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Send money to Greece

How to send money to Greece using a money transfer service or foreign exchange broker to a Greek bank account.

Send money to Greece

Transfer money to Greece

When transferring money overseas to Greece, either regularly or once in a blue moon for a significant purchase. You can take several measures to ensure you get a great rate, service and ensure you are transferring money to Greece safely.

Ways to send money to Greece

  • Bank Transfer – You can elect to transfer your money directly to Greece from your GB Pound sterling account in Britain. Typically, the exchange rate to transfer money to Greece will be less competitive than the rates offered by a currency exchange broker. You may also have to visit your local bank branch to transfer a significant amount. When sending money to Greece via a bank transfer, you will also incur a transfer fee or charge of around £10-30.
  • Debit Card – If paying for goods online or via a retailer. You may have the ability to pay using a debit card. You are unlikely to be offered a great exchange rate when sending money to Greece using a debit card. You may also incur an administration charge. Those looking to transfer funds to Greece to purchase a second home pay a legal bill for an overseas property purchase. They might be obliged to send money to Greece via bank transfer, meaning they will need to transfer via their bank or preferably a foreign exchange broker. In many cases, a foreign exchange broker will accept a debit card as payment. Allowing clients 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 Greece 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 Greece is the SEPA payments system. It’s for this reason that currency transfers to Greece are quick and seamless.  

Required Bank Details

Identification – To send money via bank transfer, you will need 1-2 forms of a photo ID and need to have your bank card in your possession when visiting the branch. If you can send money to Greece via your online bank account, you might need a card reader, logins, etc.  

If using a currency exchange broker, all of your documents will be stored when you opened the account. They will ask you a few simple questions to validate the account via phone. Their online systems are very similar to those of a bank, just with better online exchange rates pricing.  

IBAN – The IBAN will start with GR and be followed by 25 characters. You’ll also need the name of the individual or business you are sending the money to credit a beneficiary.

Time taken to send money to Greece 

  • Typical time – For a foreign exchange broker to receive, convert your currency to Euros. Then transfer your money to a Greek account or beneficiary. You should allow between 1-2 working days. Occasionally the beneficiary bank makes take a while to process and allocate funds. If using a retail bank, you should allow for 1-2 days more as their 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 Greece and funds clearing the same day. Typically, a currency exchange broker will quote 1-2 days. It might take the beneficiaries to account for a day or so to clear funds.  

    Your bank will take a lot longer, typically 2-4 days 

Cost to Transfer Money to Greece

  • Commission – FX commission taken by international banks varies from one organisation to the next. Nonetheless, one shared resemblance is they remain uncompetitive when compared to FX brokers. A currency exchange broker will generally have the ability to save their clients around 1-4% when sending out money to Greece in addition to various other areas of Europe.  
  • Transfer Fees – An overseas financial institution will generally bill anywhere between ₤ 10 -₤ 40, or local currency equivalent to transfer your money to Greece. Many currency exchange brokers do not charge transfer fees. None included on Foreign exchange Live do.  
  • Currency exchange rate – A financial institution will typically use a ‘day-to-day FX price’, which will be established when the branch opens up in the morning. To eliminate any currency market rate variations in Euro exchange rates, a margin or spread will be added to cover any daytime euro cash volatility. Fx brokers, on the other hand, work from the live market. Using up to the minute euro currency exchange rates allows you to make the most advantageous currency trends and receive help if the euro price drops. 

Fees to Receive Money in Greece

A bank will typically charge anywhere between £10 -40 to transfer your money to Greece. The vast majority of currency exchange brokers won’t charge a fee. None featured on Foreign Exchange Live charge do.

  • Commission – Commission rates charged by banks vary from bank to bank but are invariably uncompetitive when compared against those from a foreign exchange broker. A broker will typically be able to save between 1-4% when sending money to Greece.
  • Exchange Rate – Banks will typically work from a ‘day FX rate’, 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. On the other hand, foreign exchange brokers work from live euro exchange rates. Allowing their clients to benefit from positive movements and seek guidance if the euro exchange rate works against you.
  • Fees for Receiving Money in Euro – Greece is part of the SEPA payments service. Therefore, if you send money from a European country, you shouldn’t incur an intermediary fee or charges. If you are charged a fee for this, your bank is taken, and you can generally address this with them. It is, however, highly uncommon.  

Limits on money transfers to Greece

You should not be restricted on how much money you can move to Greece; you or your business can justify the euro money transfer. If your currency exchange broker approves the money transfer, there is no written limitation on just how much you can trade.  

Generally, if a transfer exceeds ₤ 500,000+ or currency equivalent, your international currency broker can request a duplicate of a financial statement to confirm your ability to meet the currency contract financially. They could additionally ask for documentation to reveal the reason for the transfer (e.g., Greek residential property acquisition).

Do Foreign Exchange Brokers Send Money to all Greek Banks?  

Providing your Greek bank or your beneficiaries’ Greek bank is correctly regulated and approved. You’ll encounter no issues transferring money to Greece. The transfer will typically take 1-2 days to clear, and funds are received.    

