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Best Ways to Transfer Money Internationally from India

With the increase in the number of opportunities available to newcomers and foreign natives, the world we live in has become a much smaller place. It is not a surprise that outward remittances or sending money from India is a common practice that has grown in recent years. From exploring education and work opportunities to travelling or for any other reason which might take you overseas, you need both time and funds to adapt to the new place and make your stay comfortable.

People transfer money internationally from India for several reasons, be it to buy or rent property, pay tuition and school fees, book a vacation abroad, gift support money to friends and relatives, buy something from a foreign vendor or something else. Travel and education dominate the reasons for outward remittance from India, closely followed by maintenance of close relatives and gifts.

If you are also wondering how to transfer money internationally and are not aware of the process, then read on to understand how to make an international money transfer conveniently.

What is international money transfer & how to transfer money to another country?

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) allows Indian citizens to send money from India through a process called outward remittance which is directed by various foreign regulations.

  • This outward remittance can be made through banks, post offices, and digital payment platforms.

  • The RBI allows for up to $250,000 from India to be sent by one individual or entity for purposes such as business visits, leisure visits, gifts or donations, overseas education and employment, medical and other necessary expenses of relatives abroad, per financial year.

  • The necessary documents required for making an outward remittance include Permanent Account Number (PAN) card copy, original fee slip/receipt/bill where necessary, proof of adequate funds, Form A2, etc. based on the bank and platform you choose.

Factors to keep in mind when making a money transfer internationally from India

When you send money internationally, there are a few things to consider in order to get your money's worth.

  • Transfer Speed: You should expect an ideal timeframe of about 48-72 hours for the money sent from India through appropriate online channels and a few days for cheques and demand drafts.

  • Exchange Rates: The foreign exchange rate is the value of a currency compared to another foreign currency. A small difference in the exchange rate can make a significant difference in sending a large sum of money.

  • Overhead Charges: While transferring money, very often you’ll be charged a transfer fee that can be fixed or a percentage of the amount you are transferring, as well as foreign conversion tax and service tax in some cases, for each of the entities involved in the transfer process.

Best ways to transfer money internationally

There are several methods available that you can choose to transfer money internationally from India. The preferred method will depend highly on the purpose for which you are sending money, or prerequisites, like whether you require the money to reach early in case of an emergency, are looking for a budget alternative or would like to go with only a specific institution such as your bank or online platforms.

1.Bank Drafts and Cashier’s Checks

Bank Drafts and Cashier's Cheques are available at various bank outlets across the country. You can physically purchase the bank drafts and cashier’s cheques in the currency of the location you're sending money to. They are an ideal way to send money abroad as they are comparatively cheap, however take longer durations to reach the recipient. The drafts and cheques are traceable in case the checks or drafts don't reach the destination, and offer total peace of mind while making money transfer internationally from India.

2.International Money Order/ Offline Money Transfer

Before online wire transfers came into existence, money orders were the preferred way to send money abroad, even for people who didn’t know how to send money to another country. Money orders can be deposited into your bank account or cashed at any of the check cashing locations. It is still a safe and cheap way of sending money out of India.

3.Online Money Transfer

Online money transfer is one of the simplest methods to send money abroad. A majority of Indians use this method to make money transfer internationally from India. The process simply requires the destination account details, IBAN or SWIFT code of the recipient bank, account holder information, etc. However, do keep in mind since this process excludes intermediator banks, you may be levied heavy taxes and high exchange rates.

4.Online Wire Transfer

This is the latest mode to have emerged in the money transfer business and offer low fees as well as levied charges for making an international money transfer from India. There are various financial institutions available which you can use to make a wire transfer such as banks, or authorized money exchangers, such as Western Union, Book My Forex etc. This process does usually take longer than online money transfers but is one of the cheapest ways possible to send money abroad. Online wire transfers include intermediator banks to send across money overseas, to be able to provide affordable or negligible overhead charges.

Today, you are no longer limited by the number of options available to you to make a money transfer internationally from India, and have access to a plethora of companies and online platforms to choose from. Whichever one you choose, make sure to verify details such as the recipient account number and other details. Do not forget to compare prices and exchange rates and pay attention to how long the transfer will take, especially if the recipient is on a tight deadline. Always keep a record of your transaction in case you need to track it in the future and beware of frauds and scams. Only choose tried and trusted platforms when it comes to dealing with your money.

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