It is not unusual for the SAP Consultant to make international transfers of money on a regular basis. In a matter of fact, I am going to be in the same situation from January 2016 when I will make transfers to my family every month. Making International transfers is not a cheap activity. Usually, the fees and the exchange rates are outrageous. For those reasons, the founders of Skype created a new online service called Transfer Wise (if you use the like you will get your first transfer up to 3000? for free). One of the investors in the service is one of the most well-known entrepreneurs – Sir Richard Branson.
You will find below why it is cheaper than bank wire transfers. The major idea is that the money itself are not crossing borders. Transfer Wise has accounts in different countries, and it is relying on that there will be flows of money from country A to country B and vice versa. The savings come from matching the money without the need to make real international transfers through the regular banks. Check the following video prepared from Transfer Wise.
There will be some situations where you may think that the fees are not so attractive compared to your regular bank. The reality is that you may forget the exchange rates. The banks are taking advantage of that and earn a lot from giving you poor rates. On the other side, you will not believe how good the rates offered from Transfer Wise are. Just open the website from the links in this post, enter source and target currency and I am sure you will be surprised.
So, here is how you can make a payment. When you create and enter into your account you will have calculator on the right side:
The following screenshot is made on 17.12.2016. For comparison, Opal Transfers gave me an exchange rate of 2.645 and an additional fee of 3 GBP. The best exchange rate in Bulgaria that I could find in an exchange office is 2.6770 BGN for 1 GBP.
On the next step you have to fill the details of the recipient.
On the next step, you will have to confirm recipient’s details and fill custom reference text if it is necessary.
On the next step you will have to choose a method of uploading money for the transfer. The options include Debit Card, Credit Card and Bank Transfer. Usually, the cheapest and in most cases entirely free method of uploading will be the Debit Card choice. Bank Transfer is also free from Transfer Wise side, but your bank may charge you for domestic transfer between your bank and the bank of Transfer Wise. Check the screenshot below for the bank transfer.
In case you want to use Bank Transfer from GBP to other currency, you will have to transfer money from your account in the UK to the UK’s account of Transfer Wise.
Currently, following currencies are available in Transfer Wise in the countries where they are recognised as legal tender.
From: EUR, GBP, USD, AUD, CHF, CAD, PLN, SEK, NOK, DKK, HUF, CZK, BGN, RON
To: EUR, GBP, USD, AUD, CHF, CAD, PLN, SEK, NOK, DKK, HUF, CZK, BGN, RON, INR, SGD, NZD, HKD, MYR, PHP, BRL, NGN, CLP, THB, AED, UAH, IDR, COP, GEL, TRY, MXN, RUB
Finally, As a bonus if you use the provided links you will be rewarded with one free international transfer up to 3000 GBP (As at 05.2016).
Update February 28, 2016: I used the service few times and I think it is amazing. You will hardly ever see a regular cross-country bank wire transfer which is completed in 4 hours and costs around 5 GBP. There is no match for this service.