Records of Argentines living in Australia date back to 1891, when they found a mention in the colonial census. However, their community remained small until much later. There were around 250 Argentine-born people living in Australia in 1947. This number increased to around 1,800 by 1971. As per the 2011 Australian Census, there were 9,879 people who claimed full or partial Argentine ancestry along with 11,985 Argentina-born citizens who resided in Australia.
Argentina has an embassy in Canberra and Australia has one in Buenos Aires. Economic and political relations between these two countries have grown significantly in the last 15 years.
The Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations led to closer collaborations, especially in the realm of pursuing liberalisation of agricultural trade. Australian investment continues to flow into Argentina, in sectors such as agriculture, industries, services and mining.
Instances of people wanting to send money from Australia to Argentina are not uncommon. If you're wondering which way will work best for you, go through the rest of this guide.
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An online money transfer service with cash pickup, bank account to bank account and airtime transfers available.
Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.
Banks versus money transfer companies
Joaquin Garcia got to Australia as a student. At the end of his studies he managed to get a job here. After he began working he decided to start sending some money back home, to his ageing parents. He figured he could afford sending around AUD 2,000 every month. While he had an account with a prominent Australian bank, it did not let him transfer funds to Argentina because the Argentine peso is an exotic currency.
He compared money transfer companies, and this is what he saw:
Money transfer service 1
Money transfer service 2
AUD1 = ARS8.377
AUD1 = ARS9.5481
Amount received for $2,000
One to three days
The fact that Joaquin decided to go with the second money transfer service provider should come as no surprise. While the second service provider took extra time, it offered him a better deal.
How do I compare transfer companies when transferring and receiving money via Argentina?
Don’t go for the first money transfer company that comes your way. Instead, compare your options across multiple parameters, which include:
Exchange rates and fees. Paying attention to the exchange rate alone in not enough; you should find out how much fees you’ll have to pay as well. This is because high fees can offset any benefit you may get through a seemingly attractive exchange rate. When comparing financial viability, paying attention to how much money the recipient will receive is a good idea.
Methods of sending money. Most banks and some money transfer companies let you send money in person. While the former have branches, the latter tend to operate out of stores and kiosks. You can also send money to Argentina online and over the phone, depending on the service provider you choose.
Methods of receiving money. One option is to transfer the funds directly into the recipient’s Argentine bank account. Alternatively, you can get the recipient to collect the money by visiting a cash pickup location.
Turnaround time. Transfers that involve cash pickups take place the quickest, which can be almost immediately. If you’re transferring money to a bank account the process can take one to seven business days. This depends on factors such as the provider you choose as well as the recipient’s bank.
Using the same bank. A quick and easy way to send money to Argentina is to use the services of a single bank. You can do this if you and the recipient have accounts with the same bank. This way, you can save in fees as well.
Minimum amounts. This requires your attention if you plan to send small sums because some service providers limit the minimum you can send to $500 or $1,000.
Customer service. If you need any assistance you should be able to contact a company representative via email, chat and phone.
Options in sending money from Australia to Argentina fall into two basic categories:
Banks. Find out if your local bank lets you transfer funds to Argentina. There’s a good chance it would. However, the time taken depends on the financial institution you bank with. You may have to pay fees to use its services. You can buy a money order from your bank, which you can send via mail. Sending cheques via mail is another option.
Non-banks. You can get in touch with a money transfer company such as Western Union or MoneyGram. They let you transfer funds to Argentine bank accounts as well as to cash pickup locations. PayPal lets you transfer money from Australia to Argentina. In this case, you and the recipient should have PayPal accounts. You can create a new PayPal account for free.
How do I receive money from Argentina in Australia?
If you’re receiving money from Argentina you have these options:
Banks. You can get the sender to transfer the money directly into your bank account. The sender can do this through a bank or a money transfer company. If you receive a cheque or money order via mail, you can deposit it in your bank account.
Non banks. If you want to collect money from a physical location you can use the services of a business such as Western Union or MoneyGram. You can receive money through PayPal, in which case you and the sender should have accounts with this online company. Once the money gets to your PayPal account, withdrawing it into your Australian bank account is easy.
