- Sending funds to Germany from Australia by bank transfer is the most common choice, but not necessarily the best one.
- Money transfer services offer faster and cheaper options compared to banks.
- No matter what transfer method you choose, there are some laws and taxes you should know about before sending money to Germany.
Transferring money to Germany from Australia is a simple process as long as you transfer funds through a bank or an authorised money transfer company.
This guide will help you choose the best option based on the amount you want to send.
Inside this guide
- Common reasons people transfer money overseas to Germany
- Business vs personal considerations
- Compare money transfer services
- How much money can you send to Germany from Australia?
- How much does it cost to send money to Germany through a bank?
- Alternative ways to send money to Germany
- What money transfer services send money to Germany from Australia?
- What to compare to get the best deal
Common reasons people transfer money overseas to Germany
Australia and Germany have had a strong relationship for many years. Many Australians move to European countries attracted by the stable government, free education, and better healthcare system. Germans also move to Australia in search of employment opportunities, to complete their studies, or as working travellers.
The main reason people transfer money overseas to Germany is to send funds to their families. Australians who want to emigrate to Germany may also send money to buy property. Likewise, investors and businesses may send money to invest in real estate, set up businesses, and pay overseas employees, suppliers or contractors.
Other reasons include paying for education overseas (families often send money to Australian students in Germany) or funding personal purposes, such as getting married overseas.
Business vs personal considerations
Whether you’re sending money to Germany from Australia for business or personal purposes, there is no limit on the amount you can send (other than the limits imposed by your bank or financial institution).
However, the European Central Bank (ECB) monitors all transfers made within the Eurozone to combat fraud and money laundering. This includes transfers made from an overseas country like Australia, either in a foreign currency or in euro.
All German banks and authorised financial institutions – including registered money transfer services – have an obligation to report any suspicious transactions to the German Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU). The FIU investigates each transaction and can block funds if the suspicions are met.
The federal government (Bundesregierung) monitors all transactions for tax purposes. Australian residents in Germany may be required to pay tax on their Australian income (including income from pensions, rent, or selling property overseas). However, you will not pay tax on the money coming from personal assets (savings).
Australian businesses are also required to pay tax in Germany for work carried out through offices based in Germany. However, the income from business conducted overseas will not be taxed in Germany. Check with a financial advisor if you're unsure.
Do you need to send money overseas?
Compare money transfer services
How much money can you send to Germany from Australia?
The Australian and German governments don't limit the amount of money you can send or receive in either country. However, your bank or financial institutions may limit the maximum amount for each transaction.
Most Australian banks have a limit between $5000 and $10,000 per transaction for personal accounts. Some banks allow you to increase the limit to $50,000 or more, but you'll usually have to call your bank or visit the branch to request a limit increase.
Business accounts enjoy higher limits, with the maximum about $100,000 per transaction.
Money transfer services generally have higher limits (or no limits at all). Revolut, one of the most popular money transfer apps in Europe, has no limits on the amount of AUD you can send through the app. Wise, another popular service, limits each transaction to €165,000 for personal accounts.
How much does it cost to send money to Germany through a bank?
Costs are made up of fees PLUS the margin on the currency exchange rate. Bank transfers cost about $25-$35 per transaction. Plus there's the AUD to EUR currency exchange rate which may not be as competitive as specialist money transfer services and apps.
Alternative ways to send money to Germany
Sending money through a money transfer service (app or website) is generally cheaper. Some services are free of charge, while the average costs rarely exceed $10 per transaction.
What money transfer services send money to Germany from Australia?
Wise is a popular service for small businesses and individuals who want to move small amounts of money fast.
The service charges a small, flat fee of 0.52 AUD + 0.45% of the amount that's converted for transfers up to $182,963 AUD.
The variable rate is lower for larger amounts, but you can still expect a transfer to cost more than a bank transfer if you want to send more than $1500-$2000.
If you want to avoid fees, you can use Wise's Borderless account as long as the recipient also has a Wise account.
Transfers are generally executed instantly, and the money will reach the recipient's account in a day or less.
TorFX is an excellent choice for businesses or individuals who want to send $2000 or more to a German bank account.
The service is free to use, but you must send at least $2000. The recipient gets the money in about two to three hours.
Similar to TorFX, Send is an excellent choice for transfers of more than $2000. Like TorFX, Send doesn't charge fees but applies a small margin to the interbank exchange rate. Transfer speed varies from 24 to 48 hours.
CurrencyFair is another option for businesses and individuals. You can use the service to send any amount faster and cheaper than your bank. You can transfer the funds in-app to other CurrencyFair users or to their bank account through a transfer.
With local banks worldwide, CurrencyFair treats most transfers as local transfers, which means faster delivery and lower fees (€3 or currency equivalent per transfer). Exchange rates are also advantageous.
Revolut is one of the most popular money transfer apps in Europe, making it an excellent choice for sending funds to Germany from Australia.
Transfers between two Revolut accounts are free, and you get excellent currency exchange rates: Revolut uses the real interbank rate and doesn't apply a margin, making it the most attractive option when you want to send euro.
You can also send funds to a bank account via Revolut. There is generally no limit, although new accounts may be limited. Bank transfer fees vary from $0.30 to $8, depending on the amount, as long as you're sending the funds in the recipient's local currency (euro). If you wish to send the funds in AUD, Revolut applies a fixed fee of $8 per transaction.
What to compare to get the best deal
Getting the best deal is easy as long as you compare the following factors:
- Transfer options
- Transfer speed
- Payment options
- Currency exchange margins
- Fixed and variable fees