How to Send Money to Brazil at the Best Exchange Rate

Christ the Redeemer, Brazil

How do you choose a bank or money transfer company when you send money abroad? Your choice is probably based on assessing charges and exchange rates.

If you work with a business partner in Brazil or often send money to a relative in the country, you should do a thorough examination of service fees – chances are that you’re not aware of their full scope. Some companies make lucrative promises but there’s more to the service than meets the eye.

Banks, online money transfer companies and other financial institutions make huge profits by having significant currency conversion charges. The hidden fee is the margin that they add to the exchange rate and tha costs you a lot of money for a single transfer. The problem is that very often, you’re unaware of that hidden fee.

Let’s say you’re sending 1,000 dollars from the US to Brazil (Table 1) and choose Western Union (slow service). You’ll pay a five-dollar fee for the transaction and an eight-dollar hidden fee (as a result of the exchange rate), which adds to a total service charge of 13 dollars.

The tables bellow will help you familiarize yourself with taxes, hidden fees and the most common money transfer practices. Thus, next time you send money to Brazil from the US, UK, Western Europe or Australia, you’ll have a better idea about choosing the most cost-efficient service.

Table 1: Sending $1000 from the US to Brazil
Transfer methodFees to send $1000 USDHidden currency conversion costTotal feesTime for the transfer to arrive
Ria Money Transfer (slow)$5$2$73-5 days
TransferWise$15$0$151-2 days
Ria Money Transfer (fast)$8$7$15In Minutes
Transfast$5$10$151-3 days
Western Union (slow)$5$10$154-6 days
WorldRemit*$4$20$241-3 days
Sharemoney$3$22$25In Minutes
Viamericas$5$20$253-5 days
Western Union (fast)$20$8$28In Minutes
Enviouchegou$5$23$281-3 days
Xoom (slow)$5$24$291-3 days
Xoom (fast)$10$24$34In Minutes
Wire transfer$25-40$10-20$35-603-5 days
MoneyGram (slow)0$5$36$411-3 days
MoneyGram (fast)$10$36$46In Minutes
Skrill$3$69$723-5 days
Travelex$0$107$1073-5 days

Note:

WorldRemit allows to send a money transfer to selected countries from the following states: Alabama, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. However all states can send an airtime top-up. Moreover for confirmation please check your availability of your US state with Worldremit.

Table 2: Sending £1000 from the UK to Brazil
Transfer methodFees to send £1000 GBPHidden currency conversion costTotal feesTime for the transfer to arrive
TransferWise£15£0£151-2 days
WorldRemit£3£21£241-3 days
Azimo£1£26£271-3 days
Global Foreign Exchange£0£34£343-5 days
Trans-Fast£3£34£371-2 days
Small World FS£3£34£371-3 days
Exchange4free£0£38£383-5 days
MoneyGram£5£34£39In Minutes
Western Union£15£24£39In Minutes
Wire transfer£15-25£10-30£25-553-5 days
Skrill£2£69£713-5 days
Travelex£0£73£733-5 days
Table 3: Sending $1000 from the Canada to Brazil
Transfer methodFees to send $1000 CADHidden currency conversion costTotal feesTime for the transfer to arrive
Transfast$5$8$131-3 days
TransferWise$15$0$151-2 days
WorldRemit$4$18$221-3 days
Exchange4free$0$38$383-5 days
Skrill$4$69$733-5 days
Wire transfer$25-40$20-30$45-753-5 days
Western Union (fast)$40$54$94In Minutes
Travelex$0$103$1033-5 days
MoneyGram$50$71$121In Minutes

Note:

WorldRemit can only send 995 CAD from Canada to Mexico.

Table 4: Sending €1000 from the Western Europe to the Brazil
Transfer methodFees to send $1000 EURHidden currency conversion costTotal feesTime for the transfer to arrive
TransferWise€15€0€151-2 days
WorldRemit€4€19€231-3 days
Western Union (slow)€16€17€331-2 days
Exchange4free€0€37€373-5 days
Azimo€3€35€381-3 days
Western Union (fast)€16€38€54In Minutes
Small World FS€0€58€583-5 days
Skrill€3€69€723-5 days
Wire transfer€20-35€20-40€40-753-5 days
MoneyGram€13€82€95In Minutes
Travelex€0€166€1663-5 days
Table 5: Sending $1000 from the Australia to Brazil
Transfer methodFees to send $1000 AUDHidden currency conversion costTotal feesTime for the transfer to arrive
TransferWise$15$0$151-2 days
WorldRemit$4$20$241-3 days
Exchange4free$0$38$383-5 days
Real Transfer$5$43$482-4 days
Western Union$22$34$56Minutes
Skrill$5$79$843-5 days
Wire transfer$25-35$30-60$55-953-5 days
Travelex$0$104$1043-5 days
MoneyGram$60$64$124Minutes
Travel Money Oz$0$185$1853-5 days

Leave a reply

  1. Very useful article, I was researching that myself for the past few days. The hidden fee on the exchange rate is really hard to find out, they will do their best NOT TO TELL YOU their daily exchange rate, and they might even trick you into thinking it is the commercial rate but it is not. Some banks have up to 10% spread between the commercial rate and their rate of exchange. I have yet to find anything better than 5%.
    I will check out some of the options listed here.

    1. Hi Eduardo,
      Exactly what I found out, I’ve used 2 Brazilian Banks and 1 private broker to transfer money from Canada to Brazil, and the spread are awful 5% to 7% so far, and nobody can tell you what is the spread based on and no negotiation, you know the rate when you close the transaction…totally obscure. So far I had a better spread using credit cards with an established 2,5 to 3% rate. Any luck using the services above? today, The opening page of Transfast was showing a spread of about 2,5% for CAD to BRL but I haven’t try it.

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