Compare the best online money transfers from the UK to France

If you send money to family, friends or a business, traditional banks are often one of the most expensive and slowest ways to transfer money internationally. Typically they charge higher transfer fees at less competitive currency exchange rates than specialist money transfer services.

So, if your bank isn’t always the right option, what is the best way to send money to France?

>>Read our piece on the Best Money Transfer Companies

Best Way to Send Money to France

What is the Best Way to Send Money to France?

The best way to transfer money to France is via a currency exchange specialist, although which one to choose will depend on your requirements for speed, cost, and convenience, plus how much you’re converting from pounds to Euros.

For sending large amounts of money to France, Currencies Direct, TorFX, and OFX are well-established brands that offer a dedicated account manager for a more personalised service. This can be reassuring if you’re moving sizeable amounts. All three of these brands have excellent customer reviews and are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

For sending smaller amounts from the UK to France, Wise or XE are reliable options. With transparent prices explained upfront, your funds can be sent within one day or even instantly for an additional fee. 

Cheapest Way to Send Money to France from the UK

At the time of writing, Currencies Direct is the cheapest way to send money from the UK to France. It has no transfer fees and offers customers a competitive exchange for small and large transfers.

Whilst OFX and TorFX have zero transfer fees, they have a higher exchange rate markup.

Exchange rate markup refers to the additional amount providers add to the base exchange rate to cover costs and make a profit.

At the time of writing, the base exchange rate for British Pounds (GBP) to Euro (EUR) was 1.1698.

It’s also important to note that fees change depending on how much you transfer and the payment method.

For £100 transfers, Wise’s fee is £1.06, yet this increases to £8.77 for larger transfers of £2000, making it the most expensive option.

Similarly, you can get a better rate of 1.1886 by funding transfers with Remitly by bank transfer. In contrast, payment by card has a 1.1503 transaction rate. 

CompanyTransfer Fee for Sending £100Exchange Rate for £100Transfer Fee for Sending £2000Exchange Rate for £2000Visit
Currencies Direct£01.16944£01.16944Visit Currencies Direct
OFX£01.15623£01.15617Visit OFX
TorFX£01.1646£01.1645Visit TorFX
Wise£1.061.16900£8.771.16907Visit Wise
XE£1.991.16446£01.15887Visit XE
Remitly£1.991.1503 (card) or 1.1886 (bank)£01.1503 (card) or 1.1886 (bank)Visit Remitly
Atlantic£3.001.168907£3.001.168907Visit Atlantic

Best Way to Transfer Large Amounts to France

For those sending large amounts of money to France, choosing money transfer specialists such as Currencies Direct, TorFX, and OFX is highly recommended due to their provision of dedicated account managers. This personalised service ensures your transfer needs are met with expertise and attention to detail.

While using a bank is an option, it’s important to note that banks typically have international transfer limits, ranging from £25,000 to £50,000, depending on the bank. This limitation can be a significant constraint for larger transactions. Furthermore, banks are often slower than dedicated transfer services and may not offer the most competitive exchange rates.

Before making a transfer, it’s wise to compare the fees and exchange rates offered by your bank with those of money transfer specialists. These specialists usually offer better rates and can quickly adapt to market changes, including those influenced by economic policies and decisions from the Bank of England.

Opting for a specialist service with a dedicated account manager can greatly benefit large transfers, providing you with a tailored approach that ensures your funds are transferred efficiently and effectively, according to your specific requirements.

Fastest Way to Send Money to France

Remitly is the fastest way to send money to France from the UK, with funds usually transferred within minutes if paid by card or within 2 hours if paid by bank transfer.

Similarly, Wise and Atlantic offer faster, instant options where the bank supports this.

In general, money transfer speed can be influenced by various factors such as the chosen payment method,  the time of transfer initiation, verification checks, high transaction volumes, and currency conversions.

However, most providers claim the recipient will receive funds in France within 1 to 2 business days. 
XE has the longest transfer processing time frame, stating transfers will be received within 1 to 4 business days.

