4 Common Mistakes When Spending and Sending Money Overseas

Two things stand out as the most important aspects to anybody spending or sending money overseas; getting the most bang for their buck without losing a lot in fees or exchange rates and, specifically for international money transfers, the speed at which their money is accessible to the recipient.

With these two things being the most vital aspects of a smart international money management policy, it surprising so many people still use their bank for their services as they tend to be the slowest, have the worst exchange rates, and have the highest fees.

Other than using a bank for their international money transfer needs and money exchanges, let’s look at some other common mistakes people make when spending and sending money abroad.

 

Making a Last Minute Transfer or Exchange

We completely understand that there are times when an emergency situation forces you to make a last minute money transfer without regard to fees, but if you have the luxury, planning ahead can help you save. Not doing any research on the best way to transfer or exchange money is basically guaranteeing you pay the most for the service.

Spend some time online finding out about the best places in your destination to exchange money or what company offers you the cheapest way to send your money. Avoid the tourist hotspots as they generally have the worst exchange rates and check with an independent online currency converter to get an idea of how much you should be getting for your money.

 

Ignoring Exchange Rates

Most people don’t realize that they often lose more of their money to a poor exchange rate in an international money transfer than to fees charged for the service, especially if the transaction involves a large amount of money. Consider the implications of getting 2% less for your money on a $5,000 money transfer. That would equal a $100 loss!

Don’t just assume your bank or that first currency exchange booth you see will give you a competitive rate. If you are setting up an international money transfer, look at the servicers available to you online. World First and XOOM have been known to give 3% or 4% more for your money than banks. You might find a similar difference in currency exchange booths at the airport versus one found in town somewhere.

You can use Send Money Cheaper’s comparison tool to find out which company offers you the best rate for your international money transfer.

 

Making Lots of Small Transfers or Exchanges

Whether you are transferring money overseas or withdrawing cash from an ATM abroad, lots of little transactions equal big fees. ATMs don’t take into account the amount of money being withdrawn, rather they charge a set fee from your home bank, and most often, the ATM’s bank. If you were to go to an international ATM five times and withdraw $200, you might wind up with as much $50 in fees, but if you went to the same ATM for two $500 withdrawals, you could end up with just $20 in fees.

When it comes to international money transfers, you may find that some foreign exchange companies charge no fees at all for transfers meeting a certain minimum amount. Many also offer a better exchange rate on larger transfers. If you were considering handling two $1000 transactions over a two month period, ask your servicer of choice what you would save by sending the whole $2000 at one time.

 

Relying on Credit Cards

At first glance, it may seem like a credit may be a good option for overseas purchases, but take a deeper look and you’ll notice some fees that aren’t readily apparent. While a credit card company may claim to only charge you a 3% transaction fee for your international purchase, they often don’t mention to you the poor exchnage rate they’ll give. Just like the banks, a credit card company will usually give an exchange rate 2% to 3% less than what you can find elsewhere. That means you’re actually paying 5% to 6% on top of the purchase price for your transaction. Quite a hefty amount. If you need to use a credit card on an overseas trip, look around for one that offers no foreign transaction fees like the Capital One Venture Rewards Card.

 

Following just a few of these simple tips can help you save big on international money transfers and overseas purchases while traveling.

 

 

Step-by-Step Guide to Moving Abroad and Sending Your Money Overseas

Moving to another country can be one of the most exciting and scariest adventures in your life. It is an endeavor filled with the unknown, which is what makes it so invigorating. Questions abound from the most cost effective way to send your personal items to the best way to transfer your money internationally.

Today, we’ve decided to put together a handy guide to help you answer some of these questions. Now you can focus on the more enjoyable aspects of the move like getting the best apartment and exploring your new hometown.

 

Step 1 – Research

The first step in any well-planned international move is doing your research. There is no shortcut here and the more research you do, the better prepared you’ll be when the big day comes. Moving to another country isn’t like relocating to another state or city in the US. There are a number of additional factors that will come into play like visas, international banking, shipping your items, and more.

