A study completed by online money transfer site TransferWise has warned that thousands of Australian expats are “needlessly” losing money in “hidden” bank fees when they send money back home.

The company based its calculations on an analysis of World Bank research into over £300bn of remittance money sent home by migrants living in the UK.

Every year, £265m is sent from the UK to Australia by migrants. When combined with the average charged by banks and traditional money remitters, it is estimated that Australian expats are losing £13.35m each year.

Banks and traditional money remitters often take as much as 5% of the money sent abroad to Australia by expats living in the UK – even when they claim they are charging no fees. They get around this by using an extortionate exchange rate.

If you’re thinking about sending money abroad, it’s best to shop around. Money Supermarket and UK Forex also offer transfer services, and you can compare rates on the money.co.uk site.

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