Although it might seem a little bit old-fashioned to send money via a wire transfer (something like sending a real letter or telegram), it is actually the fastest way to send money across the whole country.
If it wasn’t for the distance you would probably just write a check or give money to the receiver in person. However, sometimes you have to use alternative methods to transfer money. A wire transfer is your best option indeed. Keep in mind that unlike a check or a credit card bill, a wire transfer is harder to undo. You need to understand that making a wire transfer, you are saying “bye-bye” to your cash.
How do you wire money?
Step 1: Decide how to wire transfer money
If you are sure that you want to make a transfer there are 2 options available for you - traditional banks and nonbank money transfer providers such as Western Union, MoneyGram, and Ria. Some of them will let you fill the transfer form online others will make you do the transfer in person.
Step 2: Determine your wire transfer fees
Keep in mind that wire transfer costs are usually different for different transfer providers and banks. You as well as the recipient will have to pay a certain fee (they are higher for senders than for receivers). Also, fees for international transfers tend to be higher than for domestic ones. Credit unions normally have the lowest rates. Make sure you figure out the fees before making a transfer so that you are aware of all the extra expenses.
Step 3: Get all the info needed for a wire transfer
To make a wire transfer you will need to get certain information about your bank and your recipient's. This information includes but is not limited to:
- Your bank account number
- Your recipient’s name, bank name and address
- Your recipient’s bank account number
- Your recipient’s bank’s American Bankers Association number
- Other information depending on your money transfer provider’s policy
Step 4: Fill out the wire transfer form
Once you got all the necessary information (and made sure it’s totally correct because as you remember it’s hard to get it undone), it’s time to fill out the wire transform form or, if your money transfer provider allows, submit the online form. Go to their office or follow the link to the money transfer forms. Follow your provider’s instruction, and carefully fill out the wire transform form. Make sure you have all the right information otherwise your transfer may not go through or a wrong person may receive your money. And as you know, it is hard to undo the transfer.
Step 5: Keep your wire transfer receipts
You need to make sure you know what will happen next. Also save all your receipts, just in case. You never know what can happen. You need some form of proof that the transaction had taken place. Track your money and make sure that the person got the wire transfer.