While it may seem like fun to look for a beautiful condo or check out the best restaurants online, that isn’t the smartest use of your time. Instead, look into things like the requirements for opening a bank foreign account (they are different in every country), the most cost effective way of moving your personal items, how to obtain a driver’s license, requirements for getting an apartment lease, etc. They may not seem like the most glamorous things, but how quickly and easily you settle into your new life overseas depend on how thoroughly you have researched these processes.

 

Step 2 – Sorting Your Visa

Getting a visa is vital to your ability to stay in any country and while some may have very lax regulations, most do not. Read up on everything you can find about what requirements you need to meet to get a visa. The best source is usually the specific countries Department of Immigration website, but you can also check out the U.S. Department of State’s website or Visa HQ. They both have a pretty exhaustive list that cover just about every country.

If a company is sponsoring your visa application, they will handle most of the process for you, but if not, you’re on your own. As each country has its own method, there are no hard and fast rules, but it’s always best to start your application process sooner rather than later. There is nothing worse than getting everything set to move only to find out your visa has been denied or you have to wait another month.

 

Step 3 – Packing and Shipping

Packing everything you own is often one of the most stressful parts about moving to a new country. You have two options, you can either do it all yourself or hire a moving company to handle everything.

If you decide to use a moving company, spend some time getting quotes from a number of different sources. You’ll also want to check into the moving companies you are considering to make sure they get good reviews. If you are moving just few things, a quote can often be arranged over the phone, but if you are planning on moving a whole house, most companies will send somebody out to do a home survey. A good moving company will also provide you with a Customs Guide for your destination to inform you of all the regulations.

If you aren’t moving any large furniture, oftentimes paying for extra baggage on your airlines is cheaper and easier than sending your stuff overseas with a shipping company. An extra piece of luggage usually costs between $100 and $200, plus it will arrive at the same time as you.

 

Step 4 – Booking Your Ticket and Finding an Apartment

After you’ve got your visa and your personal goods in order, it’s time to book you flight ticket. While it is nice to do this long in advance to get the cheapest flight deal possible, it’s better to wait until the other things are set. Otherwise, if something doesn’t fall into place as expected, you may have to forfeit your ticket.

There are a number of sites you can use to find a great deal on international flights. We recommend SkyScanner and CheapoAir.

This is a great time to find an apartment too. Once you know the exact date of your flight, you can begin to look for an apartment, condo, or house that suits your needs. Start your search online and then contact some realtors if needed. While it seems like a great idea to get your new residence reserved and under contract before you arrive, you never know what unexpected surprise it might have in store for you. It’s best to wait until you are in country before picking out your new home. You can always spend a week or two in a hotel. It’s better to spend a little more on a hotel than be stuck in a place you don’t like for a year.

 

Step 5 – Sorting Your Finances

Getting finances in order is something often overlooked by many people moving internationally, but you’ll want to be on top of this. It’s a terrible feeling to be stuck in another country and unable get your money when you need it. Luckily there are a couple of things you can do to ensure you have access to your funds.

Make sure you set up your home country bank account for internet banking. This way you can set up a wire transfer after you move overseas. This is more of a last resort though, as there are better ways to move money overseas. Open up an account at a dedicated foreign exchange company like Forex, World First, or Xoom. They offer the cheapest and fastest options for sending money internationally, plus they give better exchange rates than the banks.

Check into the requirements for opening a foreign bank account in your new country, often you’ll need a visa and proof of address, but some countries may even require special permission from a government agency. Once you have opened you new foreign bank account, you can use one of the previously mentioned foreign exchange services to transfer your money as often as you need. Check out a Guide to Sending Money Overseas, How to Transfer Money as an Expat, or the Four Best Ways to Send Money Overseas for in-depth explanations of your best options.

In addition to getting everything set up so that you can handle your international money transfers with just the click of a couple of buttons, you should also bring enough money in cash to tide you over for about a month in your new country. This way you won’t be left twisting in the wind if something goes wrong.

