Money Transfer Abroad: 12 questions you ever wanted to have answered

By: Jens Ischebeck

Money transfer abroad is so easy today. And so difficult.

According to the World Bank, $445 billion worth of remittances is available for transfer; this amount is higher than we can imagine.

In order to make the life easier for you, this in-depth article look at 13 frequently asked questions about money transfer aborad.

Let’s dive in!

Background of international money transfer:

People living in the USA / Canada and Europe / UK whose origin is Africa will want to transfer money abroad to their people back at home.

Supporting your family is the most important thing, and hence, you need to have the best money transfer service that can guarantee safety for a smooth transaction.
You will likely want to send money to your family regularly irrespective of which part of Africa your family is.

Therefore, knowing the best way to transfer money overseas will help you eliminate the uncertainties that arise anytime a person may want to transfer money abroad.
In the past, transferring money abroad was hectic due to the lack of a well-laid procedure for sending money.

It was faced with a lot of challenges due to congestion and hence delayed in transfers.

You could take a long period to get your transaction processed by the union or the banks you chose.

Technology has taken root in almost every sector in the world today, and money transfer is not left behind.

It has led to the rising of different international money transfer companies that give flexibility like no other.

You can choose the company you want to deal with according to your needs.

With the rise of the internet, fast International money transfer has been possible.

You will not be worried any longer about the long queues in the bank, and also your family will not have to wait for days to receive the sent money. The use of the internet allows for the best way to transfer money overseas.


Emergencies are daily occurrences and can make you sick and worried whenever they happen.

You can be devastated by such happenings, mainly when they occur to your family during the period you are not around.

The ability to transfer money abroad fast allows you to support them during such times.
The internet has also given rise to instant international money transfer methods that provide you with an opportunity to send money to your family instantly.

Instant international money transfer comes in handy when you want to seek pressing issues and emergencies back at home in your absence.

Too cut it short, let’s answer 13 questions and find the best money transfer app for you!

#1:The Best Way For A Money Transfer Abroad

You cannot point the best money transfer service in the world full of multiple international money transfer companies.

It is because the firm that one prefers best for them may not seem so for the other. It depends on what needs you have at that particular time and your degree of flexibility.
If your family has instant money needs, the best way to transfer money abroad for you at that particular time is by use of methods that will deliver the amount instantly.

Therefore, the situation you are in dictates the best way to transfer money oversea according to how well it works for that situation.

Your bank and Western Union are some of those methods used to transfer money abroad by individuals who are not working on a fixed time.

They take quite a long time and also have high transfer rates. However, they provide an opportunity for a person to send any amount of money.

PayPal and TransferWise are the fast, International money transfer applications that are in use today.

They are essential in helping you meet the emergency needs of your family.

They allow you to carry out instant international money transfer with your phone and in your home.

Therefore, before you determine the best way to transfer money abroad, you need first to resolve the situation you are facing.

Then from there, you can effectively choose the best method to transfer money oversea that will help you meet the demands of the condition your family is facing.

#2: Determining A Safe International Money Transfer Method

With the multiple ways of transferring money abroad, it is difficult to determine the safest way to transfer money abroad fully.

The variety of these methods are available with different terms and conditions, delivery time, and also different charge rates. Some are reliable, while others are not.

Different possibilities for a money transfer abroad are:

  • Bank transfer (wire transfer)
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P) transfer
  • Online money transfer

To help determine the best fit, ensure you check the reputation of each one of them before you can settle for any.

Ensure proper certification with the necessary authorities. They also must provide transparency and credibility.

Their exchange rates and delivery time must be well displayed and guaranteed.

However, money experts advise using your bank to make such transactions as they are the safest compared to the rest.

The only problem with them is high rates and also delayed delivery time. Although the security of your money is guaranteed, and you can be able to transfer large amounts of money.

The bottom line is, whichever method you choose to transfer money abroad, make sure you calculate the risks well.

Be wary of cheap deals and international money transfer companies that promise cool deals.

The cheapest way to transfer money overseas may become the drain for all your hard-earned money.
Make sure you carry out proper research before you choose the method to transfer money abroad.

By doing so, you will avoid falling into the temptation of chasing the cheap deals, which may jeopardize the security of your money.

Have time to weigh what a good deal is before considering it best for your money transfer needs.

Doing this will ensure you are adequately protected while sending money abroad to your family.

Let me present you again the three major possibilities for a money transfer abroad in this infographic:

#3: Tracking An International Money Transfer Abroad

You need to know that there is no automatic method to track your money.

There are only two ways to know; the first one is, you can contact the recipient directly and inquire if the money reached their account.
The other way of tracking your transaction is through the bank you used to make the transfer.

It demands the Federal Reference number, which is a 26 to 18 digits number.

The bank uses it to track the transaction and determine whether the money sent was deposited in the account of your recipient.

Money transfer providers such as WorldRemit offer a money tracking system by sending emails or text messages to the sender. This way, the sender always knows how the order proceeds.

