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MisterTea

Transfers to UK-based foreign currency account

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I'm going to be moving back to Australia in the next 2-3 years, so if the Pound significantly strengthens against the Australian Dollar at any point between now and then, I want to be in a position to convert my savings as quickly as possible.

An Australian Dollar account based in Australia doesn't seem to be an option as it will get closed if I don't move there within a few months, so I've opened an Australian Dollar account with HSBC in the UK instead.

I've previously used OzForex (now OFX) for money transfers, but their rates don't seem very competitive now. Same with MoneyCorp, so I've looked into Wise instead. Their rates are good, but they won't let you transfer Australian Dollars to a UK-based Australian Dollar account (their form requires a BSB, not a sort code, and their support person told me its not possible).

So is there any service with rates similar to Wise that will allow Pounds to be converted and sent to a UK-based Australian Dollar account?

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Don't know if HSBC offer it in the UK but I'm in Australia and have an HSBC Everyday Global account. It lets you set up to 10 currencies in the one account.

https://www.hsbc.com.au/accounts/products/everyday-global/?cid=AUH:PA:P0:CA:05:2101:001:EGA:02M:big:TXA:DDA:N/A:CAM::CVR:NULL&gclsrc=ds

So whenever I feel like it I just transfer money from the AUD default currency to GBP or USD or whatever. The exchange rate applies as at time of the transfer.


I want it all, and I want it now.

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HSBC is the bank I'm using, and that part is fine.  I was trying to find an exchange service with good rates, that would transfer Australian Dollars to an Australian Dollar account in the UK.

If anyone else is in this position, I've done some more digging and TorFX say they can do this.  Haven't used them yet, but they seem to have a solid reputation and their exchange rates are maybe a little better than Wise.

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Have you asked HSBC about how to transfer Australian Dollars in to their account? I'd be very surprised if they don't have an Australian account number (including BSB) that you can use to do so as that's how most foreign currency accounts operate.


Chartered Accountant (England & Wales); Registered Tax Agent & Fellow of The Tax Institute (Australia)

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According to HSBC's customer support, their UK-based Australian Dollar accounts can't be accessed via a BSB code.

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, MisterTea said:

According to HSBC's customer support, their UK-based Australian Dollar accounts can't be accessed via a BSB code.

I'm a bit confused.  You are currently in the UK and you want to convert pounds from your UK bank account into Australian dollars and deposit them in a UK-based HSBC  account to take advantage of exchange rates, right?

If that's the case, why are you looking at a forex company like Ozforex which is in Australia?  Surely it's an entirely UK-based transaction?

Edited by Marisawright

Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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OFX are multi-national (they used to be operated as OzForex and UKForex, but have now merged). I used them a few years back, but as I said, they're not as competitive these days.

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10 hours ago, MisterTea said:

OFX are multi-national (they used to be operated as OzForex and UKForex, but have now merged). I used them a few years back, but as I said, they're not as competitive these days.

Have you spoken with them about the amount you intend to transfer. My impression was that they set a margin in your account depending upon the $'s you anticipate exchanging. I'm sure the same would be true with Moneycorp.

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10 hours ago, MisterTea said:

OFX are multi-national (they used to be operated as OzForex and UKForex, but have now merged). I used them a few years back, but as I said, they're not as competitive these days.

It just sounds suspicious that their forms only have BSB numbers as an option.  BSB numbers are a system used by Australian banks so I'd expect the Australian branches of these companies to use them, but not the UK branches.


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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On 08/04/2021 at 15:20, MisterTea said:

HSBC is the bank I'm using, and that part is fine.  I was trying to find an exchange service with good rates, that would transfer Australian Dollars to an Australian Dollar account in the UK.

Ask HSBC for how they can assist you with opening an account with HSBC Australia.  If you're not Premier there may be a fee to do this but at least it's an option.

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7 hours ago, Marisawright said:

It just sounds suspicious that their forms only have BSB numbers as an option.  BSB numbers are a system used by Australian banks so I'd expect the Australian branches of these companies to use them, but not the UK branches.

It is perfectly normal for Australian currency accounts to have a BSB, for GBP currency accounts to have a sort-code, and for USD accounts to have an ABA. Businesses need those to give to their customers so they can pay in to those accounts. There may also be a local account number (say a sort-code if they are UK based) but that can't usually be used to pay foreign currency in to the account as the UK's sort-code system is designed around GBP payments. IBAN numbers can be used to pay in to both GBP and EUR accounts and so can be used for GBP without needing a sort-code, but they aren't available for AUD (or USD).


Chartered Accountant (England & Wales); Registered Tax Agent & Fellow of The Tax Institute (Australia)

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