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thatbritishlass

Moving Money Stateside

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Hey folks

I have my K1 interview next week and I'm now starting to think about the actual practicalities of the move itself. I'm not going until October time, so I have plenty of time, but want to be prepared.

My 2 biggest concerns are 1. moving my stuff (but I really don't have that much in the grand scheme of things) and 2. moving my savings from the UK to the US without having thousands of pounds wiped out in the transfer!

I'm not exactly going to be joining the Forbes list any time soon but most of my savings are the wedding money, so it is significantly more than I have transferred stateside in the past - and of course it is hugely important (given I won't be able to work for 3-4 months) that I minimise the costs.

The Times Online has a very useful article on moving money abroad but I wanted to get other people's experiences. Two companies I am looking at are Moneycorp and HiFX - has anyone used them before and what was their experience? Can anyone recommend any other money transfer services?

Also, has anyone tried and succeeded to open a US bank account whilst still being in the UK? I would imagine it's nigh-on impossible but if anyone has a story that says otherwise I'd appreciate it...

Pity the exchange rate sucks so bad right now....if only it was back to 2.21 like it was when I was there in 2006 ;)

Edited by Miss Jess

Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: England
Timeline

I have used both MoneyCorp and HiFX before and recommend either. I receive a monthly pension in the UK and transfer it regularly to the US using mainly HiFX. I use them because their online service http://www.currencyonline.com makes it so easy to do so.

Do not use a High St bank, high charges, low exchange rate.


What to expect at the POE - WIKI entry

IR-1 Timeline IR-1 details in my timeline

N-400 Timeline

2009-08-21 Applied for US Citizenship

2009-08-28 NOA

2009-09-22 Biometrics appointment

2009-12-01 Interview - Approved

2009-12-02 Oath ceremony - now a US Citizen

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: United Kingdom
Timeline

My fiancee plans on keeping her UK bank account open and then pulling the money out a little at a time and then depositing it into the joint account we set up. That way she gets the best exchange rates and it just costs 1 pound per withdrawal.


RoC Timeline

08/20/2012: Sent I-751 to California Service Center

Our Immigration Checklist

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: United Kingdom
Timeline

I too was looking at MoneyCorp... seems easy to set up and manage. In fact i was going to call this morning and transfer some monies but i don't have the details with me. :bonk:

I have used my bank in the past but was unimpressed with the exchange rates and their charges. I will however be keeping them open and moving whatever i need or when the exchange rate is favourable (it's more paperwork though :P).

As for setting up a US bank A/C from the UK - highly unlikely that you'll be able to do it as you have no SSN and you aren't there in person to verify who you are, to take a copy of your passport, get a signature, etc...

Edited by arwilson80

1990(-ish): Family Holiday to FL. Met Nicole & family.

1990(-ish) - 1992(-ish): A few return visits

08-09/2007: Go back to FL. Meet with 'the folks' & Accept that we both 'like' each other & start dating.

02/2008 - Present: ...go back to FL again a few times.

09/2009: Propose and she says 'Yes'! :D

11/06/2009: I-129F posted to VSC

11/07/2009: I-129F received at VSC

11/09/2009: NOA1

11/13/2009: Touch

12/2009: ...back to FL once again

03/08/2010: Touch & NOA2 (119 Days)

03/11/2010: NVC have my case

03/12/2010: NVC incorrectly assigned & dispatched case to Dublin, not London!

03/18/2010: Package arrived in Dublin

03/19/2010: Ring Dublin and get case transferred to London

04/01/2010: London Sent 'P3'

04/03/2010: I Received 'P3'

04/14/2010: 'P3' sent back to embassy

04/16/2010: 'P3' recieved at embassy

04/29/2010: Medical - Passed

06/17/2010: Interview - In AP (220 Days)

08/17/2010: AP Finished - Approved

event.png

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I've used XE - www.xe.com loads of times since I moved here in November 2008. I've had good service and the x-rate seems fair. Moving money from the UK to US is a reasonable speed, about 5 days. Recently I've done some transfers back the other way from the US to UK and they take a bit longer, around 11 days. Overall I have been pretty pleased with their service and have an easy web site to use.

