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How to send money to France using a money transfer service or foreign exchange broker to a French bank account.

Send Money To France

Transfer money to France

When transferring money internationally to France on a regular or ad-hoc for a significant purchase, there are several measures you can take to increase your chances of getting a great rate, improved service and ensure you send money to France safely.

Ways to send money to France

  • Bank Transfer – You can elect to transfer your money directly to France from your bank account. Typically the exchange rate for transferring money to France will be much less competitive than the currency exchange rates on offer by a foreign exchange provider and you may have to visit your local bank branch to transfer a significant amount. When sending money to France via a bank transfer you will also incur a transfer fee or charge of around £10-30.
  • Debit Card – when paying for goods online or via an online retailer you may have the ability to pay using a debit card but are unlikely to be offered a great foreign exchange rate when sending money to France. You could also incur an administration charge from your bank to process the payment. Those looking to transfer money to France to purchase a second home or pay a legal bill for a holiday home purchase might be obliged to transfer money to France, meaning they will need to use their bank or ideally a specialist foreign exchange broker. More often than not a foreign exchange broker will accept your debit card as payment, allowing you to enjoy the convenience, avoid a transfer fee and benefit from a better exchange rate.
  • Credit Card – Ideal for renting holiday accommodation or rental property in France to get financial recourse and guarantee from your card provider. Not the most competitive in terms of the exchange rate offered but sometimes air miles or bonus points can be more of an attraction.
  • Swift/SEPA – Swift payments are relevant to money transfers outside the EU. Within the EU and therefore applicable when sending money to France is the SEPA payments system. It’s for this reason that currency transfer to Greece can take a few days longer than EU member states and the United States.

Required Bank Details to transfer money

Identification – To send money via a banking institution you will need 1-2 forms of picture ID and also need to have your bank card in your possession when going to the branch. If you have the option to send out money to France using your online bank account, you may need your card reader at hand and also logins etc for your account.

If making use of a foreign exchange broker’s services, all of your documents etc will be kept when you opened the account, they will simply ask you a few easy questions to verify the account through phone. Their online systems are extremely comparable to those of a bank just with far better online exchange rates prices.

IBAN – The IBAN will start with FR and be followed by 24 characters. You’ll also need the name of the individual or business you are sending the money to credit a beneficiary.

Time needed to send money to France

  • Typical time – for a foreign exchange broker to obtain, convert your currency to euro and move your cash to a Greek account or recipient you need to allow between 1-2 working days. Occasionally the beneficiary bank may take a while to confirm and allot funds transferred. If using a retail bank you should allow for 1-2 days more as there processing is typically slower.
  • Same day transfer – Providing funds are in your foreign exchange brokers account you have a good chance of transferring your money to France, and funds clearing the same day. Typically a foreign exchange broker will quote 1-2 days as it might take the beneficiaries bank account a day or so to clear funds. Your bank will take a lot longer, typically 2-4 days.

Costs making a money transfer to France

  • Transfer Fees – A bank will typically charge anywhere between £10 -£40 to transfer your money to France. The vast majority of foreign exchange brokers won’t charge a fee. None featured on Foreign Exchange Live charge do.
  • Commission – Commission taken by banks differs from bank to bank however they are invariably uncompetitive when compared against those from a foreign exchange broker. A broker will commonly be able to save their clients between 1-4% when sending money to France.
  • Exchange Rate – Banks will typically work from a ‘day FX rate’ which will be set when the local branch opens. To cover any market fluctuations with the Euro a healthy margin will be added to cover any daytime volatility. Foreign exchange brokers, on the other hand, work from live euro rates allowing you to benefit from positive movements and seek guidance if the euro exchange rate works against you.

Fees to Receive Money in France

France is part of SEPA payments service and therefore if you are sending money from a European country you shouldn’t incur an intermediary fee or charges. If you are charged a fee this is one taken by your bank and you can normally address this with them, it is however highly uncommon.

Limits on money transfers to the France

There aren’t any kind of transfer limits providing you or your company can warrant the payment and your foreign exchange broker is willing to make the payment, there is no restriction on how much you can trade.

Normally if a transfer goes beyond ₤ 500,000+ your foreign exchange broker could request a copy of a bank declaration revealing evidence of funds or a document explaining the reason for transfer (e.g French home purchase agreement).

Transfer deposit to open a French bank account

A financial institution and also foreign exchange broker will help you deposit funds into your French savings or current account. Just make sure any required paperwork and your French current account information to hand and they’ll both be able to assist with your bank deposit transfer to France.

Normally your French financial institution will expect you to deposit upwards of EUR100 as an initial deposit when your French account is opened. This naturally relies on the account and also bank you pick.

Safely Send Money to France

The good news is Foreign exchange service providers are extremely conscious of global settlements fraud. As well as being diligent on your behalf, they will cross check suspect beneficiaries through their systems as well as flag any kind of questionable payments.