Transfer deposit to open Greek banks account

A global financial institution or currency broker will certainly be happy assist with transferring funds to a brand-new Greek account. Simply ensure any paperwork and your Greek account details are to hand, your bank or broker can then assist with your bank down payment transfer as well as move your money to Greece.

Greek financial institutions will anticipate you to credit your account without delay and expect in between EUR50 as well as EUR300 to be sent immediately.

Safely Send Money to the Greek

Providing you have done all the due diligence on the person or company you are transferring to; you should encounter no issues. Standard rules apply. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If beneficiary details do not tally with the company or individual you are dealing with, ask questions. If you are dealing with a developer or property promoter, check their trading history and research the overseas property forums before committing to sending money to Greece.

  • FCA – Ensure your foreign exchange broker is financial conduct authority authorised. They should never be unwilling to share their number on the FCA’s register, and it should be featured on their website.  
  • Guarantees – Whilst a broker won’t offer guarantees, their accounts should be held with tier 1 banking partners. All funds should be allotted to a segregated account, separate from their working capital. Meaning if something was to happen to the currency company, you could reclaim the funds directly from the bank.  
  • Protection – Foreign exchange brokers follow stringent anti-money laundering protocol to ensure they are only working with legitimate clients and companies. This is continued when they remit funds. Many currency brokers will request information on transfer whose beneficiaries look the slightest bit dubious. Their trading systems are also encrypted. They implement high levels of technology to avoid the prospect of their data being corrupted.  
  • Fraud – Naturally, Fraud does exist and can occur if you’re not vigilant. Never send your logins etc., over email or be incentivised to make an international transfer by your currency exchange broker. Always ensure correspondence with your broker is from the correct email address. If a new account manager contacts you, agree to call them back to ensure they are a staff member.  

Reasons to send money to Greece

  • Bills – Your Greek holiday home or company will have reoccurring costs. These can consist of regional state property tax, renovation costs, or power costs. A forex broker will be more than happy to establish repayments to top up your Greek account and care for any continuous cash transfers to Greece.
  • Loans – If a loved one has financed you in Greece, you might want to clear the financial debt if euro prices trend in your favour. Alternatively, if you have a home loan on your Greek second home.  If the Euro rate is in your favour, you might want to consider sending out cash to Greece to pay off your second residence euro home loan.
  • Family – Birthday parties and also family members occasions, as well as other seasonal getaways, are never far. Your FX broker account can be a fantastic method to send financial gifts to members of the family in Greece.
  • Property – When the Euro currency exchange rate moves in your favour, you might think about capitalising and make building renovations to your Greek home.
  • Inheritance – Unfortunately, many experienced friends and family members passing away overseas. You may need to repatriate inheritance funds to Greece. A broker can sensitively take care of the procedure.
  • Car – If starting a new life in Greece, you might choose to lease or acquire a car to commute or uncover the Greek countryside.
  • Holiday – If leasing a home or condo for a holiday in Greece, your FX broker will supply a far much better euro rate than a financial institution or debit cards.
  • International wholesalers – When buying overseas items or materials, you can source several FX broker solutions to minimise FX risk and pay for your products in Euros.  

Foreign Exchange Brokers

Considering the services of a credible foreign exchange broker is the best way to save money when sending money abroad. Savings between 1-4% are feasible, 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 Greece.

Finding a reputable Foreign Exchange Broker

Clients can compare the offerings of transfer services and currency exchange brokers in many ways when they need to transfer funds to Greece.

  • Regulation – always ensure the currency exchange broker you use is regulated. As an example, in the UK, Currency 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 transfer money to Greece and deal with many different scenarios.
  • Transfer fee or no transfer fee – especially worth considering when the payments being transferred to Greece are small. A transfer fee can typically outweigh the advantages of sending the money to Greece 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 Greece. 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 currency 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 Greece

Specialists such as Moneycorp and Rational FX have vast experience in advising and assisting clients worldwide 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 checking 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 currency exchange broker will process your transfer to Greece with no transfer fees and a smaller 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 Greece shortly after
  • Forward contracts – fix today’s exchange rate for payment up to 2 years in the future. Clients are essentially 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 money is traded automatically when the stop loss is triggered.
  • Firm order – target a rate superior to the current foreign exchange market rate. Once the desired exchange rate is reached, the currency is purchased day or night automatically.
  • Option contract – as with the forward contract and having the ability to opt for a better exchange 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 three months old)

List of Foreign Exchange Brokers

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

Arranging a transfer to Greece  

Once you’ve chosen which FX provider or bank you will use to transfer cash to Greece, you’ll need to arrange a money transfer. The money transfer to Greece can either be placed online or over the telephone with your Currency specialist. Firstly, you will need to agree on an exchange rate on the amount you wish to transfer and pay for the FX transfer. Payment to Greece will typically be made via transfer from your local bank to the FX provider’s segregated account. You’ll then need to provide the beneficiary for the Greek account. Your FX provider can then process the payment and sums of money transferred to Greece.     

