Sending money to New Zealand from Australia and Sending money to Australia from New Zealand is an incredibly popular and common occurrence. The history and trade between the two countries is rich. In 2020, there were over 186,000 daily AUDNZD trades, making it the most popularly traded currency pair by Australians, beating the 158,000 daily trades for AUDUSD. Despite how common it is to transfer money from Australia to New Zealand or transfer money from New Zealand to Australia, the process is costly., Australian expats living in New Zealand and New Zealand expats living in Australia have surely realised that banks are not the cheapest way to transfer money to New Zealand from Australia or vice versa. Banks charge high fees and offer the worst foreign exchange rates, despite promising the best service. In this guide, we ask are banks the best way to transfer money from Australia to New Zealand or the best way to transfer money from New Zealand to Australia? And we compare their fees and service with the top commercial, non-bank, options for sending a wire between Australia and NZ.
Australian citizens are one of only a few groups of people that can freely purchase New Zealand property, making the country an attractive option for Australian property investors. New Zealand has many options for passive investment. Real estate is just one of them, and it’s the most popular. Today, the average house in Auckland, New Zealand will lighten your pocket by over NZD700,000. It’s a worthwhile investment though, with rental fees in Auckland generating NZD2,000 on average every month. Big investments between the two countries will require regular transfers of sizable amounts.
Whether the requirement is to pay a mortgage on a monthly basis or repatriate rental yields, the foreign exchange companies highlighted on this page all provide a payment solution known as ‘regular transfers’. When the same amount requires transferring at regular intervals (i.e. same date every month), customers can book a series of regular transfers for the future. Meaning funds will be automatically converted from NZD to AUD and the FX company will automatically transfer money from a New Zealand to an Australian bank account on your desired payment dates (likewise funds can also be automatically converted from AUD to NZD and the provider will automatically transfer money from an Australian to a NZ bank account). If you believe the rate may move against you in the future you also have the option to fix the exchange rate with a forward contract – guaranteeing today’s exchange rate on future regular transfers between New Zealand and Australia. Providing certainty around future margins on your rental yield or costs for a NZ mortgage.
When you use a bank for international money transfers from to New Zealand, you’ll pay approximately NZD14,000 extra for one property! Independent money transfer companies will be significantly cheaper with markups of only 0.5% or less for a transfer this big. That comes to NZD3,500 in fees.
Being close neighbours and culturally similar, there are many Australians moving to New Zealand. At present, there are approximately 70,000 Australians living in New Zealand. The Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement enables Australians and New Zealanders to migrate between Australia and New Zealand. Migration used to be far more common from New Zealand to Australia than the other way round, but over the past few years, the tide has changed. Australians are moving to New Zealand due to its soaring economy and political stability. Australians don’t need to apply for a New Zealand tourism visa. If you intend on working or residing in New Zealand indefinitely, you can get a resident visa at the airport on arrival.
Australia has long been a popular destination for New Zealanders. For a long time, Australia was seen as having a more exciting cultural life, better job opportunities, and a better economy. Fortunes have changed, and less New Zealanders are moving to Australia than the other way round. You don’t need to apply for an Australian Visa if you’re travelling, as you will receive one on arrival. If you intend on working or residing in Australia indefinitely, you can stay indefinitely on your “temporary” visa.
The NZD is the tenth most traded currency in the world, while the AUD is the fifth most traded. The exchange rate from NZD to AUD, and from the AUD to NZD, has mostly been favourable towards the AUD, due mostly to Australia’s stronger economy. Aus to NZ dollar is never too far off parity though. In the past 10 years, AUD1 has been able to purchase between NZD0.99 and NZD1.37, with an average of NZD1.19. As it stands, 1 AUD will currently buy you 1.10 NZD at the interbank rate.
In our AUDNZD exchange rate comparison conducted on 02/05/22 (more on this below), we calculated that the average exchange rate possible through Australia’s five largest banks was 1.0545 when sending money from Australia to NZ. About 4% below the interbank rate. A transfer through a specialist international money transfer company on the other hand could have achieved a rate of 1.0912 – far closer to the 1.10 mid market rate. This demonstrates the cheapest way to transfer money from Australia to NZ is indeed a money transfer specialist and almost not a bank.
Few countries in the world have a closer relationship than the Trans-Tasman relations. In fact, in 2017, a major poll conducted in Australia by the Lowy Institute for International Policy showed that New Zealand was considered Australia’s best friend.
Approximately 70,000 Australian citizens are living in neighbouring New Zealand. Money transfer fees and exchange rates are inevitably going to make a big impact on expats’ pockets. Banks generally take advantage of their customers’ trust and charge exorbitant rates. They also hide fees in their inferior exchange rates. Using an FX transfer firm will save you thousands on fees, and will take away the stress of regular transfers. Australia has long been a more popular destination for New Zealand migration.
