If you bank with Lloyds in the UK, you’ll find several options for transferring money abroad. And you may find you could get a better deal with TransferWise. But more on that later. Here’s a guide to how their international payment process works, as well as what costs are involved.
A quick example before we get started.
A theoretical online bank transfer sending £1000 from the UK to a euro bank account in Spain.
|Provider||Fee||Exchange Rate||Total Cost|
|Lloyds (UK)¹||£9.50 + correspondent bank fee £12||exchange rate + 3.55% markup||£9.50 + correspondent fee £12 + 3.55% markup|
|TransferWise||£3.75||The real exchange rate - the same one you find on Google||£3.75|
It seems clear that Lloyd’s fees are higher.
However, if the fees alone aren’t reason enough to consider an alternative, perhaps exchange rate markup will be. Lloyds specifically notes that for amounts less than £25,000, the markup is 3.55%.¹ In addition, there are normally correspondent and recipient banks who also charge fees. Lloyds notes a flat correspondent bank fee for that.
Those costs, if you start adding them up, are likely higher than you initially thought. Take that into account when you make your decision.
International bank transfers can be a costly affair. Because a number of different banks might be involved in the transfer, the precise cost isn't always clear and can vary. But here’s a summary of the costs that Lloyds Bank will charge in most cases.
|Lloyds international transfers||Regular fees|
|Incoming international transfer²|
|Outgoing international transfer¹|
|Additional fees may apply|
Read up on the full international payment details on Lloyds website. Depending on the precise details of your account and your transfer, the costs might not be exactly the same as those listed above.
The real cost of your international transfer also depends on what exchange rate is used. When banks make an international transfer, they can set the exchange rate themselves. And Lloyds uses its own standard exchange rate.
Lloyds doesn't guarantee exactly what this rate will be, although they do specify the maximum amount by which this rate will differ from the ‘wholesale rate’ that banks use to trade between themselves.
These figures are subject to change too, though. The latest ones¹ as currently available online are as follows:
|Transfer amount||Max. difference between Lloyds standard exchange rate and the wholesale rate|
|Up to £25,000||3.55%|
|Up to £75,000||2.40%|
|Up to £250,000||2%|
|More than £250,000||1.50%|
What that means is that when Lloyds makes your transfer, they might mark up the exchange rate by as much as 3.55%.
That’s not all the fees and costs you might face. Often, when international transfers are made, multiple banks end up charging a fee- the recipient’s bank might, as well as any intermediary banks that are involved. With Lloyds, you will share payment fees with the recipient when the payment is made using online banking (any currency) and in any currency to a bank account in the UK and EEA.¹
You can check some additional fees in the table below:
|International transfers||Additional fees per payment|
|Sending/recipient bank and/or intermediary bank(s)³|
|Tracking the status of the transfer³|
|Amending a transfer³|
|Stopping a transfer³|
Rather than using an exchange rate chosen by a bank, an international payment with TransferWise will give you the same rate that you’ll find on Google: the mid-market rate, which offers more value for you. And there’s only a simple fee to pay, which is always stated upfront. Making your transfer through TransferWise could save you a lot of money.
And if you need to hold money in another currency, a Borderless multi-currency account lets you do just that. You can hold money in more than 50 currencies and get local account details in pounds, EUR, US dollar, Australian dollar, New Zealand dollar, Singapore dollar, Romanian lei, Hungarian forint, and Turkish lira.
You can make an international bank transfer using their online service or their mobile app.
Online, you’ll be able to follow the instructions onscreen to make your payment. From ‘More actions’, choose ‘Payments and Transfers’ and then ‘Send money outside the UK’.⁴ Then either select a payee you’ve paid before or add details for a new one. Once the details are in place, you should be able to see an estimate of the cost, before you hit send.
In order to make an international money transfer with Lloyds, you’ll need the following information¹:
- The recipient’s name
- The recipient’s address
- The recipient’s IBAN or other international account number
- The recipient bank name and address
- The recipient bank’s SWIFT/BIC (this SWIFT/BIC finder can help you out if you haven’t been given it)
What do I need or what should I give to the sender in order to receive an international payment with Lloyds?
The information¹ you’ll need to provide to receive an international transfer onto your Lloyds bank account is as follows:
- Your account number
- Your sort code
- Your IBAN
- Your BIC
- The name of the bank - Lloyds Bank - and the SWIFT code LOYDGB2L
If you’re making a payment in euros within the EEA (European Economic Area), it should be in the recipient bank account by the next working day - although if you make the transfer later than 3:00 pm, you might have to wait an extra day. Payments in other currencies within the EEA might take up to 4 working days.¹
For payments outside the EEA, there might be a longer wait - Lloyds estimates no longer than 14 days.¹
Lloyds offers an express service for international transfers if you have a business account, but the same service isn’t available for standard international transfers from personal accounts. This service costs £28.³
- You can give Lloyds a call if you have questions: their number is 0345 602 1997 in the UK or +44 1733 347 007 from abroad.
- Their website talks you through the other ways to get in touch, such as sending Lloyds an email.
International money transfers can seem daunting, and the exact costs are often hard to find out. However, once you choose to make your transfer, make sure you know how much it’ll cost you - and how much money will actually end up being transferred to the recipient.
- Lloyds - online international payments (fees)
- Lloyds - receiving payments from abroad
- Lloyds - charging options
- Lloyds - online banking
All sources checked on December 30, 2020
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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