HSBC Money Transfer Review

Exchange rates, Payment methods, How to, Transfer fees and much more

HSBC Review

If you’re looking to send money to family and friends, pay tuition fees overseas, or manage a property, you’re going to need a trustworthy money transfer service. One of the major Canadian banks, HSBC offers two types of international transfers you may be interested in. But what is the difference between the HSBC Global Transfer and a regular wire transfer? And is an HSBC money transfer the fastest or cheapest option? If you’ve got questions, this guide will tell you everything you need to know about transferring money overseas with HSBC Canada.

How To Fund Your International Money Transfer With HSBC

In order to transfer money internationally, you’ll need to have an eligible account. The service is only available for HSBC Premier and HSBC Advance customers. HSBC takes the funds for the transfer, including any fees, directly from your bank account.

How Much I Can Transfer With HSBC?

The maximum you can transfer with HSBC is $50,000 or its equivalent. For amounts higher than this, up to $150,000 you can start the instruction through online banking. However you will then need to call customer service so it can be manually authorised.

HSBC Transfer Fees

HSBC’s wire transfer service has different fees according to the type of account you hold and the amount of the transfer. The bank’s schedule of charges details the amounts. Before the transfer is completed you’ll be able to view the charges that apply to your specific transaction.

In many cases there is no fee. HSBC defines those circumstances as

  • When the currency you send in is different from the currency of the sending account AND
  • The transfer is less than CAD $10,000 AND
  • You are sending from a personal account

You can also benefit from lower costs if you are transferring money to your own HSBC account abroad. In this case the bank charges no fees. This program is called Global Transfer but only works if you already bank with HSBC.

One thing to note is that other banks or agencies that process your transfer may apply fees. HSBC does not have any control over these charges.

Pros And Cons Of Using HSBC


  • Convenient transfers through online banking

  • Can also transfer through the branch or by telephone bank

  • Secure transactions with a bank account you already have

  • Fees are shown up front

  • Cons

  • Money can take up to 4 business days to arrive

  • Exchange rate margin isn’t transparent

  • Can only transfer to a receiver’s bank account

  • How Does HSBC Work?

    The general process involves:

    • Log in to the HSBC online banking portal or use the HSBC app.
    • Click on Banking then Move Money.
    • You will need to create a Payee, which is the receiver that the funds are going to. Get your receiver’s full address and their bank account number before creating the transfer instruction.
    • Enter the receiving bank’s SWIFT code or BIC code.
    • Enter the currency of the transfer and the amount.
    • Once all the details are correct, click confirm.

    HSBC implements an extra layer of security through its Security Device. This is either a physical device that is sent to you, or a digital one accessed through your phone. This will be used to generate a code when you log on so that the bank can confirm that the transfer is legitimate.

    To check if the receiver has received the transfer, tell them to contact their local bank. Once you have sent a transfer for the first time you can actually set up a recurring transaction to send in the future.

    For some countries you’ll need specific information to complete your transfer.

    • For China the transfer must be in a foreign currency that is not Chinese yen. The only exception is transfers to commercial entities for a commercial purpose. You’ll need to enter the reason for the transaction if this is the case.
    • For India similarly you will need to provide the purpose of the payment. Use the payment details section of the wire transfer to enter the details. Your receiver should give you this information beforehand. If they do not know, they can contact their bank for clarification.
    • For Europe most banks will require an IBAN. This is made up of the bank’s code and some other information identifying the receiver’s account. These include the transit number and their account number.
    • For Mexico, there is an 18-digit code called the CLABE that needs to be provided. If it is not, the transfer may be cancelled. This code is similar to a SWIFT, IBAN or BIC.

    Other Money Transfer Providers

    HSBC Exchange Rates

    The exchange rate for your transaction will be shown during the process. There’s no way to know beforehand without starting the instruction to send the money. For the Global Transfers service the bank uses a better rate.

    How Does HSBC Make Money?

    On the exchange rate.

    Platforms Where HSBC Is Available

    HSBC’s transfer service is available through its online banking and its apps. The phone apps are well rated, with a score of 3.9 out of 5 on the Google Play store, and 4.6 out of 5 on the App Store. HSBC also has telephone banking.

    Is HSBC Secure?

    HSBC has several measures in place to help you secure your money. In fact, when you use online banking to transfer money, there’s the HSBC Security Device to give an extra piece of protection.

    What Countries Does HSBC Allow You To Send Money To?

