IMT case study - Rab saves enough to travel 6,600km around Scotland on his new motorbike

If you’ve done some research and read some guides on international money transfers already, then you probably know that the difference between an average and good exchange rate could be considerable.

But how much can you actually save in reality? Here’s a real life story from CurrencyFair customer Rab Smith, who saved around AU$590 when he transferred money overseas to purchase a motorbike.

Here's his story:

Rab was planning a trip to Scotland. We can only assume he’d already bought his travel insurance, planned his trip to Edinburgh castle and packed up his camera gear. The next step in his travel plans was clear: buy a Harley Davidson.

He’d found the perfect ride - a $24,000 Harley from a seller in the UK. All he had to do was get the money there.

Which IMT provider did he decide to go with?

Rather than taking the easy route and transferring with his current bank, Rab decided to do a little online research to see what challenger brands were offering.

After a quick comparison, he found his best bet was to go for an online lender, because without the high overheads of the banks like branch access, they were generally able to pass on more competitive international money deals.

So what was Rab’s final choice? He decided to go for CurrencyFair, an online IMT provider that uses the peer-to-peer method of matching people looking to send funds overseas with peers doing the same. While Rab found the P2P provider was charging a fee for the service, getting close to the ‘real’ exchange rate, also called the interbank rate made the savings considerable.  

What did he save?

Rab got a deal with CurrencyFair that saved him up to £340, significantly more than if he had gone with a major Aussie bank. That’s about AU$590 at today’s rates.

With those savings, Rab could buy about 331 litres of petrol while he’s in Scotland. Assuming his new Harley has a fuel economy of around 5.5 litres to 100km, that means he could travel an extra 6,600km on his great Scottish road trip. Which, by the way, is two thirds of the entire coastline of mainland Scotland. Not too shabby.

What was the process?

To set up an account, he had to apply online and provide his identification (e.g a passport or driver’s licence), plus a recent utility bill that shows his current residential address.

He then transferred his $24,000 into his CurrencyFair account when he was ready to send his money. To book in the transfer, he needed to nominate:

  • the currency he was transferring to (pounds)
  • the amount ($24,000)
  • and the recipient

He then received the final confirmation of what he'll be charged, the rate he'll get and the receiver's details. It sounded like a good deal, so Rab confirmed the exchange.

CurrencyFair then made the transfer to the Harley seller in the UK at the rate they’d agreed on with Rab.

In just two days, the seller received the money in their bank account, and Rab had a shiny new Harley to show for it when he arrived in Scotland for his big adventure.

Tips for your international money transfer

If you need to send money overseas, whether it’s funds for a loved one, a deposit on an overseas property, or something fun like Rab’s Harley, you’ll want to score a great deal. Here are some tips to help you:

  • Check the exchange rate. The number one tip is to make sure you’re getting a top exchange rate. The better your rate, the more money you’ll wind up with on the other end of your transfer. This is especially important when converting to currencies that are generally strong against the Aussie dollar, such as the pound.
  • Beware the fees. Do you know the ins and outs of IMT fees? Well you should, because these charges can add up quick and take a sizeable chunk out of your funds. Always look for low fee options, and remember that doing a transfer online instead of over the phone or in a branch will often mean low or no fees.
  • Make larger transfers when possible. Speaking of fees, many providers will waive the transfer fee for amounts over a certain limit. So if you’re planning on making a few small transfers, see if you can lump them all into one to skip out on the fee. For example, if you’re sending money to a number of family members overseas, instead of sending each amount individually, plan to send one lump sum to one (trustworthy) person and have them divvy it up.
  • Plan ahead. The more prepared you are, the more likely you’ll be able to cash in on a great exchange rate. If you know in advance what transfer you need to make, you can take advantage of some great IMT features, such as forward contracts, which allow you to lock in a great rate for a transfer in the future, or limit orders, which set up a transfer to go through only if a certain exchange rate becomes available.

Make an international money transfer

Ready to ship your funds off overseas? Head over to our IMT hub to find the best exchange rates available today and lock in a great deal.

* Please note: all exchange rates and figures were correct at the time of writing, but are subject to change. Please check our IMT comparison page for today’s rates.