How to send money to China
In recent years, China has developed one of the world’s largest economies, just as the Internet was becoming the number one spot for world trade action to take place. Naturally, the need to trade with China is increasing and it has to be as fast and as cheap as possible. We therefore have to explore the best options to send money to China. In addition to the classic postal services, we can pay electronically via banks, or non-bank organizations, which combine the advantages of both.
Let us skip obscure payment methods, such as sending money via snail mail. Regardless of whether the money is being physically sent, or in the form of a cheque, this method takes too long and the delivery itself can be uncertain, as one needs to know the recipient’s exact address. However, on the other hand, it is one of the cheapest approaches to sending cash on delivery and does not require opening an account.
On the contrary to obtaining physical cash, cheques are associated with various bank fees. In addition, banks today also offer other services that are equally priced but far faster, such as payment by card. However, although this is ideal for the Czech market – it may not be the best option for the Chinese market as A) either your card may not support international payments or B) a foreign store may not accept your card.
This can be solved by transferring money straight from one bank account to another. It may be a lengthy procedure but it works almost every time. Nevertheless, banks do know how to profit from it. The cheapest ones charge as little as 100 CZK for small transactions but it can easily amount to over 2000 CZK, when sending large sums of money. (Some banks offer their customers the option of opening a ‘foreign’ account as a means of avoiding currency conversion fees.)
The so-called micropayment systems work similarly. Different systems may slightly alter their definition of a micropayment, but generally it is a payment of less than 500 CZK. Some percentage and a small fixed fee (together around 10 to 50 CZK) is added to the paid sum. This fee also applies to payments that are not ‘micro’ – a larger sum of money leads to a larger amount derived from percentage. Larger payments thus lead to fees that are comparable to the ones offered by banks.
Foreign exchange brokers work the other way round. Their fees are fixed at around tens to hundreds of Czech crowns, but they often offer more advantageous exchange rates than banks. This means that the larger the sum of money, the more you save. However, from a modern point of view, this payment method has its disadvantages, as it requires a certain amount of paperwork, which can lead to the payment taking over a week’s time to be executed. Forex companies wait for the paid sum to be transferred to their account before forwarding it to the recipient, so in this case two transfers are actually taking place.
Special payment systems that work similarly to delivery services seem to be a very current way of transferring money. They have a lot of branches or partner stores to send money from and payments are delivered within minutes or hours, without any need for registration. It is also possible to ‘track the shipment’ with an assigned code. Not only are these brokers incredibly fast, but they are also specialized in these kinds of transfers, making them very reliable.
Some of these systems can combine their services with certain bank features. Apart from delivery-like payments, MoneyPolo offers quick over-the-counter money transfers with fees comparable to the cheapest of banks’ fees. It also allows customers to run a corporate account where every transaction costs are fixed at 25 EUR/30 USD regardless of the amount money is being transferred.
The competition is high among non-banking systems. This pushes prices down and boosts the quality of provided services up. Hence, whatever the needs of a payer may be, the right solution would certainly be found in the aforementioned methods.