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International wire transfer

Got a good recommendation for lodging in Bruges, but they don’t accept credit cards. There are a number of online services western union etc as opposed to going to my bank. What are experiences/recomendations for international wire transfers?

Posted by
7311 posts

A long time ago, we did a wire transfer thru our bank. It was extremely expensive. Does your local grocery store offer in-person Western Union wire transfers, if that might be faster/easier/more secure/cheaper than an Online system or your bank? I haven’t used it personally, but all the grocery chains here in Colorado seem to have the service at their Customer Service desk. It appears the service exists primarily for Mexicans living and working in Colorado to wire money home to family members in Mexico, with a set fee displayed, but prices for other countries are also posted. I’d imagine that Belgium could be wired, too, maybe while you’re picking up some groceries anyway.

Posted by
6781 posts

I've used Wise a few times with good results (back when they called themselves "TransferWise") and would recommend them.

Of course, be very sure you know what you are getting into and are highly confident of the recipient: unlike using credit cards, when you squirt money across the world via wire transfer, there's no consumer protections, no undo button, only the memory of your money that's now beyond your reach and potential regrets if something wasn't on the up and up.

Posted by
84 posts

If you have a Schwab account, and problem other brokers, domestic and international transfers can be done online no problem..

Posted by
11123 posts

Got a good recommendation for lodging in Bruges, but they don’t accept credit cards.

A personal recommendation from someone you know and trust?

A lodging that does not take credit cards, sets off warning lights and alarm bells to me.

No personal experience, but anytime Wise https://wise.com/us/. has been mentioned here it has been in a positive way.

Posted by
284 posts

I normally prefer to use wire transfer, and my bank doesn't charge a fee for this for most countries. If yours does, either Wise or Western Union are good options. You don't need to go to a Western Union outlet to make a transfer - it can be done online via their web site or app.

The main advantage of Western Union is money can be collected by the recipient in cash, so it works for people without bank accounts. But obviously this is not an issue if you're booking a hotel.

I do find that my bank usually offers a better exchange rate than Wise or Western Union, so worth double checking.

Posted by
2 posts

My bank (Banner) wants $50 to do a wire transfer, don’t know about their exchange rate yet, but I’ve read that banks buy at one rate and sell at another. I’m comfortable with my bank and will check with them on Monday. I appreciate the discussion, thank you. Update on Monday.

Posted by
19905 posts

Most US banks will look at you and dream of the money they can squeeze out of you. Yes, they get you with their terrible exchange rate as well. If you want to wire money, use Wise.

Posted by
2386 posts

My firstn2 bank transfers (;2 different banks ) were $40 and $35. Then I heard about Transferwise ( now just Wise ). I was skeptical until I read a favorable article about it in Forbes magazine. .when I used it, my fee was about $5

Posted by
8115 posts

I'd just pay'em in Euros--withdrawn from a bank ATM machine.