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Barclays is a British multinational investment bank and financial services company based in London. They have been on the market for more than 300 years, and their current offer includes services such as personal banking, corporate banking, wealth management, and investment management. Through Barclays, you can receive and send domestic and international payments to more than 200 countries.
Before you can start making international money transfers with Barclays, you need to open a bank account with them. Multiple account types are offering different features. To register with UK-based banks, you need to be the resident of UK and have all of the proper documentation. Barclays prepared an offer for newcomers or people who had just got a job and are starting their new life in the UK.
After you register, you can use their online platform to order a transfer. You can also use mobile app or simply visit a local branch of the bank, or call their representatives to set up the deal.
You can send money to over 200 countries worldwide, in over 50 currencies. This includes SEPA supported locations, European countries, USA, and also South America or Africa and Asia. Different fees are depending on the destination.
The speed of the payment depends on the country you’re sending the money to, the currency you’re paying in, and the time of day you send the payment.
If you have a “Personal” or “Premier” account, there is no additional fee for ordering international money transfer. However, you still have to pay any processing costs accrued by potential intermediaries or your recipient’s bank. This fee usually costs around 4GBP and can be shared with your recipient.
Sending money to SEPA countries in Europe costs 5GBP through online banking. If the international payment is made at a branch or by telephone, the fee is 15GBP for SEPA and even 40GBP for other international payments.
It’s also essential to notice that it costs 6GBP to receive international payments, in case it’s made outside SEPA supported countries or if the sender didn’t pay the fees for you.
The markup on the exchange rates varies based on the amount you are trying to buy. It is set at around 5% compared to the average market rate.
One of the interesting features is that you can use Barclays exchange services to acquire currency and have it delivered to your house. You can order up to 5,000GBP per person within 90 days, and the minimum amount to have it delivered to your door is 50GBP. It is a convenient way to get travel money for your holidays.
The limits vary based on the account types. However, the primary offer allows you to send a maximum of 50,000GBP per day using online banking. To make higher payments, you need to contact Barclays representative and visit their local branch.
Barclays, with their regular bank fees and high markups on the exchange rates, loses the fight with independent online money transfer providers. Even other popular UK banks offer cheaper international money wire. However, in terms of security and reliability, you can be sure that Barclays will handle your money with the highest quality and without any problems.
To start sending money through Barclays, you need to open a bank account with them. You can choose from different account types and then handle all of your payments via an online platform or mobile app.
It’s best to visit your local Barclays branch or call their representative to get the latest information about opening the account. There is an option to register for online banking through their platform. Visit the Barclays website and click on the “Register” button at the top of the page. Then, fill out all of your personal information and follow the steps. You may need to undergo a special verification process and send them scans of your documentation so that they can verify it’s really you.
Your connection with the online platform is encrypted, and the bank needs to comply with all of the financial regulations and laws. As with any online banking, service, there are a lot of scam and phishing attempts. Barclays prepared educational materials for their customers to learn about security measures and how to avoid being hacked online.
With the hundreds of years of operations, their scale, and variety of offered services, Barclays couldn’t avoid scandals and controversies. The company has been investigated and fined for failing to comply with anti-money laundering laws, as well as attempts at tax evasion. The bank was also accused of manipulating the market exchange rates. There was also a case where it turned out that Barclays was intentionally refusing currency exchanges and changing the rates for some customers if the system decided that it’s unprofitable for the company. There were also controversies with Barclays influencing gold or electricity prices.
The common advantage mentioned by the customers seems to be Barclays' mobile app and online platform. Many users report that it’s easy and straightforward to use, and you can conveniently manage your daily finances and issue all of the payments.
“I mainly use the mobile app. I have actually seen it evolve, and I like it a lot. It is simple, straightforward, and pretty intuitive. I've never had trouble with it. It is easy to find all the information I need. The Web app is also great” ~ one of the users at Nerdwallet
People seem to have mixed feelings about Barclays' recent offers, and the majority of complaints focus on poor customer support. It’s hard to solve potential account issues with them, and the representative at the call center may not be fluent in English.
“I have been with Barclays for ten years they have steadily got worse and now at the point where I am going to leave them on account of there complete lack of consideration for loyal customers would certainly not recommend them to any one about to open a bank account.” ~ Mark on Trustpilot
“Great bank, not great customer service” ~ Matthew on Trustpilot
“Rude and incompetent call centre staff who are deliberately obstructive, lacking any common sense or customer service skills, and who provide contradicting advice in extremely poor English. If you call up, prepare to be on the phone for an extremely long time and to have your patience pushed to the absolute limit. It's a real shame as their app is quite good.” ~ Kat on Trustpilot
In the contact section, you can find different phone numbers and departments, as each one is responsible for different subjects and problems. Choose which topic do you want to talk about, and you will be shown articles and basic answers for the most common issues, as well as a phone number and online live chat to contact the bank’s representatives.
Many customers report that it’s hard to communicate with customer support, and they may also be rude or unhelpful.
While the service is undoubtedly reliable and safe to use, the overall costs and unfavorable exchange rates make it not the best option to choose for handling frequent international payments. There are better alternatives when it comes to mainstream banks, as well as independent online platforms. The most significant drawbacks are the high markups on the currency exchange and the past controversies about manipulating the rates, as well as low-quality customer support. The mobile app seems to be very convenient to use, and for many customers is the best tool for handling your finances.
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