Learn how to instruct us to make international payments from your account, and all you need to know about using your debit card, credit card or cash card to make purchases or withdraw cash abroad.

International payments

Santander customers can make international payments using: 

  • Online Banking 
  • Telephone Banking

Information you’ll need to receive an international payment 

  • Santander's BIC (Bank Identifier Code also known as SWIFT code). It’s ABBYGB2LXXX 
  • Your IBAN (International Bank Account Number). You can see it if you enter your sort code and account number below. You’ll also find it on your statements and in Online Banking.

Find my IBAN

To send an international payment

Make sure you have the correct details for the person you're paying, including:

  • Their full name and account number or IBAN. 
  • Their bank’s BIC (not required for SEPA (single euro payments area) payments). 
  • Any routing code or other information required by the destination country.
  • For Mexican peso payments, the beneficiary’s 18 digit CLABE (Clave Bancaria Estandarizada) account number.

The simplest way to send an international payment is to use Online Banking – take a look at the sections below to learn more.

  • Log onto Online Banking.
  • Go to the 'Payments & Transfers' tab.
  • Click 'International payments' in the left-hand menu. 
  • Follow the on-screen instructions. 

If you're sending money to companies overseas you'll need your registered mobile phone to hand as, for security reasons, we will send you a One Time Passcode. You may also need your IBAN or BIC details depending on the destination of the payment. 

Not signed up for Online Banking? Find out more 

Please call 0800 731 6666

Santander customers can make 3 types of international payments:

Payment

Description

Fee

Electronic transfer (standard)

The fastest method of transferring money, directly to an overseas bank account.

For payments in EUR and USD, funds can arrive on the same day if sent before our cut-off time.

For more information on cut-off times see the Electronic transfers and electronic European transfers section

£25

Electronic euro transfer (non-urgent: SEPA)

This method of transferring euros takes a little longer and can only be used if the bank you’re sending the money to takes SEPA transfers.

Money arrives next working day subject to cut-off times.

For more information on cut-off times see the Electronic transfers and electronic European transfers section

No fee charged

Currency draft (cheque)

We can provide you with a currency draft (cheque) which you can then give or send to the beneficiary.

£10

The fastest method of transferring money, directly to an overseas bank account. For payments in EUR and USD, funds can arrive on the same day if sent before our cut-off time.

An electronic transfer can be done through Online Banking or Telephone Banking.

PaymentAvailable currencies
Electronic transfer (urgent)Australian dollar
Canadian dollar
Czech koruna
Danish krone
Euro
Hong Kong dollar
Hungarian forint
Indian rupee
Israeli shekel
Japanese yen
Mexican peso
Moroccan dirham
New Zealand dollar
Norwegian krone
Philippine peso
Polish zloty
Pound sterling
Qatari Riyal
Romanian Leu
Saudi Riyal
Singapore dollar
South African rand
Swedish krona
Swiss franc
Thai baht
Turkish Lira
UAE dirham
US dollar
Electronic euro transfer (non-urgent: SEPA)Euro only

 

What are the time limits?

Depending on the currency of your payment and the channel you use to request it, there will be different cut-off times. The cut-off time is the time by which you must have submitted and fully authorised your payment instruction in order for it to be processed today.

Please note that payments are not processed on non-working days, including weekends and bank holidays, and this includes non-working days in the beneficiary country. 

 

Payment typeCut-off time (contact centre)Cut-off time (online)When the money usually arrives at the recipient's bank
Sending money within the UK by CHAPs2:40pm3:00pmSame working day
Sending money outside the UK in pounds1:00pm3:00pmNext working day
Sending money outside the UK not in pounds, euros or US dollars1:00pm3:00pmMay take up to 4 working days*
Sending money inside or outside the UK in euros**11:30am11:30amWithin the EEA – same working day
Outside the EEA – usually within 4 working days
Sending money within the SEPA in euros using non-urgent methods1:00pm2:30pmNext working day
Sending money inside or outside the UK in US dollars1:00pm3:00pmWithin the EEA – same working day
Outside the EEA – usually within 4 working days

*This will depend on the currency and destination of your payment.
**Please note that a cut off time of 1pm may apply to a small number of banks. Any payments made after this time will arrive the next working day.

Charging options

The charging options available to you will depend on the destination country of your payment:
EEA Payments - these are payments to a country in the European Economic Area*, made in any currency using SWIFT or non-urgent payments in euros using the SEPA Scheme. For these payments you will only have the option to pay the sender’s (i.e. your) charges.

