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Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Old May 4th 2014, 1:22 am
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Default Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

I am trying to figure out the best way to transfer all my funds from the USA to England as I am returning home in 12 weeks. I am aware of the off-shore banking option but it seems very complicated. The cashier in Bank of America suggested I close out all my accounts and get a bank check which I can take with me and just deposit in my new bank-Has anyone ever done this? Is it as easy as it sounds? Are there any hidden dangers-Any advice would be appreciated.
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Old May 4th 2014, 1:34 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

One danger, that seems obvious to me, is that you will lose the cheque!
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Old May 4th 2014, 1:39 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

If you have a debit card and/or a credit card, you can access your funds in the US from the UK. In your position, I'd keep my chequeing account open, and use my USA cards in the UK until I'd opened an account in the UK.

Then I'd make a transfer from my US account to my UK account. What kind of transfer depends on the amount. My own bank, FirstDirect, gives a very good rate of exchange so I'd use bank to bank, interac for less than $2,500 and SWIFT for over that amount. But many people on this forum recommend using a currency firm like Forex because they can offer better rates than the banks.
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Old May 4th 2014, 1:57 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Thank-you. I don't know why but the cashier at Bank of America advised me against continuing to use my American bank account (debit/credit cards) I thought it a little strange. Do you know if I would be able to do the transfer the way you suggested on-line? (I do have online banking)
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Old May 4th 2014, 2:00 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Was it literally a cashier? They may not be that knowledgeable about something out of the ordinary. Perhaps try to speak to someone else at the bank.

I think carrying a cheque would be risky, also it will be in dollars.
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Old May 4th 2014, 2:10 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Originally Posted by r0briley View Post
Thank-you. I don't know why but the cashier at Bank of America advised me against continuing to use my American bank account (debit/credit cards) I thought it a little strange. Do you know if I would be able to do the transfer the way you suggested on-line? (I do have online banking)
Yes you can do it online.

My own situation is that I kept my UK bank account when I came to Canada in '06, because I continued to have UK income and property and spend a lot of time in the UK, and we are keeping our Canadian bank account when we move. Our Canadian bank has said that we can keep it when we leave permanently, and my husband's pensions will be paid into it, then we'll transfer money over from time to time (cheaper to transfer in larger amounts). It can all be done online, or by phone.

You need to talk to your bank, and I agree you need someone with more nous than a cashier.
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Old May 4th 2014, 3:49 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Do you have any family in the UK that you would trust to transfer your funds into their account. If so transfer your funds via xe.com. Bank of America is the worst bank and I wouldn't take what they have to say as the best option. Depends on how much you have to transfer but you might be better closing your account and exchanging your funds into GBP and taking the cash with you.
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Old May 4th 2014, 9:24 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

A 'bank cheque' can take WEEKS to clear, involves fees, and may not result in a good exchange rate. Definitely NOT a good option. Carrying large amounts of cash can open yet another can of worms.

If you want to close the accounts, the best method is a wire transfer IMHO.
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Old May 4th 2014, 10:24 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

I had approximately 1/4 of my ready cash converted to GBP before leaving Canada (not a huge sum but enough) and brought it back with me in the form of a bank draft. I traveled in a fleece pullover with a zippered compartment in the chest where I carried the draft with my passport and credit cards. The draft was deposited at Lloyd's bank the morning after I arrived when we went in to convert DH's current account into joint names. The funds took about 3 working days to clear and I don't recall there being any charges involved. I'm not sure I'd want to bring a couple of hundred thousand over that way but this worked ok for me.
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Old May 4th 2014, 10:45 am
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Likely depends on the bank....RBS did us no favors at the time we gave them a US$ cheque for deposit into DH's UK account. By contrast, in the US, I deposited a cheque in CDN$ into my US account and it was credited almost instantly with no fees and a decent exchange rate.

I'm still in favor of wire transfers; paper can get lost.
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Old May 4th 2014, 12:08 pm
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Originally Posted by Vadio View Post
Likely depends on the bank....RBS did us no favors at the time we gave them a US$ cheque for deposit into DH's UK account. By contrast, in the US, I deposited a cheque in CDN$ into my US account and it was credited almost instantly with no fees and a decent exchange rate.

I'm still in favor of wire transfers; paper can get lost.
Sounds about right, I've always found you get a better exchange rate on Sterling at North American financial institutions than you do on USD/CDN in UK.
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Old May 4th 2014, 2:34 pm
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Thank-you all for the advice. I didn't even consider the possibility of losing the check but now I'm in cold sweats just thinking about it :-)
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Old May 4th 2014, 2:53 pm
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Originally Posted by r0briley View Post
I am trying to figure out the best way to transfer all my funds from the USA to England as I am returning home in 12 weeks. I am aware of the off-shore banking option but it seems very complicated. The cashier in Bank of America suggested I close out all my accounts and get a bank check which I can take with me and just deposit in my new bank-Has anyone ever done this? Is it as easy as it sounds? Are there any hidden dangers-Any advice would be appreciated.
Could you open an HSBC bank account in the UK and use XE.com or some other company to transfer it?

I would keep a US bank account open if I were you, at least for now anyway.
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Old May 4th 2014, 2:56 pm
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

I used HSBC to transfer money from my Cdn HSBC acct to my UK GBP Acct.
When purchasing a property in the UK, prior to having an HSBC account, I made an arrangement with my Cdn bank to do a wire transfer to a UK account if I needed to transfer funds. They wanted a signed fax from me and also a contact number so they could verify that I had sent the fax. Turns out that I didn't need to transfer funds that way, but at least I knew I could get the funds transferred.
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Old May 4th 2014, 4:05 pm
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Default Re: Bringing all my money back to UK in the form of Bankers Check.

Originally Posted by curleytops View Post
Sounds about right, I've always found you get a better exchange rate on Sterling at North American financial institutions than you do on USD/CDN in UK.
Sorry for hijacking the OP's thread a little but I am due to get a check for about $1,300 CAD drawn on a Canadian bank (reimbursement for travel costs to a conference in Toronto).

Does it make any difference if I pay it into my US bank a/c or a UK bank a/c? I'd rather have it here (I keep a little in my US a/c for incidentals), but not if Barclays will rob me on the exchange rate and/or charges for depositing a check drawn on a foreign account.
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