Barclays International Transfers & Exchange Rates
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Published On:
November, 25 2022
Edited On:
February, 21 2023

Barclays International Transfers & Exchange Rates

Barclays is a world-famous British bank offering diverse banking services including personal and corporate banking, foreign exchange, card issuing, and international payments. The bank has been in operation for over 330 years and continues growing in size, geographical reach, and customer base.

This review will cover everything you need to know about Barclays including how to make both local and international money transfers. Keep reading to find out more.

About Barclays

Barclays is the second largest bank in the UK after HSBC. Founded in 1690, the London-headquartered bank has a presence in 41 countries around the world. As of 2019, its global human resource count stood at 82,745.

In terms of organisation, Barclays PLC comprises two clearly defined businesses: Barclays UK and Barclays International - which includes the head office. If you are transacting within or from the UK, chances are you are using Barclays UK services whereas customers outside the UK are mostly served by Barclays International.

Through its ‘FX powered by Barclays’ service, the bank supports up to 90 different currencies. Barclays is rated A by Standard & Poor's, A1 or stable by Moody's, and A+ by Fitch, giving it great credit ratings across the board and allowing customers to feel reassured that Barclays’ services are safe and reliable.

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Barclays exchange rates and fees

Whether you are making an international transfer or receiving funds from overseas into your Barclays account, you must understand the exchange rates and fees charged. Here is a breakdown of the exchange rates, fees, and other costs to expect when using Barclays.

Exchange rates

When sending money abroad, Barclays will convert your funds for you if the receiving account and the sending account are denominated in different currencies. This process comes at a cost, however, and not just in the form of up-front fees. Barclays applies a margin on top of the mid-market exchange rate when converting currencies (known as an exchange rate markup), so you won’t be able to convert your cash at the same rate you find through google.

The mark-up differs depending on the currency pairs involved. Here is a quick run of the mark-ups you are likely to be charged depending on where you are sending money to:

  • GBP to USD: Barclays charges a 2.67% mark-up.

  • GBP to AUD: Expect to pay 2.71% above the mid-market rate.

  • GBP to EUR: In this pair, you will pay a mark-up of 2.73%.


For international payments, online money transfers cost £15.00 per transaction whereas telephone transfers cost £35.00. Payments in Euros to SEPA countries and their territories cost £7.00 or the currency equivalent.

Sending money online within the UK using Barclays’s Faster Payments Service for amounts up to £100,000 is free. Online CHAPS costs £15.00 while manual CHAPS whether through telephone or written instructions cost £35.00

Additional costs

Other than expected fees, you will also be charged £6 to receive international transfers sent from the UK. Barclays will also charge you £20.00 for payment inquiries, recalls, or amendment of transfer details in case you need to reverse the transfer.

Barclays Pros and Cons

Before using Barclays to send and receive money, it is important to bring yourself up to speed with its pros and cons of their services. Here is what you need to know.


Easy online interface: Customers can send money hassle-free online using Barclays Online Banking or the Barclays app.
Large transfer limits: Using the Barclays app customers can transfer up to £50,000 per day. The Barclays Online Banking service allows up to £100,000 per day. For higher limits, customers are advised to visit any of the bank’s branches or call in for telephone transfers.
Extensive geographical coverage: Barclays has a physical presence in 41 countries and has over 4,750 branches globally. In other countries, the bank uses intermediaries and partner institutions to deliver transfers.


Transfer speed: Transfers within the EU can take anything from a day to 2 working days. However, transfers outside Europe can stretch up to 4 or 5 working days depending on the receiving bank and destination.
High exchange rate mark-ups: Although Barclays charges lower mark-ups compared to other banks like NatWest, it is still worse compared to money transfer companies like Wise.
Limited payout options: Typically, Barclays transfers are paid out through the bank. For transfers to cash pickup points and door to door deliveries, customers need to look elsewhere.
Customers must have an account: Transfers can only be done from a bank account. This means that people without a bank account such as new immigrants and those falling within the unbanked category cannot make transfers using Barclays.

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How to open an account and transfer money with Barclays

To send money using Barclays, you first need to open a bank account. Fortunately, the process is simple, and you can do so online, on phone, or in-person at a branch near you.

Before you begin the process, you’ll need the following information on hand:

  • Identification documents: This could be a UK passport, driving license, EU and EEA national identity card, or UK biometric residence permit.

  • Proof of address: The bank expects you to produce a driving licence, bank statement, UK credit card statement, or UK utility bill.

Opening an account

  1. Enter your personal details: These include your name, telephone number, email address, and social security number.

  2. Select the account type: Choose whether you want to open an online savings account or current account. Also, select the account relationship-single or joint and input a beneficiary if available.

  3. Enter basic information: Here you enter additional personal information, contact information, and address. Also, you will need to create a unique username and password for your online login and access.

  4. Confirm your information: Check that all the details entered are correctly captured and submit.

If you are a student, you must prove your student status by producing your student ID card.

Transferring money

Once your account is set up, you can easily move money to your beneficiary’s account online, through the Barclays app, using telephone banking or at the branch. Here is a summary of how to move money online.

  • Step 1: Log in to your Barclays online banking platform

  • Step 2: Click on the ‘Move money’ tab

  • Step 3: From the Menu, click on ‘International payment’

  • Step 4: Read through and follow the on-screen instructions. Ensure you correctly input the details of the person you want to send money to and confirm.

  • Step 5: Verify your identity and authorise your payment using PINsentry


Barclays has such a rich banking history stretching back to more than three centuries. It is a well-known institution and supports large transactions in over 90 different currencies. Whether you want to move large amounts online, in person at the branch or using telephone banking Barclays will support you.

Despite its incredible reputation, customers using Barclays may have to wait even up to 4 or 5 working days to have their transfers delivered. To add on to this, the bank charges an exchange rate margin upwards of 2.5% which can be quite steep, especially for larger amounts of money.

Overall, Barclays is a great bank, but certainly not the overall best way to send money abroad. For better deals, it’s best to look at specialist money transfer companies. They are faster, cheaper, and more convenient. Our’s comparison tool can quickly help you get the best deal on your next transfer.

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April Summers
April Summers
April is a trained journalist and the Content Editor for She has 10 years experience writing about a diverse range of subjects, from financial services to arts and entertainment. When she's not writing about global remittances she can be found daydreaming about her next holiday abroad.

Answers to key questions about Barclays

Whether you are transferring funds to your family, friends or business partners using Barclays, there are certain things you must factor in. Here is a breakdown of the most important considerations to make.

Can I open a Barclays account in any country?
Does Barclays have an app?
Are there transfer limits?
How long do transfers take with Barclays?
What customer support options are available?
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