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Sending Money Overseas article discussion

edited 14 June 2010 at 5:35PM in Budgeting & Bank Accounts
505 replies 140.2K views
Former_MSE_DanFormer_MSE_Dan
1.6K posts
edited 14 June 2010 at 5:35PM in Budgeting & Bank Accounts

This the discusson for
Foreign Currency: Sending Money Abroad guide.


To discuss/ask a question click post reply.
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Replies

  • innovateinnovate
    16.2K posts
    ✭✭✭✭✭
    Superb guide, but very surprised to see Moneybookers not mentioned.

    It's ideal for anyone making regular, or multiple, transfers to their own foreign bank account. Moneybookers use very competitive interest rates (ECB rates), the charges are minute (€1.80 per withdrawal), and you can do it all from your PC.

    Potential downsides are that
    1. the foreign account needs to be in your own name
    2. you have to have your Moneybookers account verified - this can take up to a week but is a one-off activity
    3. for very large transfers, the normal Moneybookers 'outgoing transaction limit' might be too low. This can be overcome by applying for the Moneybookers VIP programme, giving you unlimited outgoing transaction limits
    4. loading your Moneybookers account is free of charge from your bank account, but this can take several days. If you have a Switch/Maestro card, uploads are also free, and instant. Loading by other cards is also instant but comes at a hefty fee. With a bit of planning, upload costs can be saved by doing it by bank transfer.
    5. account balances over £1,000 are not covered by the FSA guarantee
    NB. Moneybookers could also "help the site" ;)
  • I have a French bank account with Credit Agricole, when I need to top it up I send an ordinary English cheque in sterling made payable to myself. If I post it there's the cost of a Euro stamp and they charge €32 ( approx.£25+ now) for any amount and give good commercial exchange rate.No fuss, no bother all done in a few days.
    For general spending in France I've been using a Saga credit card but next year I'm going to try a Citibank Euro account, anyone have a good or bad experience of this system?




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  • Sam37Sam37 Forumite
    117 posts
    Innovate, Moneybookers looks interesting, but I don't get how it works..

    You state that the foreign account needs to be in your name (which I have), but the explanations on the site seem to suggest that you can send money to anyone with an email address (which I find quite obscure, and wouldn't know how to get the money ''from'' my email address).

    Is the ''send money'' different from ''upload and withdrawal"?

    The charges are 1.80 euro plus 1.75% on the exchange rate from what I can gather.
  • aless02aless02 Forumite
    5.1K posts
    Another BIG company which is suspiciously missing from the guide is XE.com

    I've been using them on a monthly basis for over a year now, after being referred by other expats. I send chunks over to the USA to pay for my student loan & credit card bills. XE gives excellent rates and has very low fees if you're an established customer. I was extremely surprised to see them not even mentioned in the guide, since it seemed like they were a pretty big player in the currency exchange market. Interestingly enough, the DFID website didn't mention them either! I was quite puzzled...

    Similar to Moneybookers, XE works for established customers (quite lengthy to set up the account, but once you do, it's easy-peasy to do the transfers), which the article doesn't really address.

    Perhaps a bit more fleshing out for those of us who send money abroad regularly??
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  • I own an apartment in Spain and have an account with Banco Popular in Spain. I simply send a cheque from my personal account in UK. I get the commercial rate of exchange but there is a commission charge of 6 Euros. To maximise efficiency, about twice a year I send a cheque for £1000+ and then the money is used to fund the direct debits for utilities, rates etc. The bank gives me a card for use at ATMs. There are no snags as long as you allow about a week for the cheque to clear.
    Named after my cat, picture coming shortly
  • I have been lurking all over this site for a while but this is my first post so please be kind!

    I opened a Uk and Spanish Halifax account to take advantage of the 'free transfers'. I spend a lot of time in Spain and live off rental income. Martin's article states that funds are transferred 'at good exchange rates'.

    All this year I am sure my transfers have been coming through at better than tourist rate. But my last one seemed very poor. In addition, we now action these transfers ourselves online or over the phone. (Previously I had to go to the Spanish branch and get the staff to fill out the paperwork). So they are saving staff time now.

    Right now Halifax are offering 1.0513 for a transfer. Co-op travel are offering
    1.0636 for FE orders, with free postage over £300.

    Please can anyone confirm that Halifax have indeed decided to action these transfers at bog standard tourist rate, or have I just been mistaken all year, and/or could anyone point me in the direction of an historic exchange rate file so that I can investigate further?
  • I have been using XE regularly for a couple of years now, and am very pleased with its service. Typically, it takes only two days from the time I click to accept a rate to the time it arrives in my foreign account and that includes using a BACS transfer from my UK account. It's worth mentioning that you are quoted a spot rate which you must accept within 60 seconds.
    aless02 wrote: »
    Another BIG company which is suspiciously missing from the guide is XE.com

    I've been using them on a monthly basis for over a year now, after being referred by other expats. I send chunks over to the USA to pay for my student loan & credit card bills. XE gives excellent rates and has very low fees if you're an established customer. I was extremely surprised to see them not even mentioned in the guide, since it seemed like they were a pretty big player in the currency exchange market. Interestingly enough, the DFID website didn't mention them either! I was quite puzzled...

    Similar to Moneybookers, XE works for established customers (quite lengthy to set up the account, but once you do, it's easy-peasy to do the transfers), which the article doesn't really address.

    Perhaps a bit more fleshing out for those of us who send money abroad regularly??
  • As one of many hundreds of thousands of UK citizen living abroad, watching my pension reduce week by week, I regularly use your excellent website for tips on subjects that although written for UK based people relate to me i.e. using credit cards abroad, currency transfers etc. but when I want to find other non UK informationI have had a lot of trouble finding the correct search text.
    For example I wanted to find a way to make cheap calls to other countries from Brazil, but when I entered cheap telephone calls or other related words all I found was info or forums dealing with calls from the UK.
    Luckily I did know of the term VOIP (Voice Over the Internet Protocol - not many people know that) and found what I was looking for, but how many others would have?
    Could I suggest you have a main heading Ex-Pates or Living Abroad so a) People could start at this heading and easily find non UK items and b) I believe you would gain more members and start a whole new range of money saving articles.
    Regards
  • The Guide suggests opening a Nationwide Bank Account to get a debit card for free cash withdrawals abroad.

    I decided to do this, but have noticed that you need to have the account open for 7 months before they will give you a debit card.

    Is this something new that Nationwide have brought in to discourage folks like me from opening an account, for use abroad only??
  • No other Spanish Halifax account holders out there?
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