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Transferring from E-Trade via Wise (TransferWise)

ecotenecoten Forumite
11 Posts
Tenth Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
A previous thread on this forum is the top Google search result for how to transfer money from E-Trade to the UK via Wise / TransferWise, so I thought I'd post here to update it with my experience.
To send money from USA to the UK using TransferWise, there are two different options.
Seemingly the simplest way is to use TransferWise' "Send Money" feature. I tried to follow this procedure and duly entered the routing code and the account number into ETrade's wire transfer screen giving my Transferwise account reference (a number beginning with P) and submitted the transfer. Two hours later I receive a notification from E-Trade which says they've received a wire transfer in the same amount as I tried to send to TransferWise.
After speaking to both ETrade and TransferWise, it transpired that this was rejected because the account names didn't match. When you use TransferWise's "Send Money" feature, you are actually paying money into a shared bank account that is in TransferWise's name. E-Trade's online platform only allows you to send money to an account in your own name, and this seems to be why it was rejected.
E-Trade explained to me on the phone that they call this a "3rd party transfer" because you are sending money to an account that's not in your own name. E-Trade said that they will only process a 3rd party transfer over the phone. So I have requested that they repeat the transfer with the correct account name and I hope that the funds will reach TransferWise by tomorrow. (E-Trade were also kind enough to credit me back the fee for the failed transfer).
The other option you have is to open a USD balance with TransferWise and request dedicated account details for that account. When you do that, it is similar to opening a bank account in your own name. That being the case, it should therefore be possible to use those details with the online Wire transfer system provided by E-Trade.
Whilst I'm writing, I tried various different services to see which would give me the best rate for USD -> GBP. I looked at:
  • TransferWise
  • Revolut
  • TorFX
  • CurrencyFair
  • SmartCurrency Exchange
Of all those, actually CurrencyFair came out top, but unfortunately I only discovered this after I'd setup the transfer with TransferWise. However TransferWise was a close second, beating the other alternatives. For other currency pairs, I found that Revolut beat TransferWise.
I hope this helps someone.


  • ecotenecoten Forumite
    11 Posts
    Tenth Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
    I also found a post on Reddit which discusses the same subject.
    Since that post was made a few things seem to have become smoother.
    1. It didn't take half an hour to obtain authorisation fro the wire transfer, the process on the phone was much quicker.
    2. What I was doing was not using the "borderless account" option within Transfer, it was the simple "Send a Transfer" option. If what TransferWise told me is correct, they have since relaxed the rules about the payee name for the borderless account.
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