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Penguin

Western Union Questions

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I want to send some money to a family member's EU bank account, and plan to try out Western Union. Normally, I go into my bank branch and make a wire transfer but for obvious reasons I am going to try to do this from home.

It looks like money can be sent bank account-to-bank account for no fee. Will my bank still charge its normal wire transfer fee? I called the bank and could not get a straight answer. I don't think the customer service rep even understood what I was asking, sigh. She just kept warning me about sending money overseas. (OK, lady, well thanks, but I have a kid in need overseas during a pandemic and WU seems reasonably safe to me, all things considered.)

She did advise not to use the debit card option since that sometimes trips as fraud. That sounds like a good tip as I really don't need to have my account locked down right now.

What else do I need to know?

 

Edited by Penguin

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Penguin sending hugs.......just reread and think I got the question wrong  but ........

Does he have any American Plastic? Perhaps a card not tied to your main bank account.  Hubby and I are thinking the easiest would be to send him to an ATM (which should be comparatively uncrowded) and have him do a withdrawal with the American card.  You pay the bill here.  You probably should let you bank know where he is as I think he is now in a different country than normal.

If not just do the transfer online. It really should be fine.  My husband has done it recently.......keep it under €5000 for a huge list of reasons.......hubby is not charged but does believe some accounts are charged.

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Western Union may not charge a fee for the transaction, but the exchange rate that they offer is much below competitive market rates.  If he has an ATM from a US bank with him, having him withdraw pounds from the local ATM machine using the ATM card.  If you need to, you can easily transfer money between two US accounts.  (Be sure that he does this with an ATM card and does not take a cash advance using a credit card.)  

I would not be too concerned regarding a fraud alert being triggered.  If that occurs, you should be able to quickly contact your bank and get the alert resolved.

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I just want to let you know that I was very happy with the WU transfer.

I tried bank-account-to-bank-account because there is no fee, but gave up after two failures to process. A debit card went right through and the fee was $2.99. My bank did not take a fee. 

I sent the money over the weekend and he had it on Tuesday.

While I am sure my bank gives a better exchange rate, my bank also charges $45 to wire money. 
 

ETA: He has access to cash through an ATM but that would not have solved this. We needed to inject a buffer of funds into his overseas account before an autodraft pulled. 

Edited by Penguin
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Glad you were able to get it taken care of!  Bank-to-Bank transfers are not usually a possibility between US accounts and European accounts.

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You can also use Xoom, a pay pal service to transfer money. The transaction fee is lesser than a bank IME.

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