My client wants international bank transfer payment method to his eshop. I already implemented PayPal and credit/debit cards gateways. Do you have any experience using bank transfer payment method? I think it's unnecessary because there are high fees on international bank trasfers and people use it only rarely but that's not a fact, that's my though. I have no experience with this. Please give me your opinions. Thanks

  • These can be very dangerous places. It can get very hairy when dealing with bank transfers on a website directly, because sometimes it's not immediate and creates a "I got product, I paid, but then it bounced" situation. Often times, it indicates something more sinister taking place. I would advise staying away from these types of transfers unless they are done in person and not automatically. (Please wait a few days while we process your payment).
    – ionFish
    Aug 3, 2012 at 0:53

1 Answer 1


Of course people use it. Especially when they want to avoid credit card interest, paypal fees and stuff. Paypal and credit card transaction companies also hold a rolling reserve on your money and so you can't actually withdraw the funds until X amount time. They do that to lower the risk of charge backs and disputes.

And why do you say there are high fees? I don't believe that to be the case.

For example this wikipedia article said:

In the United States wire transfers are costly and seldom if ever used by consumers. As an example of the cost, Bank Of America as of November 2011 charged $25 to send a wire and $12 to receive one within the U.S. For international transfer, it charged $35–$45 outgoing, $16 incoming.[4] However, fees may vary from bank to bank.

Clearly $45 can seem to be a lot if you're buying goods that are lets say $100 but if you're buying something that costs $4000 USD like a high end computer or something it may make sense. Also one may have an offshore bank account that they would want to use that is not located where they have residence. Secondly as the receiver or salesperson, $12 is not that much on a large sale amount. Well I'll take the wire transfer costing me $16 over the PayPal fees which can take up to 3% at $120 on that same $4000 sale. If I am not mistaken I believe AmericanExpress takes something like 5% off of brick and mortar retailers hence why it's not as accepted.

In Canada international wire transfers from my bank are about $5 dollars so it largely depends which bank your client uses. An offshore account like in Cyprus could cost even less since they are used to this sort of thing going on with their clients and build it in to their offerings.

The only concern really is the currency conversion charges of the receiving bank and if the total amount being sent justifies it. I would advise the client to only allow orders through wire transfer when the total amount is X dollars over some amount.

Also often times it is enough to provide the SWIFT code to the customer, the order number and invoice and directions on where to send the money. Then their order will be processed. And you proceed as normal once billing department has cleared it. A bit more steps but it's not unheard of. My clients are allowed to pay their bills by sending me a cheque in the mail so what is the difference with wire transfers.

In the end your client should be doing his research on feasibility, legality and if it makes sense for his business.

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