Edited by HikerMark

My time line

CSC

Nov 7, 2004 - First met in Chagford, Devon, UK

Sep 1, 2007 - Married in Chagford

Oct 5, 2007 - Sent I-130 to CSC

Oct 9, 2007 - Received by CSC

Jan 14, 2008 - Rejected by Chicago, wrong date on check 😞

Jan 15, 2008 - Sent I-130 back to Chicago with correctly dated check 🙂

Jan 16, 2008 - Received by Chicago

Feb 14, 2008 - NOA1

Apr 28, 2008 - NOA2

May 6, 2008 - NVC assign case number

May 12, 2008 - DS-3032 and AOS bill generated

May 18, 2008 - DS-3032 request emailed by me

May 22, 2008 - AOS bill paid by check

May 27, 2008 - DS-3032 accepted by NVC

Jun 2, 2008 - IV bill generated

Jun 9, 2008 - IV bill received

Jun 16, 2008 - IV bill paid by check

Jun 21, 2008 - I-864 package received

Jun 26, 2008 - I-864 sent to NVC

Jun 30, 2008 - DS-230 generated by NVC

Jul 11, 2008 - DS-230 received

Jul 26, 2008 - DS-230 sent to NVC

Aug 4, 2008 - DS-230 received by NVC

Aug 12, 2008 - Case completed

Aug 14, 2008 - Papers sent to London Embassy

Oct 20, 2008 - Medical in London

Oct 27, 2008 - Interview in London (was originally scheduled for Sep 23)

Oct 28, 2008 - Visa received

Nov 22, 2008 - Arrived in USA at Phoenix.... Yeah!!!

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: England
Timeline

I've used XE - www.xe.com loads of times since I moved here in November 2008. I've had good service and the x-rate seems fair. Moving money from the UK to US is a reasonable speed, about 5 days. Recently I've done some transfers back the other way from the US to UK and they take a bit longer, around 11 days. Overall I have been pretty pleased with their service and have an easy web site to use.

I use worldfirst in London and have moved money about 25 times using them. They have the best rates. You can simply send money electronically and then it pops up in your US bank account same day

A word of warning about keeping a UK bank account

MOST UK banks will CLOSE your account if you become non resident. Halifax doesn't. Check on the others and if they do allow it, open accounts before you leave.

Also you will NOT be able to open a new UK mainland account when you become non resident with one exception I have found >

The national savings and investments has a direct account paying 2% which is better than any other regular account and can be opened by a non resident.No cards etc though. Electronic in and out to your Halifax account.


moresheep400100.jpg

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Australia
Timeline

I use paypal. It's $5 to send money (I sent $1000 just the other day). No conversion fee. and for my bank in Australia it costs $1.50 to take out money less than $150 or it's free if it's more than $150. They also work off the CURRENT exchange rate (unlike some sites)

I have a paypal in Australia in my maiden name linked to an account at home and one here in America linked to my US account. The money I sent the other day (Monday) will take 3-5 business days to receive it. I'll get an email from my US paypal account telling me the funds are there. Pretty happy with the fees to be honest.

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Thanks for the advice everyone :)

I too was looking at MoneyCorp... seems easy to set up and manage. In fact i was going to call this morning and transfer some monies but i don't have the details with me. :bonk:

I have used my bank in the past but was unimpressed with the exchange rates and their charges. I will however be keeping them open and moving whatever i need or when the exchange rate is favourable (it's more paperwork though :P).

As for setting up a US bank A/C from the UK - highly unlikely that you'll be able to do it as you have no SSN and you aren't there in person to verify who you are, to take a copy of your passport, get a signature, etc...

Well I do have an SSN from a previous visa, but I agree the other stuff looks dubious.