 

Step 6 – Congratulate Yourself on a Job Well Done

You’ve researched what you need, sorted your visa, packed your things, booked your ticket, and got your finances in order. Now just sit back, relax and wait for the big day. Your greatest adventure is looming on the horizon.

 

 

How-to Save Money When Doing Business Internationally – Part Two

In part one of this article we discussed some things to keep in mind as you expand your business internationally, namely paying attention to exchange rates, researching low cost international money transfer options, and finding the right foreign bank account which offers you great service at a reasonable rate. Today we focus on another aspect of saving money when doing business overseas; hedging.

There are a number of ways you can hedge against the ups and downs in foreign currency exchange rates to ensure you are always getting the value needed for you goods.

 

Forward Currency Contracts

A forward currency contract lets you lock in a set exchange rate ahead of time. They can be used for protection if you are accepting large payments in a foreign currency and are worried the exchange rate might move against you. Once you purchase a currency forward contract, you get the agreed upon value for your foreign currency when the time comes no matter the current market rate.

The downside of using a forward contract is if you misjudge the market and the exchange rate improves when you are expecting it to plummet, you won’t be privy to the benefits. To learn more about forward currency contracts and how they are used, read “Using Currency Forward Contracts to Save on Large International Money Transfers”

 

Currency Options

Currency options are more flexible than forward contracts. With a currency option you have the right to buy or sell a particular foreign currency at a set rate on or before a specified date. The main difference with the currency option vs. a forward contract is flexibility. Unlike a forward contract, with an option you can choose not to go ahead with the exchange and keep your money in whatever form you currently hold it.

Because of the added flexibility you get with a currency option, you’ll be paying a higher premium for the deal; usually 1% or 2% over the value of the contract. If the foreign currency exchange rate goes down by 3% or 4% though, you’ll come out smelling like roses.

Currency options are best for large deals that may not ever go through. If you are unsure if the deal is going to work out, a forward currency contract is not a good choice as you’ll be stuck exchanging your cash even if you don’t want or need to. With a currency option you can choose not to exchange your money or use the spot exchange rate instead.

 

Holding a Foreign Currency

As long as you’ve set up a foreign bank account, you have a third option to hedge against poor exchange rates; holding a currency. This isn’t so much a permanent solution, but rather a temporary option that allows you to hold out until a profitable exchange rate comes around.

If there is a chance you might need the capital to cover operating costs at some time in the near future, holding a currency isn’t really a viable option as you may get stuck with an even worse exchange rate if you find yourself in a pinch and are forced to transfer your money quickly.

On the other hand, if you have staying power and are holding a foreign currency in stable economy that regularly has upswings, it can be beneficial to hold onto it for a couple of weeks or months until the currency increases in value. Holding onto a foreign currency also allows you to use it for paying bills, suppliers, etc in the country where business is being transacted which removes some of the risk involved with transferring and exchanging it. It’s less complicated than purchasing forward contracts or currency options too.

 

 

 

 

 

How-to Save Money When Doing Business Internationally – Part One

Growing your business from a domestic company to an international brand is an exciting and scary endeavor. On one hand, your homegrown business that you started from scratch is poised to explode on the international market where there will be countless new ways to profit and grow, but on the flip side there will be a number of unforeseen hurdles and a steep learning curve.

After logistics, one of the trickiest aspects of expanding internationally is managing your finances. A number of things can lead to higher costs and sometimes, just a tiny mistake can mean the loss of thousands of dollars. International banking and money transfers are a large part of doing business overseas and the fees associated with them are often overlooked as the cost of doing business, but they don’t have to be. There are a variety of things you can do to save money while growing your business overseas.

 

Keep an Eye on the Exchange Rate

Doing business internationally leads to unexpected ups and downs in your cash flow based on exchange rate swings. If you have a slim profit margin, this is doubly important. Exchange rates can work with you or against you depending on your timing and it’s vital to remember they change daily. Timing your currency transfers whether hourly, daily, or weekly, to align with the best exchange rate can equal to big savings.

