If you are trying to send money overseas, MT Global will be one option you can use. There are also banks, money transfer firms and foreign exchange (FX) brokers. Read on to learn more about MT Global and the options available to you.

Who are MT Global?

MT Global money transfers can be done only to more than 100 countries and three million pay-out locations. The company is registered in the UK and offers fast money transfers that can be available within 24 hours.

What is the best money exchange option?

With several different options, it can be difficult to decide how you should transfer your money, these are some points to consider before making your decision:

  • how much do you intend on sending?
  • what is the total cost and does this meet with your budget?
  • are you sending the money regularly, or is it just a one-off?
  • is it urgent?

These are some steps you can take to ensure you find the right deal to suit your circumstances:

Step 1 – Determine the available options

There are three main options available when you are doing a money transfer:

  • bank or building society
  • foreign exchange brokers (FX) (including MT Global)
  • high street transfer companies (such as Western Union).

Banks are by far the safest option when transferring money, but they all have different pros and cons, depending on your requirements.

If you are sending large amounts of over £3,000, then FX brokers might be your best option.

Money transfer firms are quick but can be expensive, especially for smaller amounts.

Step 2 – Find out the cost

MT Global have a range of fees and exchange rates, which can make it a bit difficult to work out the most suitable option.

Find out what you can get for your pounds, first of all, after you have paid any associated costs. You can then compare this to the other options.

There are generally three parts which make up the total costs of money exchange:

  • Foreign exchange rates – the exchange rates can change quickly, so keep an eye on these.
  • Sending fees – there will be a cost for sending the money.
  • Receiving fees – in some cases, a receiver fee may also be added.

The fees also vary depending on how much you are transferring. If you are transferring high amounts, the costs tend to be lower.

FX brokers sites like FX Compared can be useful for getting the costs for sending with this method.

Step 3 – Ask for confirmation

When you have made your decision, ask the company to confirm the costs etc, and get everything in writing. Keep all paperwork, incase there are any queries in the future.

Is it safe to use MT Global?

There is nothing to say that using MT Global isn’t safe. However, if you use your bank account, you are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) You don’t have such protection when you use other methods to transfer money.

Read our page on checking the authorisation of a firm and what to do if something goes wrong.

No matter what option you choose, you should use an FCA authorised firm, as you will have more protection this way.

Should you use your bank or building society?

You can use your bank or building society to send money overseas. The advantages of this method are that:

  • You can arrange it easily. You already have an account, so there is no need to set anything up.
  • It is convenient, as there are banks and building societies everywhere!
  • It is the most secure way of sending money, you have protection which you don’t get from the other options.

With any benefits, there are also the downsides, and this is also true for using banks and building societies:

  • You usually won’t get the best exchange rate. Foreign exchange brokers are more favourable in this way.
  • It is a lot slower than the other methods. In some cases, it can take up to 6 business days to make the transfer.

The benefits of regular payments

If you intend to send regular payments via your bank, you will usually benefit from better exchange rates and lower fees. It is worth checking with your bank first, but most have branches overseas, or at least links with other banks.

How to make a transfer via your bank account

  • You will need the International Bank Account Number (IBAN) and Bank Identifier Code (BIC) for the account you are transferring the money too. This should be easy for the recipient to find, especially if they do online banking.
  • You may also need the IBAN and BIC from your own bank account, depending on whether you are sending from the same bank or not.

Using an online or high street money transfer firm

There are money transfer firms everywhere, so it is easy to send money in this way.

Some are on the high street and others are online, or a combination of both. If you use a money transfer firm, you can enjoy a range of services, it is also easy to set up and the transfer can be done quickly. The downsides are that exchange rates can vary on a daily basis, and it is not covered by the FSCS, so it is not as safe as sending via the bank.

How to do a money transfer service via the high street

If you are looking to do a money transfer via the high street, this is how it works and what you can do:

  • Money transfer services are available throughout the high street. You can usually find them in newsagents, and some Post Offices will also offer this service.
  • You are not usually required to open an account to do your transfer. You can hand over the funds you want to send, pay the fees available and the rest will be taken care for you.
  • You will receive a reference number, which you can hand over to the recipient, and they will be able to use this to collect the money from the branch or agency.

Some points to remember:

  • Make sure you know what the fees will be, it may be a fast service, but it can also be quite expensive.
  • If it’s an instant cash payment you are making, you will need to check which branch or agency the recipient needs to visit to collect the payment. It will need to be near enough to them to be able to get to. There are sometimes options to send the cash directly to the recipient’s ‘wallet’ via their mobile. This means they won’t need to go anywhere to collect it, it will be sent directly to them.