International payments - these are payments anywhere in the world outside of the European Economic Area*, made in sterling or any other currency, using SWIFT. For these payments:

  • the beneficiary can pay all the charges or
  • you can pay the beneficiary’s charges in addition to your own (sender’s) charges. This option will make it more likely (although not guaranteed) that the beneficiary will receive the full amount that you send.

If you want to change the charging option from the default setting (which is that you pay the sender’s charges only), this can be found in the section ‘Expenses paid by’ in Online Banking - alternatively the telephone operator or branch staff can select the correct option for you.

* European Economic Area Countries;
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

For currency drafts (cheques), customers should request a draft drawn on the country where it will be paid in. Santander can provide currency drafts drawn in the following currencies:

Santander can provide currency drafts drawn in the following currencies:

Country

Currency

Australia

Australian dollar

Canada

Canadian dollar 

Switzerland

Swiss franc 

Austria

Euro

Finland

Euro 

France

Euro 

Italy

Euro

Germany

Euro 

Luxembourg

Euro 

Portugal

Euro

Spain

Euro

New Zealand

New Zealand dollar 

United States

US dollar

 

Please refer to Section 16.9 of the General Terms and Conditions (pdf, 205 KB) for further information on Foreign Currency Cheques.

How do I request a foreign currency cheque/draft?

You can complete a request for a foreign currency cheque over the telephone by calling 0800 731 6666.

Things to be aware of

  • We will debit your account immediately for the equivalent sterling amount using our exchange rate for payments made out of your account.
  • If you wish to cancel the cheque after we have issued it to you, we can do this but there will be a charge. Due to exchange rate fluctuations and different rates for payments into your account and payments out of your account you may receive back less than you originally paid.
  • If you notify us that a cheque is lost or stolen, we will place a stop on it and refund your account, but there will be a charge. It will take at least 5 working days for your account to be re-credited. Due to exchange rate fluctuations and different rates for payments into your account and payments out of your account you may receive back less than you originally paid.
  • If after 6 months the payee has not presented the cheque for payment, we may cancel it. Your account will be re-credited with the sterling amount, based on our exchange rate applicable to payments made into your account on the day we stop the cheque. This means you may receive less back than you originally paid.

Going away
If you're planning a trip abroad, we've put together a quick checklist to make sure you have a stress-free experience when it comes to managing your money.

Using your card abroad

Let us know if you're travelling
We’ll continue to monitor your account for fraud and unusual transactions while you’re abroad and we’ll contact you if we detect unusual activity. If you keep your mobile phone with you, you’ll be able to confirm genuine transactions as soon as we contact you. Learn more about fraud and security

If you need a new PIN, call us on 0800 731 6666

If you’re travelling outside the EU, let us know by calling 0800 731 6666 so we can place a note on your account to say you are travelling. 

Fees and charges abroad - debit card and cash card

This depends on which card you have with us and which type of transaction you make. The 2 kinds of transaction are:

  • Making a purchase abroad or online in a currency other than pounds sterling to buy goods or services
  • Withdrawing money (foreign currency) and buying traveller's cheques - withdrawing cash abroad (either in a bank or at a cash machine), or buying traveller's cheques or foreign currency when abroad (at another bank, bureau de change or other outlet displaying the Mastercard/Visa sign) in a currency other than pounds sterling

What are the charges?
When you use your card abroad you’ll be charged a foreign currency conversion fee.
The tables below show the charges on our cards when used abroad:

 

Foreign currency conversion fee (making purchases)

Foreign currency conversion fee (making withdrawals)
Debit card2.95%2.95%
Cash cardN/A2.95%

Mastercard - Illustrative cost examples based on a €100 (Euro) transaction

TransactionTransaction value ^Foreign currency conversion feeTotal cost
Debit card purchase€100
£88.73

2.95%
£2.62

£91.35
Debit card and cash card cash withdrawal€100
£88.73
2.95%
£2.62
£91.35
Debit card cash withdrawal at Santander cash machine in Spain€100
£88.73
n/a
£0
£88.73

Visa - Illustrative cost examples based on a €100 (Euro) transaction

TransactionTransaction value ^^Foreign currency conversion feeTotal cost
Debit card purchase€100
£88.76
2.95%
£2.62
£91.38
Debit card and cash card cash withdrawal€100
£88.76
2.95%
£2.62
£91.38
Debit card cash withdrawal at Santander cash machine in Spain€100
£88.76
n/a
£0
£88.76

^ Mastercard exchange rate of €1 = £0.887292 as at 1 June 2019
^^ Visa exchange rate of €1 = £0.887578 as at 1 June 2019

The exchange rates reflect the rate applicable when the payment scheme (Visa or Mastercard) processed the transaction and not the date on which the transaction took place.

