Transferring money to the United States is far from being a simple and straightforward process for most people. There are all sorts of hooks in the international financial system that could see you wasting time and money in the process. Here at OrbitRemit we are all about making sure that our clients know exactly what they should be aware of before sending an international currency transfer.
While we pride ourselves on being fully transparent when it comes to fees, service charges, timeframes and exchange rates, unfortunately not all providers are as responsible. To help you out, we’ve put together this list of the five biggest things that you should know before attempting an international remittance to the United States.
1. You’ll seldom get something for nothing
Some providers that offer fee-free transfers will compensate for this by padding their exchange rates unreasonably. When you’re sending money to the States, no matter if you’re in New Zealand, The United Kingdom or Australia, you’ll need to make sure you take care to read all the fine print and know exactly what you’re likely to get charged. While we offer fee-free transfers to new customers, it’s not done by padding our exchange rates way above market rates – this is not the case with some other providers however. Make sure you get an idea of what a fair exchange rate should be before taking a fee-free offer at face value.
2. It can take time to get the cash at the other end
If there’s an urgent need for the money to arrive in the US on a specific date or within a specific timeframe then you’ll need to take this into account when you’re selecting your provider. The length of time that it can take for the funds to arrive stateside can vary from a few hours to over a week (with most traditional banks being closer to the “week or more” end of the spectrum).
3. The fees you pay at the point of origin may not be the end of the costs
Some providers, even though they may seem cheap on the surface, will use partners in the USA that charge a receiving fee for the funds. This is generally true of many big names in the traditional banking system. There are also a number of specialist remittance services that engage in this practice. Be sure you find about about receiving-end fees before you choose who you are going to go with.
4. There is a high likelihood that your provider is not disclosing all the costs
Unless your provider clearly states a reasonable exchange rate (like we do) and also fully discloses the total fees that will be levied on the transaction, then chances are you’re not getting a very good deal. How do you know if the exchange rate is reasonable? That’s a case of doing a little research and finding out what the official exchange rate is and what certain companies are offering right now. Banks, remittance services and online operators have all been guilty of not being transparent about their exchange rates – for instance, showing one rate publicly and then performing transactions at a different rate. Make sure that you are fully armed with all the information you may need before you commit to completing a funds transfer to the US with any particular provider.
5. Not all online service providers are created equal
By the time you take all of the fees and charges into account, you can easily find yourself spending the price of a reasonable lunch on a transfer of just a few hundred dollars. Also, different providers take very different lengths of time to have the funds in hand in the US. OrbitRemit is the only online transaction provider that will, every time:
- -Complete your transaction within 1 – 3 working days subject to the processes of the beneficiary bank
- -Charge you a flat rate, every time
- -Give you perks for loyalty (like every 10th transfer for free)
- -Disclose our exact exchange rates and all the costs right from the start, with no hidden fees
And don’t forget – your first transfer with OrbitRemit is 100% free, so you can take the service for a test drive completely risk free.