17 November 2023

Lower Costs and Wait Times: A Closer Look at International Transfers and NOAH's Solutions

Explore challenges in international money transfers and discover NOAH's solutions for lower costs and faster transactions. Join us on a journey to streamline global financial transactions.

Lower Costs and Wait Times: A Closer Look at International Transfers and NOAH's Solutions


    Common Struggles with International Money Transfers
    Understanding Fees in Detail
    Reasons for International Transfer Delays
    Fast, Low-Cost International Transfers with NOAH

International money transfers play a pivotal role in the global economy, facilitating transactions for various purposes including business, personal, and humanitarian needs. Despite their significance, these transfers often entail a range of difficulties, such as high costs, prolonged processing times, and opacity in pricing, leading to frustration and financial strain for individuals and businesses alike. This article delves into the common challenges and introduces innovative solutions, particularly focusing on NOAH's offerings.

Common Struggles with International Money Transfers

  1. High Costs

    • General Overview: International transfers typically incur higher costs compared to domestic transfers. These expenses are influenced by various factors such as currency conversion, intermediary banking fees, and compliance costs. The complexities of international financial systems and the need for secure, cross-border transactions contribute to these additional charges.
    • Cost Variability: The exact cost percentages vary depending on several elements, including the service provider, the amount being transferred, and the specific payment corridor. This variability is a result of the differing economic and regulatory environments in each country, which affect the operation costs for transfer services.
  2. Slow Transfer Times

    • Processing Delays: The time it takes for international bank transfers can range from several days to even weeks. This delay is attributed to the processing requirements of different banks and financial institutions involved in the transfer chain. Each institution has its unique processing time, and the necessity for regulatory compliance checks adds to these delays.
    • Factors Contributing to Delays: A variety of factors can cause these delays. Global events like pandemics may impact staffing and operational efficiencies. Bank holidays, both in the sending and receiving countries, can pause processing as transactions are only processed on business days. Additionally, differences in time zones and the reliance on traditional banking networks like SWIFT, which requires multiple intermediary banks, further contribute to the slow pace of international transfers.
  3. Lack of Transparency

    • Hidden Costs: A significant challenge in international money transfers is understanding the full cost of the transaction. Often, there are hidden fees not immediately apparent to the customer. These may include exchange rate margins—where banks and transfer services add a markup to the mid-market rate—and fees charged by intermediary and recipient banks. This lack of transparency makes it difficult for customers to compare services and choose the most cost-effective option.
  4. Example Costs by Region

    • Varied Fees Across Corridors: According to the World Bank, the average cost to send a $200 remittance varies significantly by region. For instance, it's approximately 8.9% to Africa, 6.5% to Latin America, and more affordable at 4.9% to Asia.
    • Reasons for Regional Differences: These discrepancies are largely due to the economic and infrastructural development in each region. Developed countries with more advanced banking systems often have lower transfer costs and faster processing times. In contrast, developing countries, especially those with less robust financial infrastructure or higher regulatory hurdles, face higher costs. This is particularly evident in regions like Africa, where limited access to banking services and higher operational risks contribute to increased fees.

Understanding Fees in Detail

Several fees can be associated with a standard international money transfer. Please review the following list of typical fees that may apply.

  • Transfer Fees: Charged by banks for processing the transfer.
  • Exchange Rate Margins: Often hidden, they are added to the mid-market rate by banks and transfer services.
  • Intermediary Bank Fees: Charged by intermediary banks in a wire transfer, usually deducted from the transferred amount.
  • Recipient Bank Fees: Fees charged by the recipient's bank for processing incoming transfers.
  • Sending Fees: Fees for initiating a transfer by your bank.
  • Currency Conversion Fees: Charged for converting to a different currency than your account's base currency.

Reasons for International Transfer Delays

Understanding the fee structure is crucial for anyone engaging in international transfers. Typical reasons for transfer delays can be found below.

  1. Global Events: Events like pandemics can affect transfer times due to staff limitations or alternative working arrangements.
  2. Bank Holidays: Transfers can be delayed due to holidays in either the sending or receiving country, as banks operate on business days.
  3. Weekend Transfers: The working week varies by country, affecting when transfers are processed.
  4. Time Zones and Bank Cut-offs: Time zone differences can add time to transfers, especially with significant time differences.
  5. SWIFT Network Processing: Transfers via the SWIFT network can take several days due to the involvement of multiple intermediary banks.
  6. Missing Paperwork: International transfers can be delayed by missing or incorrect documentation, which is subject to human error and varies by country.

Fast, Low-Cost International Transfers with NOAH

NOAH's services are designed to address the above mentioned challenges head-on, offering a streamlined and cost-effective option for global transactions.

Global Reach and Specialization

NOAH operates extensively, providing bank solutions in 115+ countries and supporting transactions in 40+ local currencies as well as high liquidity across stablecoins. The service specializes in facilitating transfers to and from African countries including South Africa, Nigeria, Senegal, as well as Latin American countries like Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico, India and all European countries, including the UK. This broad reach, especially in regions traditionally underserved by conventional banking systems, positions NOAH as a versatile platform for diverse international transfer needs.

Speed and Efficiency

One of the standout features of NOAH is the speed of its transactions. Over 80% of its transactions are settled either on the same day (T+0) or the next day (T+1), subject to market liquidity. This efficiency is a significant boon, especially when compared to traditional banking systems where transfers can take several days or even weeks.

Transparent and Low Fees

NOAH distinguishes itself by its transparent fee structure. NOAH offers top-tier currency cinversion rates globablly with no hidden fees. For specific details contact us at business@noah.com directly

Ideal for Businesses with International Operations

With NOAH business with suppliers, customers and entities across multiple countries now have a seamless solution to execute all their cross-border payments needs. By leveraging NOAH's platform, businesses can reduce the expenses and delays commonly associated with international transfers. Using NOAH includes the ease of managing transactions in multiple countries and currencies through a single, unified platform.


NOAH presents a compelling solution for fast, low-cost international money transfers. Its global reach, specialization in key regions, swift transaction times, transparent fees, and suitability for businesses with international dealings make it a standout choice in the market, effectively addressing the common challenges faced in international money transfers. For any information contact us at business@noah.com.
Please be aware that: Cryptocurrencies are unregulated in the UK; Cryptocurrencies are not protected under Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS); Profits may be subject to capital gains tax; The value of investments can go down as well as up.

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