If you're in a bind and you need to quickly transfer money, a number of options are available. But the best option is to send a wire transfer from the bank or other financial institution that holds your account. A wire transfer, sometimes called an electronic funds transfer, sends money electronically from your account and into another.
Find out how your recipient wants to receive the funds. Hopefully your recipient will have a bank account that accepts wire transfers, as this is the easiest option. If not, there are a few services that allow for wire transfers from bank accounts that are held as cash for pickup at another location.
Ask your bank about wire transfer service. Most banks provide this service, although the fee structure may vary from institution to institution. If your recipient happens to have an account at the same bank, you’re in luck; most banks will transfer money between accounts free of charge. (You can often even conduct the transfer yourself online.)
Look for a money transfer operator. If your recipient does not have a bank account (or prefers not to use it), a money transfer service like Western Union can help you wire the funds. The money would be sent directly from your bank account and the recipient can pick it up in cash at any Western Union location.
Pay the fee. There will usually be a fee required when you wire money. If you’re using your bank for the wire, the fee will likely be deducted from your account along with the transferred funds. However, if you’re using another service, you may need to pay the fee separately.
Fill out the form. There is usually an official form (sometimes offered online) to complete before you wire money out of your bank account. While your bank will already have most of your information in its system, you will need to know specific information about your recipient such as the person's name, the name of the bank the money is going to, and the account and routing numbers of the person.
Confirm the transfer. One you have completed the wire transfer, be sure to call the recipient and confirm that the funds were received. Your bank or money transfer service will give you a transaction receipt with the wiring information on it, so if anything is amiss you can take this back to the institution and ask for assistance in sorting out the problem.
- While wiring money instantly transfers money out of your bank account, it could take a few hours for the transfer to be credited in the recipient's account.
- There is a wire cutoff time in the late afternoon. Wires made after this cutoff will not be credited until the following business day.
Items you will need
- Bank account
- Wiring service fee
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