How to send money to Germany from the UK

In this article, I’ll talk you through the best online platforms that facilitate easy and secure money transfers to Germany from the UK. I’ll also cover how they compare to sending money via a high street bank.

Send Money to Germany

Best Way to Send Money to Germany: My Verdict

Specialist online money transfer services like Currencies Direct, OFX, and TorFX are usually the best way for most people to send money to Germany. These well-established companies are safe, FCA-regulated alternatives to sending money via a bank.

You can initiate transfers online or through their mobile apps, making them quick and convenient.  They also provide a dedicated account manager for large transfers, helping to streamline the transfer process and offer peace of mind.

Alternatively, most banks offer international wire transfer services that allow you to send money directly from your UK account in the UK to recipient banks in Germany such as Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank.  But while bank transfers are reliable and widely accepted, they often incur higher transfer fees and take longer to process, making them less cost-effective and unsuitable for urgent transfers. Banks and building societies may impose transfer fees up to £30 for a single transaction and frequently provide exchange rates that are not very competitive.

What’s the Cheapest Way to Send Money to Germany?

CompanyTransfer Fee (£100)Exchange Rate (£100)Transfer Fee (£2,000)Exchange Rate (£2,000)Learn More
TorFX£01.1640£01.1641Visit TorFX
OFX£01.1639£01.1639Visit OFX
Currencies Direct£01.1632£01.1630Visit Currencies Direct
Wise£1.061.1687£8.771.1686Visit Wise
XE£1.991.16330£01.16330Visit XE
Remitly£1.991.1480 (card) or 1.1582 (bank)£01.1480 (card) or 1.1582 (bank)Visit Remitly
Atlantic£31.168511£31.168511Visit Atlantic

At the time of writing, TorFX is the cheapest way to send money to Germany, offering an interest rate of 1.1640 and no transfer fees. 

OFX and Currencies Direct are also highly competitive with no transfer fees, making these providers suitable for sending small amounts of money to Germany. 

However, if the costs if the most important factor to you, then the absolute cheapest way to send money to Germany depends on more than just the transfer.

Providers with low or no transfer fees often have less favourable exchange rates, and vice versa. 

Wise offers the best exchange rate but charges a transfer fee, which could be expensive if you send a large amount of money to Germany. 

Whilst TorFx, OFX and Currencies Direct don’t have transfer fees, they do markup their exchange rate to cover their costs and make a profit.

Exchange rate markup is an extra charge added to the interbank exchange rate a provider can convert your currency from one to another. This hidden fee means you will get fewer Euros for your pound.

At the time of writing, the interbank exchange rate for British pounds to Euro is 1.1685.

The closer your exchange rate is to this figure, the better your deal is. As you can see, Wise‘s exchange rate is actually above this rate. 

Some providers also have incentives for new customers, lowering your costs. 

For example, Remitly offers discounted fees and an enhanced exchange rate, making it cost-effective for one-off transfers if this is your first time using the provider. 

screenshot of transferring money to germany on torfx

What’s the Fastest Way to Send Money to Germany?

ProviderTransfer Speed
RemitlyVaries depending on the payment method. Within minutes by card or within 2 hours by bank transfer
AtlanticWithin one business day or instant for a 0.1% fee
Currencies DirectCan transfer same working day if received by 10 am. Standard transfers are usually within 24 – 48 hours
TorFxSame-day to 2 business days
WiseApproximately one business day
OFXWithin 1-2 business days
XE1-4 business days

Remitly is the fastest way to send money to Germany, with funds available within a few hours as standard.

Atlantic also offers a quick service, with the option of paying a 0.1% fee to enable the recipient to receive your transfer instantly. 

Although Remitly and Atlantic stand out for their speed, most online providers offer a similar processing speed, usually taking between 1 and 2 business days. 

If your transfer needs to be received in Germany urgently, consider paying for it using a debit or credit card, as these transfers are processed faster than bank transfers.

Can I Send Money to Germany Online?

Yes, there are a few ways you can send money to Germany online, including

  1. Online Money Transfer Services: Providers like Currencies Direct, OFX, and XE allow you to send money from the UK to Germany. Although exchange rates are competitive, some providers have transaction limits, which could be too restrictive for larger transfers. 
  2. Bank Transfers: Banks such as RBS, NatWest, and Halifax offer online banking services that allow you to send money to Germany directly from your bank account. Although familiar, transfers take longer to process and exchange rates are often lower than specialist transfer services. 
  3. Digital Wallets: Services like PayPal and Skrill enable online money transfers to Germany. You can fund your digital wallet and send money to the recipient’s email address or mobile number linked to their account. Although suitable for recipients without a German bank account, not all merchants may accept payments made through the service, limiting its utility. 
  4. Prepaid Debit Cards: Providers like Revolut or Payoneer allow you to load funds onto your card and then transfer them to recipients in Germany. These cards are accessible to recipients without a German bank account but may come with fees for activities such as ATM withdrawals, balance inquiries, and inactivity. 