  • FCA – Constantly guarantee your foreign exchange broker is financial conduct authority (FCA) authorised. A broker should never be unwilling to share their number on the FCA’s register as well as publicise it on their website.
  • Guarantees – Whilst a broker will not have the ability to supply guarantees or assurances their accounts need to be held with tier 1 financial partners. All client funds transferred to these segregated accounts must be set apart from their own working capital if something was to happen to the currency broker you can redeem the funds directly from the tier 1 bank.
  • Protection/security – Foreign exchange brokers comply with strict anti-money laundering protocol to ensure they are just dealing with legitimate customers as well as companies. This is continued when they transfer funds, brokers will request information on transfer whose beneficiaries look dubious. Their trading systems are encrypted as well as they apply high levels of online security to avoid the possibility of their data being corrupted.
  • Fraud – Regrettably Fraud does exist and can take place if you’re not attentive. Never send your logins etc over e-mail or be incentivised to make an international transfer by your foreign exchange broker. Always ensure correspondence with your broker is from a correct email address and also if you are spoken to by an unfamiliar or new account manager agree to call them back to guarantee they are an employee of your foreign exchange broker.

Top 7 reasons to transfer money to France

  • Bills – Your French property leasing or home will naturally include ongoing prices. These might include local real estate tax, repair work costs or utilities. A foreign exchange broker will be more than pleased to help in topping up your French bank account to cover these regular bills.
  • Loans – If you have borrowed money from a family member abroad you may wish to send them money to settle the loan. Additionally, you might wish to pay off a piece of you French residential or commercial property home loan.
  • Family – Birthday celebrations and also Christmas are never far away. A foreign exchange broker can be used to send financial presents to family members overseas.
  • Property – When the Euro foreign exchange rate jumps in your favour you could want to capitalise and also make home improvements.
  • Inheritance – sadly many encounter relatives dying overseas. You may be confronted with having to repatriate the proceeds of an abroad inheritance.
  • Car – If relocating to France you may want to purchase a vehicle to commute or travel around the country.
  • Holiday – If renting a villa for a vacation overseas your foreign exchange broker will without a doubt guarantee you get a better price than your bank or bank card.
  • International wholesales – When running a local business you need to acquire goods or items from worldwide wholesales that trade in a foreign currency.

Foreign Exchange Brokers

Considering the services of a credible foreign exchange broker is the best way of guaranteeing to save money when sending money abroad. Savings between 1-4% are feasible which will be significant on regular transfers and a Greek property purchase money transfers. They can also provide you with several solutions to maximise the amount of currency you receive in France.

Finding a reputable Foreign Exchange Broker

Clients can compare the offerings of transfer services and foreign exchange brokers in many ways when they need to transfer money to France.

  • Regulation – always ensure the foreign exchange broker you use is regulated, in the UK, for example, brokers must be authorised by the FCA (financial conduct authority)
  • Length of time in business – typically indicating knowledge of the market, number of clients they’ve helped, stability in the market. They are most likely to have helped many other clients transferring money to France and dealt with many different scenarios.
  • Transfer fee or no transfer fee – especially worth considering when the payments being transferred to France are small. A transfer fee can typically outweigh the advantages of sending the money to France via a bank or broker even if the rate offered is competitive. All brokers promoted on Foreign Exchange Live work on a fee-free basis.
  • Online transfer, telephone transfers or both – online Apps are great for small transfers to France. Recourse can be slow if the money goes astray. Customer service when dealing solely online can vary. Much of this service is via a chat/text box or email. An established foreign exchange broker will operate both an online and telephone dealing service. Meaning you speak directly to an account manager who will be assisted by a back-office team or customer service division.

Find The Right Broker To Transfer Money To France

Specialists such as Moneycorp and Rational FX have vast experience in advising and assisting clients all over the globe and saving them thousands of pounds in the process.

  • Customer Service – Banks are cumbersome and hard to contact from overseas. Transfer apps can be convenient for smaller payments, but don’t offer prompt customer support if an issue arises. Foreign exchange brokers offer a consistent service. All clients receive a personal account manager with a direct email address and phone number to enable easy contact and customer service if required.
  • Safety And Security – All top foreign exchange brokers will hold client funds in segregated accounts. All transactions are conducted following the FCA regulations and guidelines, we strongly advise to check with your broker on the exact details.
  • No Expensive Fees Or Charges – Depending on the bank, for each transaction, it could cost anywhere from £10 to £4o or local currency equivalent. A foreign exchange broker will process your transfer to France with no transfer fees and narrow margin (or spread).
  • Better Exchange Rates – A bank will, as a rule, be making a spread of between 2-6% whereas the rates on offer from leading providers will be around 1%. Once your trade is executed, you will be provided with a deal notification showing clearly the base currency amount and the number of Euros purchased.

