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How to Send Money Home from China

source:Teach Abroad time:2018-10-09 16:59:37 read:180

Given that most schools in China offer foreign teachers generous salaries and free accommodation, many are left with large sums of RMB in their Chinese bank accounts come to the end of their contracts. Once outside of the country, it can be difficult to get holds of funds from a Chinese account, so it's best to transfer any extra Yuan to a foreign account in advance. Fortunately, thanks to a growing number of apps and online services, this is easily done. Here are three of our most recommended ways to make international transfers from China:

#1 PayPal 
This global online payment service offers a safe and convenient method to transfer up to $10,000 in a single transaction to a foreign account. In order use this, you must create a PayPal account in both China and the country of your recipient account and link your respective bank cards to them. You will then be able to add money to your PayPal wallet and simply send it using the recipient's email address and phone number. Alternatively, you can make a direct transfer using the credit/the debit card associated with your account. You can expect PayPal transfers to reach the destination account within 3-5 working days. Though a quick, safe and convenient tool, PayPal charges fees of between 0.5-7.4% for cross-border transfers, making it quite a costly method. That said, if you are looking to make the transfer independently and securely, it's a good choice!

#2 Alipay 
Possibly one of the most convenient ways to transfer money abroad, the Alipay app enables users to send large amounts of money for enticingly low fees that will reach the destination account in up to 5 working days. The catch is that this service is only available to Chinese nationals or green card holders, meaning that if you wish to use Alipay to get your funds home, you will need to find a trusted friend to help. Your friend will need to use their account to make the transfer, so it's best to either transfer your funds directly to their account by going to the bank, or by withdrawing the cash.
To use the service, your friend will first need to make sure the international payment the function of the app is enabled on their account. If it isn’t already, they simply need to fill in a few details and should be approved within a few days. Once that's done, you will need to enter the following details, along with the amount you wish to transfer:
· Recipient's full name as printed on passport/ID
· Recipient country
· Recipient's address
· Name and address of their bank
· Recipient's IBAN and SWIFT codes

Once these details have been entered, Alipay will calculate the transfer fee and the charge will be no more than stated – even once it reaches the foreign account after no more than 5 days! This makes Alipay one of the cheapest and quickest ways to transfer money, the only real disadvantage being that as a foreigner you are unable to do it alone.

#3 The Bank 
Anyone looking to go down the old-fashioned route, practice their Chinese or simply avoid online transfer services will be pleased to know it's possible to transfer in the person at the bank. There's a chance staff at local branches will be unfamiliar with international transfers, so it's best to head to your bank's main branch in your city to do this. Much like any visit to a Chinese bank, this is unlikely to be quick, so if you’re on a tight schedule this probably isn't the option for you.
To make the transfer, you will need to provide the same information as outlined above as well as your passport details. It's important to note that due to currency restrictions in China, foreigners are limited to maximum transfers of 500 USD per day, while Chinese citizens can transfer up to 50,000 USD per year. Therefore, if you're looking to send large sums and avoid multiple charges, again it's advisable to ask a trusted Chinese friend to make the transfer from their account.
Money sent directly from the bank can take between 1-5 working days to arrive and it's likely that both your Chinese and recipient banks will charge a cross-border transfer fee. Though fees differ depending on who you bank with, this remains one of the most expensive options. Though by no means an exhaustive list, these methods have been used by several of our teachers over the years and provide a good variety of ways to get your hard earned money home. When it comes to deciding which is best, we recommend considering how much you wish to transfer, the fee you’ll incur and whether you wish to do it independently.

Whichever you choose, be sure to provide your name as is on your ID and double check your bank IBAN and SWIFT codes. If using an online method, do so only on a private WIFI network for safety purposes!


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