In addition to keeping an eye on the daily swings in the exchange rate, there are a number of things you can do to hedge against negative currency moves. You can use forward currency contracts to lock in a specific exchange rate or set up a currency option. Check out part two of this article to learn about the ins and outs of these options more fully.

You’ll find out that at times it will be better to accept payments in a foreign currency and other times it’s best to accept payment in USD. Just make sure you discuss and agree with your clients upfront about the type of currency you’ll be accepting.

 

Don’t Forget About Banking and International Transfer Fees

The basics of international banking are very similar to domestic banking, but the fees associated with the services vary greatly. Take the time to fully explore your options to find out which institutions offer the best services at the lowest cost.

Even if you have a foreign bank account and credit card, at some point you’ll either need to send money abroad or want to take some of your profits back home. This is where you can really get whacked with international transfer fees from the large banks. Despite having an overseas bank account, it’s often best to use foreign exchange transfer services like Xoom or World First for your international money transfer. They offer better exchange rates than banks, usually by 3% or 4%, and the fess will be lower too. Many offer large international money transfers at no cost too.

 

The Takeaway

Expanding your business overseas is going to take a lot of moxy, a touch of knowhow, and maybe even a bit of luck. If you are smart about it and plan correctly though, the positives will far outweigh the downsides.

 

 

 

 

 

 

H1B Visa Holders Can Save When Sending Money to Family Overseas

If you’re like most H1B visa holders, you’ve left your friends and family back home in the hopes of making a good western salary. Not being able to see your family on a daily basis is a sacrifice you’re willing to make knowing that in the end, it will be worth it.

Unfortunately, with the high cost of living in America and the exorbitant fees charged by banks for sending money overseas, many H1B visa holders find it difficult to give their family as much money as they had hoped. So what’s the life on an H1B visa holder in America like and how can you save when sending money internationally to ensure your family is really benefiting from the sacrifice you’re making?

 

The Life of an H1B Visa Holder                                                                                     

Living and working in America as an H1B visa holder has its fair share of limitations. Unlike American citizens, you aren’t allowed to work multiple jobs or for multiple companies. The rules of an H1B visa state that you must work full-time and only for the company that is sponsoring your visa. You also aren’t eligible for any federally-held education loans.

There is also a fair bit of uncertainty that comes along with the visa privilege. For example, if you get laid off, you cannot claim unemployment and are supposed to leave the country. The loophole here would be if you can quickly find another company to sponsor your visa.

So with all of the uncertainties and drawbacks of living on an H1B visa, why do so many people still come to America and work on them. The answer is simple. They are much easier to obtain than a green card and the opportunity to make a western salary is hard to pass up.

 

How-to Ensure Your Family is Getting as Much Money as Possible             

You have put so much work into educating yourself, learning a skill, and getting an H1B visa so you can make good money working in America that it doesn’t seem fair for the huge banking corporations to take a large chunk every time you send it back home, but that’s exactly what they do.

It is not uncommon to lose 8% or more on the value of your money during an international money transfer with most banking institutions. How would you feel sending $2,000 USD to your family back home, paying a $50 fee to the bank, and then they only get an amount in their local currency with a $1,900 USD value? Pretty annoyed I imagine.

The reason this happens is because of the poor exchange rates banks give for international money transfers in addition to their high fees. Unfortunately most H1B visa holders are surprised when this first happens because the banks do a good job of hiding it. Luckily there is a way you can ensure your family is getting every dollar they deserve.

Dedicated foreign exchange services offer lower fees and better exchange rates than banks for overseas money transfers. With a company like Xoom or World First, that same transaction would only cost you $5 or $10 and your family will receive the full $2,000 value because their exchange rates are pretty close to, if not matching, the current market rate.

Don’t just settle on losing a large chunk of your money every time you want to send it back home to family. Do the research, check with foreign exchange transfer services, and find out how you can get the cheapest international money transfer.

 

Guide to Sending Money Overseas with a Foreign Exchange Firm

Sending money overseas may seem like a complicated, time-consuming, and expensive process, but it doesn’t have to be. Where banks used to be the only way to go, foreign exchange brokers are stepping in making it cheaper and simpler at the same time.

