The ins and outs of wire transfers
There are tons of money transfer options, such as cash, checks, mobile apps, and wire transfers, for different types of needs. When speed and simplicity are top priorities for a money transfer, wire transfer can be a good option.
A wire transfer is a method of transferring electronic money between people or companies that does not involve the exchange of physical money. The sender is the one who gives all the instructions for the transfer, including the recipient’s name, bank, account number, amount and sometimes the place of collection. Wire transfers can be facilitated by a bank (sometimes referred to as a “wire transfer”) or by a non-bank money transfer provider.
When would I use a wire transfer?
Wire transfers are common for both US domestic use and international use. They are popular for international transfers because they can be easily exchanged into a foreign currency if needed.
They are also a good option if:
You urgently need to make a transfer. Most domestic transfers are processed the same day and international transfers are usually completed within a few days.
You need to move large amounts of money. While the limits vary by money transfer provider, they are usually high. For this reason, bank transfers are often used to pay bills, transfer money between family members, or for real estate transactions.
Where can I send a wire transfer?
While you can send wire transfers to domestic and international recipients, fees vary by carrier, destination, and amount transferred.
The information you need to provide depends on whether you are using a banking provider or a non-banking provider:
When sending a domestic bank transfer, you must provide the recipient’s name, address, bank account number, and ABA (routing number) number.
When sending an international bank transfer, for certain countries, you must provide the name, address, bank SWIFT BIC code and bank account number, plus the routing code of the international payment system (you will be prompted to do so).
A bank transfer through a non-banking provider may not require a bank account number, but the provider does require the recipient’s name and pick-up location.
These methods are similar in terms of security.
What else should I know about wire transfers?
Please ensure that you determine whether a transfer is valid and appropriate, as transfers are final and cannot be canceled once the transfer has begun.
Please familiarize yourself with the fees that apply to your transfer before initiating a transaction, as the amounts vary depending on the provider, destination, how you send money and the amount of money being transferred. If you send a transfer in a foreign currency, you should also pay attention to the level of the exchange rate, as the level of the exchange rate can differ per provider.