CompanyTransfer Speed
RemitlyWithin minutes by card or within 2 hours by bank transfer
WiseInstant to 1-day
AtlanticWithin one business day or instant when the bank supports it
Currencies DirectCan transfer same working day if received by 10 am. Usually within 24 – 48 hours
TorFxSame-day to 2 business days
OFXWithin 1-2 business days
XE1-4 business days

Can I Send Money to France Online?

These days any money transfer service will allow you to send money to France online with just a few clicks. Online money transfer methods offer convenience, speed, and often competitive rates compared to traditional bank transfers. 

You can send money to France online in several ways, including:

  1. Online Money Transfer Services: Providers such as Currency Direct, TorFX, OFX, and Wise specialise in international transfers. They typically offer competitive exchange rates and low fees for sending money to France.
  2. Bank Transfers: Most banks offer online banking services that allow you to send money to France electronically. You can initiate a transfer through your bank’s website or mobile app by providing the recipient’s bank account details.
  3. Mobile Wallets: Services like PayPal and Skrill enable you to send money to friends, family, or businesses in France using your smartphone. The recipient can receive the funds directly into their mobile wallet account.
  4. International Payment Platforms: Platforms such as Payoneer and WorldRemit facilitate online money transfers to France, offering various delivery options such as bank deposits, cash pickups, and mobile wallet transfers.

How to Transfer Money to a French Bank

Transferring money to a French bank from the UK requires careful attention to detail and choosing the right transfer method. Whether opting for your bank’s online service, a dedicated money transfer specialist, or an international payment platform, the first step is setting up your transaction. This involves providing your personal details and linking your UK bank account for the transfer.

For the recipient’s information, it’s crucial to include their full name, the IBAN of their account, and the name and address of their French bank. Major French banks such as BNP Paribas, Société Générale, Crédit Agricole, and Banque Populaire are common recipients of international transfers, each with its own process for receiving funds from abroad.

When specifying the transfer amount, remember to check the current exchange rate if you’re converting from pounds to euros, as this will affect the final amount the recipient receives. After inputting the transfer details, carefully review everything to ensure the accuracy of both the recipient’s information and the transfer amount.

Authorisation of the payment is typically done through the transfer service’s website or mobile app. Once you’ve authorised the transfer, await confirmation that your transaction has been successfully initiated. The processing time can vary significantly, from a few minutes to several business days, influenced by the method chosen and the banks involved.

Finally, it’s good practice to notify the recipient in France once the transfer is in progress, providing them with the transaction’s reference number.

How to Send Money to a Business in France

When your business requires the transfer of funds to a company in France, for activities such as settling invoices with suppliers or collecting payments from clients, there are various practical and efficient methods available. Here’s a closer look at each option tailored for business needs:

  • International Money Transfer Specialists: Ideal for businesses looking for competitive exchange rates and lower fees. These services can handle large transactions efficiently and often provide support for business-related queries.
  • Bank-to-Bank Transfers: A straightforward method for businesses already banking with institutions that offer international transfer services. This option is reliable and secure, suitable for regular or large-scale transactions.
  • Online Multi-Currency Accounts: These accounts are perfect for businesses dealing with multiple currencies. They allow for easy management of funds across different currencies, facilitating payments to and from France without the need for constant currency conversion.
  • Cash Pick-Up Services: Useful for transactions where the recipient prefers or requires cash. This method is fast and convenient, though typically used for smaller amounts.
  • Digital or Mobile Wallets: Increasingly popular for their convenience and speed, digital wallets offer a modern solution for businesses to send and receive payments. They’re especially useful for quick, smaller transactions and can be a great tool for businesses prioritizing digital operations.

What Details Do I Need to Send Money to France?

