New research from Money Transfer Comparison has revealed 44% of Aussies don’t give a second thought to finding the best deal on fees or exchange rates, at least sometimes. 

A further 18% of the 1,002 respondents have never checked to make sure they have found the best deal. 

For those who never check or only occasionally check the fees and rates before making an overseas money transfer, two-thirds (68%) said they didn’t think they could save money by conducting research.

Meanwhile, 27% said they just didn’t have the time and a further 6% are willing to lose some money for the sake of convenience.

Founder and Managing Director at Money Transfer Comparison Alon Rajic said with some services charging fees of up to $30, Aussies may be paying more than what they bargained for.

“This is a significant number of Australians that are naively accepting the first rate they come across, and potentially spending more money than they need to, with some transfer services offering a foreign exchange rate markup of up to 4.81%,” Mr Rajic said.

“It doesn’t take longer than two minutes to compare transfer providers through a comparison site, and those two minutes could prove hugely valuable, especially for large-sum, or frequent transfers.” 

NAB data in December revealed international transfers by NAB customers jumped 20% compared to the monthly average. 

The top three destinations for funds were New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Read More: How to send money overseas

The age group more likely to neglect checking rates

Older Australians are less likely to do their due diligence to ensure they’re using the best international foreign exchange payment method before sending money.

Forty-six per cent of over 55s never or occasionally conduct research amongst different service providers.

This compares with 45% of those aged 35-54 and 41% of respondents aged 18-34.

According to the survey results, the older the respondent, the more likely they will assume savings can’t be made by comparing fees and rates.

Whereas younger Australians are motivated by convenience. One third (36%) of 18-34s selected lack of time as a barrier to checking what other offers are on the market.

What to consider before making international money transfers

Before you exchange currency or transfer money overseas, consider the following:

  • Is the current exchange rate strong? If not, it may pay off to wait and see if the value rises. 
  • Different service providers will offer different exchange rates and fees so be sure to compare all options e.g. bank transfer, PayPal, peer-to-peer transfer, etc. It only takes a few minutes out of your day. 
  • Always read the fine print of the institution you transfer through to avoid being hit with a surprise fee e.g. conversion fee.


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      Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

      All products with a link to a product provider’s website have a commercial marketing relationship between us and these providers. These products may appear prominently and first within the search tables regardless of their attributes and may include products marked as promoted, featured or sponsored. The link to a product provider’s website will allow you to get more information or apply for the product. By de-selecting “Show online partners only” additional non-commercialised products may be displayed and re-sorted at the top of the table. For more information on how we’ve selected these “Sponsored”, “Featured” and “Promoted” products, the products we compare, how we make money, and other important information about our service, please click here. Rates correct as of December 1, 2023. View disclaimer.

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