Using an online money transfer service for your overseas payment

If you are considering doing an online money transfer, these are some points you should consider.

How it works and what to do:

  • If you are doing an online transfer, it is worth bearing in mind that it may take a few days, so it’s not ideal for urgent needs.
  • You can make international money transfers via online services, usually with a small fee.
  • Signing up couldn’t be easier, you just register your bank account/credit cards details via the company’s website. All you need is internet access and an email address, it couldn’t be easier!

Key points to remember:

  • Make sure you have all the details you need for the recipient to receive the cash. For instance, a bank account, email address etc. You should know what is required before you sign up.
  • Use a strong password to protect your account, and don’t be tempted to share this information.

Is a foreign exchange broker the best option?

These are some of the benefits of using foreign exchange brokers:

  • Low fees for high values – if you’re sending high amounts of over £3,000, you will usually either be charged low fees, or no fees.
  • Better exchange rate –  one of the benefits of FX brokers are that they specialise in currency transactions, so you can expect a great exchange rate with this option.
  • Quick transfer – the recipient may be able to receive the money on the same day or the next day.
  • Make regular payments – with FX brokers, you can make regular transfers if you wish.

The disadvantages of using FX brokers include:

  • Slow account opening times – as you are required to open an account, it can take a day or two to get everything set up.
  • Not ideal for small payments – if you are sending small amounts, this is not the most favourable option.
  • Less safety – with banks, you are covered by the FSCS. However, you don’t have such safety with FX brokers.

Why you should use comparison sites to find the best deal

Comparison sites are the best way to find the best deal, which is right for your situation. These are some tips for finding the right deal.

  • Use more than one comparison site – they all have different deals and special offers, the more research you do, the better! Although it can be time consuming, it will pay off when you get a great deal!
  • Make sure it fits with your requirements – not all options will be applicable. For instance, they may not be FCA authorised, they might not be able to transfer it as quickly as you want and/or the amount you want to transfer.
  • Look at filters – make sure there are no filters on that are hiding the perfect deal.
  • Understand your budget – if you have a budget, make sure you don’t go over this, take everything into account, including the fees.

Are transfer scams common?

Just like everything else, scams are also common when transferring money. It is important to be aware that these scams exist, and to be extra vigilant when taking advantage of any offers.

There is nothing to say that MT Global is a scam, but these are some thing to consider to ensure you avoid scams of this nature.

  • Does it look too good to be true? If a deal seems too good, it probably is. Always question deals that seem like they may be offering you a deal of a lifetime!
  • Are you receiving random emails? If you receive an email from the transfer company, make sure it is coming from a legitimate email address, and don’t click on any links as they may take you to a virus!
  • Don’t give our personal details – unless you are sure it is a legitimate company, don’t give out any personal details.

Preparing to transfer a large sum in the future

If you think you may want to send large sums of money in the future, you may want to consider a ‘forward contract’, which means you can lock down the exchange rate.

This can ensure you get the best possible exchange rate if you’re intending to transfer large sums for a property, for instance, or to send regular payments to family members.

If you are concerned about the pound weakening or the euro getting stronger, and you are worried you will miss out on a good exchange rate, this is a good way to do it.

You can lock in a great rate by doing this, and maybe even get a reduction on your fees in the process!

Your rights if things go wrong with MT Global

There are certain things you need to do to protect yourself incase the worst happens and things go wrong.

You should make sure you always keep any receipts and paperwork, as well as emails for evidence to support your case.

It is important to be aware that FX brokers are money transfer forms do not have the same protection as banks and building societies, so if they go bust, you could lose your money.

If MT Global are authorised by the FCA, they will need to offer protection though. If you would like to check MT Global FCA authorisation, you can do this by visiting the Financial Conduct Authority website, which opens in new window.

It is always best to use a company who are FCA authorised, as otherwise you won’t get the level of protection you want.

Alternatives to using MT Global for money transfer

If you are looking for an alternative, you can use a credit card or debit card for online payments and purchases, including online shopping via overseas stores.

It is advisable not to send a cheque overseas (or bank draft as it’s often known as), as this can be a lot slower and more expensive. You’ll have the foreign bank charges, as well as possibly UK bank handling charges too.

About the author

Scott Nelson

Scott Nelson is a financial services expert, with over 10 years’ experience in the industry, including 6 years in FCA regulated companies. Read more
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