Using a foreign exchange broker to send money overseas makes the process a lot less costly and more convenient. Unfortunately, most Americans are still unaware of this option and tend to use their local bank branch. As the cross-border money transfer industry is becoming more transparent, it has become obvious that banks are the most expensive option and aren’t any more secure. In addition to the high fees often charged, upwards of $40, they are hiding poor exchange rates in the transaction.

It’s not uncommon for people sending money overseas to lose as much as 8% to 10% on the value of their money using one of the big banks. That drops down to about 2% or 3% when using a foreign exchange broker like Xoom or WorldFirst which specialize in international money transfers.

 

How to Send Money with a Foreign Exchange Firm

While each firm has their own unique way of doing things, they are follow a pretty similar process.

Step 1: Set Up an Account

The first thing to do is set up an account with your broker of choice using their website. You can see from the Xoom signup page that it’s a pretty standard form. Once you have an account, you can initiate a transfer.

Step 2: Initiate a Transfer

Now that your account is set up, you can initiate your first money transfer by picking the receiver location, the transfer amount, the receiving option, and choice of payments. Some common sending options include bank to bank transfers, bank to cash at specified locations, credit or debit card to bank, bank to Paypal, and more. Each transfer firm will offer their own options and fees.

Depending on the foreign exchange firm you choose, the whole transfer process should take anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 days. Take a look at four of the best ways to send money abroad which highlights each options sending time and fees.

That’s all it takes for a basic overseas money transfer, but there are more options for the savvy-minded focused on the best exchange rates.

 

Additional Options When Sending Money Abroad

While most of the foreign exchange firms charge little to no fees for common money transfers, one should always keep the exchange rate in mind. Almost all exchange firms will offer a better rate than banks for international money transfers handled at the same time, but exchange rates fluctuate from minute to minute. Consider using a forward contract to lock in an exchange rate for money to be sent at a later date. You can also set up a limit order which will automatically execute the transaction when the exchange rate hits a value of your choice.

 

Use Currency Forward Contracts to Save on Large International Money Transfers

If you are looking to save money and get the most out of your international money transfer, consider using a currency forward contract. Most people who send money abroad place what is called a spot trade. This means the trade is executed immediately at whatever the current exchange rate happens to be, but people who regularly send money overseas know that getting a good exchange rate can equal to be savings and luckily, there’s way to ensure that you do.

The problem with spot trades comes from the fluid nature of currency exchange rates. Because the value of one currency against another is always fluctuating, you never know if you are going to get a good deal when the time comes to transfer your money overseas and into another currency. Currency forward contracts aren’t subject to that same problem.

 

What is a Currency Forward Contract

In simple terms, a currency forward contract is a way of locking in an exchange rate ahead of time; before the trade ever happens. This can be very beneficial if you are a person or business that regularly transfers money overseas or know of a large international money transfer need in advance.

A currency forward contract works by connecting two parties in need of exchanging money. This doesn’t mean you’ll actually be put in contact with the other party; the foreign exchange firm will handle all of that. Both parties involved agree to the exchange rate they are willing to accept at a future date, which could anywhere from a single day to a few years in advance. Once the set date is hit, the transaction is executed at the agreed upon exchange rate regardless of the current market rates

 

Benefits of a Currency Forward Contract

Currency forward contracts are a way to hedge against the value of a currency dropping at a later date. It can be incredibly useful if you are working with a currency that has a tendency towards massive rate fluctuations. You can protect yourself against an unfavorable spot trade rate at a future date. It’s a valuable way of insuring a good exchange rate if you are planning a large international money transfer such as a house, property, or business purchase in the future.

Most companies that regularly do business overseas use currency forward contracts as way of ensuring a predictable cash flow and hedging against sudden currency drops which could have negative consequences.

For example, imagine a US importer is doing business with a Chinese manufacturing firm. They have a contract to purchase a large amount of products from the manufacturing firm in six months time and the currency for that transaction will be the Chinese Yuan. If the American importer thinks the value of the dollar may fall against the Yuan over the next six months, he can execute a currency forward contract which locks in a rate to purchase the Yuan in six months time. This leaves the American importer fully protected if the USD depreciates in value.