Remember to pay using local currency
When you use your card abroad, retailers will often give you the choice of paying in either the local currency or pounds sterling. Always choose to pay using the local currency unless you're sure the exchange rate is more favourable. If you choose pounds sterling, the retailer will handle the conversion and may charge you a fee.

We’ll convert the foreign currency using the exchange rate set by Visa or Mastercard (subject to card type) on the date the transaction is charged to your account, together with any applicable foreign currency conversion fees as set out in the table above.

The exchange rate used may differ from the rate that applied on the actual date of the transaction as exchange rates vary on a daily basis. The exchange rate used when the transaction is processed and the amount of the transaction in pounds sterling after the application of the exchange rate will be detailed on your statement.

Exchange rates for using your debit or cash card can be found in our calculator. You can also see how this exchange rate compares to the European Central Bank (ECB) exchange rate.

All Business Banking customers using a debit card or a cash card can benefit from free cash machine withdrawals in Spain at a Santander-branded cash machine.

Daily cash withdrawal limits apply. Please see your Key Facts Document for details.  

Fees and charges abroad – Business Cashback Credit Card

This depends on which type of transaction you make. The two kinds of transaction are:

  • Making a purchase abroad or online in a currency other than pounds sterling to buy goods or services.
  • Withdrawing money (foreign currency) and buying traveller's cheques - withdrawing cash abroad (either in a bank or at a cash machine), or buying traveller's cheques or foreign currency when abroad (at another bank, bureau de change or other outlet displaying the Mastercard sign) in a currency other than pounds sterling. Please note there is no interest free period on cash withdrawals or traveller's cheques purchases and interest will be charged from the date of withdrawal.

What are the charges?
When you use your card abroad you may be charged a non-sterling transaction fee or a cash withdrawal fee, depending on if you’re making a purchase or withdrawing money.

The following charges apply to our Business Cashback Credit Card:

  • Non-sterling transaction fee - 0%
  • Cash withdrawal fee - 3% (min £3)

Illustrative cost examples based on a €100 (Euro) transaction using the Business Cashback Credit Card

TransactionTransaction value ^Non-sterling transaction feeNon-sterling cash feeTotal cost
Credit card purchase€100
£88.73
0.00%
£0
n/a
£0
£88.73
Credit card cash withdrawal€100
£88.73
0.00%
£0
3%
(min £3)
£91.73

^Mastercard exchange rate of €1 = £0.887292 as at 1 June 2019

The exchange rates reflect the rate applicable when Mastercard processed the transaction and not the date on which the transaction took place.

Remember to pay using local currency
When you use your card abroad, retailers will often give you the choice of paying in either the local currency or pounds sterling. Always choose to pay using the local currency unless you're sure the exchange rate is more favourable. If you choose pounds sterling, the retailer will handle the conversion and may charge you a fee.

We will convert the foreign currency using the exchange rate set by Visa or Mastercard (subject to card type) on the date the transaction is charged to your account, together with any applicable foreign usage fees as set out in the table above.

The exchange rate used may differ from the rate that applied on the actual date of the transaction as exchange rates vary on a daily basis. The exchange rate used when the transaction is processed and the amount of the transaction in pounds sterling after the application of the exchange rate will be detailed on your statement.

Exchange rates for using your credit card can be found in our calculator. You can also see how this exchange rate compares to the ECB exchange rate.

Please see the Business Cashback Credit Card Terms and Conditions for details of the limit on cash transactions. 

Using our mobile banking app abroad 

Using Mobile Banking on your phone or device is an easy way to track what you're spending during your trip. Check the latest transactions and balances, transfer money and even find details on how to report a lost or stolen card.

Using the app through your mobile's 3G or 4G signal may incur charges, so please check with your mobile provider to confirm if your device is set up to use (has 'roaming') in the country you're visiting and what the charges may be. To avoid data roaming charges, you can connect to local Wi-Fi hotspots. But, these aren't always secure, so only use them if you feel comfortable.

Learn about Mobile Banking with us

Stay up-to-date with alerts

Our free text and email alerts let you stay up-to-date with what’s happening in your accounts while you’re away.

Learn more and how to set up your alerts

Your travel company has gone into administration

 If you have been affected by your travel provider going into administration, and have paid using your credit or debit card, you can use our Travel Company Liquidation Form (pdf, 2.47 MB) to raise a claim.   
 

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