HSBC do claim to be able to set up a US bank account for you from the UK, but I haven't called them yet to find out the T&Cs. If it's an account you have to pay for monthly I'll be less keen...


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: United Kingdom
Timeline

Thanks for the advice everyone :)

Well I do have an SSN from a previous visa, but I agree the other stuff looks dubious.

HSBC do claim to be able to set up a US bank account for you from the UK, but I haven't called them yet to find out the T&Cs. If it's an account you have to pay for monthly I'll be less keen...

I think they have a minimum of 50K. I looked into as well (on their website) and 'ignored' them as it didn't seem attractive and the amounts were 'out of my league'. :s


1990(-ish): Family Holiday to FL. Met Nicole & family.

1990(-ish) - 1992(-ish): A few return visits

08-09/2007: Go back to FL. Meet with 'the folks' & Accept that we both 'like' each other & start dating.

02/2008 - Present: ...go back to FL again a few times.

09/2009: Propose and she says 'Yes'! :D

11/06/2009: I-129F posted to VSC

11/07/2009: I-129F received at VSC

11/09/2009: NOA1

11/13/2009: Touch

12/2009: ...back to FL once again

03/08/2010: Touch & NOA2 (119 Days)

03/11/2010: NVC have my case

03/12/2010: NVC incorrectly assigned & dispatched case to Dublin, not London!

03/18/2010: Package arrived in Dublin

03/19/2010: Ring Dublin and get case transferred to London

04/01/2010: London Sent 'P3'

04/03/2010: I Received 'P3'

04/14/2010: 'P3' sent back to embassy

04/16/2010: 'P3' recieved at embassy

04/29/2010: Medical - Passed

06/17/2010: Interview - In AP (220 Days)

08/17/2010: AP Finished - Approved

event.png

event.png

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: India
Timeline

Is there some advantage to use xe for money transfer? From what I understand they do not have a EFT withdrawal service available for countries other than the USA and Canada.

So if you have money in a country like England or India or anyplace other than USA/Canada, the only real option to initiate the transfer is via wire transfer. You have to wire transfer the money from your foreign bank to xe.

I don't see the advantage of using xe in this case then - because what it means is that you still have to pay for an outbound wire transfer from the foreign bank.

I am just familiarizing myself with xe - so please let me know if I am missing something.


CR-1 Visa Was Approved :-)

Entry Date to USA: 2/3/2011

12-10-2012 - Sent off I-751 packet visa USPS

I751 Was approved - 10 Year GC was granted

N-400 Progress

4/10/2014: Package Mailed
4/11/2014: Package Received
4/14/2014: Notice Date
x/x/2014: Biometrics appointment

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Filed: Country: United Kingdom
Timeline

Thanks for the advice everyone :)

Well I do have an SSN from a previous visa, but I agree the other stuff looks dubious.

HSBC do claim to be able to set up a US bank account for you from the UK, but I haven't called them yet to find out the T&Cs. If it's an account you have to pay for monthly I'll be less keen...

I can confirm that HSBC do help set up bank accounts for you. I had an hsbc account in the UK and they set up the account in the US before I arrived. They also give you the option of transferring your credit history which I neglected to do and later regretted. In the US the credit history is so important and I didnt really understand that in the begining. However remeber that HSBC in the UK and in the US are different entities so when i went to get a credit card they gave me a tiny $300 limit! because i hadn't ticked the box for credit history transfer I when i initially set up the account. It also still costs to transfer money, it was 10GBP per transaction last time i did it bit if your moving lots of money its dirt cheap.

They set no limits or minimums as far as i am aware. I did not have that much cash to transfer. HSBC premier might be different.

Edited by fozzie

K-1 Visa Journey

04/20/2006 - file our I-129f.

09/14/2006 - US Embassy interview. Ask Lauren to marry me again, just to make sure. Says Yes. Phew!

10/02/2006 - Fly to New York, EAD at JFK, I'm in!!

10/14/2006 - Married! The perfect wedding day.

