Domestic wire transfer is much more common nowadays, but international ones are still complex to understand. Whether you want to wire money abroad to your loved ones or you want to deposit due to relocation, wiring money abroad might seem expensive and time-consuming to you.
Moreover, not many are aware of the actual process of wiring money abroad. But is it so difficult to do? Well, not really; here’s how you can do it:
Ways to do an international wire transfer
Typically, you will have to visit the bank and fill out the form to make an international wire transfer.
The information you will have to enter is –
- The recipient’s bank name
- Bank branch number and complete address
- Bank account number of the receiver
- Bank’s BIC/Swift code
- If sending money to the USA – American Bankers Association (ABA) or routing number
- If sending money to Europe – International Bank Account Number (IBAN)
To be on the safer side, call the bank in advance and get exact details, as some banks ask out additional information. You can also ask the bank for their international wire transfer fees because the charges differ as per transaction and location.
If you cannot visit any bank in person, you can try out non-bank, online wire transfer services that are relatively cheaper and more convenient than the latter one. Usually, for such transfers, you will have to create an account with the organisation, make the payment, and they will forward it to the recipient’s account.
Things to take care of while making international wire transfers
The Office of Foreign Assets Control manages international wire transfers in the US. This agency checks the complete transfer details to avoid illegal activities like money laundering and terrorism. If they spot anything suspicious, the wire gets frozen then and there.
Hence, banks and most other transfer services transfer over $10,000 to the IRS to prevent such issues. Banks even ask for relevant documentation when the transfer amount is more than $3000. Hence, if your international wire transfer amount exceeds these numbers, consult an accountant first to get better assistance with the transfer.
Does it cost to do an International Wire Transfer?
Like domestic wire transfers, you will also have to pay a set fee for the transaction over here. However, the cost is higher compared to domestic transfers. A local transfer can cost you around $0-$25, whereas an international wire transfer fee is $35-$45 per transfer.
The sender has to pay the transfer fees; however, the cost even applies to the receiver in rare cases. This amount is known as the median fee, and it can cost the receiver $13 (depending on the whole transfer amount).
Moreover, a few banks charge receivers a higher markup than the present market rate while converting the currency. The charges are calculated according to the total wire transfer amount, and banks take a percent or more of it. But these charges are now avoidable with non-bank transfer services.
Here’s how you can track your International Wire Transfer easily
International wire transfer is the safest and most reliable transfer method. However, the chances of a few unexpected issues are always there. Thankfully, it’s now possible for both sender and receiver to track transfers and rectify the issue if it happens!
When your bank initiates an international wire transfer, they will share a Federal Reference Number of your transaction. With this number, you can contact your bank to trace the transfer. They will be able to check the complete transfer details between the bank and the corresponding bank in which funds are being deposited. They can even identify the wire transfer’s live location through this number.
If, by mistake, you have shared the wrong bank details, you can always request a recall wire. This must be done before the amount gets transferred to the receiver’s account, or it becomes challenging to retrieve.
If your wire transfer is taking longer time than mentioned by the sender, you have to contact them and get the following information:
- The Federal Reference Number
- The SWIFT number
- The exact amount
- Transfer date
With the help of this information, your bank can determine where and for which reason the account deposit is still pending.
If your bank (receiver) cannot trace the wire, you can ask the sender to check out from their end. Banks even allow senders and receivers to initiate a wire trace to locate where the funds are and the expected time they would reach the receiver.
Now that you have explored the ins and out of an international wire transfer, next comes the time duration an international wire transfer can take. Usually, this kind of transfer takes two working days. But even, this depends on several factors like the bank and the recipient’s destination.
This delay happens because of more checks happening at the domestic Automated Clearing House and the foreign recipient house needing to clear the transfer.
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