Small Business Brief

Financial Services

Doing Business Overseas? Here Are the Best Ways to Send an International Wire Transfer

Almost 60% of small companies do business internationally. In today’s global economy, it’s the only way to gain a competitive edge.

Doing business worldwide means you need a reliable way to get money to the other end of the earth. That’s where international wire transfer comes in.

Wiring money is about as old as the telegraph, but what are today’s options for sending money overseas?

Here are some of the best ways to transfer money internationally.

Go to the Bank

Don’t forget about your local bank for your international banking needs. An international bank transfer is one of the most secure ways to move large sums of money across the world.

If you prefer to do things in person, the bank is a great choice. It allows you to tap into your account manager’s experience with international banking. 

While it’s nice to work with a familiar face, there are some caveats.

Both parties have to have a bank account, and you’ll need some specifics from the recipient in addition to the account info, like branch and transit numbers. Bank fees for international transfers can add up, and you won’t always get the best exchange rate from a bank.

Bank transfers can also be pretty slow. Factor in a couple of days, at least.

Get Online

The worldwide web is increasingly more reliable for money matters. Plus, it’s worldwide, as the name suggests.

Websites like PayPal and apps like Venmo are safe and efficient for moderate sums of money. They both have the option to verify your account and raise your max limit.

The benefit of going online is ease. You don’t need sensitive banking information to do business, just an email address or phone number. And the transfer is immediate.

Beyond sending money online, you can also find a global solutions company like to streamline your interactions with customs and border control.

International Money Transfer

Money transfers through companies like Western Union are the traditional way to wire money. It’s even how the phrase was coined.

Just because wiring money is the traditional way to do it, it doesn’t mean it’s not up to date. Western Union offers three ways to complete the process: in person, online, or via telephone.

Money is transferred immediately, attached to a Money Transfer Control Number. Western Union also allows you to send cold, hard cash instead of digital funds.

Wire transfer fees vary but are often somewhat steep compared to less urgent methods.

There are other money transfer companies, including one offered by Walmart, but Western Union is the most widespread.

Peer to Peer Currency Exchange

Peer to peer currency exchange is the modern way to send money internationally. You sign up for a currency exchange marketplace and swap currencies with other users, skirting transfer fees.

Users set their own exchange rates and the website matches sellers with buyers. The money is ultimately transferred by bank exchange. 

There Are More International Wire Transfer Options Than Ever

Even twenty years ago your options for international wire transfer were scarce. Advances in security and the propagation of the internet have made sites like PayPal and peer to peer networks viable alternatives.

Are you looking for more information about doing business? Check out our archive of business advice.