Cheapest method to send $30k to Dubai UAE?
March 29, 2009 7:51 PM   Subscribe

Simple question: what is the cheapest method to send $30k from the USA to Dubai, UAE? Any advice or experience is greatly appreciated! Options I have considered are - Paypal - Western Union - Moneybookers
posted by lupefiasco to Work & Money (11 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Bank to bank wire transfer - if you have large deposits with a bank in the US, they might waive the fees for you. Of course you'll also need a bank account in Dubai to transfer the money to - check to make sure there aren't any fees for receiving a wire. I don't know about Dubai specifically, but many banks outside of the US don't charge for incoming wires.

Also be aware that 30k will raise all sorts of red flags and require any financial institution to file a report with their regulators.
posted by mosessis at 7:58 PM on March 29, 2009

Response by poster: Just to clarify, this is money I am sending to my fiance who is at the moment in Dubai. No long lost princes were involved in this question.
posted by lupefiasco at 8:03 PM on March 29, 2009

How fast does it need to be? (e.g. If it were possible to mail a cheque but it would take months to clear, would that be okay?)
posted by winston at 8:05 PM on March 29, 2009

Wire transfer is probably your best bet. American Express might also be able to help you, as long as you're a cardholder. Call them up, they should be able to set things up for you.
posted by paperzach at 8:21 PM on March 29, 2009

Best answer: Another thumbs up for international wire transfer.

You'll need the bank name and address in dubai.
The SWIFT code for Dubai.
The account number
The name on the Account, and
The IBAN number.

You're local financial institution should help. Be prepared to document the purpose of the funds.

Hope this helps.
posted by davidamann at 8:37 PM on March 29, 2009 [1 favorite]

Yesing wire transfers.

Another option, find an intern'l bank that operates in both locations (ie HSBC) and open an account in both names. Deposit or transfer money in US location. He withdrawls money from the same bank in Dubai.

I've also heard of (but never done this myself) people depositing money and mailing the ATM card to the other person. Then the pin is given over the phone. Of course that means withdrawals in smallish amounts.

Before sending the money out of the country, make sure there aren't limits placed on what can be sent back to the US (in case he doesn't need it all) or how it can be withdrawn so the money doesn't end up "stuck" where you can't access it.
posted by MuckWeh at 9:05 PM on March 29, 2009

If you find that the costs for a wire transfer are more than you would like to pay, you can use a foreign currency exchange company. We used HiFX (no affiliation) when we transfered the down payment on our house from one country and currency to another country and currency. They were fast, friendly, efficient and we saved a barrel of money over what our bank(s) wanted to charge for currency exachange, sending and recieving of funds.
posted by DarlingBri at 9:21 PM on March 29, 2009

And be prepared to have Homeland Security sniffing around your personal affairs for some time.
posted by Neiltupper at 3:05 AM on March 30, 2009

Yes, wire transfer. Should take three working days.
posted by atrazine at 3:37 AM on March 30, 2009

If you want to do a wire transfer and have accounts at multiple banks, you should shop around. In my experience, there's a wire transfer fee, but this is nowhere near as expensive as the exchange rate spread, which can easily be hundreds of dollars for a $30k transfer. Make sure you take both the fee and the spread into account.

And be prepared to have Homeland Security sniffing around your personal affairs for some time.

Really? Can you provide a link backing up this assertion? It's true that currency transactions over $10k are reported to regulators, however the regulator is the Treasury Department, not Homeland Security. For what it's worth, I've transferred over $30k out of the US with nary a peep from anyone. Haven't heard any horror stories (or any stories at all) from my expat friends either, which makes me wonder where you heard this.
posted by blue mustard at 7:26 AM on March 30, 2009

I have been using for international transfers. They have had better rates than my bank.
posted by avex at 8:09 AM on March 30, 2009

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