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Transferring money to a European bank account from the US

Transferring money to a European bank account from the US

May 10th, 2010, 11:24 AM
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Transferring money to a European bank account from the US

We've done lots of house/apartment rentals before, and all owners have their own payment methods. I've sent a personal check as a deposit, paid through paypal, used a credit card and just shown up with all the cash.

This time the owner wants us to make a bank transfer directly into her account which I am suspecting might be an expensive hassle. Whether or not it makes a difference, this is a last minute arrangement and we will be there next week.

We live in the US. What has been your experience with this type of transaction? Is it a huge hassle? And, about what am I probably looking at for bank fees?
julies is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 11:38 AM
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You can do it from your home computer if you have online access. Look at Transfers. I've never paid more than $30.
Marija is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 11:44 AM
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It is my understanding that this is a commonly-used and relatively painless (read:CHEAP) transaction in Europe, though that has NOT been MY experience in the US.

My Credit Union (which is OTHERWISE excellent) charges $50 for a foreign wire transfer -- and seemed QUITE overwhelmed by the process the one time I did this.

I suspect that it is BECAUSE of the imminent nature of your stay that your hosts have reguested the direct transfer.

That, and the fact that it is a relatively inexpensive option in the EU.

Itallian_Chauffer is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 11:54 AM
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Too bad you don't have more time, because an international draft only costs about $5.00.

My bank in the USA charges $25 for an international wire, which is pretty cheap compared to a lot of banks. I would tart by calling your bank.
StCirq is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 12:15 PM
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If you have a PayPal account, be sure to take a look at the options there. You can send money to a bank account, pay with a credit card. Fees/exchange rate may be more favorable than your bank.
djkbooks is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 12:34 PM
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Well, I've called a couple banks we do business with. One wasnt $50 and the other $35. Plus they said the receiving bank may charge some sort of conversion fee. And, it could be 2 to 7 days for all of this to occur.

djkbooks--I do have a PayPal account, so I'll have to check that out. I had no idea I could do a wire transfer that way. Thanks.

So, for citizens of the EU this is a common, inexpensive and easily used solution. Wish it would work as easily for those of us across the Atlantic who wish to work with people on the other side.
julies is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 12:50 PM
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It is a common, simple and free solution for those in the Eurozone. It can be expensive for those outside the Eurozone as they too have to contend with exchange rates, bank fees, and the payment getting lost in cyberspace for a few days so the banks can earn as much money from it as possible.

Since it is a last minute booking and payment may take a week why not suggest to the owner that you pay her upon arrival - or do they live elsewhere?
hetismij is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 01:03 PM
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Yep, the wire transfer costs on this side of the pond are obscene. Last time I did one to a hotelier in Croatia, BofA charged me $35, gave me a wretched exchange rate, and the receiving bank in Croatia charged a €15 handling fee, which the hotel (rightly so) asked me to pay when I arrived. Since the deposit was only for €200, the transfer cost me over 25%. And a lot of hassle.

nukesafe is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 01:14 PM
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I did not realize that this is a free service to those in the eurozone and suspect that the owner of the house also assumes that this is an efficient and cheap way to do this transaction rather than something that will cost me a lot. The owners don't live on site and have a caretaker, but I am wondering if I could just explain the situation to the owner and see if I could pay the caretaker in cash when I arrive. I am especially concerned now because my bank did say something to me about the fees the incoming bank could charge. So, I can see how this could easily cost me at least $50 for this transaction when next week, when I am in Ireland, I could just go to a local ATM and withdraw the funds for only what the bank charges for an ATM transaction conversion.
julies is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 01:22 PM
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The only hassle is that you may have to bank several times to get total amount.

I've done several wire trasnfers to Europe, and end up paying in the $40-50 range. I only do it if insisted on. I've been told it takes up to 5 business days. You need the IBAN and BIC numbers as well as the address of the destinee. You also need to tell bank that you want to cover destinee's costs.

A bank draft would be a better choice, if they can wait the time a registered envelope takes to get there.
Michel_Paris is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 03:12 PM
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I have found the landlords are becoming more computer savvy lately, and many will now take PayPal transfers. It works really well, any you can assume the markup that occurs, so the owner gets the full fees. Costs to Ireland or France would run about €0.50 for transferring €100 from your PayPal account or Bank account. If you use a credit card it would cost €4.50.

Much cheaper and faster than the wire transfer, IME>
nukesafe is offline  
May 10th, 2010, 03:35 PM
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I've done lots of bank transfer both to pay for cottage accommodations and to pay people I have hired to do work in Europe.

Just know that you should get as much information as possible. Generally I've needed:
Account number and bank branch number
Name on the account and address of person whose name is on the account
Bank name and branch address
IBAN number (which can be a challenge as it's called something different in Europe)

I've had good luck with transfers going through within a couple of days most of the time. However, if you don't have ALL the information required (check with the bank) or if there's an error made in the process, then it all goes bad.

I despise Paypal, have used it sometimes and have had issues about 25% of the time. And Paypal is extremely difficult to deal with if you run into problems.
taggie is offline  
Aug 7th, 2013, 05:43 AM
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Great suggestions BUT they are NOT what the poster says the landlord will ACCEPT...or are they, OP???????????????????
Dukey1 is offline  
Aug 7th, 2013, 05:49 AM
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The original post was 3 years ago.

I also wish that other forms of payment were accepted. I recently sold books to Brazil and Paypal made the transaction no different than an ordinary ebay transaction.

My bank charged a $40 fee to transfer funds to a German fewo this year.
bigtyke is offline  
Aug 7th, 2013, 07:31 AM
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From the UK across the sterling / Euro barrier I pay between £5 and £9 for the transfer, if I complete before 3pm it will be in my supplier's bank by 9am.

When I used to work shifting money between countries the two places you used to avoid were Portugal (whose banking system is ancient) and the States because their banks don't seem to realise that there is a big world out their. Both would rip you off on fees and Portugal would not move the money for weeks.

No one ever had to pay anything in Russia as all the money movements are to Tax Havens outside the place. ;-)
bilboburgler is offline  
Aug 7th, 2013, 08:08 AM
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I use http://www.xe.com/xetrade/ for any transfers to bank accounts, whether mine or someone else's (as when paying for replacing a roof) with no problems. I believe that the rates are about as low as they can be.
Michael is online now  
Feb 24th, 2014, 10:17 AM
Join Date: Feb 2014
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I know this is a little late but I used to do this all the time with a small place we rented in Barcelona. I compared most services. Banks will rip you off. www.usforex.com is the BEST I've found. I paid no fees and got a pretty good exchange rate. The owner of the flat received the money in 2 days.

Just my 2 cents!!
TravelFreakout11 is offline  

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