12th January, 2020
How to send money to Germany
In this article, we’ll examine common methods of money transfer, and help you to know how you can best transfer money to Germany
Whether you’re an expat from Munich, or you’re working between London and Frankfurt, sending money from the UK may seem like a complicated and time-consuming process. But there are many ways of getting the money from A to B, some taking only minutes. Discover below which one will work best for you.
Before you start, you’ll first need to consider the following variables:
● How quickly do you need the money to arrive?
● How secure must the transaction be? (Obviously the greater the sum, the greater the required security level)
● What fees will you incur?
● Are you getting the best exchange rate?
How to send money to Germany
Here are the most common methods of sending currency to Germany:
Bank or building society
If you want to transfer money from the UK to Germany, you could opt to use a bank. Your online banking should have an ‘international payments’ option, where you can get a quote for how much the bank will charge to make the transfer. You’ll need to enter an IBAN and/or a SWIFT/BIC number, and it should then be as simple as clicking to confirm the payment. If you’re not signed up for Internet banking, you can also go into your branch and fill in the necessary forms by hand.
Most banks may charge relatively high fees for international transfers and the transfer may be slow. You’ll often find that most banks offer faster transfers for a higher fee. Santander’s One Pay FX service does not charge transfer fees. Sending via your bank is one of the safest methods of transferring money abroad; all UK banks are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority, so your money will be safe even if something were to go wrong.
High-street money transfer services
You can find these in any town, so convenience is a factor. You don’t need to register; you just hand over your money and pay the fee. You’ll then get a code to pass on to the recipient, who then uses it to withdraw the money in Germany from a branch of the same brand. Finding a brand with locations close to both you and the recipient may be a challenge of its own. Furthermore, these services can be fast, but they may charge large fees.
Currency exchange apps
There’s an increasing desire for the ability to make payments on the move, and the growing trend for mobility is seeing new products reach the marketplace regularly. The foreign exchange (FX) possibilities and rates are difficult to assess due to the ever-changing nature of the sector, so it’s best to proceed on a case-by-case basis.
Being able to conduct your financial transactions from the comfort of your own home is increasingly important in this time-poor society. Online services usually offer very competitive fees and excellent security. You’ll often need to register your email address, credit card and/or bank details. Be sure that your recipient also has a bank account and Internet access, and they’ll often need an email address too.
One such example is PagoFX, a low-cost money transfer app launched by global bank Santander. PagoFX offers transparency with no hidden fees, as well as all the flexibility associated with mobile banking. Because it’s backed by a renowned high street bank, you get the peace of mind of knowing your money is safe, whether you’re sending it from home or on the move. The app also offers you very competitive exchange rates as it gives you the real-time mid-market rate. It’s the base price of a currency without any kind of mark-up, and the currency rate that banks trade between themselves. This also ensures that you have the fairest rate possible. To find out more about PagoFX, read our FAQs here.
Making the decision
Once you’ve considered all the options available, it’s time to make your decision. If, for example, you want to send small amounts of money regularly, then you may want to consider using a method that charges low fees or is ‘fee-free’. However, take care to ensure that a ‘fee-free’ option is actually cheaper, with many services offering less competitive exchange rates to compensate for not charging a fee. If you can find a ‘mid-market rate’, which is the average of the buying and selling rate and is used by most financial institutions, then you know you’re getting a good deal.
Sending the money
When you’re confident you’ve found the most cost-effective and convenient way to transfer money to Germany, all that remains is to make the transaction. Just be aware of ever-fluctuating exchange rates. The EU’s single currency, which was adopted by Germany when the euro was introduced in 1999, has grown in value against the British pound. In 2000, you could get more than €1.70 to the pound, whereas in 2019 it’s closer to €1.10 to the pound. Keep a close eye on the financial markets to ensure that you get the best value, and remember to look out for those ‘mid-market’ rates!
Figures correct as of 1 October 2019