Jun 182014

By Mohammed Waseem

New Zealand based money transfer operator Orbit Remit allows the residents of New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom to send money to over 33 countries in Europe, Asia and Oceania. They boast of excellent customer service and swift transfers. They also boast of excellent customer reviews.

Orbit Remit allows users to send money to a bank account to all supported countries and to a credit card issued in Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, the United Kingdom and Vietnam. The minimum amount for transfer is 50 in the local currency of the sender, which is either AUD or NZD or GBP.

Orbit RemitAll customers are required to verify their identity, before which, they can send a maximum of GBP 800 (from the UK) or ZUD/NZD 2000 (from Australia or New Zealand). After verification, residents of the UK can send a maximum of GBP 9900 and the residents of Australia and New Zealand can send a maximum of AUD/NZD 60000. Verified businesses are allowed to send a maximum of AUD/NZD 100000 from Australia or New Zealand and GBP 50000 from the UK.

Senders are required to transfer money to Orbit Remit via internet banking and they release the payment once funds have been cleared and deposited into their account. This may happen overnight or may take up to 3 days in the UK, depending on the bank. This is a disadvantage, as most money transfer companies accept credits cards and debit cards, which is not true for Orbit Remit. A customer who does not want to use the bank account would switch over to another provider for this reason.

Money is available within 36 hours of receiving it in Orbit Remit’s account. Payment delivered is in the local currency and not in USD or any other foreign currency. Senders can also setup recurring payments via Direct Debit for selected payment types. They are also allowed to send payments to their own credit cards in the countries mentioned above.

The fee charged for transfers from the UK to India is GBP 1.99 and GBP 5.00 for all other countries. From Australia, the fee is AUD 4.00 for transfers to India and AUD 8.00 for transfers to all other countries. From New Zealand, the fee charged is NZD 5.00 for transfers to Australia and NZD 8.00 for transfers to all other countries.

Residents of New Zealand can also make court payments free of cost and same day settlement guarantee and recurring payments option.

Interested users in the UK, Australia and New Zealand can start using their service by registering here.

Jun 122014

By Mohammed Waseem

Lebara Money, a UK based organization offers money transfer services to over 310000 locations around the world. They do this by using the agent network of MoneyGram. Senders can use all the ways of transfer that MoneyGram offers, including online and mobile transfers. They offer three ways to make transfers including MoneyGram, International Airtime transfer and Prepaid Cards.

Transfer through MoneyGram is no different, but their Lebara Prepaid Card transfer is quite interesting. When a user signs up, they are given two cards; one for them and one for a family member or anyone else, intended to send money to. So, any time of the day, money can be transferred from the sender’s card to the family member’s card. The holder of the latter can choose to withdraw this money at any ATM location bearing MasterCard logo or to spend the money for shopping at places around the world where MasterCard is accepted.

Lebara MoneyThe cards can be ordered here and they are delivered within 10 days after ordering. The cards are free of any fee if the sender’s card is loaded with an initial £20 credit. Alternatively, a fee of £14.95 can be paid. Money can be loaded through the Lebara mobile app, via a bank transfer, at a post office or at any PayPoint location. Loading the card with the mobile app is charged £1 and the limit is £250. For bank transfer, the limit is £3000 and it is free of charges. Post offices charge £1 for loading a card and the limit there is £500. At a PayPoint location, the charge applicable is 3% of the amount loaded and the limit is £500. Senders can load their cards maximum twice a day.

Money can be sent using the sender’s card by calling the IVRS at 0123 525 2000 or by logging onto the Lebara website. The money is available in the family member’s card within seconds. A charge of £1.50 is applible for withdrawal from most UK ATMs, restaurants and other retail merchants may also charge an additional amount over the money spent, if applicable. Charges at international ATMs are £2.

The family member’s card can be used in the 210 countries and territories around the world, where MasterCard is accepted. Additionally, the sender’s card can also be used for withdrawal at ATMs and for spending at retail locations. The charges towards foreign exchange fees are 2% of the transaction amount in currencies other than GBP. £1 per month is also applicable if a card is inactive for over 90 days.

I will discuss about the international airtime transfer in a different article on SafeCashTransfer.com. To sign up for an account with Lebara for instant online transfers, this link can be followed.

May 252014

By Mohammed Waseem

Sending money to and from the UK is simple these days, with so many money transfer operators popping up. Many of these companies have operations in multiple countries, some even have over 100 countries in their list. We have discussed about few of those companies in the past. Today, I will talk about Send Money 24, a UK based money transfer service provider to over 100 countries.

