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How to make a bank transfer for the USA?  What to put in the BBAN field for the United States?

How to make a bank transfer for the USA? What to put in the BBAN field for the United States?

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Lots of misinformation on the internet!

⚠️ It’s surprising but even the most specialized sites concerning banks do not clearly indicate how to make a bank transfer for the USA. Worse still, more often than not the information provided is incorrect. At best, the best advice on the web would then be to go directly to a bank branch so that the advisor can make the transfer for you. You will have the opportunity to ask for a commercial gesture so as not to pay the additional costs of a transfer requested in an agency. Big anything! It is however not difficult.

The IBAN is a European system, and does not work for the USA

You can find yourself without glass as soon as you have to make an international transfer to the USA. A lot of false information is present on the net, and mislead readers. No, the IBAN system does not exist for the USA. There is therefore no need to mention an IBAN when you want to transfer money to the USA. This is a BBAN, as indeed for many countries outside of Europe.

Bank transfer for the USA: the necessary information

If your bank’s customer area allows you to access international transfers, for entry the interface probably gives you the choice between an IBAN and a BBAN to enter the recipient bank details of your transfer.

Data needed to make a transfer for the USA

In order to make a transfer for the USA you must have at your disposal the list of information below:

  • the name and address of the receiving bank,
  • the bank’s swift code (for example, BOFAUS3N for BankOfAmerica),
  • Routing Number (often called ABA, branch of the bank within the bank),
  • Account Number,
  • the amount to be transferred in USD,
  • the wording (comment) of the transfer (strongly recommended).

What does Swift code look like?

As an example, BankUnited’s Swift code is CUESUS33.

Bank Of America’s swift code is BOFAUS3N.

You will often be able to use the swift code followed by XXX, for example BOFAUS3NXXX for Bank Of America. In fact, the swift code is 11 characters and if the code is less than 11 characters, it is completed with Xs. But these Xs, completing the swift code, are useless except to fill in the field. A swift code without trailing X’s is just as valid as the same swift code followed by those X’s.

How to enter your transfer for the USA?

For named fields, like the SWIFT code, it’s very simple! Once entered, the interface can tell you the name of the bank. Similarly, the input interface must ask you for the name and address of the recipient of the transfer. What is more complex is to correctly fill in the BBAN field.

Example of an interface for entering an international transfer request to the USA on the BRED website © Screenshot of the BRED website

How to complete the BBAN for a transfer for the USA?

It’s simple, but you still have to know it. In order to complete the BBAN for a transfer to an American bank, you must enter the routing number followed directly (without spaces or dashes) by the account number (account number). It’s as simple as that. The problem being that there is no redundant code to verify that no input error has been made during input. So check your entry carefully before confirming the execution order for your transfer!

BBAN for USA = Routing number (ABA) + Account Number

Cost sharing?

This is also a possibility that is de rigueur for the USA. Be careful, your correspondent probably expects to receive the full amount you owe him. If you choose to share the costs, in fact, he will not have the full amount in his bank account, half of the costs will have been deducted. In general, the issuer of the transfer bears all the bank charges for this transfer.

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