There are countless challenges involved in moving to a new country, not least of which is dealing with your finances. For instance, you may need to transfer money to your new home to make major purchases or even send money back to cover things like mortgage repayments. Whatever you need to do, it is vital that you have a convenient and affordable way to move your money around.

The best way to transfer your money will depend upon how much you need to send, how fast it needs to get there and how often you will need to do so. Here we will take a brief look at four main methods of transferring money internationally, as well as the pros and cons of each.

Bank transfers

Banks provide a safe and easy way to transfer funds almost anywhere. All you need is the name, address and account number of the recipient and you can make the transfer yourself online. If you are with an international bank, transfers are even easier, faster and they are often free.

The downside of bank transfers is that they will often take up to a week to process, making them unsuitable for emergencies. Banks are also known to offer extremely poor foreign exchange rates and tend to charge fees to both send and receive money. Many banks also have strict regulations regarding how and when you can transfer money.

Money Transfer Services

If you need a fast and easy way to transfer money, services such as Moneygram and Western Union can be useful options. To send money all you need is the recipient’s name and all they need is photo ID and a transfer confirmation number. These services are perfect for times when the recipient doesn’t have a local bank account because transfers are usually paid in cash.

The main problem with money transfer services is the cost. Not only do they offer poor exchange rates, their fees are extremely high and only get worse with larger transfers. Also, larger transfers cannot be completed online and there are limits regarding how often you can send money.


Free to join and available in over 200 countries, it is easy to see why PayPal has become a popular way to transfer funds. Sending money simply requires that both parties have a PayPal account and all you need is the name, email or phone number of the recipient to transfer funds.

Unfortunately, PayPal is a rather expensive option. A fee of 1% of the sent amount is charged to the sender and a further 3.9% fee is charged to the person receiving the money, so sending large amounts of money can be costly. Extra fees are also added if you need the transferred money to be converted into local currency and the funds usually take a few days to become available.

I am text block. Click edit button to change this text. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.

Select the size of your move to get free quotes

Foreign Exchange Brokers (Forex)

If you need to transfer large amounts of money it is hard to beat forex brokers. Not only will you get the best exchange rates available, you can even lock in favourable rates for future transfers. If you are in no hurry, forex brokers also allow you to choose your own desired exchange rate, with your transfer arranged to process automatically as soon as that rate is reached.

Forex brokers provide all the information you need to maximise your finances when transferring and many brokers even offer fee-free transfers for regular customers. Unfortunately, forex transfers are limited to larger sums of money with many brokers only accepting transfers above €5,000 EUR.

Transferring your money wisely can save you thousands of dollars each year, not to mention make your life a whole lot easier. Do yourself a favour and find a transfer method that will actually work for you.

The following table compares the estimated fees associated with sending €5,000 EUR to Germany using four common options. All estimations include the cost of both sending and receiving the money.

(From)Bank TransfersMoney Transfer ServicesPayPalForex brokers
Australia$45 (AUS)$300 (AUS)$368.15 (AUS)Free
Canada$27 (CAN)$300 (CAN)$352.54 (CAN)Free
USA$45 (US)/td>$217(US)$269.09 (US)Free
China354.66 CNY217.34 CNY1,670.19 CNYFree
India5,758.78 INRn/a17,281.38 INRFree
UK£25£ 140£172Free