SendMoney24.com is an online payment service provider specializing in International Money Transfer and Payment Services to and from the UK. They can transfer money to a recipient’s bank account or for cash pickup at their agent locations. Their fee starts from 2% of the amount being sent, with the minimum limit of £2.99. Their agent locator and fee calculator are accessible and easy to use. They also work in partnership with UNIstream, WebMoney, Ria and Contact.

Send Money 24In order to send money, a sender has to register for an account, send the money transfer request, pay after receiving confirmation, and communicate the unique code and the agent’s address from the acknowledgment receipt (applies for cash pickups only). Senders can pay through Internet Banking from any UK bank. Money is paid out to the recipient in USD, EUR or the local currency, as instructed by the sender.

Once the company receives the funds from the sender, they process the payment and the receiver can collect it the next working day or depending on the time taken by banks to process the transactions, in case of bank account transfers. Senders do not have to choose agent locations, they are automatically applied based on the recipient’s address.

Send Money 24 is secure and is regulated by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority). They are a simple service, best for people sending money to families regularly or for people making business payments or any other similar payments. They are however not suitable for emergency transfers which happen within minutes.

Apr 142014

By Mohammed Waseem

Sending money has become very easy today, thanks to the continuous innovations in the money transfer industry. Companies dealing in foreign exchange, most of them offer international money transfers as well. On such company is RationalFX, a UK-based exchange house, which operates Xendpay, the online money transfer service with offices in the UK and France.

Xendpay is among the most reputed money transfer services of UK, which has transferred over $2 billion worldwide and is among the fasted growing privately owned financial services businesses. They operate in approximately 90 countries worldwide. They guarantee better rates and lower fees along with 0% commission charged. Senders can send anything from £20 and pay by bank transfer, credit or debit cards and iDeal (applicable only for EUR transactions). In addition, they provide a “No Surprise Guarantee” which means that if any of the intermediary banks makes a deduction for some reason, they will refund that deduction in full to the sender.

Xendpay Money TransferIn order to send money, the sender has to create an account on Xendpay website, view the live quote, provide remittance details and then make the payment. The fee depends on the amount and the destination country, but the general fee for payments in GBP are £3.99. The exact fees and limits can be known by visiting this link. They guarantee best exchange rate and fees in comparison to some of the leading money transfer operators including Western Union and PayPal. Delivery times depend on payout currency and the destination country; it may be anywhere between same day delivery to 2-3 working days.

Referring a friend can earn users Amazon vouchers worth £10, €12 or $15. The limitation, however, is that their transaction amount should be more that £300 or equivalent.

Most users are happy with their service and recommend others to send money through them for better exchange rates, better fees and an overall good service.

Feb 122014

By Mohammed Waseem

While discussing about European money transfer services, we must not leave out one of the best money transfer companies in the continent, which has been awarded Best Money Transfer Company for Europe in 2012 by the International Association of Money Transfer Networks (IAMTN). The company in question is World Remit which is based in the UK and has reach in over 100 countries across the globe.

World Remit is among the world’s largest dedicated money transfer companies with over 30 send countries and over 100 receiving countries. They offer a variety of payment options such as debit cards, credit cards and other local payment methods. The pay-out options include instant cash pick up, bank deposits, transfer to mobile wallets and international airtime top-up.

World Remit money is transferIn order to send money, a user is supposed to register and login to the World Remit website, enter the recipient details including the name, city and mobile number and then make payment in of the ways including debit card, credit card and bank account. As soon as the transaction is complete, the recipient is notified by SMS. Delivery depends on the option chosen. If bank deposit is chosen, the recipient is informed about the deposit, if cash payment is chosen, the recipient is notified with the tracking number and asked to collect the money and if transfer to mobile wallets or transfer as airtime are selected, money is sent accordingly and the recipient is notified. Once the recipient collects or receives the money, the sender is notified by SMS.

Cash is available almost immediately, while bank deposits take 1-3 working days. There are limits to maximum transaction amounts which depend on the laws and regulations of the countries. They charge a nominal fee, compared to many other money transfer services. As an example, I compared their fees and exchange rate with that of Western Union for sending 200 GBP from the UK to France. Their fee is 2.99 GBP and the recipient gets 238.94 EUR. On the other hand, Western Union charge 4.90 GBP for payment with bank account and 3.9 GBP to 19.60 GBP for payment with debit card or credit card and the recipient gets 228.92 EUR to 236.73, depending upon the services chosen.

World Remit also offers services based on local market needs. To name a few, Interac Online payment option in Canada and Send Money to Yourself service in Somaliland have been launched by the company to cater to local needs.