#4: Requirements For An International Transfer

If you want to send money from a bank account to a bank account, there are several things that the sender requires to provide for a successful international money transfer.

They include:

  • The address and the full name of the person intended to receive the money
  • The recipient’s bank full name and its address
  • Account number and account type of the recipient
  • Routine number of the person to receive the money
  • If applicable, the sender is required to give the BIC or SWIFT code of the recipient’s bank
  • IBAN of the recipient’s bank
  • The amount to be transferred
  • The reason why the transfer is necessary

Sending money to the mobile money account of the recipient is much easier. You just need to detail:

  • First name and surname of the recipient
  • His address (can also be just the city)
  • His mobile phone number
  • The amount to be transferred
  • The reason why the transfer is necessary

That’s it.

#5: How Can International Money Apps Be Evaluated?

With the recent advancement in technology, it is now possible for people to transfer money abroad and receive cash in Africa.

Money can directly be sent instantly with minimal human contact.

It only requires a smartphone with reliable internet access to access fast international money transfer applications.
Several international money transfer companies have come up with online applications that allow one to send money directly from one bank account to another in a different location at any given time.

Before selecting a specific app to use to transfer money abroad, one should consider the following factors:

User friendliness for a money transfer abroad
User-friendliness

A good app should be user friendly. It should have an easy to use homepage with all features you need. You should be able to access your account quickly and transfer money abroad easily. The interface should be clear and straightforward.

Security of a money transfer abroad
Security

Security is the most vital aspect when transferring money. It would be best if there is an assurance that both your details and funds are secure.
The app should have a strongly protected server that is not easily accessible without authorization to protect it from hackers. Even when you lose your phone, your information should still be secured.

transfer money overseas with lowest transfer charges
Transfer charges

It is also essential to consider how much you will pay for sending a certain amount of money. The fees should be at least cheaper than what the banks are charging. You should also be aware that some apps with low rates may not be secure, and you may end up losing all your money.
Some even take advantage of the foreign exchange rates, and therefore you should double-check before doing any transaction with them.

Transfer money overseas: the availability of money transfer applications is viable
Availability of the Money Transfer Applications

Not all money transfer apps are available all over the world. Check whether the application you are using will allow you to transfer money to your target country.

money transfer abroad: availability of extra features is important
Availability of Extra Features

A good money app should have added extra features that allow one to make payments through bank transfers. It increases customer satisfaction since it reduces the number of transfers and will enable you to pay directly for goods and services.

money transfer abroad: reputation is essential
Reputation

Always use apps with a good history. Go for apps that have been in the market long enough, and you will be sure that their reputation is good. Check their online reviews to be able to gauge them.

#6: Internationally Recognized Companies Used for Instant International Money Transfer
Zelle

It is the United States-based application.

When using Zelle, the sender and the recipient should have bank accounts based in the United States. It means that money cannot be transferred internationally to other countries.

Sending money to African friends: not supported

Google Pay

Google Pay is one of the cheapest ways to transfer money internationally. It can only be put in use when paying for items online.

Not all countries have embraced Google Pay; therefore, when traveling overseas, contact your bank for further clarification.
Some countries in Africa have adopted Google Pay to make payments for mobile and computer programs: Algeria, Egypt, Kenya, South Africa,

Google Pay is usable for sending money to your family and friends just in USA and India.

Sending money to African friends: not supported

Paytm

Paytm is an Indian based company. Paytm was only available to Indian residents who have attained the age of 18.

Foreign currency is not applicable to transact using Paytm. Currently, money can be transferred from Kenya to India using Paytm.

Sending money to African friends: not supported

WorldRemit

WorldRemmit is a known fast international money transfer app. It allows users to transfer money abroad with great convenience. Money is transferrable from one bank account to another, or you can choose if the money is delivered physically to a specific location.
It also allows for money to be sent through a mobile phone. It is among the best money transfer services since it is secure as it provides a tracking service that will keep you updated on the progress.

Sending money to African friends: supported! WorldRemit is the best money transfer service to Africa.

Currencyfair

It is the cheapest way to transfer money overseas. The international money transfer app uses peer to peer payments making the rates much less expensive.

It allows you to directly sell your currency to your target country, who will buy at competitive prices.
It also has a live currency tracker that enables you to see how your cash exchanges. It is among the best money transfer service because you can send multiple currencies depending on the deals offered.

Sending money to African friends: supported by CurrencyFair!

Payoneer

Payoneer is the best way to transfer money abroad if your country does not support other money transfer apps, e.g. for sending money out of African countries. It supports several countries and currencies.

Despite the size of the country you are in, you will transfer money abroad.
It is also the best way to receive money from abroad.

Money transfers using Payoneer are free, so if you are looking for how to transfer money overseas without fees, you should consider the app.

Sending money to African friends: supported by Payoneer!

TransferWise

It is known to be the cheapest way to transfer money overseas due to its low fees. It uses interbank rates to transfer money. Therefore, it makes the cost come down to a charge of only 1% of the transfer.
The only disadvantage is that it only operates within a few countries in Africa. Before making any transaction, you should consult to know whether your target country is among those that are legible.