When sending money abroad, you will need the following information from the payee to ensure a smooth transaction to France from the UK:

  • Recipient’s Full Name and Address: Essential for identifying who will receive the funds. For direct bank deposits, this includes the recipient’s bank name, branch address, and their International Bank Account Number (IBAN), which in France spans 27 characters, mixing letters and numbers for precise identification.
  • Your Personal Details: Include your name, address, and contact details. These are necessary for the transaction’s processing and security checks.
  • Identification Documents: Depending on the transferred amount and your chosen service’s policies, presenting a form of identification, like a passport or driver’s license, may be required.
  • Amount to Transfer: Decide the sum you wish to send in GBP. The service provider will handle the conversion to EUR for the recipient in France.
  • Payment Method: Selections typically include debit card, credit card, or direct bank transfer, depending on your convenience and the fees associated with each method.
  • Purpose of Transfer: Be prepared to specify the reason for your transfer, whether it’s for personal reasons, a business transaction, or supporting family.

How Much Does it Cost To Transfer Money To France?

Transferring money to France from the UK can incur costs ranging from 2% to 5% in exchange rate charges if you opt for a major bank. The total cost of sending money varies based on the chosen service provider and the method of transfer:

Specialist money transfer apps can usually give more competitive rates. At the time of writing, to send money in GBP to France using Wise, you would incur a minimal flat fee of £0.21 plus 0.43% of the converted amount.

With Atlantic Money you’ll pay £3 per transfer for any amount of up to one million GBP.

Types of Money Transfer Fees

  • Transfer Fees: A percentage, flat fee or combination of both for each bank or transfer service provider transaction. Bank transfers may incur flat fees ranging from £10 to £30 per transaction, while online money transfer services like TorFX or Wise often charge a percentage-based fee ranging from 0.5% to 3%. 
  • Exchange Rate Markup: Some service providers apply a markup to the exchange rate when converting currencies. This means you may not receive the mid-market exchange rate, and the recipient may receive less money in the destination currency.
  • Speed of Transfer: Faster transfer options, such as same-day or next-day transfers, may incur higher fees than standard transfer options.
  • Recipient Fees: In some cases, the recipient’s bank in France may charge fees for receiving international transfers. These fees can vary depending on the recipient’s bank and account type.
  • Additional Services: Some providers may offer other services, such as currency conversion or tracking features, with extra fees.
  • Hidden Fees: Be aware of any potential hidden costs, such as intermediary bank charges or fees for cancelling or amending a transfer. 

Before initiating a transfer from the UK to France, carefully review the fee structure and terms and conditions of the service provider to understand the total cost of the transaction. 

Comparing fees and exchange rates across multiple providers can help you find the most cost-effective option for sending money to France.

How Can I Make Regular Payments to France?

Setting up regular payments to France requires a methodical approach, and there are several tailored options available to ensure these transactions are both efficient and cost-effective. Money transfer services such as Currencies Direct, TorFX, OFX, or Wise not only facilitate the scheduling of recurring payments but offer cheaper rates than your bank, in most cases.

For those preferring to use their existing bank accounts, establishing a standing order is a viable route. This arrangement allows for automatic transfers to a specified recipient in France at regular intervals, be it weekly, monthly, or as required.

Online banking presents another straightforward solution for sending regular payments. By accessing the “Payments” or “Transfers” section of your online banking portal, you can arrange for recurring payments directly to a French bank account. Essential information such as the recipient’s IBAN is required to facilitate these transfers.

International payment platforms, including PayPal and Payoneer, extend the capability to automate regular payments to entities in France. These platforms are especially useful for business transactions, offering the flexibility to manage payments seamlessly across borders.

How Long Does a Money Transfer to France from the UK Take?

Transfers from the UK to France typically complete within minutes for digital wallet or card payments and transfers between accounts of the same digital banking provider.

Using money transfer specialists such as Wise or Currencies Direct may expedite the process, typically completing within one business day.

Traditional bank transfers, however, may take 1 to 2 business days, influenced by factors like the specific service provider, payment method, and timing of the transfer. Additional verification checks can extend this timeframe.

Transactions initiated over weekends or holidays are subject to delays, reflecting the operational hours of traditional banks.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use PayPal to send money to France?

Is it safe to send money to France online?

What are the options for sending money to France if I don’t have a bank account?

How can I find the best exchange rates for sending money to France?