How to send money from the UK to students abroad | moneyfacts.co.uk

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Michelle Monck

Michelle Monck

Consumer Finance Expert
Published: 18/12/2020

At a glance

  • The most common ways to send money to overseas students are bank transfer, cash transfer services, and via international money transfer firms.
  • The latter will typically have the cheapest fees and most favourable exchange rates, and transfers can often be arranged online.
  • You may want to consider setting up a regular payment for your child, such as to help cover living costs or tuition fees, which can be easily arranged through a specialist provider. 

 

How can parents send money abroad to students?

As the parent of a child studying abroad, ensuring their financial needs are taken care of will be high on the list of priorities. It may not be as simple as transferring money into their UK bank account, but there are ways you can send money to overseas students – it may just take a bit more planning.
It can be a worrying time when your children start to study abroad. Luckily if your child needs money quickly while they are studying abroad there a range of ways to send this to them: 

 

Using your bank to arrange a transfer

The first option is transferring funds from your bank account to your child’s account overseas. This may appear to be the most convenient, but fees can be substantial – both for yourself and your child, with both banks typically levying charges – and exchange rates aren’t always the most favourable. It can take a few days, too, so may not be suitable if your child urgently needs the cash.
If you’d rather give your child the option of receiving the money as cash, instead of transferring the funds into their bank account, you may want to look at money transfer providers such as Western Union or MoneyGram. These offer quick international cash delivery – if your child can collect the money from a local agent, it can be arranged in as little as a few minutes – though fees can be particularly high, and can depend on a range of factors from how you pay the money to the speed at which you want the transaction to take place. Another issue with this method is that your child will need to be near to a local agent, otherwise the money can potentially be transferred to their mobile wallet, credit/debit card or bank account. 

International money transfer providers

Another option is to go to specialist providers of global money transfers. This could arguably be the best option for those who need to send money regularly, as once you’ve signed up, it can be a quick and convenient process – and it’s often far cheaper, too. Fees are often lower and exchange rates better than with high street providers, and in some cases the transfer can take place in a matter of seconds, making it ideal for emergencies. 

How to send money abroad

Things to consider when sending money to overseas students

There are a lot of things you’ll need to consider when sending money to students overseas.

 

1. Costs

The first thing to consider is the cost involved. There’ll invariably be fees to pay to your provider, though these are generally less expensive (and in some cases there won’t be any at all) if you use a specialist international money transfer service. Exchange rates come into this as well, as the worse the exchange rate, the poorer value it will be, and ultimately, the less money your child will get out of the transfer.  

2. How easy is the process

Next, there’s the process and convenience of the transfer itself. You need to make sure that your child has the capacity to accept the transfer, be it into their own bank account or in cash at a local kiosk, and if it’s the latter, you’ll need to check they can easily get to the agent. Arguably sending money via a specialist online transfer service will be the most convenient, and with many offering app capability, you can arrange transfers wherever you are. 

3. Security

However, one of the most important considerations will be how secure your money is, as there’d be nothing worse than finding it didn’t reach the required destination. This is why it’s so important to choose a money transfer service you can rely on, and to be absolutely certain that the account (or kiosk) you’re sending the money to is legitimate. 

When it comes to specialist currency providers, you’ll want to make sure that they’re either authorised by or registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), with authorisation offering the most protection. If a firm is FCA-authorised it must keep your money ringfenced from company funds, so if it were to collapse there’s a greater chance that you’d get your money back. All larger international money transfer firms have to be authorised by the FCA.

Where can I send money to international students?

This all depends on where they’re studying! The most popular countries for UK students to study abroad include Australia, the USA, Canada, France, Germany, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands, and even if your child is further afield, there shouldn’t be much to worry about – international transfers can typically be arranged across the globe, so provided you choose a money transfer provider that can accommodate your needs, you should be able to send money to them with ease. 

Can I send regular payments to my child abroad?

Yes. If you want to help with your child’s rent/living costs or pay their tuition fees, you may want to set up a regular payment to ensure they’ll receive the money exactly when they need it, but in this case you’ll probably want to sign up with a specialist international money transfer provider to make the necessary arrangements. Once set up, payments will be made automatically, so you can relax knowing that your child will never be left high and dry. 

Disclaimer: This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts recommends you obtain independent financial advice.

Send money to students abroad study USA

At a glance

  • The most common ways to send money to overseas students are bank transfer, cash transfer services, and via international money transfer firms.
  • The latter will typically have the cheapest fees and most favourable exchange rates, and transfers can often be arranged online.
  • You may want to consider setting up a regular payment for your child, such as to help cover living costs or tuition fees, which can be easily arranged through a specialist provider. 

 

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