How To Transfer Money From India to Singapore
Very recently, a few of my friends who recently moved to India asked me if I know any best and cheapest way to send money from India to Singapore. I am a researcher by profession and l enjoy investigating the details. Hence, I dig up all the available options through which you can send money from India and Singapore and found out the following. Transfer Money From India to Singapore
Singapore is one of the favorite travel destinations for Indians. In addition to this, there is also a large population of Indians residing in Singapore. Due to this, there is a constant need to transfer money from India to Singapore.
Here I will compare 10 major options to transfer money to Singapore from India, but before that let’s get familiar with some information which I believe can be useful to you
Money Transfer From India to Singapore – Tax Implications
RBI’s Liberalized Remittance Scheme (also known as LRS) allows resident individuals (Indian nationals and expatriates) to remit foreign exchange of a maximum of US$250,000 (or equivalent) per Indian financial year. Resident individuals can usually send foreign exchange overseas for one of the following purposes:
- Overseas education expenses
- Medical treatment
- Care for a close relative
- Emigration fees
- Visa fees
- International visits for private purposes
The individual needs to hold an appropriate account at an RBI authorised dealer, generally a bank having international branches. He or she needs to designate a specific branch of the particular bank, using which he or she will be making all foreign exchange remittances under the LRS. The individual can also make overseas remittances through an entity which is not a bank (but has appropriate permission from the RBI to deal in foreign exchange), but the remittance has to be funded from a bank.
Earlier, it was not necessary to produce PAN card for money transfer transactions abroad up to USD 25,000 or its equivalent. However, in April 2018, this rule was amended. Now, it is mandatory to produce the PAN card for all remittance transactions from India to Abroad regardless of the amount being transferred. This is to ensure that a resident individual is being compliant to the LRS limit of USD 2,50,000 in a single financial year.
India has a Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement with Singapore, hence if you have already paid tax on the income earned in Singapore, then you need not pay tax when transferring that money back to India.
What To Look Out For When Transferring Money to Singapore
There can be many reasons for you to transfer money from India to Singapore – living expenses, college fees, business purposes. So depending on your requirements, you shall also look out for the below criteria when using an online remittance
- Reliability – How reliable is the money transfer service, you are choosing?
- Speed – How soon do you need it to get there? You may end up paying more if speed is a priority.
- Exchange rate – Are you getting the best rate or are you paying more for convenience or speed?
- Hidden Fees – Are you paying more than you should? Sending money using a debit or credit card may have fees attached.
- Convenience – How easy was the experience from start to finish? Could you do it online or did you have to go to a location to complete the transfer? Is there an app that makes it even easier?
- Tracking – Are you be able to track the process online? Or you need to call the customer care or visit the branch
Sending Money Then Vs Now
Sending money internationally was a daunting task earlier. It used to take multiple visits to banks, waiting for hours, arranging documents and then after everything is fine, it would take 3–4 days for the money to be sent. But thankfully, this is not the case anymore, now this process has become convenient and affordable and you can complete the process in 2–3 minutes, without comprising the security.
Banks had been one of the most reliable ways to send money. But there are many disadvantages to choosing banks
- inflated exchange rate
- takes longer to process
- high fees – while sending and/or receiving
- requires more documentation
Because of these issues, people have now shifted to online remittance companies. There are now plenty of online companies that offer very attractive exchange rates and joining offers.
Process To Transfer Money From India to Singapore
The money transfer process in online remittance companies are quite simple and mostly follow these steps
- Create an account (Email, PAN card, Passport may be required)
- Provide bank information of receiver
- Transfer the amount using bank transfer/credit card/debit card
Options For Sending Money From India to Singapore
There are basically three modes to transfer money from India to Singapore or any other country
- Transfer using online remittance companies
- Transfer using banks
- Transfer via a local agent
Transfer Using Online Remittance Companies
Since a large number of Indians are residing in Singapore. There is fierce competition among the online remittance companies to provide the best exchange rate and customer satisfaction so as to gain more and more customers.
I am using 1,000 SGD as the transfer money and let’s see how much INR, you would need to give to get SGD.
1 – Transferwise (Avail Offer on Transfer Fee)
TransferWise is an online money transfer service, which lets you transfer money up to eight times more cheaply than with a bank. It is one of the most popular apps/sites and has the highest customer satisfaction ratings on Google play and Trustpilot. TransferWise was founded in 2010 by two financial gurus and its system is beautifully simple. It bypasses pricey international payments entirely by using two local transfers instead of one international transaction.
