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide.
SingX
Within minutes
From 0.5%
SingX offers the real exchange rate every time you make a transfer and can help you send money across the world.
CurrencyFair
Within minutes
€3
CurrencyFair has bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
OFX
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 50+ currencies.
Send Payments
Send Payments
24 hours
$0
Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
MasterRemit
Within minutes
From $0
Get your 1st and 2nd money transfer for free with promo codes FIRSTFREE and MASTERFINDER!.
Send money in minutes at competitive exchange rates to the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.
Western Union
Within minutes
From $0
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries around the world.
Qantas Business Money
Within minutes
$0
Earn 1 Qantas Point per AUD$1 equivalent you convert into foreign currencies. Conversion limits and T&Cs apply.
Set up accounts in 11 different currencies and get rewarded for global business payments by earning Qantas Points.
TorFX Business Transfers
24 hours
$0
TorFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. Conditions apply.
TorFX sends money overseas in 30+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
OFX Business Transfers
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
WorldFirst
24 hours
From $0
Open bank accounts in Australia, the UK, US, Canada, Japan and Europe. Send and receive funds with zero fees for large sums, including same-currency supplier payments.
Send business
24 hours
$0

Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
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Sending an international wire transfer in person at your bank

  • Pro: In-person assistance to complete your transfer at your bank.
  • Con: Restricted to sending during banking hours while often paying higher in-person fees.
If you like to keep your business in-person, you can head to your bank to send an international wire transfer through a teller.

Be sure to bring:

  • Name and address of your recipient's bank
  • Recipient's name, address and account type
  • Recipient's account number or international bank account number (IBAN)
  • Recipient's SWIFT or BIC code, which can be found by asking the recipient's bank
  • Proof of ID

The steps for sending an international wire transfer in person from your bank are similar to those for sending online:

  1. Start your transaction: Ask the teller to start an international money transfer.
  2. Prove your identity: Provide documents and identification.
  3. Double-check details: Confirm details with bank teller, double check everything before sending.
  4. Pay: Pay for your transfer using cash or your bank account balance.
  5. Get proof: Get a receipt and keep it somewhere safe.

Some banks charge more for in-person wire transfers than they would for online wire transfers, so make sure you ask the teller if you could save money by making the transfer online instead of in person.

How do I compare money transfer providers to my bank?

There are several factors to consider when choosing a company to handle your next international money transfer.

  • Compare exchange rates. The better the exchange rate, the better value for money you can get on a transfer. Search for the company that offers consistently competitive exchange rates, but remember there may also be higher transfer fees attached.
  • Check transaction fees. Fees range substantially, so it pays to compare fees across providers. Some online transfer companies also waive their fees when you send large amounts, sometimes as high as $10,000.
  • A range of transfer destinations. Check to see whether the country you want to transfer your money to is supported by the transfer provider you select, as well as whether you can send money in the currency you want.
  • Processing times. Cash transfers are usually quicker than transferring with a bank account.
  • Transfer options. Some providers offer one-off transfers only, others allow you to place forward contracts and limit orders to lock in the exchange rate you want.
  • Reliable customer support. If you have a problem with a transfer or need help with your transfer, look for a service that offers customer support — either through its FAQs, phone, email or online chat.

Bottom line

There are many methods for transferring money overseas from your bank account. Though it can be convenient to transfer money overseas from a bank account, always compare your options to ensure you get the best value for your money.

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