A Wire Transfer Guide for Students Abroad

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When you’re an international student, there are a lot of things to think about — from getting your student visa to finding housing and, of course, paying for school. One of the most important things you’ll need to do is figure out how to send and receive money from home. That’s where wire transfers come in.

What is a Wire Transfer?

A wire transfer is a way to send money electronically from one bank account to another. They can be sent within the same country or internationally, and the transfer usually takes place within 1-5 business days (depending on the destination country).

Why Choose a Wire Transfer?

Speedy Transfers

One of the benefits of wire transfers is that they’re relatively quick, often quicker than sending a cheque in the mail, for example. And, because the money is transferred electronically, there’s no risk of it getting lost in the mail, or interfered with. Generally, wire transfers take 1-2 business days, but can take up to a week. 

Reliability and Safety

Wire transfers are relatively safe. When you send a wire transfer, the funds are typically transferred directly into the receiver’s account — which means they can’t be intercepted en route as they might be with a physical cheque.

How to Send a Wire Transfer

Step 1:

Before you get started, it’s important to remember that schools will always bill in domestic currency. You’ll need the recipient’s name, address, and bank account number, as well as the name and location of their bank, and their SWIFT code. Each bank has a SWIFT code that is used to identify banks in Canada and around the world. Your financial institution should have these codes on hand.

You’ll also need some information about your own bank account, including your account number and routing number. Once you have all of that information gathered, you can start the process of sending a wire transfer. 

Step 2:

The next steps vary depending on the financial institution. Generally, you’ll fill out a form with the recipient’s information and your bank account details. 

Step 3:

Once the form is complete, your financial institution will submit it, along with any required fees, and then wait for the funds to be deposited into the recipient’s account. 

Pro Tip: In order to avoid any late fees, we recommend sending your wire transfer one week before the payment due date.

Wire Transfer Fees 

One important thing to keep in mind when sending a wire transfer is that there may be fees involved, both from your bank and from the recipient’s bank. These fees can vary dramatically depending on where you’re sending money and how much you’re sending. It’s important to ask about fees upfront, so there are no surprises later on. 

The most competitive banks charge $40 per transfer, and prices increase from there. At Currency Converters, wire transfer fees are a flat $15 fee.

Reasons To Choose Currency Converters

Since we do so many wire transfers, we have a low fail rate. A teller, who might not have as much experience, often does not know the exact codes and other details to send a transfer on the backend, which risks failure. 

Unlike banks, Currency Converters doesn’t have any affiliations, so we work with banks openly based on cost and availability. 

Our team also has extensive knowledge and expertise to help you figure out how you’re going to fund your life while you’re away and we can help you understand the fees you can expect as a student studying abroad. 

If you need to send a wire transfer or have any questions about your finances as a Canadian studying abroad or an international student in Canada, contact our team to get started!

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