The international remittance industry has experienced a FinTech boom in the last couple of decades, giving consumers an array of alternatives from which to choose. However, given varied requirements, while one overseas money transfer company might work well for someone, someone else may benefit more by turning to its competitor. What this basically means is that the best way to move money in and out of Europe depends on your individual needs.
Supported Countries and Currencies
There is no point registering with a company that does not support the country of your residence, the destination country, or the currencies you wish to trade. For instance, Xoom and Remitly serve as reliable alternatives for the American market, but their reach is limited. While Remitly accepts customers from the UK, it does not from the rest of Europe. Xoom, on the other hand, accepts customers only from the U.S.
The Cost Factor
Some overseas money transfer companies claim to charge no fees. Be particularly wary in such scenarios because they might make up for the absence of fees by offering less than favourable exchange rates. An easy way to determine which company scores better on this front is to compare how much money the recipient will receive at the end of the transfer. Factors that may affect the cost of your transfer include the amount you wish to send, the destination country, the payment method, and the transfer method.
Transfer Methods and Turnaround Times
If you are transferring money inside the borders of the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA), the funds should get to the recipient’s bank account within one to two working days. Transfers to bank accounts in most countries outside Europe usually take two to seven working days, depending on the company you select, the destination country, and the receiving bank.
Companies such as Western Union and MoneyGram have given people the ability to transfer money to cash pickup centres in the past. Now, newer players such as WorldRemit and Azimo have created their own agent networks, giving people more cost-effective alternatives to collect cash from physical locations. These transfers tend to take place almost immediately.
If you wish to top up mobile airtime or a mobile wallet from another country, you may turn to service providers such as WorldRemit, Azimo, and MoneyGram.
How Do You Wish to Pay?
What good is an overseas money transfer company if it does not accept payments through your desired method? All the top companies let you make payments via bank account transfers. Some accept debit card payments, although credit cards don’t find as many takers. Some, on the other hand, even accept payments through European region-specific methods such as SOFORT and iDEAL.
The good overseas money transfer companies that operate out of Europe are typically registered with and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).The service provider you choose should rate well in customer service, and you may want to look for companies that offer online and over-the-phone support. An easy way to determine what previous customers of the companies you shortlist have to say is to turn to online platforms such as Trustpilot and Feefo.
There is no single overseas money transfer company that can work equally well for everyone because requirements tend to vary. To narrow down to the company that suits you best, pay attention to aspects such as exchange rates, fees, processing time, modes of payment, and transfer methods.