If you need to send money to a friend or family member abroad, finding the right provider to move your payment quickly and safely can seem tricky. There are many choices out there, and the prices and processes they use vary widely. Doing some research in advance is the best way to make sure you’re getting the best deal for your needs.
OFX has been established in Australia for over 20 years, and processes some 3,250 transfers a day. This handy guide covers all you need to know about how to place a transfer with OFX, and what it’ll cost you to do so. When you’re thinking about your options, make sure you check out other specialist international transfer services such as TransferWise, to see how the costs stack up.
Before deciding if OFX is the right service for you, you’ll need to understand the fees and charging structure. Here’s an outline:
|Transfer fee||Transfers under AUD10,000: $15 Transfers over AUD10,000: free|
|Exchange rate markup||You’ll pay a markup on the exchange rate offered, compared to the real exchange rate which you get on google. OFX state: “Our OFX Customer Rate is an estimated rate that is based off the current Market Rate and includes our margin but excludes any fees (if applicable).”|
|Other fees||Potential fees due to use of the SWIFT network - more on that later: “Occasionally, third-party banks may deduct a fee from your transfer before paying your recipient. This fee may vary and OFX receives no portion of it.”|
OFX supports a wide range of global currencies and a number of other smaller regional and exotic currencies. The full list is below. It’s worth noting that Chinese yuan transactions are available for business customers only.
If you want to compare the exchange rate offered to any of these currencies, you can use an online currency converter to quickly and easily get the current mid-market rate. We’ll talk a bit about why you need to check the rate on offer, in a moment.
- United Arab Emirates dirham
- Australian dollar
- Canadian dollar
- Swiss franc
- Danish kroner
- Pound sterling
- Hong Kong dollar
- Japanese yen
- Mexican peso
- Norwegian kroner
- New Zealand dollar
- Polish zloty
- Swedish kroner
- Singapore dollar
- Thai baht
- US dollar
- South African rand
- Azerbaijani minat
- Bulgarian lev
- Bahraini dinar
- Brunei dollar
- Chinese yuan
- Czech koruna
- Egyptian pound
- Fiji dollar
- Hungarian forint
- Indonesian rupiah
- Israeli shekel
- Indian rupees
- South Korean won
- Kuwaiti dinar
- Sri Lankan rupee
- Moroccan dirham
- Malagasy ariary
- Malaysian ringgit
- Omani rial
- Peruvian nuevo sol
- Papua New Guinea kina
- Philippine peso
- Pakistan rupee
- Russian ruble
- Saudi riyal
- Solomon Island dollar
- Seychelles rupee
- Tongan pa’anga
- Turkish lira
- Taiwanese dollar
- Tanzanian shilling
- Venezuelan bolivar fuerte
- Vietnamese dong
- Vanuatu vatu
- Samoan talar
- CFA franc
- CFP franc
To find out what exchange rate OFX will offer for your transfer, you’ll need to register and log into your account. That’s because the rates used vary, according to your circumstances. Here’s what OFX say:
“Each OFX Customer may get a different rate depending on the Market Rate; the value of their transfer; how often they transfer; and or the currency pairing of their transfer.”
When you do get the exchange rate details you need, it’s important to compare the OFX customer rate to the mid-market exchange rate. The mid-market rate is the exchange rate used by banks trading currencies amongst themselves, and the rate you’ll get if you google your currency pairing. In fact, it’s the only real exchange rate out there.
However, the exchange rate that OFX gives will be calculated by taking the real exchange rate, and adding a markup or margin to it. Here’s how they explain it:
“Our OFX Customer Rate is an estimated rate that is based off the current Market Rate and includes our margin but excludes any fees (if applicable).”
Before you decide whether or not to use OFX for your money transfer, compare the exchange rate they give, to the mid-market rate, so you can see how much of a margin they have added. Exchange rates change all the time so it’s easiest to use an online currency converter to get the current mid-market exchange rate.
If you don’t like what you find, it’s time to get yourself a different international transfer provider. TransferWise always use the real mid-market exchange rate for transfers, and charge just a low, upfront fee for each transaction. See if the deal on offer with Transferwise is better for you, before you go ahead with the transfer.
OFX offers customers bank to bank transfers, which can take 1 to 5 working days to process. Major routes, such as sending dollars to the US, can be processed quicker, sometimes even in the same day. However, the exact length of time taken depends on the country you’re sending to, and the recipient’s bank, along with a number of other factors. One reason it’s difficult to say exactly how long it’ll take to complete the transfer is that bank to bank transfers commonly use the SWIFT network.
The SWIFT network is a system where banks all over the world cooperate to move money to different countries. It means that several banks might handle your transfer on the way to the recipient - a bit like your money taking a series of connecting flights to make its final destination. This process can take some time - and can also result in you being charged more than you might expect, because the intermediary banks involved can also take a fee from the transfer as they process it.
You can avoid the SWIFT network - and these hidden charges - by using a specialist provider like TransferWise for your international transfer.
OFX provides bank to bank transfers for customers, so you can send money to friends and family overseas.
OFX transfers are sent from your bank account, and finish up in the recipient’s bank account. To make an OFX international transfer, you’ll have to register and have your identity verified. You then complete the recipient’s details in an online form and make a bank transfer of the amount you’re sending, to the OFX local account in Australia. OFX then transfer the equivalent amount from their local bank account in the destination country, to your recipient.
OFX transfers are deposited directly in the recipient’s bank account, so they don’t need to sign up to access them.
There are no fixed limits - instead you’ll model the payment on the OFX website, and can then see the exchange rate and fees charged, and whether the transfer is possible based on the amount and destination country.
To make a transfer with OFX you need to register, and give your personal details. A member of the team will then call you to discuss your application, and finish setting up your account. You may also have to send in documents to verify your identity.
Here’s how to contact OFX if you have any questions:
Contact OFX by mail:
Visit the OFX office in Sydney
Call the team
All contact details can be found on the OFX site.
If you’re looking to send money abroad, you’ll know that there is no shortage of providers out there, including banks and specialist international transfer services. To find out which will work best for you, you’ll need to look at the fees charged - both upfront costs, the margin added to the exchange rate, and potential hidden fees thanks to thanks like the SWIFT system. A bit of time invested in finding the right service can really pay dividends, and make sure you’re not spending more than you have to, to send money overseas.
All sources are correct as of 03 December 2018
This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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