Losing your wallet or money when travelling in Argentina can be difficult to deal with. The first thing you should do is make the required phone calls to cancel your credit and debit cards. Next, you can get some emergency money using one of these options:
Cash pickup. You can get money from a friend or family member through a money transfer company that has cash pickup locations in Argentina. Let the sender know of a desired location. Keep an acceptable form of ID with you when you go to collect the cash.
Cash through credit card provider. If you’re an existing Mastercard, Visa or American Express credit card holder you can get some emergency money by visiting a local participating bank. The money you get adds to your credit card account.
Travel insurance. If you pay for the right kind of travel insurance you can get money to deal with scenarios such as medical emergencies, flight delays and cancellations as well as lost and misplaced baggage.
Cash pickup locations in Argentina/ Western Union / MoneyGram branches in Argentina
Western Union and MoneyGram have numerous locations spread across Argentina. To collect money from a cash pickup location you’ll have to provide an acceptable form of photo ID such as your passport or driver’s license. If the transfer involves a large sum, calling ahead of time to check for availability of funds is a good idea. Here are some cash pickup locations in Argentina:
Correo Obelisco Cerrito 368 - San Nicolas Capital Federal, 1043 +54-11-43829188 Open 10:00am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday, closed on Saturday and Sunday
New Multiservicios Obelisco Av. Corrientes 928 - San Nicolas Capital Federal, 1043 +54-11-53688290 Open 10:00am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday, closed on Saturday and Sunday
Claro-Mercado Sud Bv. Illia 155 Puesto 7 Alta Cordoba, Cordoba 5000 +54-351-4230296 Open 8:00am to 8:30pm Monday to Friday, 7:00am to 2:00pm Saturday, closed on Sunday
Telecentro Nico San Lorenzo 328 Cordoba, Cordoba 5000 +54-351-4699529 Open 8:00am to 11:00pm Monday to Saturday, 4:00pm to 10:00pm Sunday
Banco Piano - Casa Central San Martin 347 San Nicolas Buenos Aires, 1004 +54-11-43250472 Open 10:00am to 4:00pm Monday to Friday, closed on Saturday and Sunday
Banco Piano - Ramos Mejia Avenida De Mayo 271 Ramos Mejia Buenos Aires, 1704 +54-11-46545583 Open 10:00am to 3:00pm Monday to Friday, closed on Saturday and Sunday
Maguiexpress - Sendmoney - Centro De Julio 9 591 Cordoba, 5000 +54-351-5690824 Open 10:00am to 6:00pm Monday to Friday, closed on Saturday and Sunday
Maguiexpress - Sendmoney - Cordoba Cerro Avenida Rafael Nunez 3961 Cordoba Cordoba, 5000 +54-351-4812639 Open 8:30am to 4:30pm Monday to Friday, 10:00am to 1:00pm Saturday, closed on Sunday
There are government imposed restrictions on purchasing foreign currency in Argentina. Since these restrictions are subject to change, you should monitor media reports for any relevant updates.
The most common crimes in Argentina include bag snatching, distraction theft and armed robberies. Instances of thefts from hire-cars are common. As a result, when you collect money from a cash pickup location you should exercise due caution. Refrain from carrying large sums of money when possible. Avoid wearing expensive jewellery. Think twice before venturing into poorly lit or isolated places after dark.
Occasional protests take place against Australian interests. These relate to Falkland Islands. It’s best that you avoid these protests.
The steps involved in sending money to Argentina depend on the method you choose:
Transfer to bank account. If you’re using the services of your bank you’ll have to start the process by providing details such as the recipient’s name, account number, name of the bank and the bank’s SWIFT code. If you’re sending money through a money transfer company you’ll have to submit your bank account, debit card or credit card details.
Cash pickup. The money transfer company will require the recipient’s name along with a desired cash pickup location. If you’re sending cash through a physical location you’ll have to provide some kind of valid ID. For transfers initiated online, you’ll have to provide details of your bank account, debit card or credit card.
Shirley Liu is Finder's global program manager. She was previously the publisher for banking and investments and has also written comparisons for energy, money transfers, Uber Eats and many other topics. Shirley has a Master of Commerce and a Bachelor of Media, Journalism and Communications from the University of New South Wales. She is passionate about helping people find the best deal for their needs.
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