Many people assume that making a cross-border transfer is complicated and costly, but this simply isn’t the case. In fact, sending money from UK to EU countries can be as simple as making a domestic transfer and you may not incur any fees at all.

Read on to find out how you can send money from UK to EU and discover the most popular ways to transfer funds to recipients in countries within the European Union.

Transfer Options When Sending Money from UK to EU

There are numerous ways to send money to a recipient in the EU, but you’ll need to know a little more about these options before you can decide which one is best for you. To help you determine the right way for you to send funds to recipients in the EU, we’ll cover three of the most popular transfer methods in more detail:

SEPA Transfers

Known as the Single European Payments Area, SEPA consists of all countries within the EU, as well as the UK, Norway, Lichtenstein, Monaco, Andorra, Switzerland, Vatican City, Iceland and San Marino. Designed to ‘harmonise payments across the Eurozone’, SEPA was launched to make international transfers as secure, efficient and cost-effective as domestic transfers.

If your intended recipient is located in one of the SEPA countries, it’s likely that this will be your preferred option for transferring funds. However, there is more than one type of SEPA transfer. In fact, you can transfer funds via:

  • SEPA Credit Transfer
  • SEPA Instant Credit Transfer
  • SEPA Direct Debit

A SEPA Credit Transfer typically takes a maximum of one business day to complete, whereas a SEPA Instant Credit Transfer means the funds will be received in seconds. The fees associated with SEPA Instant Credit Transfers may be a little higher, but a regular SEPA Credit Transfer can often be sent for free or for a small nominal charge.

So, if you want the recipient to have access to the funds right away, it’s probably worth paying a slightly higher fee and sending money from UK to EU via a SEPA Instant Credit Transfer. However, if the transaction isn’t time-sensitive and you’re happy for the transfer to take one business day, a SEPA Credit Transfer is likely to be sufficient.

It’s worth noting that the amount you’re sending can also impact your choice of SEPA Transfer. A SEPA Instant Credit Transfer has a maximum limit of €100,000, while SEPA Credit Transfers have a higher maximum limit of €999,999,999.99.

While SEPA Credit Transfers and SEPA Instant Credit Transfers can be used for one-off, ad hoc or frequent transfers, you may prefer to use a SEPA Direct Debit if you’re sending money from UK to EU on a regular basis. Setting up a SEPA Direct Debit offers increased convenience for regular payments and ensures you’ll never forget to make a transfer.


Another way to send money from UK to EU is via the TARGET2 system. Launched by the European Central Bank, more than 52,000 worldwide financial institutions participate in TARGET2, so it’s easy to send funds to recipients in a variety of countries.

Although TARGET2 is used to send more than €2.2 trillion per day on average, it is best suited to high value transfers and is regularly used for commercial and bank-to-bank transactions. However, if you’re sending a large amount of money and you’re happy for it to be sent in Euros, then TARGET2 could be a viable way to transfer the funds.


The SWIFT messaging system sends payment orders so that funds can be transferred from the sender’s account to the recipient’s account. Although it doesn’t technically send the funds, it initiates the process and prompts specified amounts to be sent through a number of intermediaries in order to reach the recipient’s account.

The SWIFT network is worldwide and incorporates 200+ countries and territories, so it’s one of the best-known ways to make cross-border payments. Although it can be used to send funds to the EU from the UK, it’s rarely the most popular option.

This is because SWIFT transfers generally take longer and cost more than SEPA transactions. Due to this, most people prefer to use SEPA if they are located in a SEPA country and sending funds to a recipient within the Single European Payments Area.

Sending Funds to EU via a Multicurrency Account

Opening a multicurrency account can be one of the easiest ways to facilitate sending money from UK to Euro. As well as having access to numerous transfer options, such as SEPA and SWIFT, you can hold funds in multiple currencies, if you choose to.

As fewer intermediaries are required to facilitate cross-border transactions, you can benefit from reduced transaction fees and increased efficiency.

A multicurrency account can be particularly beneficial if you routinely send payments to one or more recipients in the EU. Perhaps you have friends and family living in an EU country and you want to send them funds on a monthly basis? Maybe you rely on an EU supplier to keep your business operations underway and need to pay quarterly invoices? Alternatively, you might make regular purchases from EU retailers and want to be able to pay for your goods in Euros?

Whatever the reasons, a multicurrency transfer gives you easy access to international transfer systems, as well as centralised reporting and enhanced visibility. With all of your transactions situated in one, user-friendly online portal, you can monitor income and expenditure simply and efficiently in real-time.

Sending Money from UK to EU with PayAlly

At PayAlly, we understand that choosing the best method of international transfer can seem overwhelming at first, which is why we’re always on hand to provide support. Every one of our clients has an appointed Relationship Manager, so you can access 1:1 support whenever you choose.

If you’d like to find out more about sending money from UK to EU or you want to discover the best way to plan future cross-border transfers, talk to our expert team now.