International Money Transfer |

International Money Transfer

  - Compare your high street bank's international money transfer currency exchange rates with those offered by some of the many currency specialists
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Guide to international money transfers has chosen HiFX to offer an International Money Transfer service. Any legal or contractual relationship will be with HiFX. HiFX is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority and any customer money held by them will be in a safeguarded account. Money in that account is protected and cannot be used by HiFX to pay off any debts in the event they become insolvent.

Buying or selling international investments or property, transferring pension payments and salaries, topping up an overseas bank account or simply sending a lump sum home?
Whatever your reasons for making an international money transfer it pays to shop around for the best deal.

This simple step by step guide gives you all the information you need to understand the best ways to send money abroad saving you serious cash.

International money transfer charges explained

When making international payments, the costs fall into two simple areas: fees and the exchange rate. When shopping around and comparing one company to another regardless of whether it’s your high street bank or one of the many currency specialists in the UK, it’s important to pin point both.

  • Fees. ‘The charges you see.’
    The key charges to look out for include transfer charges and overseas bank receiving fees.
  • Exchange rates. ‘The charge you don’t see.’
    Many companies claim to be ‘commission free’ then load the exchange rate. Also it’s often really difficult to get hold of the exact rate and compare it, as some providers simply don’t provide the information.

Despite these complications, getting the most for your money actually boils down to a very simple question…

“How many Euros/ Dollars/ Swiss Francs etc. will I receive for my pounds, after all charges?”

Remember exchange rates often change by the minute, so to compare providers properly you need to do it one after the other.

How to find the best deal

For larger bank to bank international money transfers i.e £1,000 and over, it pays to compare your high street bank’s exchange rates with those offered by some of the many currency specialists that exist within the UK. Every month HiFX use an independent company to check all its main high street banks and building societies to make sure their overall price (including bank charges, exchange rates and other fees) is better.

Money Transfer TableTypical reasons for sending money abroad include:
  • Large purchases abroad - stocks and shares, property, boats and cars.
  • Regular transfers - pension transfers, overseas mortgage payments and salary transfers.
  • Smaller one off transfers - topping up an overseas bank account or transfers to family members.
If your currency exchange requirements fall into one of the categories above, let the experts at HiFX provide you with all the help and guidance you need. It is easy and completely free to sign up with HiFX and the benefits of using its services include:
  • Bank-beating exchange rates online and over the phone
  • No hidden charges or fees
  • Access to over 800 currency pairs and a range of currency options including spot (buy now, pay now), forwards (buy now, pay later) and Market Orders for targeting a specific exchange rate
  • Fast transfers ensuring your money arrives on time every time
  • Online account management and the ability to track payments 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
  • A trusted brand. HiFX is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority, (the UK's financial services watchdog) and, together with sister company, is part of the Euronet Worldwide, inc (NASDAQ: EEFT)
  • HiFX's security technology, Norton is used by 97 of the world's top 100 banks, giving customers complete peace of mind when transferring money

How is the exchange rate calculated?

The rate you are offered by HiFX will be dependent upon a number of factors including:

  • The amount of money you are transferring.
  • The timeframes you are working to (i.e whether you are looking to lock into an exchange rate for up to 12 months into the future).
  • The currencies you are buying and selling and the volatility of those currencies.
  • The exchange rate levels at the time of purchase.

How can foreign exchange rate volatility affect your international money transfer?

As the exchange rates are constantly changing, an important aspect to your international payment will be the timing.

In many cases, people don’t pay much attention to what’s happening to the exchange rate and simply leave their decision to make the international money transfer to the last minute hoping for a good rate, assuming, that without all the funds available, there isn’t much they can do.

Regardless of why you’re sending your money abroad, the larger the amount you're looking to move overseas, the more important it is to maximise the timing of your transaction and minimise the risk that the exchange rate could get worse and make your money worth less.

Remember, as soon as you decide to move overseas or buy and sell an asset abroad such as a property, you are exposed to adverse moves in the currency market.

Unlike many banks, currency specialists can offer additional services and tools that can help you manage your money transfers more effectively, when the currency markets are unstable:

  • Forward contracts - A "buy now, pay later" option. This enables you to agree a price now for foreign currency to use in the future. A forward contract allows you to buy foreign currency based on current market rates, for a delivery at a predetermined date, which can be up to one year ahead. Should the exchange rate worsen you will not be affected.
  • Market order - This allows you to specify a 'target rate' and when the market reaches this rate, your currency is bought or sold automatically. You can cancel your order at any time.
  • Personalised rate alerts - This service allows you to set a target rate and HiFX will alert you when this rate has been achieved.

How to decide which option is best for you?

Choosing which option is right for you is relatively straight forward as it depends on three key factors:

  • The time frames you are working to.
  • Whether you have some or all of the funds available at the time of the transfer.
  • The levels of protection you want to put in place.

Your options are as follows:

Q. I have access to all of the funds - what are my options?
A. If you have access to all the funds and want to convert all or part of them immediately, you can buy at the spot rate. Essentially this is a ‘buy now, pay now’ scenario, where you will need to arrange an immediate transfer of the full value of the currency sold.

Q. I do not have access to all of the funds - what are my options?
A. If you do not have access to all of the funds at the outset you can wait or act now and buy one or more forward contracts.

Read more about the services and information from our partner HiFX in the articles below:

*Marks & Spencer Monthly Prize Draw

HiFX is giving away 10 £25 Marks and Spencer vouchers in a monthly prize draw. To enter, simply register with HiFX here and transfer a minimum of £1,000 in three months. Vouchers can be used in store and online.

For more information, terms and conditions, visit the HiFX website.


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