It works the same way for you if you’re planning a large overseas money transfer in the future. Lock in your rates using a currency forward contract and be assured you’ll get a good value for your dollar when the time comes.

Changing Trends in Migrant Money Remittances

The international money transfer market has been thrown into a tizzy over the last couple of years. While traditionally the big banks have had what could be called a monopoly on the majority of overseas money transfers, this is finally beginning to change. Private money transfer companies are coming to the fore as a better and cost effective alternative.

Adding a touch of transparency to the international money transfer industry, these private foreign exchange firms are offering lower rates and quicker transfers than the big banks. This is having huge effect on one of the least represented demographics in the governmental and financial sectors; migrant workers.

For a longer than most can remember, migrant workers have left developing countries and come to places like America, the U.K. and Australia for the chance at a better life. The majority of them send large portions of their salary to families members back in their home countries, but according to a World Bank Report, they are being charged an average of 8% for the service.

The ratio of fees to money transferred is generally higher for smaller amounts making this a costly problem for migrant workers who regularly send small amounts of money weekly. Not only do the big banks make money on the expensive fees charged, they often give poor exchange rates too.

 

A Better Way to Send Migrant Remittance Overseas

There are a number of new players on the scene leveling the playing field and helping migrants keep more of their money when sending it to friends or family members overseas. Companies like US Forex, WorldFirst, Transferwise, and Xoom are emerging as cheaper ways to send money abroad. Not only do they charge lower fees, but they give better exchange rates too. They are becoming the best way to regularly send small amounts of money internationally.

It’s not just migrant workers who can benefit from these emerging companies, but expats and holiday travelers as well. Instead of using their credit or debit cards and receiving 3% or higher fees, they can initiate a cash money transfer online from their home banks to a number of convenient pick up locations. It eliminates the need to choose between carrying large sums of cash or using credit and debit cards.

 

Boosting the Economies of Developing Countries

It’s not just the migrant workers and their families who can benefit from cheaper overseas money transfers, but whole economies too. The Pew Research Center has found that annual flow of remittances has nearly tripled since 2000 reaching a grand total of almost $500 billion. Along with foreign direct investment, migrant remittances are one of the most significant sources of money flowing into developing countries. Lower fees for sending money overseas translates into more money boosting the economies of developing nations.

The emergence of these foreign exchange firms is coming at just the right time; a period when the reputations of large banks are coming into question because of their deceptive actions. Recently international banks like Barclays and Deutsche Bank have been investigated for using algorithms to manipulate exchange rates. It will be interesting to see, how the banks respond as more people learn of cheaper ways to send money overseas.

 

The 5 Most Traded World Currencies

The Forex Market is the largest and most liquid trading market on the planet. Trillions of dollars in a variety of currencies change hands every day. Knowing a bit about the Forex market is integral to any person or business handling overseas money transfers or any other type of business abroad. Timing your foreign money transfer just right can mean the difference between making and losing large amounts of cash, especially when talking about transfers of large sums.

Despite the hundreds of world currencies available, there are five top dogs that account for the majority of the foreign currency transfers and exchanges. Today we examine the big five and what makes them so popular.

 

1. The US Dollar

It probably comes as no surprise to anybody that the U.S. dollar holds the top spot. It is the standard currency for most commodities and known as the unofficial global currency. In addition, it is often used as the intermediary in multi-currency exchanges. The USD is held by nearly every central bank and large investment agency for stabilization purposes as it is subject to minimal inflation.

Numerous other countries such as Panama, Cambodia, Zimbabwe, Ecuador and a number of Caribbean countries use the USD as an official currency and many more use a technique known as dollarization to keep the value of their money pegged against it. Even in countries where it’s not the official currency, it is often accepted happily.