Cryptocurrency Transfers: If you and the recipient in Germany have cryptocurrency wallets, you can send cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum online. Although processed quickly, cryptocurrency prices can be highly volatile, potentially causing the value you send to Germany to change dramatically between the time of initiation and completion of the transaction.

Sending Large Amounts of Money to Germany

CompanyMaximum TransferLearn More
Currencies DirectNo limitVisit Currencies Direct
OFXNo limitVisit OFX
TorFXNo limitVisit TorFX
AtlanticNo limitVisit Atlantic
WiseUp to £5,000,000 per transfer, depending on the payment methodVisit Wise
XE£350,000 per transactionVisit XE
RemitlyTiered limits for specific periods that vary between accounts. 24-hour limit ranges between £5,000 and £25,000. 30 Day limit ranges between £15,000 and £25,000. 180-day limit ranges between £50,000 and £150,000.Visit Remitly

Currencies Direct, OFX, TorFX and Atlantic are the best ways to send large amounts of money to Germany.

All four providers don’t have a maximum transfer limit, giving you greater flexibility.

Some specialist online money transfer services such as Currencies Direct, OFX and TorFX will provide a dedicated account manager for customers making large transfers to streamline the process and ensure you get the best rate.

In contrast, providers such as Remitly have a tiered limit structure, restricting the amount you can send within 24 hours, 30 day and 80-day periods, making it unsuitable for frequent large transfers.

Although Wise has a higher maximum transfer limit of up to £5,000,000 per transaction, this depends on the payment method, with payments made by card having a lower limit. 

When sending large transfers to Germany from the UK, choose a reputable and secure transfer service or bank that employs encryption and other security measures to protect your personal and financial information. Ensure that your chosen service complies with relevant regulations and offers fraud protection.

While you could send large amounts of money to Germany through a bank transfer or digital wallet, these services often have a lower maximum transaction amount and higher fees, making them more inconvenient and less cost-effective.

Can I Set Up Regular Payments to Germany?

You can set up regular payments to Germany in several ways, including

  1. Online Money Transfer Services: Providers such as Currencies Direct, Wise and OFX offer options to set up recurring transfers with fixed amounts and frequencies.
  2. Payment Apps: Platforms like PayPal or Revolut have features to link your bank account or debit card to the app and schedule payments according to your preferred schedule.
  3. Direct Debit: You can set up a direct debit agreement through your bank to authorise the recipient in Germany to withdraw money from your bank account in the UK at regular intervals.
  4. Bank Standing Orders: You can instruct your UK bank to automatically transfer a fixed amount of money to the recipient in Germany regularly. Unlike direct debits, standing orders usually transfer the same amount each time.

Cryptocurrency Auto-Payments: Some platforms offer features to set up recurring cryptocurrency payments to recipients in Germany. This method involves converting a specified amount of cryptocurrency into euros and sending it automatically at predefined intervals.

How to Send Money to Germany

There are several ways to fund a transfer to Germany from the UK, including

  1. Bank Transfer: You can initiate a transfer from your bank account directly to the recipient’s German bank, like Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank. Although slower than card payments, bank transfers often have a more favourable exchange rate.
  2. Debit Card: Input your card details and authorise the transfer amount from your account. Debit card transactions usually have lower fees than those funded by credit cards. 
  3. Credit Card: Although faster than bank transfers, transfers paid for by credit card may have higher fees, including cash advance fees and interest charges associated with using a credit card for transfers.
  4. Digital Wallets: Platforms like PayPal or Skrill may offer the option to fund transfers using funds stored in your wallet balance or linked bank account or credit/debit card. The recipient in Germany can then receive the funds in their own digital wallet or connected bank account. Although convenient, digital wallets often have higher transfer fees than other methods. 
  5. Mobile Wallets: Payment apps like Apple Pay or Google Pay may offer the option to fund transfers to Germany from the UK. You can link our bank account or debit/credit card to the app and initiate the transfer directly from your mobile device. While it is faster than other methods, not every merchant accepts mobile wallets. 
  6. Cash Deposit: Some money transfer providers allow you to fund transfers by depositing cash at physical agent locations. However, this method is less convenient and could involve additional fees or processing times.
  7. Cryptocurrency: Certain platforms facilitate transfers to Germany using digital currencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum. You can convert your cryptocurrency holdings into euros and send them to the recipient’s digital wallet or exchange account. Although faster than a bank transfer, cryptocurrency is less widely accepted. 

