By Oliver Smith on Friday 6 November 2020
No more wire transfer fees, finally.
A decade after TransferWise arrived, banking giant HSBC is bringing its US customers its own fee-free international transfer service.
The move means US customers of the bank, who’ve long had to pay wire transfer fees both for sending and receiving funds, can now transfer money to other HSBC customers around the world for free.
To benefit from the change customers will have to sign up for HSBC’s new Global Money Account, which is designed to accommodate the kinds of people who might have previously switched to a Revolut or TransferWise.
“The ambition for Global Money is to provide our customers with one global account for all of their financial needs so that if they move from one market to another, they don’t need to open a new account, they just take their existing account with them,” said HSBC USA’s head of digital payments wealth and personal banking, Carolyn Criscitiello.
“This will allow them to pay bills in multiple markets, make cross border transfers and spend like a local wherever they are.”
While for US customers the Global Money Account is novel and potentially game-changing for those who haven’t left for fintechs, the bank’s UK customers will likely be less excited given they already benefit from free transfers.
What might be gamechanging, however, is the fact that HSBC says its free transfers will eventually be extended to other banks, something which it currently charges for both in the UK and US.
It’s also worth drawing the comparison between the Global Money Account and PagoFX, Santander’s low-cost international transfer app which basically operates as an arm’s-length rival to Santander’s in-house and more-expensive international transfer service.