However, the trend is turning around, with more Australians now moving to New Zealand. The Australia to NZ dollar exchange rate is always relatively close to parity. Small changes happen to the pairing, which can have a significant impact on expats and investors alike.
There are no restrictions on sending money from NZ to Australia. Any bureaucracy and anti-money laundering requirements are handled by the FX company that you use to transfer money to Australia from New Zealand.
One thing to watch out for is tax on international pensions. If you’re living in Australia permanently, you can transfer your KiwiSaver savings to an Australian complying superannuation scheme. However, before making a decision to transfer, get advice from an authorised financial adviser/international tax expert. Whilst there are no restrictions when transferring money from New Zealand to Australia, there could be some tax implications depending on what the purpose of your transfer is.
To provide international money transfers, companies are required to be authorised as a Financial Services Provider in New Zealand. In recent developments, this involves having a local NZ office in order to qualify. Overseas addresses are no longer eligible.
The primary aspect that you should be concerned about when transferring money to Australia from New Zealand is the exchange rate used by the company chosen to handle the transfer. Because historically the difference between the AUD and NZD has been so low, every 0.01% counts. The maximum difference between the two currencies in the last 5 years was about 0.10%.
The companies featured in our money transfer comparison at the top of this page, are all providing better exchange rates than the usual banks found in Australia and New Zealand.
To make safe transfers from Australia to NZ, it’s best to work with an AUSTRAC registered and ASIC authorised payment provider.
If an international payment company in Australia facilitates spot transfers (i.e. transfers to settle within 2 business days) then the firm must be registered as a remittance provider with AUSTRAC. This indicates the payment provider takes their responsibilities seriously but AUSTRAC legislation is mainly based around preventing financial crime. If an Australian company also provides forward transfers (i.e. transfers to settle beyond 2 business days) then they are required to be authorised by ASIC as a foreign exchange provider. This ASIC authorisation provides more protection for customers.
At SendMoneyAustralia, we recommend registering with an AUSTRAC registered and ASIC authorised payment company when transferring money from Australia to New Zealand. All of the Australian providers listed on this page are both registered with AUSTRAC and authorised by ASIC.
One thing to be aware of is that your money is not protected under the Financial Claims Scheme if a provider goes bust. For this reason, choose a payment provider that is financially sound and with a low risk of insolvency. Companies like OFX are very safe and power international money transfers for ING Direct and Macquarie.
Similar to money transfers from NZ to Australia, there are absolutely no restrictions to transfer money from an Australian to a NZ bank account.
Finding the best company to send money to New Zealand is an easy task with SendMoneyAustralia.com! No need to scour the internet to find out how to send money to New Zealand. Just choose your preference from the providers we have listed.
There is an ever-growing number of ways to transfer money from Australia to NZ so we conducted a rate comparison to see just how many NZ dollars you’d receive for making a $10,000 transfer. See how the Australian banks stack up vs an independent money transfer service.
BANK / FX FIRM
MONEY RECEIVED INCL. FEES
2-3 working days
2-3 working days
2-3 working days
2-3 working days
2-3 working days
2-3 working days
The above table was correct as of May 2, 2022, with spot AUDNZD at 1.10 and NZDAUD at 0.91.
If we look at just the banks, it’s NAB who offer the most favourable exchange rate of 1.0631 when transferring money from an Australian to a New Zealand bank account. The worst exchange rate was offered by Bendigo Bank, where customers would get just $10,499 for a $10,000 AUD transfer. Every single bank rate was a long way off the 1.10 mid market rate. The 1.0907 rate offered by a dedicated money transfer company for sending money from Australia to NZ was much closer.
This rate comparison shows a dedicated money transfer service is definitely the cheapest way to transfer money from Australia to New Zealand. Compared to the best bank NAB, customers would have still been $276 better off, and when compared to the worst bank Bendigo, customers would have been a whopping $458 better off.
The best way to transfer money from Australia to NZ or indeed the best way to transfer money from NZ to Australia depends on what it is you, as the customer, value most. If convenience is an important factor then you might think your bank is a solid option. However, just be aware that this is probably going to be the most expensive option too. Our AUDNZD rate comparison on a $10,000 wire found that an independent money transfer service was the cheapest way to transfer money from Australia to New Zealand. On a $10,000 transfer, a huge $458 saving was possible. If safety is an important factor, then again a bank might be a good option but by working with an AUSTRAC registered and ASIC authorised payment provider we think this is the best way to combine safety with value for money. It’s also worth considering that in the vast majority of cases, accounts with money transfer specialists can be opened within a couple of hours. And once an account is open, we’re sure you’ll find these firms are the most convenient way to transfer money from Australia to NZ too. These companies focus solely on international payments, so everything from their customer service to online platform is completely optimised to efficiently process international money transfers. International payments are what they do and sending money from Australia to NZ is easy.
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