Is Western Union asking non-residents for a CDI now?

steveinbsas

Registered
One more over-hyped scare extinguished.
Yeah, now expats can get back to more important concerns...like how to avoid paying taxes in Argentina (perhaps by not creating a "paper trail" for AFIP to follow).

I imagine the one request for igggysnaks to provide a CDI was triggered by the high number of transfers and the total amount of money involved (well over the income tax trigger point for an individual living in Argentina for more than a year).

It's hard for me to imagine that one Western Union employee would just make it up.
 
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Alpinista

Registered
As far as I know, one WU employee told a non-resident (without a DNI or CUIT) who made about 50 transfers totalling "roughly" $20,000USD during the past 15 months that he would need a CDI to complete future transfers.

I am guessing the high volume of transfers and the gross amount may have triggered the request for a CDI-

I haven't heard or read about this happening to anyone else.
I am certainly above the levels mentioned by this one non-resident, and I am a non-resident as well. Probably has to do with an over-eagerly person at the counter or that the non-resident went to "mom and pop" WU shops where he raised more attention than at large WU centers (I normally go to a big one).

If it became a real problem for non-residents, I am not really worried about that as I would send someone else on my behalf (plan B). If that also fails, there are enough brokers in the city where I could get the pesos at the blue rate (plan C). The latter has the disadvantage that currently (with CCL 10 pesos higher than the blue), the WU option is by far the best option.

Nonetheless thanks to you for bringing this up.
 

gracielle

Registered
....I am not really worried about that as I would send someone else on my behalf (plan B). If that also fails, there are enough brokers in the city where I could get the pesos at the blue rate (plan C). The latter has the disadvantage that currently (with CCL 10 pesos higher than the blue), the WU option is by far the best option.
Alpinista, I am curious. Do you include the WU transfer fee in your mathematical calculation?

Using my case as an example:
Today Blue rate broker in CABA at 2:00pm.
US$100.00 at AR$140.00. I obtained AR$14,000.

Had I done a WU transfer:
WU rate today at 2:56pm
1.00 USD = AR$148.73
Sender pays in cash in California.
Recipient collects cash in CABA.
Total Cost: US$100 + US$8.00 transfer fee=US$108.00
 

Alpinista

Registered
Alpinista, I am curious. Do you include the WU transfer fee in your mathematical calculation?

Using my case as an example:
Today Blue rate broker in CABA at 2:00pm.
US$100.00 at AR$140.00. I obtained AR$14,000.

Had I done a WU transfer:
WU rate today at 2:56pm
1.00 USD = AR$148.73
Sender pays in cash in California.
Recipient collects cash in CABA.
Total Cost: US$100 + US$8.00 transfer fee=US$108.00
Hi Gracielle

I am not coming from USD, but transferring from a Swiss Franc account. The calculation is as follows (real transaction, yesterday):

1619032121145.png

If I use yesterday's interbank rate, then I end up with a USD / ARS rate of 147.5 (or 146.7 if I consider the fees as well). So this rate is somewhere between the blue and CCL.

(the strange thing is that your fees seem to be considerably higher. Are they flat at USD 8? Or in percentage?)

The alternative - non-WU approach - would be as follows. (as the bank fee is flat with 25 USD and the fact that I don't want to do such time consuming transactions for a few hundred dollars, the amounts are higher; just an example at yesterday's rates):

1619032138709.png

So I lose first 2% in changing the CHF to USD. Then there are bank fees (not really material though), then a commission of 3% from the local broker. Then I have to agree to meet the broker here and he gives me the USD in cash, then I walk to the cueva (not with 5000 obviously) and get the blue rate in Florida (today it is 142, so I assumed it was yesterday 141). This gives me a hypothetical USD ARS rate of 133.46, which is about 9% lower than the WU way (not to speak about that this option is more time consuming)

If I came directly from a USD bank account, the effective rate would be 136.8 (basically the blue / cueva rate minus 3% broker commission)
 

gracielle

Registered
Hi Gracielle
I am not coming from USD, but transferring from a Swiss Franc account.
(the strange thing is that your fees seem to be considerably higher. Are they flat at USD 8? Or in percentage?)
Hi Alpinista, thank you for the extensive explanation re: your particular situation.
The WU USD$8.00 is a flat fee when initiating the transfer from California for US$100.00.
 

