This guide explains what information you will need to give the sender when you want to receive an international money transfer through Westpac and offers some alternatives to consider if you want to save money.
Where can I find the information I need to receive a Westpac transfer?
To receive a transfer from overseas using Westpac, you'll need to give the sender the following information:
Your account name, number and BSB: You will need to provide your name exactly as you did when setting up your Westpac account, along with your account number and BSB (bank state branch) number. You can find this information on your bank statements or your online banking site.
A range of fees may be involved with international bank transfers. These are typically taken from the payment, so it's common for less money to arrive than was sent.
Westpac takes a receiving fee when your money arrives, but a range of other fees may also apply beyond that.
Receiving money to a Westpac bank account
Paid by bank cheque or cash
Receiving money to an account at another local bank
Monthly fee if you have a foreign currency account with Westpac
Westpac's fees explained
There is a flat $12 fee for international payments received into a Westpac bank account, but the original transfer amount could also be reduced due to the following:
Sending fees. The first fee in an international bank transfer is typically from the sender's bank
Correspondent bank fees. International payments may pass through several different banks en route, and each may take a fee in the process. Each bank's cut may range from about $15 to $30 depending on the situation.
Exchange rates. Banks will typically process a currency exchange at below mid-market rates. A single transfer may also require multiple exchanges through an intermediary currency.
Additional fees. Additional fees may be charged for certain transfer types, such as international cheques or more complex transfer instructions. If the sender wants to pay the fees up front, that usually incurs an extra fee as well.
What form can I receive the transfer in?
There are several different ways you can receive a transfer.
Direct to your bank account. You can receive the funds directly to your bank account. This is usually the most convenient option, but won't suit all situations.
Bank draft. Bank drafts are IOUs from the sender, paid up front, which can only be deposited into your bank account. It's essentially like a bank deposit on a piece of paper.
Cheque. International cheques are just like regular cheques, but for overseas payments. They are paid at the time you cash the cheque, and so they might "bounce" if the sender doesn't have the funds in their account at the time.
Money order. Money orders are similar to bank drafts in that they are paid in full at the time of purchase, but they can be cashed in a wider range of locations including post offices.
Bank transfers are usually not the cheapest option for international payments.
If you're looking for a more cost-effective way to send money, try comparing some other options using the calculator below. Just enter your transfer details, and it will run the numbers and show you how much different services may cost.
The "Rate" and "Amount Received" displayed are indicative rates that have been supplied by each brand or gathered by Finder.
Exchange rates are volatile and change often. As a result, the exchange rate listed on Finder may vary to the actual exchange rate quoted for the brand. Please confirm the actual exchange rate and mention "Finder" before you commit to a brand.
Frequently asked questions
It typically takes several business days to process an international bank transfer. It may take longer if the transfer is held up en route by weekends or public holidays.
Andrew Munro is the cryptocurrency editor at Finder. He was initially writing about insurance, when he accidentally fell in love with digital currency and distributed ledger technology (aka “the blockchain”). Andrew has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of New South Wales, and has written guides about everything from industrial pigments to cosmetic surgery.
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