Send Money To China

Find the cheapest way to send money to China by comparing with Savvy today.

Last updated on August 2nd, 2022 at 05:12 pm by Cate Cook

Compare international money services to send money to China

Thousands of Australian residents send money to China each year, either to family or friends or for buying goods and services from Chinese companies. Naturally, if you find yourself in this position, it’s important to be on the lookout for the cheapest way to send your money to China, with the best exchange rate and lowest fees. Savvy has partnered with a range of international money transfer providers to give you a wide range of trusted partners to choose from, so you can find, compare and start your transfer today.

site-logos Xe
  Minimum Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Transfer Fee Total Currencies Available  
site-logos $0 1-3 days From $0 100
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Xe is a 2021 Canstar Award Winner and offers the best exchange rates, low to no fees so customers save the most money

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site-logos OFX
  Minimum Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Transfer Fee Total Currencies Available  
site-logos $250 1-3 days $0 50+
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OFX offers speed, security and simplicity with no hidden fees, total transparency and real people support 24/7

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site-logos Wise Money Transfer
  Minimum Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Transfer Fee Total Currencies Available  
site-logos $0 1-3 days From 0.41% 53
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Send money cheaper and easier with Wise with no hidden fees.

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site-logos TorFX
  Minimum Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Transfer Fee Total Currencies Available  
site-logos $200 0-2 days $0 35
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Excellent exchange rates with no transfer fees. Trusted by over 55,000 customers. Awarded Canstar’s 5 star rating 2018-2021.

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site-logos SingX
  Minimum Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Transfer Fee Total Currencies Available  
site-logos $0 0-2 days From $0 30
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SingX offers live exchange rates with no mark ups and only charge a nominal fee shown to you upfront

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site-logos Remitly
  Minimum Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Transfer Fee Total Currencies Available  
site-logos $0 0-2 days From $0 21
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Remitly offers fast, safe and secure money transfers with excellent rates to over 100 countries

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More information about how to send money to China

What is the best way to send money to China?

Specialist money transfer companies now offer the cheapest and fastest way to send money from Australia to China. Whatever your reason for sending money, using one of Savvy’s partnered international money transfer companies will be your best option to get funds overseas quickly.

International money transfer providers

These are specialist companies that provide international money transfer and forex services. They range from those with a cash and retail focus to those that provide a complete business foreign exchange service. An international transfer company can get your payment to its destination as soon as the same day (with some completed in a matter of seconds) or within two days in most cases and charge lower fees compared to other transfer options.

Bank transfers

A standard bank transfer to China will often take at least three to five business days, making it a slower option when it comes to completing a money transfer. In addition, they charge transfer fees of between $6 right up to $30 or more and often add a markup onto the exchange rate to take a further bite out of your pocket. In contrast, transfer companies charge lower fees and their markup will be less.

Cash transfers

Another way of sending money to China is by sending a deposit to a popular Chinese digital payment system such as Alipay, or by using WeChat cash transfer. This will depend on your recipient having access to these mobile apps. To use WeChat, you’ll have to be a Chinese national and have a National ID card, plus there are various other conditions to be met to be able to send or receive money using WeChat. It’s also possible to send instant cash transfers to China through other international transfer companies which support cash transfers. However, these will likely turn out to be more expensive than standard online transfers.

PayPal (Xoom)

Another popular method for sending money to China is to use PayPal’s Xoom. Whilst it’s very popular elsewhere in the Western world, it isn’t currently available for Australians to send money in Australian dollars. It’s only possible to use it to send money to China if you have a bank account in US or Canadian dollars, Euros or British pounds. However, if you open an international account, such as those offered by a company like Wise, and deposit any of these currencies into your international account, you’ll be able to use this service to send money to China from Australia.

This will still prove to be a more expensive option than using a specialist international money transfer provider, though, as PayPal will charge a high set transfer fee (on average around 2.9% of the send amount) plus you won’t get the best exchange rate. Specialist money transfer providers such as those partnered with Savvy will help you secure a cheaper way to send money overseas than either Xoom or a standard bank.

How should I compare transfer providers when sending money to China?

Exchange rate

When planning an international transfer, the exchange rate on offer is the most important factor to take into consideration (in conjunction with the fees charged for the transfer service). Even a small difference in the exchange rate can make a major difference to the amount your recipient in China will receive, which will increase as the size of your transfer grows. Look at the chart below to see how much a small difference in the exchange rate adds up where the mid-market rate is 4.66:

Transfer amount Exchange rate on offer Amount received in China Difference between exchange rates
$300
4.66
¥1398
N/A
$300
4.54
¥1362
¥36
$300
4.25
¥1275
¥123
$30,000
4.66
¥139,800
N/A
$30,000
4.54
¥136,200
¥3,600
$30,000
4.25
¥127,500
¥12,300

*Calculations do not include transfer fees. Rates aren’t necessarily representative of current market rates.

Fees charged

After you’ve considered the exchange rate, look at the fees charged to carry out your transfer. Some companies charge a set fee (up to $15), while others charge a small fee based on a percentage of your transfer amount (typically 0.40% to 0.65%). Look at the following table to see how a percentage fee structure is cheaper for smaller transfers, but more expensive for larger transfers when transferring money to China.