 

2. The Euro

Recently created in 1999, the Euro has become a force to be reckoned with on the international currency market. It is the world’s second largest reserve currency and has a higher value than the USD. Every year more and more countries in Europe enter the euro zone to stabilize and improve their economies.

A number of countries in Africa have begun to peg their currency against the Euro for the same reason other countries peg theirs against the USD; to protect against inflation and stabilize the exchange rate. Despite being one of the world’s youngest currencies, it is one of the most trusted and becoming the one with the largest amount of cash currently in world circulation.

 

3. The Japanese Yen

Japan became an economic powerhouse in the 1980s and has managed to keep their place as a player on the global economy despite recent woes. It is the most traded Asian currency although the Chinese Yuan is rapidly making a name for itself. One of the reasons for the Yen’s popularity was its zero interest rate policy for the majority of the 1990s and 2000s. Many currency traders and large investment firms would borrow the Yen at a minimal cost and use it to invest in higher yielding currencies.

 

4. The Pound Sterling

The GBP is the world’s oldest currency still in circulation and was the most powerful player until the end of WWII. While its value has dropped on some occasions, it is currently worth more than the USD and the Euro. It’s another commonly held reserve currency because of its high value against other world currencies.

The U.K. is the only member of the euro zone that still uses its own currency. They do this to control their own domestic interest rates. It’s extremely liquid and has a high trading volume in the Forex market. Known for being more volatile than the Euro, it offers great investment opportunities for those knowledgeable of world politics and changing economic winds.

 

5. The Swiss Franc

The Swiss Franc is an unusual player on this list. It’s the only economy in the top 5 with a G.D.P that measures in the billions instead of trillions. They have managed their place as one of the world’s top converted currencies because of their neutral stance on most world events and their reputation as a safe haven for investors. They have one of the world’s most stable economies, but are highly dependent on foreign investment.

Its minimal volatility on the Forex market makes it a good place for foreign currency investors to park their funds between trades. Another interesting thing to note is that the Swiss National Bank is actually a specially regulated corporation and its monetary policies are governed by the heads of three major corporate Swiss banks.

 

The Take Away

We can see from the distinctly separate properties of each of the top five most traded currencies that the each has a different function on the world’s currency exchange market. Despite having very separate properties, the fate of each is affect by, and intertwined with, the others. Every movement in a currency on the Forex market has a correlated reaction from the others. The newness of the Euro shows us the foreign exchange market and world currency scene is ever evolving. Understanding the motivating factors behind these changes, opens up the opportunity for significant financial gains by the savvy investor.

 

The Best Way to Send Money to Students Overseas

Figuring out the best way to send money to students abroad can be tough for a lot of families. Most just wind up going with the traditional method of using their personal bank to wire money overseas. Unfortunately this is rarely the cheapest way to send money internationally and could be costing you hundreds or even thousands of dollars annually.

Finding the right choice to send money to a student overseas depends on the amount you plan on transferring. Some foreign money transfer firms offer no fees when sending over a certain amount and others charge minimal fees on small amounts.

 

Sending Small Amounts of Money Regularly to Students Overseas

While it’s usually not a good idea to regularly send small amounts of money to a student overseas as you will be hit with numerous transfer fees, it’s just a reality of having a child living abroad. Whether your kid isn’t good at budgeting or they ran into a situation where they need a small amount of cash quickly, there are still a couple options to send money abroad cheaper than your personal bank and they’ll get your money there quicker to boot.

Paying $30 to $60 to your bank for transferring $500 to a student overseas seems pretty pricey; especially if you are doing it on a regular basis. If you did that twice a month, you would be losing 6% to 12% of your money, not even including the horrendous exchange rate you will most often get.

We recommend using a foreign exchange firm like Xoom instead. They only charge $4.99 for transfers under $1,000, offer competitive exchange rates, and the money is usually transferred within one day. We realize every situation is different depending on how often and where you will be sending money overseas. To find the best rate for your personal overseas currency transfer use our comparison tool for real time rates and fees.

If you have one of those rare college kids who is a good at budgeting and want to know the best way to save money when transferring larger amounts of money overseas, check out this article.

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