How You’re Losing Money With CIBC Global Money Transfer


How You're Losing Money With CIBC Global Money Transfer

The necessity for fast, low cost international transfers and payments is increasing all the time.

Continued advances in internet technology have led to an increase in businesses having customers overseas and farming out jobs to freelancers in other countries.

It also means that the workforce is becoming globalised, resulting in more and more people working abroad and sending remittance payments home to family.

An essential advancement that makes all this possible is the ability for customers and businesses to send money online.

With online transfers, there’s no longer any need to get cash out to carry over to a traditional money transfer company, or worry about it getting lost or stolen.

There’s also no more waiting around for cheques to move through the mail – which you should never do.

Being able to send money online has truly revolutionised payments. However, figuring out the best way to send money overseas can cause headaches due to the intentional lack of transparency adopted by many players in this industry.

There’s bank fees and exchange rates to consider, and then the hassle of communicating with partners in different time zones.

No one wants their international transfer to cost them and arm and a leg in steep charges or delivery delays.

Here we take a look at what it costs to send money overseas with one of Canada’s most trusted banks, CIBC.

Hopefully this piece will help point you in the right direction when sending money internationally.

How You're Losing Money With CIBC Global Money Transfer

CIBC Global Money Transfer

CIBC advertises that their Global Money Transfer service allows you to send money globally with no fees.

Here we’ll take a look at the ground realities and how much of this is what meets the eye.


CIBC advertises a $0 transfer fee with its the Global Money Transfer. However, their terms and conditions note two important things.  

The first is that “CIBC foreign exchange rates apply”, which we will get to soon.

The second is as follows:

“A Global Money Transfer and a Foreign Exchange transaction counts towards your allowable transaction limit, bank account transaction fees may apply.”

This means that, depending on your bank account, certain transfers may not be free. Some fees, not specific to international transactions, can still be charged.

These fees may include overdraft fees and service charges that apply to your specific CIBC bank account.

Another type of fee to watch out for would be receiving fees. CIBC note on their website that recipient banks may add to costs.

“Our fee is non-refundable. Additional fees and/or taxes may be deducted from the GMT amount by the Recipient Bank.”

These sneaky fees can cause tension between the sender and the receiver. The receiver, understandably, will want exactly what they’re owed and nothing less.

Exchange Rates

When you send money to a country that uses another currency, CIBC are not offering you the best Foreign Exchange rate.

Banks make a profit when exchanging money from one currency to another.

With their Global Money Transfer, CIBC hides their charges in the exchange rates they offer consumers.

By not calling this poor rate a fee, this charge remains buried beneath the surface. Foreign exchange rates are constantly fluctuating, and can be hard to keep track of.

When banks receive an exchange rate, they then offer customers a poorer one. They keep the difference as profit, also known as mark-up. Most banks and money transfer companies will also do a mark-up, but the extent may differ.

How You're Losing Money With CIBC Global Money Transfer


Typically with CIBC’s Global Money Transfer, you can only send up to a maximum of $15,ooo. This maximum of $15,000 in total is per 24-hour period.

You can also only make a payment if the amount you are sending is $100 or more. However some countries are below this limit.

For example, if you’re sending money to China you can only send a maximum of $6,000 at a time.

If you’re sending money to the USA, India, UAE or Australia you can send a maximum of $30,000 at a time.

How Many Countries Can I Send To?

CIBC’s Global Money Transfer allows customers to send money to around 50 countries.

This list of countries includes India, the Philippines, China and the United States.

However, considering around 200 countries exist, CIBC’s Global Money Transfer isn’t quite as ‘global’ as advertised.

Should I Use Wire Transfer Instead?

What if you need to send to a country that CIBC’s Global Money Transfer doesn’t send to? What if you need to send more than $15,000?  Some people may look to the dreaded wire transfer.

When sending a wire transfer using CIBC,  the cost of wiring money increases as the amount being sent increases.

For example, when sending between $10,000 and $50,000 there is a $50 service fee But, if you’re sending an amount greater than $50,000, there is an $80 service fee.

Just like with their GMT, they will also seek to profit from you using their own marked-up exchange rate. And if all these fees weren’t enough to put you off – there’s lots more.

With CIBC, wire transfers to another CIBC branch incur a receiving fee of $15. This is regardless of the amount being sent.

When sending a wire transfers to another bank, receiving charges are likely to be even higher! This will almost always the case with an international wire transfer.

Many international wire transfers will involve an intermediary bank to help pass funds along.

You won’t be surprised to hear that these intermediary banks also charge a fee on the amount that’s being sent.

Sending a wire transfer overseas also means you’ll likely have to make a painful trip to the bank. This trip will involve pre-gathering information and filling out forms.

In order to send a wire transfer through CIBC Bank, you will need to provide them with the following information:

  • Full name of beneficiary
  • Address of branch
  • Account number & Routing number/Transit number
  • Institution number
  • SWIFT number
  • IBAN number/BIC code

And to cap it all off, with wire transfers funds can take up to 5 business days to become available.  

So, we’ve established that wire transfers are awful and expensive.

We’ve also learned that CIBC’s Global Money Transfer system is far from perfect.

We know exactly what you’re wondering – and we’ve got you covered.

What Is The Best Way To Send Money Overseas?

The best way to make an international payment is to use a modern, online Money Service Business (MSB).

While some of these companies can charge you significant fees – here at REMITR we do not. We offer you the best live foreign exchange rates – and charge a flat fee as low as $5!

Using REMITR allows you to send money to over 150 countries worldwide 24/7. There’s no waiting around either, as funds are delivered within 1 business day.

Our service does not charge a fee to the receiver’s account.

So, if you want to save time and money, while ensuring your payments go through, get in touch with REMITR today.