TransferWise comes to Argentina

Not sure if this is something that interests people, but you can use Transferwise to transfer dollars from a US bank account to a US$ denominated account in Argentina. I needed to get dollars down here, but my bank does not make international wire transfers. I reached out to Transferwise and they gave me a solution.

I sent $2,300 US dollars for a total cost of $3. Meaning I received $2,297 US dollars in my account. Super cheap!! Note many banks charge SWIFT transfer fees and some have to use an intermediary bank which charges its own fee. SantanderRio actually told me their intermediary bank (Wells Fargo) would charge $50, but no end bank receiving fee from SantanderRio. I did not get charged the $50. Why? I'm not 100% sure but I think Transferwise deposits the funds at WellsFargo for US user borderless accounts (I can't confirm this though). So my money didn't end up going through an intermediary bank. It went straight from Wells Fargo to SantanderRio. Google how SWIFT works if this seems confusing. Here are the steps for those interested:

First you need to open a Transferwise borderless checking account. It's super easy, and I did it right through my regular Transferwise profile. It took about 24 hours in total to open it. Next you need to contact Transferwise support and ask them to enable the feature that lets you send USD from a US account to a foreign account denominated in US dollars. They responded within an hour and activated it immediately.

Next transfer USD from your US account to the borderless account. Transferwise uses an app/interface that links directly with your online banking to make the transfer (for banks that support this). The app is called plaid and built directly into Transferwise's interface. It took 24 hours for the transfer to go through.

The money is sent to Argentina using the SWIFT system, so you need to go to your bank and request the details about how to receive a SWIFT payment from abroad in US$. SantanderRio has a page they print and give to you. You really just need the bank's SWIFT code and your account number (note account number is different that CBU). Once I sent the money US$ arrived in my account 24 hours later.