Is Transferwise Reliable?
Google Play Ratings
It is also one of the fastest growing online remittance companies (more than 7 million customers) having more than 50% over last few years. You would see that their profit has not increased as much as their revenue. This is because the company is expanding and growing its customer base, and another most important thing is its attractive exchange rate and low transfer fees as compared to its peers.
How Transferwise Works?
Transferwise works in three different steps (in this case, India to Singapore transfer)
- You send money from your Indian bank to their Indian bank
- Transferwise transfers money from their Indian bank to their Canadian bank
- Transferwise sends money from their Canadia bank to your Canadian bank
For safety purposes, Transferwise might ask to verify your address when you use TransferWise. They are a financial institution and it helps them combat money laundering, and keep everyone’s money safe.
Now let me show you where does Transferwise stand when you compared it with other options for sending money from India to Singapore. There is a current offer going on Transferwise for relaxation on Transfer Fee. So you can avail of this offer by following the link I shared above. Using this you would see no transfer fee is charged on the low transfer amount and the reduced transfer fee at a large amount.
How much can I send?
You can send up to 1.5 million GBP per transfer to a private individual. You can send up to 15 lakhs per day to businesses. However, the minimum amount is 20,000 INR.
How long does it usually take for the money to arrive?
Once TransferWise receives and converts your money, it usually takes 1 working day to arrive in your recipient’s bank account. Conversion can take up to 2 working days. The first transfer can take longer time but the successive transfer is usually quicker.
TransferWise is an online account that lets you send money, get paid, and spend money internationally. With a TransferWise account, you can send money abroad, get paid in other currencies, and spend abroad on the TransferWise debit Mastercard.
TransferWise mobile apps review – TransferWise mobile apps have great ratings on Apple’s App Store (4.7/5 stars on 19,300 ratings) and Google’s Play Store (4.4/5 on almost 80,000 ratings). According to TransferWise customers, the app is “an invaluable tool for anyone moving money internationally”.
TransferWise fees and exchange rate – TransferWise is an innovative international money transfer provider that is often dubbed the “Robin Hood” of the money transfer industry. They focus on making bank transfers more affordable than traditional banks by charging low and transparent transfer fees and converting money at the true mid-market exchange rate. In other words, there’s zero markup on the exchange rate. (As a comparison, banks usually give customers an above-market rate, the margin is part of their fees and in general, they are not transparent about this.)
Most currencies supported by TransferWise offer one option: a bank transfer from one bank to another. For some currencies, you can pay with debit and credit cards or use a SOFORT transfer option. Apple Pay or Android Pay is also available for certain currencies via TransferWise iOS and Android apps. In most cases, the recipient will get the money within one to two business days.
- Cheap because of the real-time middle-market exchange rates.
- Convenient (online or in-app), no visit to the branch required
- The minimum payment amount is £2 (or the equivalent in other currencies).
- The maximum payment amount is £1 million.
- Lock-in rate available for 24-72 hours
- Highest customer rating on all platforms – Google Play, TrustPilot, Monito, etc.
- The first transfer can take 2-3 business days
- A large amount of money may require to verify the address.
- A credit card may not always be approved
- Not all countries are included, for example – India-China, Israel-India, etc.
- No flexibility on margins for larger transfers.
Currencytransfer.com allows you to compare and make international money transfers via it’s online market place and app.
- Businesses and individuals have plenty of choices with FX rates
- Same day transfers with different banks
- Segregated accounts with FX providers
- Zero transactions fees
- FCA regulation (Financial Conduct Authority)
- CurrencyTransfer only has an edge for transfers of over £5,000.
- CurrencyTransfer can only accept payments via bank transfer.
- Low minimum transfer amount of $1.00
- Option to send money in minutes
- Transfer to a wide range of countries
- Not the cheapest option depending on transfer location
- You may need to visit the nearest branch
Headquartered in Singapore, InstaReM is a leading digital payments solutions provider across Southeast Asia, Asia Pacific, Europe, and the Americas. InstaReM Logo With InstaReM, individuals and businesses can make low-cost money transfers to 55+ countries. InstaReM also offer customers Zero-Margin FX Rates and Best Transfer Amount Guarantee.
For its business clients, InstaReM offers MassPay – an international business payments platform that allows them to send single and bulk payments using the same web, file and API interfaces to over 60 countries in multiple currencies.
