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Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

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Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby snk919 » 25 Jan 2012, 09:31

Hi,

I have heard that the bank charges is very high to do a wire transfer to Taiwan. The charges by the intermediary bank is like a 'black box' where you only know how much they charge after the recipient receive the money. Heard that some got charge as high as >10% of the total amount of money they transfer! Would be grateful if anyone of you who have done it before can share your experience on transfer money to Taiwan. I would like to transfer money from Malaysia to Taiwan but am trying to figure out the most cost effective way to do so. Thanks!
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby CTaitung » 25 Jan 2012, 11:04

Depends on the bank and the amount of money. Taiwan banks that I have dealt with do not charge a percentage of transaction, usually a flat fee. If it is a percentage, I do not think it is anything more than 0.25%. Yes, that's less than 1%.

You should be in touch with your bank in Malaysia to make sure they give you the best "deal" (charges) when wiring out (I know the banks in HK charge a cheap flat fee, and not a percentage, for outgoing wires), and then go to a private bank in Taiwan (not a government-controlled bank) and talk to the bank salesladies there in the financial management department. Because you are a foreigner, they will likely expect you to be a bit more "wealthy" than locals, and as such the financial management departments give you better charges (wire charges, currency exchange rates) than a walk-in up to the teller desk.

You can ask them directly their charges and how much you expect to bring in. These banks will want your business if you are staying here longer-term, because they finger you might do a bit more currency transactions than normal Taiwanese, which is a good business for them. Pick a few banks (leading ones are Chinatrust, Taishin, E.Sun, Fubon. Maybe even try HSBC Taipei, because in Hong Kong, HSBC website is very user friendly for currency transactions) and compare prices.

Make sure you ask what kind of exchange rate you can get for changing into NT$, before giving go ahead to exchange. Try to haggle just a bit.
You will have to open up 2 bank accounts: 1) an NT$ only bank account and 2) a foreign currency bank account (which can hold all kinds of different currencies at the same time.
To get the NT$ from that money in Malaysia, you first bring it into your foreign currency account and then get the favorable rate to exchange into NT$.
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby fh2000 » 25 Jan 2012, 11:35

I sent money from US to Taiwan, so my experience may not be universal. What I did was, I got a hold of the phone number of the bank in Taiwan that my relative has an account. I called the bank and asked for options. I found out that the cheapest way for me is to send my relative in Taiwan a US personal check. My relative deposit this check in his local branch in Taiwan. The bank charges him 1100 NTD. Wire transfer would cost me more in total fees. The downside of depositing a personal check in the bank in Taiwan, is that the bank holds the money for 3 weeks.
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby finley » 25 Jan 2012, 12:12

From the UK it is expensive. My bank charge GBP25 to make the transfer from their end to the intermediary bank. On one occasion they took a further GBP20 that had supposedly been levied by the receiving bank (in Taiwan). I asked them (the Taiwan bank) about the extra fee and they told me they make no such charge. My bank stalled for months when I queried it until I eventually gave up, but I'm sure the second charge was fraudulent. If you do go ahead, I suggest checking with your Taiwan bank first to ask if they have a receiving charge (Bank of Taiwan definitely does not) and inform your own bank what you have been told, just to avoid any similar scenario. Since their big "oops" in 2008, banks are looking for any opportunity to scrape in a few extra $.

Transferring from Taiwan is cheaper (about NT$500 IIRC), at least for modest amounts.

If you're only talking about a couple of thousand US$, just use an ATM.
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby snk919 » 25 Jan 2012, 14:21

CTaitung, fh2000, finley,

Thanks for the sharing :thumbsup: As per finley's experience, that's exactly what I'm worry about. We're clear about the fees charged by sending bank, we're also clear about how much the receiving bank charge (in my case they told me that they do not charge). But the problem is the intermediary bank(s) charges which is unknown. The sending bank nor receiving bank is able to tell us how much these intermediary bank(s) charge. As per I understand, the money goes thru more than one intermediary bank before reaching the receiving bank and they take some fees in the process. One of my experience in the past (sending money to Canada), the sending bank do mentioned to me that my money will go thru intermediary bank and the only way to know how much they charge is by seeing final amount the recipient received - which will be too late if we found they charge too high.

I have been warned by Taiwan friend that few occasion where the total bank charges is about 7% of the amount transfer to Taiwan bank. If the amount transferred is few hundred thousand NTD, imagine how much the bank going to charge! I also ask one of the Citibank branch in Taiwan. To send money from Citibank Malaysia to Citibank Taiwan, it will first go to Citibank New York first before goes to Citibank Taiwan. For my case, I need to transfer a moderate amount of money to Taiwan local bank which can't be done thru ATM :( Imagine that Citibank to Citibank also need to go thru Citibank New York, so if local bank in Malaysia to local bank in Taiwan, may need to go thru more intermediary bank(s). :ponder:
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby llary » 10 Feb 2012, 13:56

finley wrote:From the UK it is expensive. My bank charge GBP25


Which bank, and did you refer to the Financial Ombudsman?
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby Satellite TV » 10 Feb 2012, 13:59

snk919 wrote:Hi,

I have heard that the bank charges is very high to do a wire transfer to Taiwan. The charges by the intermediary bank is like a 'black box' where you only know how much they charge after the recipient receive the money. Heard that some got charge as high as >10% of the total amount of money they transfer! Would be grateful if anyone of you who have done it before can share your experience on transfer money to Taiwan. I would like to transfer money from Malaysia to Taiwan but am trying to figure out the most cost effective way to do so. Thanks!



Standard bacnk charge is usually NT$400 for an incoming transfer or about US$12. I don't know who told you its up to 10% thats just rubbish.
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby headhonchoII » 10 Feb 2012, 14:02

I think the intermediate bank charges a flat fee , could be around 20-30 USD. One of citibanks main cash cows is interbank clearance. It's funny if they use that in their own international transactions!
I have an overseas HSBC account, they charge a flat fee but they also charge another fee for wiring money specifically to Taiwan. Then the intermediate bank and the host bank may also apply a fee and you cannot be sure about the exchange rate. So check the small print.
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby Belgian Pie » 10 Feb 2012, 14:37

I'm thinking of opening an account (two actually, foreign and local currency) with the Bank of Taiwan because their transfer charges are acceptable low (400NT$) ... at least for outgoing transfers, I didn't query for incoming.
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Re: Transfer money to Taiwan - share your experience

Postby snk919 » 11 Feb 2012, 12:10

Satellite TV wrote:Standard bacnk charge is usually NT$400 for an incoming transfer or about US$12. I don't know who told you its up to 10% thats just rubbish.


You're right. Just done my transfer thru HSBC and it's a flat fees. I believes the person who told me that it charges >10% is not because the bank charges. It's due to bad conversion rate for some banks. I found that some local banks give really bad conversion rate. If I choose those bank to perform my transfer, I could lose up >10% for my amount transferred!
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