TransferWise Issues?

Old Aug 18th 2018, 5:36 pm
  #1  
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Default TransferWise Issues?

I was wondering if anyone has had any issues having TransferWise money transfers getting approval at Malaysian banks. I submitted a request almost a month ago and waited a week to get the money drawn from my US bank in US$ and converted by their "Malaysian partner bank" into MYRingitt. Then the transfer took place to Public Bank in KL. It apparently sat there for a week then sent back. Then it was sent again. I contacted TransferWise and my bank and requested a trace. The local bank first said "we never received it", then when I showed them the trace from TransferWise they said oh...it's an account to account transfer...it will be rejected by HQ because it violates banking regulations. Contacted TransferWise again. They said - we have made transfers to Malaysian banks before, including PB.

I asked for a refund, TransferWise said because the transfer had been sent out AGAIN they could not refund until PB returned the money. I asked which bank they could guarantee a transfer and the name of their partner bank but they would not tell me.

So has anyone else had this issue. If they had no issues with transfers what banks seemed to have no issue.
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 2:05 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Originally Posted by RedApe View Post
I was wondering if anyone has had any issues having TransferWise money transfers getting approval at Malaysian banks. I submitted a request almost a month ago and waited a week to get the money drawn from my US bank in US$ and converted by their "Malaysian partner bank" into MYRingitt. Then the transfer took place to Public Bank in KL. It apparently sat there for a week then sent back. Then it was sent again. I contacted TransferWise and my bank and requested a trace. The local bank first said "we never received it", then when I showed them the trace from TransferWise they said oh...it's an account to account transfer...it will be rejected by HQ because it violates banking regulations. Contacted TransferWise again. They said - we have made transfers to Malaysian banks before, including PB.

I asked for a refund, TransferWise said because the transfer had been sent out AGAIN they could not refund until PB returned the money. I asked which bank they could guarantee a transfer and the name of their partner bank but they would not tell me.

So has anyone else had this issue. If they had no issues with transfers what banks seemed to have no issue.
TransferWise can only deliver MYR via domestic transfer to bank accounts based in Malaysia and currently they cannot send money from Malaysia.

Like many others here I use HSBC Premier global banking. It's free, instant, available 24/7 and all done via internet banking. I'm sending money around too often to endure the kind of service TransferWise is providing (even if they can save you a few Sen)
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 2:30 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Thanks- Not all can afford to join HSBC Premier global banking. It's not "free" if one drops below their financial minimums (in US $100,000 combined account minimum otherwise a $50/month fee; £50,000 with HSBC in the UK). It's essentially a fixed account at that level. And to establish an account in Malaysia (with lower financial requirements- RM200,000 or minimum monthly salary of RM16,500 deposited in a HSBC Branch in Malaysia or RM150/mo fee) requires transferring the money at a vastly higher fee/rates.

I'm looking for an answer to MY question. I have very different financial circumstances and your solution is irrelevant to my situation.
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 2:38 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Originally Posted by RedApe View Post
Thanks- Not all can afford to join HSBC Premier global banking. It's not "free" if one drops below their financial minimums (in US $100,000 combined account minimum otherwise a $50/month fee; £50,000 with HSBC in the UK). It's essentially a fixed account at that level. And to establish an account in Malaysia (with lower financial requirements- RM200,000 or minimum monthly salary of RM16,500 deposited in a HSBC Branch in Malaysia or RM150/mo fee) requires transferring the money at a vastly higher fee/rates.

I'm looking for an answer to MY question. I have very different financial circumstances and your solution is irrelevant to my situation.
As you say the balance requirement at HSBC is RM200K but the MM2H deposit of RM150K is taken into account so it's not exactly expensive and it gives you Premier status worldwide, not just in Malaysia. Seems like a good deal to me.
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 2:56 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

We wanted to transfer some money from the US to Malaysia 4 years ago. The CIMB staff told us that we could just bring in a bank check. We did, but it took them several weeks bouncing between the branch and CIMB headquarter. At the end, they refused to cash our check and also took sometime to return the check. They explained this was because of rules against money laundering between the US and Malaysia. So while we did not use TransferWise, maybe you have the same problem, which is something to do with strict control on money transfers from the US.

In our case, We were happy that the check was not cashed out then, as the ringgit dropped significantly afterward...
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 3:13 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

I don't need to establish a Fixed Deposit. Your advice is helpful to the question of which fixed deposit to initially establish. I'm already here. On the pension plan.

In addition, wouldn't one would still have to transfer money into the Malaysian Premier Account, unless they allow one a gratis one time "set up" account at a foreign HSBC branch, and waive transfer fees. Plus they'd likely do that at the poorer exchange rate if at all. If not then you are transferring RM200,000 at the poorer exchange rates and fees. As an example, I attempted to transfer US$10K back when the $/RM was $1/4.00 RM. Transferwise gave me 3.98 and a $100 fee. My Bank gave me 3.90 ($200 less) and a $150 fee ( Total $350 - net $250 lost through fees and bad exchange rate). I can imagine what the transfer loss would be on $50,000! An estimated cost of $500 (TransferWise) vs. $1750 (wire transfer).
Now you could say, "you'll eventually make that up in the interest rate on the fixed deposit", but one could use TransferWise to establish that very same fixed deposit. 4%/annum would indeed bring $2000 the first year covering the cost of the transfer. But with a TransferWise transfer that's $1500 profit above expenses.
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 6:11 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

I've only made two inward transfers using TFW, both to someone else's account at Maybank. No problems at all and the money was received in less than two working days.