SecretShopper

Registered
Ok I have a very newbie question. I basically have never worried about how to access money in another country since all of my cards have no international fees and most countries have atms that you can find with no fees.. or for countries that don't have those, like Mexico, very low atm fees.. like a dollar and change. So I've always used ATMs as my source of cash since I basically take money out at the exact exchange rate listed online (never take the atm conversion).

I understand Argentina has the ATM scam of high fees and low limits which makes it not possible there. When you guys are selling dollars there you are getting 135-145 pesos per dollar? When I look at the rate online I only see 93ars to the dollar.
 

steveinbsas

Registered
Ok I have a very newbie question. I basically have never worried about how to access money in another country since all of my cards have no international fees and most countries have atms that you can find with no fees.. or for countries that don't have those, like Mexico, very low atm fees.. like a dollar and change. So I've always used ATMs as my source of cash since I basically take money out at the exact exchange rate listed online (never take the atm conversion).

I understand Argentina has the ATM scam of high fees and low limits which makes it not possible there. When you guys are selling dollars there you are getting 135-145 pesos per dollar? When I look at the rate online I only see 93ars to the dollar.
There are "cuevas" in the city where expats can sell their dollars if they already have dollars in Argentina and get the "blu" rate.

I never have physical dollars in Argentina and I have been using online transfer services for the past eight years. That's when I stopped using ATM's.

Since October of 2019 Western Union has been offering exchange rates significantly higher than the official rate or any of the other exchange services (like XOOM and Transferwise, which I used prior to that time).

You will see the current rate Western Union is offering ($148.73 at the moment) if you go to their US webiste. It is possible to get this rate when you make online transfers from a US bank to an Argentine bank or pick up the funds (in pesos) at Western Union/Rapi-pago agencies in Argentina.

The fees are higher if the funds are picked up in cash, but more than offset by the difference in the rate.

The fees are also higher if you use a credit card than a debit card when sending the funds to an Argentine bank account, but there is no fee if the funds are sent from a US bank account to an Argentine bank account.
 

SecretShopper

Registered
There are "cuevas" in the city where expats can sell their dollars if they already have dollars in Argentina and get the "blu" rate.

I never have physical dollars in Argentina and I have been using online transfer services for the past eight years. That's when I stopped using ATM's.

Since October of 2019 Western Union has been offering exchange rates significantly higher than the official rate or any of the other exchange services (like XOOM and Transferwise, which I used prior to that time).

You will see the current rate Western Union is offering ($148.73 at the moment) if you go to their US webiste. It is possible to get this rate when you make online transfers from a US bank to an Argentine bank or pick up the funds (in pesos) at Western Union/Rapi-pago agencies in Argentina.

The fees are higher if the funds are picked up in cash, but more than offset by the difference in the rate.

The fees are also higher if you use a credit card than a debit card when sending the funds to an Argentine bank account, but there is no fee if the funds are sent from a US bank account to an Argentine bank account.
Interesting. That is a 50 percent increase in value of the exchange rate. When Argentina finally decides to start processing visas I'm going to show up with enough cash to just last the 6.5 months.
 

BAHibs

Registered
Should be noted the Western Union charges for transfers are far lower in Europe (or at least France from where I transfer money).
 

steveinbsas

Registered
When Argentina finally decides to start processing visas I'm going to show up with enough cash to just last the 6.5 months.
If you are entering Argentina as a tourist (from a "visa free" country) please keep in mind that entry permit is for 90 days and can be renewed once at for an additional 90 days at the office of migraciones. You can stretch your stay for the 6.5 months that you indicated (or even longer) if you visit a neighboring country while your 90 day entry permit is still valid. You will get a new 90 day entry permit when you reenter and you should be able to extend that by 90 days at the office of migraciones.

You can only get one extension and you should not leave and reenter while the extension is in effect. Border agents cannot "override" the extension and will not give you a new 90 day permit if you return before the "prorroga de permanencia" (extension of stay) expires.

PS: Always count the exact number of days when calculating your departure deadline. It's easy to overstay an entry permit by considering it good for three months. An overstay is not a big deal, but there is a fee/fine (I beleive presently $4500 pesos) that is charged for an overstay of even a single day..
 
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