Foreign Exchange Contracts

A foreign exchange broker offers several supplementary services not available in banks or on many money transfer apps. These include:

  • Spot contracts – Arranging a transfer and agreeing on a rate and sending the money to France shortly after
  • Forward contracts – fix today’s exchange rate for payment up to 2 years in the future. guaranteeing the cost of your purchase and avoiding foreign exchange volatility.
  • Stop-loss – If your currency pair is trending lower a stop-loss protects your currency from depreciating too much, the currency is traded automatically when it hits the agreed level
  • Firm order – target a rate superior to the current foreign exchange market rate. Once the desired exchange rate is reached, the currency is purchased automatically day or night.
  • Option contract – as with the forward contract but also having the ability to opt for a superior rate is the market rate improves. Typically for businesses rather than private clients.
  • Regular international transfers – A payment plan to send money overseas regularly

Documents needed for a foreign exchange broker account

The application to open your foreign exchange account can be completed within minutes. The first step is to apply online giving personal details and a brief overview of transfer needs. Once complete you will typically need to supply the following to get your account approved

  • A valid form of photo ID
  • Recent utility bill or address proof (less than 3 months old)

List of Foreign Exchange Brokers

  • Boutique brokerages such and Newbridge FX offer tailored services to cater to their clients’ needs and work tirelessly to limit their clients’ FX risk.
  • Midsize brokerages such as Rational FX operate both corporate and private client operations with a focus being on key markets such as France and Spain.
  • Large multi Geographic operations such as Moneycorp operate in multiple jurisdictions and have many local offices to best serve their global clientele.

Relocating to France

The Best Way to Open a French Bank Account and Transfer money to France

If you have a second home or are considering purchasing one you will be familiar with the array of means you can use when transferring money to France. Services can vary from using over the counter retail banks transfer services to transferring money quickly via an online App. However, for those looking at making significant transfers to France, it can pay dividends to speak to a specialist provider such as Currencies Direct. They have a strong knowledge of the French market and an excellent grasp of the process, notably when a property acquisition is part of the money transfer.

Setting an FX broker account will only take a few minutes and you can be sending funds internationally within hours. However beforehand you will have to tackle a French banking application which can be challenging when done from overseas. Fortunately, AXA Banque offers an English-speaking service allowing you to open an account from your current location before the purchase or relocation takes place.

Opening a Bank account – leading banks

Whether you are treating yourself to a city ‘pied-a-terre’ or a beautiful home in rural France banking coverage is comprehensive with leading banks having a presence in most small towns.

The leading French banks include Credit Agricole, BNP Paribas and Société Générale. These banks will offer many of the services required when moving to France including Mortgages, investment vehicles and insurances. They will, however, be very limited when it comes to advising on internal money transfers, and advice should be sought the moment you have an account open or find your future residence.

To open an account locally or via the English-speaking service provided by AXA Bank, you will require the following as a minimum. Although please be warned requirements can vary with each branch setting its parameters.

  • Photo ID – passport or photo ID drivers’ licence
  • Documentation on your residency status
  • Your address or future address – you can use a copy of your compromis de vente if you haven’t completed on your property transaction
  • In some cases, you may be requested to provide a cash deposit for the account or reference from your French employer

To qualify for a French bank account, you will have to fulfil the following criteria to be accepted.

  • Be over the age of 18 years old
  • Resident in a country where applications are accepted by the bank – many for example choose not to deal with those based outside of Europe.
  • Visit France frequently or are intending to purchase a property soon

Releve d’Identite bancaire – French bank account details

From country to country bank details will change in format and different terminology will be used. However, add in a foreign language and banking internationally and it can soon become baffling. In France this is very much the case, fortunately the vast majority of French banks issue a cheque book and your account details can normally easily be located within this cheque book.

Your French bank details or RIB (releve d’identitie bancaire) can be passed on to your bank or international payments provider to send money quickly and easily to your account. Likewise, if your Notaire or French estate agent provides you with their beneficiary accounts these will almost certainly be provided in a RIB format and can be passed onto your foreign exchange broker who can route funds within 1-2 days.

Why use an FX Specialist when Transferring money to France?

When purchasing a home in France seeking out the best advice is key, the same is true about finding the best way to transfer money to France. Whilst Banks can offer great general services making a large Euro purchase through them is the equivalent of having your Ferrari serviced at the local garage. Put simply they just aren’t equipped or set up adequately.

A specialist such as Currencies Direct can advise appropriately, the guidance on offer is based upon over 20 years of assisting 250,000 clients; the vast majority moving to mainland Europe, many to France.

In comparison to traditional retail banks, a specialist international payment provider or FX broker can offer several favourable terms and benefits, improving your overall experience when transferring money to France.

Foreign exchange broker – Dramatically improved levels of service

Whereas service levels in retail banks appear to continually deteriorate leading FX brokers and international payments providers continually look to improve. Many such as Currencies Direct offer intuitive online platforms, app’s and extended telephone dealing hours allowing you to trade at your convenience.

Whereas navigating a banks switchboard can test your patience, when you open an account with an FX provider you will automatically be coupled with an expert who will proactively manage your requirement. Many providers pride themselves on offering private bank levels of experience, offering excellent rates and incredible service.

Excellent exchange rates coupled with transparency

The rates on offer from leading providers such as Currencies Direct are rarely rivalled by retail banks and the saving on larger money transfers can be significant. Supplementary to these great savings is the transparency offered by providers. Upon completion of a currency transfer, you will be provided with a deal notification which will depict the base currency amount, the amount to be sent in France in Euros and the exchange rate you verbally agreed or booked online. Once the deal is done and funds have been sent the Euros will typically be visible in your French bank account within 2 days.