The Most Important Questions You Should be Asking When Switching to an Online Money Transfer Service.

The most important questions you should be asking when switching to an online money transfer service. 

Online financial services such as money transfers can be scary for some people at the start. There are a lot of factors to consider, and you may have many questions that come to mind when considering making a switch to sending money online. It’s important to compare all your different options, and most importantly, know that your remittance service is completely safe and offers an efficient service for your needs including sending money abroad. We break down the most commonly asked questions below. 

What type of documents do I need to open an online money transfer account and why?

For your own security and for the compliance needs of your online financial service, you will need to provide a form of identification documents such as passport or a local residence card. Specifically, financial services that offer remittance that deal with large sums of funds moving across countries regularly, need to comply with AML laws (Anti Money Laundering) to make sure their customers are genuine. They also check your identity documents to verify that it’s in fact you, this is to protect you from online identity theft and fraud. Most banks will also ask for proof of address especially if you order a credit card to be delivered. It’s possible some banks may additionally require proof of funds/salary slip when involving “high limits.”. 

What type of fees do online transfer services charge compared to traditional banks?

When comparing a traditional bank to an online money transfer service, a really important aspect to consider is the fee. Some of the fees can be costly and add up quickly, so it’s advised to look closely at the, sometimes, hidden fees. Traditional banks usually have high fees for international money transfers and take what’s known as an “agent’s fee,”, “foreign bank fee,”, “intermediary bank fee” or ”correspondent fee,”, it’s a fee that is commonly charged by banks when a third-party bank or agent is used to send money from one account to another. When looking at sending money abroad the best option is to consider using a banking platform that specializes in international transfers and maintains the low fees per transaction.

How long does it take to complete an international money transfer?

This is dependent on many factors. Firstly, it depends on the method of remittance: wire transfer would take longer than mobile wallet or cash pick-up. Transferring money to a foreign account could take anywhere between a few hours and up to 1- 2 business days at most, whereas other methods can be as fast as immediate or up to a few hours. 

Secondly, even if your online banking solution provides a fast service, the order may take longer than expected due to receiver banks being slower. Some countries in particular can take longer than others. Usually the best days to send money are not over the weekend or public holidays as this can delay the time it takes for the money to reach its destination, and local banks are usually shut. 

What type of parameters should I check to make sure my money transfer service is safe?

Firstly, only work with completely regulated businesses. Make sure to avoid joining unauthorized banking services that may actually be involved in certain illegal activities themselves. Secondly, research the company’s data protection history for possible breaches. Customer support should be included as a factor to consider that the service provides, as a customer, you need to know that you have someone to talk to 7 days a week, in your language, and who understands your unique needs.Lastly it’s imperative to inspect the company’s certifications depending on the region and local regulations. For an article with further details on these regulations and expanded parameters read more here. 

There are many questions to ask yourself when selecting the online money transfer service that suits your needs. Once you have considered all these integral factors above, you should be able to find the perfect one.