Since Paris Unraveled was written in 2011, the landscape of currency transfers has changed rapidly. As of 2016, Paris Unraveled is proud to partner with Transferwise, an international currency transfer service that enables you to transfer money easily to France with low fees.
Here’s how it works:
If you want to transfer money from, say, the US to France, you create an account with Transferwise, and you transfer, say, $1000 to Transferwise’s US account.
Transferwise then transfers money from their EU company to your French bank account. Because the money never actually crosses borders, it arrives quickly, and the fees are much lower than for a traditional international wire transfer.
They use the interbank exchange rate, and add a *small* commission of around .5%, whereas banks add 3-4% and sometimes add international transfer fees.
How to Use TransferWise:
1) Go here to start: http://transferwise.com
2) Input your starting currency and the currency you are transferring to. You can choose to input the amount you are starting with, or the amount you want the recipient to receive.
3) Click ‘Start’ to create an account or sign in with Google or Facebook.
4) Transferwise tells you what the fees are, how much you’ll save compared to your bank, and how long it will take to transfer the funds.
5) Input your details (name, address, email, etc.)
6) Input details on the recipient. You can transfer money to yourself, an individual, or a company/association. If the recipient is in the US, that means including the routing number and the account number. If the recipient is in the EU, you can input the IBAN number (which you can find on your RIB from your French bank).
Note: if you don’t know the recipient’s bank information, you can input their email address, and Transferwise will send them an email inviting them to put in their bank details to receive the money. If they don’t reply to the email, your money will be reimbursed.
7) Verify the information and click to confirm. The money will be withdrawn from your account and you will receive an email confirmation when the money is deposited to the recipient.
(*Note: Paris Unraveled receives a one-time commission if you join and make a transfer within 60 days. This in no way impacts the cost of your money transfer or the rates you pay.)