- Low transfer fees between 0.25% and 1%
- No extra margins to exchange rates & guaranteed best transfer amount
- Complete transparency and absolutely no hidden charges
- InstaPoints – loyalty points to redeem against transactions
- Dedicated customer support team
- Coverage: No presence in the Middle East and Africa
- Unable to send money to or from New Zealand
- Account activation can take longer than promised
- They don’t accept credit card
- 24/7 support doesn’t extend to personal financial advice
5 – ExTravelMoney
ExTravelMoney is an online aggregator for foreign exchange services in India. Launched in December 2014, ExTravelMoney claims to have tie-ups with more than 4,000 foreign exchange outlets across India, so their customers can get the best rates.
Since ExTravelMoney acts as an aggregator for foreign exchange providers, they display rates from reputed forex providers located in the area of your choosing. For example, if you would like to transfer money from Mumbai, you can filter the search results to show providers in different locations in Mumbai.
- Get access to a wide range of foreign exchange providers in your preferred location.
- Get access to competitive exchange rates and low fees since there are multiple providers competing to serve you.
- Lock in an exchange rate for 2 days by paying a refundable deposit of INR1,000.
- A number of currencies around the world are not supported, so you may need to use an alternative provider if you’re sending a more exotic currency.
- Must send at least US$250 (or equivalent).
- Have to be physically present to complete the formalities for the wire transfer.
Transfer Using Banks
Banks have been a traditional way to send money to Singapore. You can send money using the international draft facility offered by major Indian banks, transfer via the international beneficiary, and international money transfer through an account, debit cards, or forex cards.
For all these three options, banks offer an elevated exchange rate, meaning if the current exchange rate is 1 SGD = 53.84 INR (21 July 2020), then the bank would say they follow 55.0 INR = 1 SGD.
1 – State Bank of India – SBI Express Remit (54.74 INR = 1 SGD)
SBI is India’s largest bank which operates foreign offices network and has correspondent banking arrangements with about 600 banks worldwide. You can send and receive money internationally through SBI Express Remit. Check Exchange Rate Here.
- For amount <= Rs.1 lakh – 0.12%
- For amount > Rs. 1 lakh and <= Rs. 10 lakh 0.06%
- For amount >=Rs.10 lakh – 0.012%
2 – HDFC Banks – HDFC Quick Remit (54.90 INR = 1 SGD)
If you have an HDFC bank account, you can send money abroad with HDFC through their net banking option called RemitNow¹⁴. You can send money anywhere in the world using RemitNow, other than to countries under OFAC sanctioned countries list. Check Exchange Rate Here.
- For amount <= Rs.1 lakh – 0.12%
- For amount > Rs. 1 lakh – 0.06%
In addition to service tax, an education cess of 2% on the tax is also applicable. The transfer can be tracked online.
3 – ICICI Bank – Money2India (55.30 INR = 1 SGD)
ICICI bank is one of India’s leading banks which offers international money transfer solutions to and from India. But transferring money to loved ones overseas has always been a tricky experience for many expats, especially NRIs. Many of you might’ve faced difficulties in the past with varying foreign exchange rates, money not being received on time, or spending much more than you planned. Check Exchange Rate Here.
4 – HSBC Bank – HSBC Remittance (55.42 INR = 1 SGD)
You can use the faster and smooth transfer of money into your HSBC India account within just 2 working# days from the day of receipt of funds by HSBC India This service is offered to both Resident and Non-Resident customers of the Bank. Check Exchange Rate Here.
0.3% of value (Min. INR100, Max. INR1,500) + cable charge of 200 for same currency TT+ Applicable taxes# In case of transactions with charge type selected as ‘OUR’ (All local and overseas charges to be borne by remitter), an additional charge of INR1,200 + Applicable taxes#
Transfer Using Local Agent
I would suggest opting for this option until or unless you have a strong recommendation from a friend or relatives. When it comes to money, we need to be very cautious and finding a reliable money transfer agent may not be an easy task.
Transferwise was the cheapest option. I also liked the lock-in exchange rate provided by them, using which once you complete the process, you have an additional 24–48 hours to transfer the money at the same exchange rate.
The best thing about transferwise is that it is entirely online and the process takes only 5 minutes to complete the online process. Your first transfer may take 2–3 days to transfer but the successive transfer is quicker and can be done within a day.
Most importantly, you can avail of the current offer where you will be relieved from paying any transfer fee for transfer around 1000 SGD, this way you can save 1480 INR. You can avail of this offer following the link I shared above.
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