Worldwide Currencies is one of the options for sending money overseas. The others include banks, money transfer firms and foreign exchange (FX) brokers. Read on to find out more about Worldwide Currencies and whether this is the right choice for your needs.
Who are Worldwide Currencies?
Worldwide Currencies offers same day delivery on major currencies around the world. The company offers very competitive rates and customers can register online and open an account for regular transfers. The company is authorized by the financial conduct Authority.
How do you decide how to do your money exchange
When you are sending money overseas, the choice you make will depend on a range of areas, including:
- the amount of money you are looking to send
- the total cost, including fees and charges
- the frequency of your payments
- the way in which the recipient would like to receive the funds
- how urgently the money is needed
If you stick to these steps, you can find the option that works best for your needs.
Step 1 – Consider the choices
These are the main considerations for sending money overseas:
- bank or building society
- foreign exchange (FX) brokers (like Worldwide Currencies)
- high street transfer firms (such as Western Union).
Banks are the safest and most convenient option, especially for making regular payments.
FX brokers will usually be the most appropriate option, if you’re planning to send larger amounts, which will usually be over £3,000.
Money transfer firms can take care of the transaction quickly, but they may be quite expensive, especially if you’re sending smaller amounts.
Step 2 – What will the total cost be?
With Worldwide Currencies there are a range of potential fees and exchange rates, so it can provide to be quite challenging to work out.
The best thing to do is to find out the total amount of money you will get for your pounds, after all costs. This will give you a figure which you can now use to compare with other options you have.
The total cost is comprised of three parts:
- Foreign exchange rates – these are likely to change fairly regularly so if you’re comparing different offers, you should try and make sure you do this within the same day.
- Sending fees – this is the charge for sending the money.
- Receiving fees – some firms will charge a receiver fee too, but you will be able to cover this, instead of the recipient.
Fees may vary depending on the total value of what you are planning to send. There are some exchange firms that will give you better rates if you are sending large amounts, especially over £5,000.
The first step should be to request a quote from your bank, which you can use to compare with the others, including acquiring quotes from FX brokers sites like FX Compared.
Step 3 – Clarify the details
Now that you have found the most favourable option to suit your needs, you will be able to confirm that the company are permitted to handle your transfer, and get confirmation of this, including the destination and time frame.
You should request this in writing, if possible, so that you can use it if anything goes wrong.
Make sure you keep hold of all the paperwork and receipts, just incase you need them in the future.
Will my money be safe if I am transferring with Worldwide Currencies?
Although money which is held in a UK savings account is protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), which means if a firm goes out of business, your money is protected. This compensation scheme does not exist with these transfer firms, so if the company goes bust, you will, unfortunately, lose your money too.
Money transfer firms or FX brokers like Worldwide Currencies who have Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) authorised will have a responsibility to adhere to certain rules, and this will greatly increase the chance of being able to get your money back, should the worst happen.
If you’re planning to send a large amount of money, you would be better off trying to increase the chance of being protected, by using an FCA authorised firm.
What about your bank or building society?
Your bank or building society will be more than willing to deal with the money transfer and is one of the safest ways to send your money overseas.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons:
- Easy to arrange – your bank will be able to help you during the set up process and in some cases, you can do it online or on your mobile.
- Convenient – you will find banks and building societies readily available on your high street, which makes it a convenient option, even if you can’t access online banking.
- Safe and secure – your money will always be protected when you use your bank or building society to send money overseas using a UK bank or building society. This is one of the main reasons for choosing this option.
- There may be lower exchange rates – If you are sending amounts over £5,000, you will usually benefit from a more favourable exchange rates when you use a broker.
- Slower transaction – standard transfer may take up to 6 business days, but it is possible that you will be able to pay to get an express service which may take only 1 or 2 days. Some foreign banks will charge a receivers fee at the end of the transfer. You may be able to cover this cost though.
If you need to send regular payments
When you use UK high street banks, you will find that many will also have branches based overseas, or at least have the ability to make arrangements for more favourable fees and lower charges.
You may be able to also benefit from exchange rates that are more competitive, making it a good option for regular payments.
If you need to pay bills on a second home abroad, for instance, this can be quite a good perk! The better rates you can get for regular payments, the better!
You would usually be required to have an account in both the sending and receiving country, in order to benefit from the better fees and rates.
What you will need
- The International Bank Account Number (IBAN) and Bank Identifier Code (BIC) for the account you’re making the payment to – the recipient of the money will be able to find these details by calling their bank, checking their bank statement or via online banking.
- You will also be required to have the IBAN and BIC from your own bank account. If you are transferring to the same bank, this may not be necessary.
How to use an online or high street money transfer firm
It is relatively easy to find a money transfer firm that will enable you to transfer money overseas.
Some, such as Western Union, have branches on the high street, and you will be able to find MoneyGram in Post Office branches. Many can also provide you with online services.
- Range of services – you may be able to send instant cash to the recipient or alternatively a straightforward money transfer into your bank account.
- Easy to organise – you may not even be required to have an account. For the transfer of small sums, you may not even be required to provide identification either.
- Quick process– you will usually be able to complete the money transfer quickly, often within just a few minutes. A money transfer from your bank account will usually take a lot longer.