Cash transfer or bank transfer is not available in all supported countries while mobile airtime top-up option is available in most supported countries. If you are going to use this service, don’t forget to take advantage of the “0% fees on the first money transfer to all countries” offer.

Aug 142012

The BBC News reports that by the beginning of 2013, every bank customer in the U.K. may have the ability to transfer money between bank accounts using apps on their mobile phones!

In February 2012, Barclays Bank became the first bank to launch such an app for its customers.

Now the banking industry at large – as represented by the Payments Council – is building a database that will link all bank accounts to their customers’ mobile phone numbers.

This will allow every bank to connect their own systems to the database, and offer their own money transfer mobile apps to their own customers.

Mobile-to-mobile transfers

Mobile-to-mobile transfers may revolutionize the way people send money.

“There’s clearly a great demand for mobile payments, and our work will ensure that banks of all shapes and sizes can offer their own competitive service to their customers,” said Adrian Kamellard, chief executive of the Payments Council.

“Whether you want to pay a friend or your window cleaner, we are laying the foundation to enable mobile payments to become a mainstream option.”

How the System Will Work

Once the system is up and running, if you want to send money from your own bank account to someone else’s, here’s what you’ll have to do:

1. Register with your bank and activate their money-transfer app on your mobile phone (the recipient must also be registered with their own bank).

2. Log in to the app on your phone using a pin number.

3. Select the person you want to send money to – all you will need is their mobile number.

4. Choose the amount to be paid and add any note that you wish, such as “loan” or “gift”.

5. Enter a pin number to confirm the transfer.

6. The payment is then made, details will appear on the recipient’s app, and your account will show your reduced balance.

The money will be transferred instantly. So if you want to pay a vendor, or you get a call from a friend or relative needing a little financial assistance, you could move money to their account instantly.

“The point is not only that it is very secure but that it is fast as well,” Mr Kamellard says.

“It offers customers a different way of behaving.”

An Alternative to Credit Cards?

Money won’t be stored on your phone itself – the system doesn’t turn your phone into a mobile wallet – but the banking industry seems to believe that the coming changes will revolutionize personal payment habits.

Dave Birch, a payments expert at Consult Hyperion, says the biggest impact may not be on individuals but on small businesses such as shops.

“This could be adopted very quickly in the small business space – it may turn out to be more convenient and cheaper than accepting credit card payments,” he says.

Perhaps. But if I were a merchant, I wouldn’t want to have to use an app to log in to my bank account and confirm payment every time someone purchased a product. There are also security issues that will need to be addressed. For example, banks will have to be able to disable the app remotely if the phone is lost or stolen. But I suppose that’s not much different than having to cancel your credit cards when your wallet gets stolen.

I also wonder if this is bad news for online money transfer services like Paypal, and maybe debit card and credit card providers as well.

In any case, these are interesting changes that are coming, and it will be fascinating to see how they impact various financial spheres, including remittances, personal money transfers, and the retail industry.

Aug 112009
UK Post Office box

UK Post Office box

Magda Ali writes at FT.com that the British Post Office has launched a new Overseas Property Money Transfer service which allows people to transfer money between UK and overseas bank accounts. Customers can fix the rate of exchange for up to a year, which protects them against currency fluctuations.

”Until now, many users of international bank to bank money transfer services have found it to be an expensive business, with limited options for small transfers,” said Sarah Munro, Post Office head of money transfers, said. “They have often been unable to capitalise on the great rates offered by currency specialists because they weren’t buying in bulk. And they were also at the mercy of volatile currency markets, making it harder to get the most from their money.”

The service is aimed at people who:

  • make payments on foreign mortgages
  • own property overseas and have costs associated with maintaining that property
  • are paying utility bills
  • are bringing money back to the UK after selling property overseas
  • and others with regular payments such as pensions, salaries or school fees

”The Post Office Overseas Property Money Transfer service offers customers the ability to fix at a competitive exchange rate, giving them peace of mind for up to a year, which is a real advantage in current markets,” said Munro. “We calculate that with 0 per cent commission and our competitive exchange rates we will be saving customers a serious amount of money if they’ve just sold their house or are paying a deposit on a new property.”

The Post Office claims that a customer who transfers, for example, £700 over the course of a year, would save £528 in fees by using the Post Office’s money transfer service.Wow! That’s a huge savings. I don’t know if something like this would fly in the USA as private companies would object. I recently spent three years in Panama and transferring funds was a costly and complicated affair. I could have used a service like this. I imagine British citizens living overseas, or living in the UK with regular costs overseas, will find this service to be quite a relief.