Sending money to Switzerland inefficiently can leave you stung by fees and delays.
There are several options available to you. International transactions can be received by any of the 300 Swiss banks and The Post (most offering an online transfer service, too). It’s required by Swiss legislation that all fees and costs involved be declared before the transaction is carried out.
An alternative is to use an online service such as CurrencyFair to handle the transfers. A service like this gets around some of the heftier fees, by carrying out local transactions rather than international ones. It works in three steps:
1) Deposit your money into a CurrencyFair account.
2) Convert your money by matching with other users who are sending money in the opposite direction
3) Transfer your money to a nominated account in the country of destination.
They promise a 0.15 percent commission which is included in the quote you receive before completing the transaction – so this may be worth looking into if you’re annoyed by the way your bank handles international transactions.
To complete any international transfer to Switzerland you’ll need a couple of things – primarily the details of the nominated account including the IBAN and BIC/SWIFT numbers. If you don’t know these, your bank will provide them. Be aware that not including this information can incur additional fees!
If you do use a money transfer firm like the one mentioned above, you will be required to provide identification for the sender and receiver and sometimes other documentation, such as proof of residence.
Online services offer the most convenience, but the transfers can be slow. Dedicated money transfer firms tend to be the fastest, but may offer poorer exchange rates. It’s always worth researching to find what suits you and your circumstances!