I created a UK-based TFW account, paid money into it from my UK bank, set up the MYR payment, got the mid-market rate and a very low fee. No complaints at all. Possibly your issues are being caused by the American (FATCA) Inquisition? Just a wild guess.
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 7:29 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Have sent TW several times to HSBC MY, biggest single transfer was 230K MYR, no issues. The transfer shows up as a domestic transfer from a Malaysia (money transfer) company, so I don't see why the receiving bank would block an incoming domestic MYR transfer.
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Old Aug 19th 2018, 12:01 pm
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Originally Posted by RedApe View Post
I was wondering if anyone has had any issues having TransferWise money transfers getting approval at Malaysian banks. I submitted a request almost a month ago and waited a week to get the money drawn from my US bank in US$ and converted by their "Malaysian partner bank" into MYRingitt. Then the transfer took place to Public Bank in KL. It apparently sat there for a week then sent back. Then it was sent again. I contacted TransferWise and my bank and requested a trace. The local bank first said "we never received it", then when I showed them the trace from TransferWise they said oh...it's an account to account transfer...it will be rejected by HQ because it violates banking regulations. Contacted TransferWise again. They said - we have made transfers to Malaysian banks before, including PB.

I asked for a refund, TransferWise said because the transfer had been sent out AGAIN they could not refund until PB returned the money. I asked which bank they could guarantee a transfer and the name of their partner bank but they would not tell me.

So has anyone else had this issue. If they had no issues with transfers what banks seemed to have no issue.

I've not used TransferWise but I can recommend someoe who I have used for years for multiple currencies, and who used to look after my clients when I was a Financial Planner - feel free to PM me.

N.
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Old Aug 23rd 2018, 11:57 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

I am likewise having issues with Transferwise this week trying to move a large sum over to CIMB for my MM2H FD. Rejecting at the local Malaysia level, not with CIMB but with some agent between TW and CIMB. I've had to provide my MM2H approval letter, banking statements, etc. But to no avail. I've paid rental deposit, rent and other bills with no issue over the last couple of months but all of a sudden it is being rejected.
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Old Aug 23rd 2018, 12:01 pm
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Epicurious might have a good point about the US, I wonder if setting up a Euro or Pound "Borderless Account" would work around the issue, accepting that more exchange loss is in the mix with that.

RedApe what have you learned?
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Old Aug 24th 2018, 6:23 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Originally Posted by macmagrduer View Post
Epicurious might have a good point about the US, I wonder if setting up a Euro or Pound "Borderless Account" would work around the issue, accepting that more exchange loss is in the mix with that.

RedApe what have you learned?
When I tried to open an FD and current account at Affin bank around 6 months ago I was told by the staff member that they would not allow me to open an account if the money was being transferred in from overseas so perhaps it's not a Transferwise or a US issue but an issue with local Malaysian banks. In my case I also have HSBC Malaysian account and have used that as the destination when using Transferwise without any problems as HSBC being an international bank receives transfers directly. I then do a local transfer from HSBC to Affin without problem. Note that when I opened the Affin account I had to not only provide documents around MM2H (FD held at HSBC) but also evidence that I had a local HSBC bank account that can take overseas transfers. Application went to head office and took about 2 weeks before account opening was approved. Would suggest that at Affin bank they don't want the problems that are being described in previous posts.
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Old Aug 24th 2018, 1:57 pm
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

I made maybe 20 or 30 Transferwise transfers from EUR to MYR in the last years, never had any problems. But I did not do extraordenary large sums with a single transfer, maybe that is the problem.

HSBC Premier global banking is not free, compare the exchange rate and you will know. Even better then transferwise is the good old money changer of your trust. So it is not a bad idea to let every family member bring in the maximum amount of currency from any visit home. In KL stick to MidValley for money changing.
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Old Aug 26th 2018, 4:50 am
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Yes, after floating around different Money Changers in Kuching I found a wide range of rates. Pays to shop around. All were better than the "real" (non-internet) bank rates and none charged a service fee. One then simply strolls over to the bank branch and have them put it into your account. The problem is the whole "carrying around cash" element.
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Old Aug 26th 2018, 1:42 pm
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Default Re: TransferWise Issues?

Originally Posted by RedApe View Post
I was wondering if anyone has had any issues having TransferWise money transfers getting approval at Malaysian banks....So has anyone else had this issue. If they had no issues with transfers what banks seemed to have no issue.
Yep, we're just in the process of buying so I need to transfer UK funds into Malaysia and far more than I've needed for living in a rental.[1] Although I did a couple of years back do a a largish transfer for the car etc I recently sent RM200k and it got held up for just on a week with Transferwise not being particularly helpful. They kept saying it was complete but the money had vanished into limbo.

Eventually after a number of calls and emails it did get to the destination account. In a subsequent call with Transferwise they suggested that they could transfer up to £2 million at a time but that sums of RM200k and above triggered investigation in Malaysia. I've just made another instalment below RM200k and it went through in a couple of days. I've a few more to do but the rate has been so rubbish I am hoping for the odd point increase before sending some more.

[1] I did send a small sum a week before the brexit nonsesne, which I'd transferred the lot now at 6.3 if only.
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