- Wide range of fees – fees may be different, depending on the service you choose and can be particularly high for the transfer of small amounts. You may end up paying as much as £10 for a transfer of just £50, so make sure you know what to expect.
- Exchange rates can fluctuate– you should always compare the different prices on the day you are intending to carry out the money transfer. You may even be able to do this via online services.
- Less safety – the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) will not provide cover to these firms if they end up going out of business.
Using a high street money transfer service
- You will be able to find money transfer service in various ways, including on the high street and at the post office.
- You will usually not be required to open an account. Simply give the funds over and pay any necessary fees.
- After paying for the transfer, you will be given a reference number, and you should hand this to the recipient. The recipient will then collect the funds.
Before you hand over your cash:
- Make sure you understand the fees involved in the transfer.
- If you are sending ‘instant cash’ overseas, make sure you know where the money will be collected by the recipient. Speak to the recipient to make sure they will be able to get to the required branch or agency. You may have the option of sending the money to the e-wallet of the recipient (systems such as M-PESA are common).
How to use an online money transfer service
What you need to know:
- Online transfers may take a few days, so they’re only suitable for non-urgent transactions.
- Online money transfer firms will give you the chance to make international money transfers through online services, but you may need to pay a small fee.
- You will need to have your bank or credit card details to sign up through the firm’s website. This means you’ll need an email address and access to the internet.
Things to know before sending money overseas:
- Make sure you know what the recipient needs in order to be able to collect the cash. If they need a bank account, internet access or an email address, make sure you confirm that they have these.
- Use a password to protect your funds, and don’t share it with anyone.
The pros and cons of a foreign exchange broker
If you want to be able to send a large sum of money overseas, you will usually get the best deal by using a foreign exchange (FX) currency broker.
- Lower fees – if you are intending to send over £3,000, FX brokers will not usually charge you fees, or they will at least be lower.
- Better exchange rate – FX brokers are specialists in currency transaction and will usually be able to offer you a better exchange rate than if you use a bank or money transfer firm.
- Quick payment – money will normally hit the recipient’s account on the same, or the next day after the transaction.
- Regular payments – there are FX brokers that will be able to deal with regular transfers.
- Takes time to open an account – to complete the transfer with the FX broker, you will be required to be able to open and pay into an account. This may process may take up to two days.
- Smaller amounts may not give you the best possible deals – FX brokers may not usually be the best option for sending small sums of money.
- Less security – The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) does not provide cover to these firms if they go bust.
How to use comparison sites to get the best possible deal
When you’re looking for the best deal for your money transfer, these are some points you need to consider.
You should use more than one price comparison site, as some will be able to offer you special deals or you might not find all the possible providers, so you could end up missing out on great offers if you use just use on price comparison site.
Ensure that the deal is fit for purpose. There is a lot of choice out there and varying prices, so it can be difficult to work out the best possible deal to suit your needs. You should always ensure that the deal has all the elements you require, such as having FCA authorisation, and the branch is based in the required location.
Make sure you check the filers, as these sometimes hide great deals, and if that’s the case, you could end up missing out on a great offer!
Be aware of scams in money transfer
There are always scammers out there, who target those who are using money transfer services. This means you will need to ensure you are only ever using legitimate companies for your transfer.
We don’t believe that Worldwide Currencies are trying to scam anyone, but you should always be diligent.
These are some points to keep in mind to ensure you avoid being on the receiving end of any scams:
- Don’t take a deal if it seems to be much better than all of the others. There will be some differences, but these won’t usually be significant.
- If you receive unexpected calls or emails, make sure they’re genuine and authentic, before you click on links.
- Do not give out any personal information unless you are sure you are dealing with the right company.
Consider your future needs
You may use the current exchange rate for your urgent transfer needs.
If you’re concerned about the exchange rate changing for your future needs and further payments you’re looking to send, consider opting into a ‘forward contract’ as you can retain the current exchange rate for your future needs.
Forwards can be useful if you may need to send a large amount of money overseas in the future.
For instance, if you have plans to put down a payment on a second property in Spain but you are concerned about the pound weakening or the euro becoming stronger before you decide to send the money. This will allow you to lock in the rate.
What if things don’t go right with Worldwide Currencies
No matter what option you choose, you should retain all the necessary receipts and paperwork in case the process doesn’t quite go to plan.
Money transfer forms and FX brokers do not have cover by the compensation scheme, so will not be as safe as if you decide to use your bank.
If Worldwide Currencies is ‘registered’ with the FCA, they do not have a requirement to keep your money safe if they go out of business.
However, if they are ‘authorised’ by the FCA, they have a responsibility to keep your funds separate from company funds.
You can take a look at the Worldwide Currencies FCA authorisation on the Financial Conduct Authority website opens in new window.
When searching for other small firms, including money transfers agencies such as Western Union, you may wish to find the postcode so you can narrow your search.
Other options to sending money overseas with Worldwide Currencies
If you are just making payments to overseas companies for products or services, you may wish to use a credit card, or even your own debit card. Credit cards tend to have more security.
You should not send a foreign bank draft , also knows as a UK cheque to pay for your overseas products or payments.
The reason for this is that the process can be extremely slow, because you’ll be required to pay bank charges (and possibly UK bank handling charges).