Large Money Transfer to Greece  

When buying a second home or moving to Greece, you could need to make a more significant money transfer to Greece. When dealing with more substantial amounts, the timing of any transfers overseas is crucial.     

FX providers will suggest getting in touch at a minimum, a few weeks before the Greek money exchange is required. The difference on a £1000 transfer to Euros, if the rate moves by 3% are £30. However, a sizeable money transfer of £100,000 to the Euros, which encounters the same 3% currency movement, will vary by £3000. Meaning you could receive more Euros if timed correctly.  

Instant Money Transfers to Greece  

Several currency providers will be able to make instant money transfers to Greece. The fees taken by these transfer companies are comparable to those charged by retail banks. The Euro exchange rates on offer are similar to those taken in airports and train station bureaux de changes.     

When should I use an Instant Money Transfer Service?   

Using instant money transfer services to transfer money to Greece should only be considered once all payment avenues have been explored. Suppose a relative or friend is without cash and in dire straits whilst Greece. In that case, instant money services can be a handy way of getting euros to them quickly. You will, however, pay for this immediacy, and the commission taken by the currency provider relative to the amount will be high.

Greek Banks

Whether relocating to Greece or investing in a second home, there are several banks to consider. During the global economic crisis, Greek banks were scrutinised and stress-tested, meaning your funds these days should be in safe hands.  

Leading banks in Greece include the following institutions 

  • Piraeus Bank  
  • Alpha Bank  
  • National Bank of Greece
  • Eurobank  

When choosing your Greek bank, it’s worth reviewing all of the products and services on offer. Some banks will debit a fee if you withdraw money from ATM’s that the bank doesn’t own. Others will charge you a monthly fee and or charges. Therefore, it’s worth reviewing which best suits your needs.  

The majority of the leading Greek banks will operate online and telephone services in English. Most ATM’s will also opt for you to withdraw money in English.  

Opening a Bank account in Greece

To make the first steps toward owning a home in Greece, you will need to deposit the funds fully before starting the legal process. Thankfully you needn’t be intimidated by the process, thankfully once opened, most major banks operate in English.  

Suppose you have allowed your solicitor to work on your behalf by power of attorney. In that case, they might be able to open an account for you. However, if this isn’t the case, the following documents should cover the opening process:  

  • Recent mobile and landline telephone bill  
  • Recent utility bill (electricity, water or gas)  
  • Last tax return (UK p60 or p45)  
  • Any document which states your national insurance number or social security
  • Proof of occupation (payslip)
  • 12 months’ worth of bank account statements
  • Copy of birth certificate
  • Copies of passports
  • Marriage certificate
  • Tax residency certificate from HM revenue or IRS  

Your bank will generally wish to meet you at least once, and therefore it’s worth combining your viewing trip with an appointment at a local bank. 

Can I Send Money from a Greek Bank Account to the UK?  

Sending money from a Greek bank to a UK account will pose no issue. You may have to visit the Greek bank if the transfer from your account exceeds €25,000. If using a currency broker, they’ll contact you when the funds arrive from Greece. A EUR/GBP exchange rate can either be fixed upon reception of the money or before funds arrive. You’ll need to provide details of your UK account or beneficiary to process the transfer and send the pounds.     

Can I Send Money from a Greek Bank Account to a US Bank Account?  

A currency exchange specialist can arrange a transfer from Greece to the US with relative ease. The currency provider you work with will need your US account’s details, including the swift number, to execute the Euro to USD transfer. An exchange rate can be agreed upon before the cash arrives or once money appears in your FX account.     

Greek bank details

An IBAN (International Bank Account Number) is an internationally-agreed bank code composed of as many as 34 letters, numbers. These letters and numbers aid financial institutions to ensure that international transfers are processed accurately.  

  • The IBAN code for Greek accounts is composed of 27 characters  
  • 2 letter country code for Greece – GR  
  • 2-digit check number – 16  
  • 3-character swift for the Greek bank – xxx  
  • 4-digit bank branch code – xxxx  
  • 16-digit bank account number – 0000000123456543  

Sending Bank Deposits to Greece  

Retail banks and currency exchange specialists will be more than happy to make bank deposit transfers to Greece. All you’ll need to hand in is the Greek account details, including the IBAN, to send a bank deposit to Greece. The money transfer to Greece will take 1-2 days to clear in Greece.

Relocating to Greece

Greece has a total population of just 11 million and roughly the same landmass as the United Kingdom. Therefore, if you decide to buy a second home or relocate there, you shouldn’t be short of space. Its cost line reaches 17,000 kilometres, four times that of Spain. Despite the country’s economic troubles, tourism continues to increase. The property market, as with tourism, has enjoyed a rebirth and prices have improved along with the economy.  

The islands such as Corfu and Crete once again prove popular with English second home buyers and retirees. Other nationalities including, Germans, Scandinavians and French, opt to relocate to other areas of the country. The country has also proven attractive to foreigners from the middle east, India and Israel who purchase via golden visa. The investment threshold in Greece is €250,000, which offers golden visa investors a five-year residency.

Frequently Asked Questions

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