Bank Draft or Cheque: Some money transfer services may accept bank drafts or cheques. Slower than paying by card or digital wallet, you can deposit the funds into your account with the service provider, and they will process the transfer to Germany accordingly.

What Details Do I Need to Send Money to Germany?

Typically you’ll need the follow basic details:

Your Information:

  • Full name, address, phone number
  • Payment details
  • If needed: Source of funds, extra ID/documentation

Recipient’s Details:

  • Name or business name, address in Germany, contact info
  • Bank details if sending to a bank: bank address, SWIFT/BIC, IBAN
  • If needed: Tax ID, extra ID/documentation

Transaction Details:

  • Amount in GBP, reference/message
  • Reason for transfer, any special instructions
  • If applicable: Intermediary bank details

The specific details you will need to send money to Germany depend on the nature of your transfer.

For transfers to German banks like Sparkasse, ING-DiBa and Postbank, you’ll need the bank’s 8-11 long alphanumeric SWIFT/BIC code.

You’ll also need the recipient’s 22-character alphanumeric IBAN (International Bank Account Number) to identify the exact bank account your transfer should be sent.

Depending on the transfer size, you may also need to provide the recipient’s 11-digit Tax Identification Number (TIN) and additional documents such as proof of income or identification.

How Much Does it Cost to Transfer Money to Germany? 

Transferring money to Germany can cost you different amounts depending on how you send it and how much you send.

Transfer Fees.

Some services charge a fee every time you send money to Germany. 

This can be a fixed fee ranging between £1 and £10, a percentage of the amount you send between 05% and 3%, or, in Wise’s case, a combination of both. 

Fixed fees may be more cost-effective for large transfers, as your transfer fee will remain the same regardless of how much you send to Germany. 

Your provider may also offer discounted or zero transfer fees, reducing your costs further.

In contrast, smaller transfers will find a percentage transfer fee more suitable. Your fee will scale with the amount you send, making it a fairer and potentially cheaper pricing structure.

Exchange Rate Markup

Although some services advertise zero transfer fees, you’ll probably still pay a hidden fee through exchange rate markup.

When you request your provider to convert your British pounds to Euros, they can do so at the interbank rate. 

However, this rate is usually higher than your provider’s exchange rate.

The difference between the two rates is called the exchange rate makeup and is how the provider covers their costs and makes a profit. 

It’s important to look at the total cost of sending money to Germany, including hidden fees.

Some services might have lower fees but higher exchange rate markups, while others might have higher fees but better exchange rates.

Additional Charges

Your bank may charge additional fees for processing international transfers. These fees can vary depending on your bank and the type of transfer you’re making.

If your bank account does not have sufficient funds to cover the transfer amount, you may incur overdraft fees or insufficient funds fees from your bank.

For transfers that involve intermediary banks to facilitate the transaction, each intermediary bank may deduct fees from the transferred amount.

Urgent transfers may incur an additional fee to enable the recipient to access the transfer in Germany faster. For example, Atlantic offers instant access for a 0.1% fee.

Some money transfer services may also charge fees if you need to cancel or amend a transfer after initiating it. These fees can vary depending on the service provider and the stage of the transfer process.

Recipient Fees

The recipient’s bank in Germany may charge fees for receiving the transferred funds. 

These fees can include incoming wire transfers or currency conversion fees if the funds are received in a different currency.

How Long Does it Take to Send Money to Germany?

Generally, online money transfer services like Currencies Direct, TorFX, and OFX are quicker than bank transfers, with many transfers arriving within one to three business days.

However, the speed of the transfer depends on factors like

  1. Your Provider: Different services have varying processing times for transfers. Some offer expedited transfer options for an additional fee, which can result in quicker delivery of funds to the recipient in Germany.
  2. Recipient and Sender Banks: Some banks may have faster processing systems or may be part of networks that facilitate quicker transfers.
  3. Currency Conversion: Exchange rate fluctuations and the processing times of the transfer provider’s currency conversion services can affect transfer speed.
  4. Weekends and Bank Holidays: Transfers initiated outside of regular business hours may experience delays, as banks and financial institutions may have limited operational hours during these times.
  5. Verification Checks: Some transfers may undergo additional checks for security and regulatory compliance, which can delay the processing time.

Transfer Amount: Larger transfers to Germany may require additional verification or documentation, leading to longer processing times than smaller transfers.


FAQs about Money Transfers to Germany

Can PayPal send money to Germany?

Can I transfer money from a UK bank account to a German bank account?

Are there any alternatives to traditional bank transfers for sending money to Germany?

What options are available for sending money to Germany in emergencies or urgent situations?

How much money can I transfer to Germany?

What exchange rates should I expect when sending money to Germany?