The United Nations International Migration Report released in 2017 suggests that there are around 258 million people who have relocated from the countries in which they were born. According to the Pew Research Center, migrants living in different parts of the world sent around U.S. 574 billion to their home countries in 2016. These numbers go to show that the global expat community is large, and that it also carries out cross-border fund transfers in significant volumes.
Expats might need to send money to their home countries for a variety of reasons. For instance, an individual who has moved from the U.S. to Australia might need to keep making ongoing payments towards an American mortgage. Alternatively, someone might simply need to send money to a family member back home. No matter why you want to send money to your home country, selecting the right service provider is important.
Should You Turn to a Bank?
Most of the top banks from different countries let their customers carry out overseas fund transfers. However, since cross-border remittances make up for a small portion of their revenues, there is a good chance that you will get less-than-desirable exchange rates, and you might also have to pay steep fees.
Turning to a bank to send money overseas might work well if you and the recipient have accounts with the same bank. For example, sending money from a Citibank account in the U.S. to a Citibank account in Singapore comes with no transfer fees.
Sending money to your home country does not have to be complicated or time consuming, and you may even initiate a transfer using a mobile app from just about anywhere. Some companies provide promotional offers for new customers, and these may lead to added savings. What’s important, though, is that you take some time to compare your options well.