Expatriates in the UAE often send money to friends and families overseas. This is such a frequent occurrence, in fact, that according to the ‘2016 World Bank Migration and Remittances Factbook,’ the UAE is currently ranked as the fourth top remittance-sending country in the world. This accounts for more than $19 billion (Dh70 billion) in one year, and represents 4.8 per cent of the UAE’s gross domestic product (GDP). In addition, the cost of remitting money from the UAE to some of the most popular destinations such as India, Pakistan and the Philippines is also one of the lowest in the world – according to World Bank statistics.
A key reason for remittance today is to financially support family members, build a retirement fund abroad or invest in a diverse range of properties. If you are looking to send money, chances are that you might be overwhelmed by the abundance of options out there as the UAE has several exchange houses, online brokerages and banks which offer to remit money to your destination of choice.
Choosing a suitable option
Before rushing into a transfer, it’s important to do a thorough investigation. Finding the best deal with the strongest rate and paying as little as possible when sending funds home should be your top priority. If you use an online brokerage for example, rates can differ from the official website compared to when you use your online account. Ultimately, it’s important for you to do your research and compare all your options to save a lot of money in the long run.
Another thing to consider is where you are sending the money. For example, if you send funds through an exchange house to a bank overseas, you would need the exchange house to have a relationship with that bank. If it doesn’t have a relationship with that specific bank, the transaction won’t be possible. If you are sending money to a person that isn’t banked, then remittance companies are probably your best option to direct money internationally.
Sending money via a bank can be a better option. Usually, the only requirements are the institution you are transferring to, Iban number, address and a contact number. Banks traditionally require less documentation to make a transfer, as in most cases, your information will already be entered into the bank.