Transfer amount AUD $300 $3,000 $30,000 $300,000
Percentage fee charged (0.45%)
$1.35
$13.50
$135
$1,350

As this table demonstrates, it would be cheaper to use a percentage-based fee if you wanted to send up to $3,000 to China, but once you get over about $3,000, it’d be cheaper to opt for a provider charging a set fee of $15. It’s always worth noting that some companies drop their set fee for larger transfers, such as not charging any fees for transfers over $10,000.

 

Other aspects of international transfer services worth comparing include:

 

  • Speed of transfer – how long will it take to get your money to China? As mentioned, bank transfers will take three to five days, but the transfer time for international money transfer companies is within two days on average (and sometimes instant). If you need to get your money overseas urgently, it’s worth comparing the speed of the delivery of your funds.
  • Currency and destination availability – is the company able to transfer the amount of money you wish to transfer to China? This could be a consideration if you wish to make a large transfer, but may not be an issue for a smaller transfer.
  • Limits – are there any minimum or maximum limits which may be applied? Minimum transfer limits range from $1 to $250, to a maximum of $5,000 a day, up to much larger limits of $500,000 from companies that are more business-oriented, such as TorFX.
  • Payment method – how will you pay for your transfer? Check with your transfer provider which methods of payment they accept, as not all transfer companies will allow you to use a credit card, cash or Apple Pay. The most common forms of payment are a direct debit from your bank account or an EFTPOS payment with a debit card. If you do use a card, make sure no additional fees are charged by your card provider.
  • Receiving method – how do you wish your payment to be received? Your options include payment into a Chinese bank account or a cash transfer which is collected in person. If you do decide to make a cash transfer, you will pay a premium for this service, so it will not be the cheapest way of sending money to China.

How can I save money when sending funds to China?

There are quite a few things you can do to help you make the cheapest money transfer to China. These include:

Compare your options regularly

International money markets move relentlessly, so exchange rates constantly change. As such, it’s worth comparing exchange rates and transfer providers frequently to make sure you get the best rate and lowest fees possible. Comparisons with Savvy are always free, so check back with us often before making your next international money transfer.

Use an international account

International accounts allow you to store funds in different currencies, nominate the currency in which a bill is paid and receive payments from a variety of sources in up to 50 different currencies. This type of international transfer account can help you save money if you intend to regularly send money to China by enabling you to make a bulk currency transfer when the exchange rate is competitive and store those yuan for when they’re needed, rather than risking a lower rate. You may also be able to use your international account to change Australian dollars for US dollars to pay your Chinese recipient to benefit from potentially lower prices.

Use currency exchange tools

Many providers offer currency exchange tools either on their website or mobile app. These can include:

  • Rate alerts – which send you a notification when a pre-determined exchange rate is reached so you don’t have to actively monitor the currency market to get the exchange rate you want
  • Limit orders – which allow you to set an exact exchange rate for your transfer, so the transfer won’t take place until the pre-defined limit has been reached
  • Forward contracts – similar to a fixed mortgage rate, a forward contract guarantees you a set exchange rate for a set period, sometimes up to 12 months into the future
  • Rate guarantees – which fix your exchange rate for a set number of hours (up to 36 hours or more), so you can budget accurately when planning your transfer
  • Tracking tool – so you can track your transfer and see exactly when it arrives at its destination

More of your frequently asked questions about money transfers to China

What information will I need to send money to China from Australia?

First of all, when setting up your transfer account, you’ll need a form of Government-issued ID such as your passport or driver’s licence to prove your own identity. Secondly, you’ll need the exact name of the person you’re sending money to and their bank account details, which may have 18 or 19 digits. In addition to this number, you may also require a CNAPS code, which is 12 digits long. This stands for China National Automatic Payment System and is a number assigned to all banks in China to enable payments to reach their destination safely.

Do Chinese banks charge a receiving fee?

It’s quite common for Chinese banks to charge a receiving fee if you use a bank transfer to send money to China. However, if you use a money transfer service, there likely won’t be any fees charged to the recipient, as the funds aren’t sent through the international SWIFT banking system.

Is it possible to get a free money transfer to China?

Yes – some international transfer companies offer free transfers to attract new clients. For example, some offer the first one to two transfers free, while others offer free transfers above a certain limit, such as over $10,000. However, it’s important to check the exchange rate given on free transfers, as they may not always be the most affordable way to transfer money.

Are there any limits on how much money I can send to China?

Yes – there may be limits imposed on how much money you can send to China in one transfer. However, these limits can vary depending on the destination region in China for your money, so check with your transfer company before authorising your transfer, particularly if it’s over $10,000 (as you may have to fill in a declaration form to send a large sum of money to China).

Is there any age limit for sending money to China from Australia?

Yes – you’ll have to be 18 years of age to send money to China through most international money transfer companies.

Is sending money to China using a transfer service safe?

Yes – it’s safe to use any of Savvy’s trusted and reliable international money transfer service providers, as all of them are highly reputable and trusted to get your money overseas. In addition, money transfer companies use the same level of digital encryption to safeguard your private details as the big banks do, so using these services is completely safe.