AOS Journey

10/23/2006 - AOS and EAD filed

05/29/2007 - RFE (lost medical)

08/02/2007 - RFE received back at CSC

08/10/2007 - Card Production ordered

08/17/2007 - Green Card Arrives

Removing Conditions

05/08/2009 - I-751 Mailed

05/13/2009 - NOA1

06/12/2009 - Biometrics Appointment

09/24/2009 - Approved (twice)

10/10/2009 - Card Production Ordered

10/13/2009 - Card Production Ordered (Again?)

10/19/2009 - Green Card Received (Dated 10/13/19)

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I can confirm that HSBC do help set up bank accounts for you. I had an hsbc account in the UK and they set up the account in the US before I arrived. They also give you the option of transferring your credit history which I neglected to do and later regretted. In the US the credit history is so important and I didnt really understand that in the begining.

Do you know if they make that credit history info available to everyone or is it just for HSBC credit cards? It might be worth doing if they share it with everyone...


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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I can only comment on the UK. In the UK you can transfer funds to XE using internet banking which for many of the banks now means the Faster Payment System. Hence no wire fees are payable.

I have been using XE for 18 months or so with good service. The only cost for me transferring the funds from the UK to the US is XE's dealing spread which is built in to their exchange rate.

Is there some advantage to use xe for money transfer? From what I understand they do not have a EFT withdrawal service available for countries other than the USA and Canada.

So if you have money in a country like England or India or anyplace other than USA/Canada, the only real option to initiate the transfer is via wire transfer. You have to wire transfer the money from your foreign bank to xe.

I don't see the advantage of using xe in this case then - because what it means is that you still have to pay for an outbound wire transfer from the foreign bank.

I am just familiarizing myself with xe - so please let me know if I am missing something.


My time line

CSC

Nov 7, 2004 - First met in Chagford, Devon, UK

Sep 1, 2007 - Married in Chagford

Oct 5, 2007 - Sent I-130 to CSC

Oct 9, 2007 - Received by CSC

Jan 14, 2008 - Rejected by Chicago, wrong date on check 😞

Jan 15, 2008 - Sent I-130 back to Chicago with correctly dated check 🙂

Jan 16, 2008 - Received by Chicago

Feb 14, 2008 - NOA1

Apr 28, 2008 - NOA2

May 6, 2008 - NVC assign case number

May 12, 2008 - DS-3032 and AOS bill generated

May 18, 2008 - DS-3032 request emailed by me

May 22, 2008 - AOS bill paid by check

May 27, 2008 - DS-3032 accepted by NVC

Jun 2, 2008 - IV bill generated

Jun 9, 2008 - IV bill received

Jun 16, 2008 - IV bill paid by check

Jun 21, 2008 - I-864 package received

Jun 26, 2008 - I-864 sent to NVC

Jun 30, 2008 - DS-230 generated by NVC

Jul 11, 2008 - DS-230 received

Jul 26, 2008 - DS-230 sent to NVC

Aug 4, 2008 - DS-230 received by NVC

Aug 12, 2008 - Case completed

Aug 14, 2008 - Papers sent to London Embassy

Oct 20, 2008 - Medical in London

Oct 27, 2008 - Interview in London (was originally scheduled for Sep 23)

Oct 28, 2008 - Visa received

Nov 22, 2008 - Arrived in USA at Phoenix.... Yeah!!!

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: England
Timeline

Due to the Patriot Act, you cannot open a US banking account unless you are in the US.

The Wells Fargo office in London is quite happy to open an account for you in the US, while you are still in the UK. I know several people who have used them in the last few months.


What to expect at the POE - WIKI entry

IR-1 Timeline IR-1 details in my timeline

N-400 Timeline

2009-08-21 Applied for US Citizenship

2009-08-28 NOA

2009-09-22 Biometrics appointment

2009-12-01 Interview - Approved

2009-12-02 Oath ceremony - now a US Citizen

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