    Using HSBC’s wire transfer service allows you to send money in 21 currencies. You can see the full list on the HSBC website.

    Among the popular countries you can send to are the Eurozone, Australia, India, China, South Africa, Mexico, and the Philippines.


    How To Contact HSBC

    The following methods are available:


    1-888-310-4722 1-877-621-8811 (Online and mobile banking)

    Live chat:

    On their website. Log in to online banking for a secure conversation.


    Find a branch near you on the HSBC websie


    885 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6C 3E9

    Alternatives To HSBC Money Transfer

    Other banks

    Banks are seen as a safe and trustworthy choice to send your money overseas. Many people don’t even know that there are alternatives. In the modern financial world, however, banks are probably the least convenient and most expensive money transfer option. Some banks have made it easier to send online but for the most part sending a transfer through a bank is time consuming and expensive, with fees and exchange rates that are not transparent.


    Online banks

    For customers who are comfortable with technology, an online bank can be an alternative to using HSBC. They offer low fee accounts and competitive rates on transfers. In addition to this, they have top level security on their apps so you can feel safe using them to transfer money.

    Some of the top Canadian online banks are Simplii Financial, EQ Bank, and Tangerine.


    Traditional Money Transfer Providers

    For the quickest and most convenient transfers, it’s worth looking into traditional money transfer providers. These include Western Union, Ria, and MoneyGram. They offer cash pickup and your receiver probably has a branch near them.

    The only downside of these services are the extremely high transfer fees. The exchange rates are also not competitive.


    Online Money Transfer Companies Like Remitly

    Remitly is a money transfer company with the advantage of a large bank. It has an impressive number of banks in its network. This means it’s likely both sender and receiver will have a bank close to them. There are multiple payout methods available that the receiver can take advantage of. There are other online companies such as Remitbee who also do money transfers exclusively. Due to their lower operating costs, you can benefit from the savings they pass on to customers.



    Transferwise operates exclusively online sending money between different currencies. The fees are low and transparent. The real draw however is the fact that Transferwise uses the real mid-market exchange rate. Like HSBC, your recipient will need a bank account to receive.


    HSBC Frequently Asked Questions

    Here are some frequently asked questions about choosing BMO Money Transfer for your online money transfers:

    By default your account can send $50,000. In order to increase the limit you’ll need to contact customer service.

    You can send a transfer using money in your eligible HSBC account.

    HSBC waives fees for wire transfers under $10,000 if the currency you send in is different from the currency of the sending account. In other cases the fee ranges from $35 to $55. Transfers to your HSBC accounts abroad also have fees waived.

    The longest it will take is three to four business days. In some cases it is with the receiver in as little as one business day. Your receiver should contact their bank to find out more.

    History Of HSBC

    HSBC has a long history worldwide, and it's driving idea has always been “a local bank serving international needs”. Due to this it has a great understanding of customers who need to manage their money in different countries. The first of the HSBC group banks opened in Asia in 1865.

    In Canada, it has been a high profile bank since 1981. After first buying out the Bank of British Columbia, it continued to acquire other banks. These included Lloyds Bank Canada, Barclays Bank of Canada, National Westminster Bank of Canada and Intesa Bank Canada. Today HSBC ranks at number seven in terms of size on the list of Canadian banks.

    Other Services HSBC Offers

    • Currency exchange service
    • Savings accounts in international currencies
    • Free Interac e-transfers
    • Credit cards
    • Travel insurance
    • Loans
    • Mortgages
    • Investment products
    • Small business services

    How To Open An Account With HSBC

    If you've been living in Canada for less than five years, you are eligible for the HSBC Canada Newcomers Program.

    For international students there is a possibility to get a special Student Newcomer account. This has benefits such as no monthly fees for a year, bonuses for common transactions, and even the chance to get a credit card when you don’t have any Canadian credit history. You will need to visit a branch in order to apply, but you can book an appointment online using the site first.

    So What Is HSBC In A Nutshell?

    HSBC international money transfer is one of the many bank options available to Canadian senders. It can be convenient if you already have an account with the bank. Or if you want to transfer a large amount at once. It is however not the cheapest option, so it’s best to compare other providers to see which are best. To explore which money transfer options may work for you, read the Remitbee Blog.

    Try Remitbee today and get a 15$ bonus for your first transfer!

    Best exchange rates, one-day delivery, free transfers over 500$ and amazing customer support! Too good to be true? How about a sweet 15$ bonus towards your first transfer? Just give us a shot!