1

I know international bank transfers, across different national currencies, can get pretty expensive; while transfers between my own accounts in the same are typically free (may not be true everywhere).

I'm interested in how the fees change with the destination in the following range:

  1. Account in another bank in the same EU member state
  2. Account in a bank in another EU members state which uses EUR
  3. Account in a bank in another EU members state which doesn't use EUR

I'm more interested in knowing whether there's a general rule for the relative increase, or whether it depends on country of source and/or of origin - but concrete examples are also relevant for an ABN AMRO account in the Netherlands.

  • I don't think there's a general rule you can use, as costs can vary between completely free (UK) to paying sometimes even 3-5% (Hungary) to another account in the same bank. Also note there are a lot of currencies in the EU zone, apart from the UK the Nordic countries and most Eastern European countries use something different than €. But for €-zone countries there is the SEPA, which should make transfers between any two € accounts cheap and easy, but afaik it's not fully implemented yet – SztupY Nov 17 '17 at 18:48
  • I think you should limit your question however as this is too broad. Asking something like "how does SEPA work for cross border € transactions" might be better – SztupY Nov 17 '17 at 18:51
  • Not just the UK: eight other EU countries have their own currencies: Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Croatia. – phoog Nov 17 '17 at 19:58
  • @phoog: Fixed that. – einpoklum - reinstate Monica Nov 18 '17 at 0:22
  • Incidentally, if you use ABN AMRO online banking website, you might have noticed that the traditional Dutch bank account number have been dropped in favour of IBAN, some time last year I think. – Gala Nov 21 '17 at 16:51
3

There isn't any systematic, gradual increase based on these factors. In my experience, transfers to an EUR-denominated account in the SEPA can be free. Same bank, other bank, other country in the Eurozone, even EUR-denominated account in a non-EUR country, it does not necessarily matter. I cannot guarantee that it's the case with all possible bank/country pairs but I have done all these (including transfers between countries and transfer to an EUR-denominated account at a UK institution), from my Dutch ABN-AMRO account, without incurring any fee.

Wikipedia suggests this is actually a rule. Banks are still allowed to charge for bank transfers, but then they have to do it for all transactions and cannot discriminate between domestic and foreign banks (at least inside the SEPA). Apparently, any fee should also be charged separately, instead of being deducted from the amount of the transaction (which certainly used to happen before those rules were introduced), meaning you should be confident that the recipient will receive exactly the amount you specified and you should be able to figure out what the fees are reasonably easily.

If you need to change currency on the other hand, all bets are off, you will find multiple systems with all sorts of fees.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.