How to send money from the US

International money transfers: How to send money from the US

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Sending money from the US to another country used to be time-consuming and expensive, requiring you to make a special trip to your bank and wait days or even weeks for your money to arrive.

This is still what you have to do with some American banks, although others have developed more efficient ways of doing it online. But some companies, like TransferWise, have rethought the process.

With online money transfers, you can not only wire your money from the US to your new home abroad, you can also avoid the bank altogether — and take advantage of a better currency exchange rate. Charging only a low fee and using the mid-market rate means that more of your money can get to its destination for less and faster.

What are the best ways to wire money from the US?

A wire transfer simply means a transfer of funds from one bank account into another. To send a traditional wire transfer, you have several options. You can go into a branch, where a teller will talk you through the process — most banks offer this service. Alternatively, your bank might allow wire transfers via phone or online, provided you are registered for those services. Whatever method you choose, there are generally fees to pay; these can vary depending on several factors, including which bank you use and where the money is going.

Non-bank exchange services can get the same result — your money in a foreign bank account — but the cost and transfer time might be better for you. Plus, it might be more convenient to make the transfer quickly online.

How much does it cost to transfer money from the US?

US wire transfer fees vary from bank to bank, and they may also change depending on how you make the transfer. Recent research by NerdWallet puts the average fees as follows:

  • Incoming domestic wire transfer: USD 9
  • Outgoing domestic wire transfer: USD 25
  • Incoming international wire transfer: GBP 10
  • Outgoing international wire transfer: USD 44

However, for international transfers, that’s not the end of the story. When banks transfer money into a different currency such as euros or British pounds, they set their own exchange rate — they can choose how much your money is actually worth in the new currency.

The true cost of your transfer will also vary depending on what exchange rate the bank uses. This can make a big difference as to how much it costs to transfer money; it’s not just about the fixed wire transfer fee.

How to wire money internationally from the US

In a branch

If you are still located in the US and have yet to relocate abroad, you may visit your local bank branch to make the transfer — in fact, some banks actually require you to make an international wire transfer in person.

  1. Go to your local branch with your account details on hand.
  2. Talk to a teller about the wire transfer you would like to make. They will ask you for the recipient’s account details as well as the amount you want to transfer.
  3. Check the cost of the transfer with the teller. See if it is cheaper to make the transfer in US dollars or the destination currency, and ask about the fixed fee, the exchange rate and how long the transfer will take.
  4. If you’re happy with the details, go ahead and request the transfer.

Online

Not all American banks offer foreign wire transfers online. If your bank does, you will need to register for internet banking services before you can wire your money via their website.

  1. Log in to your online account.
  2. Select the option to make an international wire transfer or international payment.
  3. Enter the recipient’s bank account details. You will typically need their account number, often an IBAN, as well as their bank’s name and address.
  4. Check the costs including exchange rate if possible. Take care to read the small print.
  5. If you’re happy, hit send.

How long does a wire transfer from the US take?

How long wire transfers take depends on a number of factors, including where the money is going and which banks are involved. Different banks give different estimates, so you should check directly with your bank for a reliable arrival date.

  • Domestic wire transfers may reach their destination the next business day.
  • International wire transfers can arrive as early as the next business day, but they may take around five working days or more.

Banks generally have a daily cut-off time. If you request your wire before the cut-off time, the bank will begin the transfer that day; if you request it after the cut-off time, it will have to wait until the next working day.

How to wire money internationally from and to the US: by bank

These are the bank details you’ll need to send money from — or receive money into — accounts with various banks in America, including Chase, PNC and Bank of America.

 

Wire transfer from Chase bank account

Wire transfer to Chase bank account

Name

Recipient’s name

Your name

Address

Recipient’s address, including street, city and country

Your address, including street, city and country

Bank name

Recipient’s bank name

JPMorgan Chase Bank NA

Bank address

Recipient’s bank address, including street, city and country

Chase Bank, 270 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017, USA

 

BIC/SWIFT code

Recipient’s bank’s BIC/SWIFT code

CHASUS33

Recipient account number

Recipient’s account number (for US accounts) or IBAN (for most other countries)

Your account number

 

 

Wire transfer from PNC bank account

Wire transfer to PNC bank account

Name

Recipient’s name

Your name

Address

Recipient’s address, including street, city and country

Your address, including street, city and country

Bank name

Recipient’s bank name

PNC Bank

Bank address

Recipient’s bank address including street, city and country

Firstside Center Mail Stop P7-Pfsc-03-W 500 First Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15219 USA

 

BIC/SWIFT code

Recipient’s bank’s BIC/SWIFT code

PNCCUS33

Recipient account number

Recipient’s account number (for US accounts) or IBAN (for most other countries)

Your account number

 

 

Wire transfer from Bank of America account

Wire transfer to Bank of America account

Name

Recipient’s name

Your name

Address

Recipient’s address, including street, city and country

Your address, including street, city and country

Bank name

Recipient’s bank name

Bank of America, NA

Bank address

Recipient’s bank address, including street, city and country

For transfers in US dollars or unknown currencies:

222 Broadway, New York, NY 10038

 

For transfers in foreign currencies:

555 California St, San Francisco, CA 94104

 

BIC/SWIFT code

Recipient’s bank’s BIC/SWIFT code

For transfers in US dollars or unknown currencies: BOFAUS3N

 

For transfers in other currencies: BOFAUS6S

Recipient account number

Recipient’s account number (for US accounts) or IBAN (for most other countries)

Your account number

 

International wire transfers are the long-established way of getting money from one country to another, but that doesn’t mean they’re the fastest or the cheapest. When some banks still require you to visit them in person, they might well not be the most convenient, either.

Online money transfer platforms, however, may use the mid-market exchange rate, which is always a better value than the exchange rate chosen by your bank. Some platforms also calculate fees as a small percentage of the amount you want to transfer — these factors make it far more affordable and far faster when sending money from the US to your new home abroad.

Transferwise / Expatica

 
 

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