Sending money to African friends: supported by TransferWise!

Azimo

It is one of the most secure apps to transfer money overseas. The information you provide is safe hence protecting you from any malicious practices when you want to share money abroad.
They have also installed SSL certificates in their programs to increase the security of the app.

It is easy to use the app, making it the best and the cheapest way to receive money from abroad.

It also provides for ten different languages hence can be used in several countries.

Sending money to African friends: supported by Azimo!

PayPal

PayPal is known worldwide, and it beats all the other peer to peer money transfer apps because of its convenience. It is accessible in many countries and offers different payment methods.
Funds are received instantly into the recipient’s PayPal account. You can transfer money abroad with PayPal since it only requires one to sign in to receive the payment.
Sending money to African friends: supported by Xoom!

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#7: How Can I Send Money To Someone Instantly?

You can use the apps mentioned above to transfer money instantly to someone.

Not all the apps can be used for international money transfers: United States residents only use the Zelle app.

In the past, PayPal was known to be the most convenient and fastest way to transfer money abroad instantly.

Currently, especially in regards of recipients in African countries, WorldRemitAzimo and Xoom are the recommended money transfer apps for instant transfers.

In my country reports, I describe how it works for each country:

#8: How To Avoid A Wire Transfer Fee
use foreign currency for the cheapest way to send money
Use foreign currency

Before you transfer money abroad, you can change your currency to lower the charges. It may allow you to save due to different conversion rates. You can secure high bonds and only pay expenses for the conversion.

cheapest way to send money: register for repetitive wire transfers
Register for repetitive wire transfers

You can sign up for several wire transfers so that the bank can reduce your transfer fees. You will spend little money when transferring repeatedly. This process will also decrease the chances of error.

cheapest way to send money: use email transfers
Use email money transfers

Email money is one of the cheapest and convenient ways to transfer money. It is affordable and much faster compared to the use of banks. PayPal is the established provider for the services.

cheapest way to send money: send money to a student account
Send money to a student account

The majority of banks do not charge for money transferred to student accounts. You should always check for these waivers, especially for those who send or receive payments from students who are paying their education loans.

#9: Will My Bank Charge Me For Using Transferwise Or Currencyfair?

Yes. When using a P2P marketplace such as Transferwise or Currencyfair, the bank will charge you a small fee to add to your balance to convert between currencies in your account.

It will also charge you a small fee for transfer money from your account to a bank account.

#10: Is It Possible To Get Scammed On A Wire Transfer?

Wire transfer is fast, reliable, and safe for sending money overseas. Many people have used it successfully, making it more trusted.

However, it does not mean that you will not get conned. Con artists are everywhere, waiting for that bad press of a button to steal your hard-earned money.

It would be best if you exercised a lot of caution when trying to wire money to anyone because once you send, you can never reverse the transaction. That is how you easily part with your money.

Below are ways to help you avoid losing money through a wire transfer:

  • Use an excellently reputed money transfer service
  • Mostly, the service you use to transfer the money is not the cause for the con but, it is always advisable that you deal with a reputed international money transfer company.
  • If you want to send money to a stranger, avoid sending large amounts of money at a go
  • Do not send money to strangers
  • Pay late. Scammers give you money transfer deadlines in terms of date. If those dates exceed and they call you to remind you then, you might be dealing with a con.

In this context I recommend you as well my article about money laundering measures in Africa.

#11: How Much Can You Transfer Internationally?

There is no actual limit to the amount of money you can transfer.

When you want to move more than $10,000 abroad or receive the same amount from abroad, you will need to abide by the Laws to protect your money and the interests of the authority.

#12: Best Ways To Transfer A Large Amount Of Money
transfer money abroad: use correspondant banks

Use correspondent banks

It is easier to transfer money abroad using correspondent banks. Some banks are international and have locations in most countries worldwide, making the transfer of large amounts of money accessible and cheaper.

transfer money overseas

Wire transfers

It requires both the sender and receiver to provide proof before sending or receiving the money. These proofs undergo thorough scrutiny before approval. There are no fixed charges; hence can be high depending on the country.

transfer money overseas: use online money transfers

Use online transfers

Online transfers will help you maximize the amount of money you are transferring by checking different exchange rates. Online platforms will allow you to send money to several countries all over the world. Such media include Venstar-Exchange or OFX.

money transfer abroad: international currency check

International currency check

Few money transfer services only offer it. The processing time is slow and, therefore, not a good option for instant sending. It takes at least 20 days for the destination country to credit the amount deposited into the account.

Conclusion

Exposure to how to transfer money internationally is crucial for African origin people who live abroad and especially those that are breadwinners for their families.

Providing for the needs of their loved ones is the main reason why they are struggling to work in the first place.

Knowing that their money will be safe is just equal to knowing that their family members are fully taken care of.

One hence requires having enough knowledge on the best way to receive money from abroad that their recipients can use and the best way to transfer money abroad to their people at home.

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