Sending and receiving money in Brazil (swift, iban and other horrors) – Update 23/07/2012

NOTICE: I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL, SO ALL QUESTIONS REQUIRE EXTENSIVE RESEARCH. IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION YOU WANT ANSWERED, DONATE FIRST (Paypal button…sidebar). I will no longer answer queries without prior donation. A cup of coffee will do:)

Update 21/11/2013

Bradesco is now also offering money transfers via Western Union, although you have to have a Bradesco account to send.

Update 19/07/2013

The Brazilian Central Bank has issued a notice stating that, from now on, all transfers must also contain the IBAN, which was not previsouly used in Brazil. For more info, see:

I recommend you visit your agency, although they probably won´t know what the heck you are on about, and insist they give you the IBAN and SWIFT for money transfers.

Last update 23/07/2012. Updated information on the limits for Western Union via BB in Brazil.

If you ever need to transfer money from a foreign account to a Brazilian bank, you will need the swift code and all relevant bank and account information (full name and address, agency and account number, etc.). Some countries also use the IBAN which is basically the bank account and agency numbers. The IBAN is not used in Brazil. The SWIFT code, however, is the country code, bank code and city code, totaling 11 digits. In order to get this code right, you will have to contact the receiving bank and ask for it, or ask the receiver to find out the SWIFT code of the bank in Brazil. Don´t call the main office as they will tell you to call the branch. Try the “cambio” desk of the branch. Below, some SWIFT codes of the main Brazilian banks and some useful websites in case you need more information. You will not need the SWIFT of the agency, just the general SWIFT of the bank in Brazil to send money.  If you need help, write a comment.

Swift codes of major Brazilian banks
Note: all More information links are to the International Remittance page of the bank´s website, in Portuguese. It is VERY important to use these swift codes for sending money as most banks have more than one swift code. If you are unsure or have not been given information on the specific “branch”, use the general swift codes provided below.

Swift code: ITAUBRSP
Bank code: 341
More information
Contact info

Bank code: 237 (Bank Bradesco S.A)
More information

Caixa Economica Federal
Swift code: CEFXBRSP
Bank code:
More information

Banco do Brasil
Swift code: BRASBRRJ
Bank code: 001
More information
Western Union (Banco do Brasil is the only bank that accepts remittances via Western Union)

Swift Code: BCBBBRPR
Bank Code: 399
More information
Client services

Santander (Banco Santander Banespa)
Swift Code: ABNABRSP
Bank Code: 033
More information

Swift codes:
Bank websites
Bank codes (see below)

Bank codes (all Brazilian banks)
Full list from Central Bank website

Useful Links
Free IBAN Calculator (some countries only, except Brazil)
Remessa de Recursos para o Brasil

Ways to send and receive money in Brazil

Bank transfer (wire)

This is the best option if you are sending large amounts. According to an article I read in Epoca magazine the other day, the bank rates (on reception or to send, in BRL) are the following:

Bradesco: Up to 100 dollars, regardless of amount.
Itaú: Up to 200 dollars
Caixa Economica: 1% of amount and max. of 100.
Banco do Brasil: 1% of amount and max. of 200.

Receiving money from abroad can be a real pain because most bank employees (especially in small towns) get no training on this service (as noted in a very useful blog). The money is usually bottlenecked somewhere in between for reasons unknown, while the banks/Central Bank demand loads of unnecessary paperwork and then clear the transfer to the corresponding account. This is especially true is you are sending large amounts. The limit is 10,000 BRL.

Western Union and other money order services
Another option is Western Union. The limit for sending and receiving varies from country to country, but Brazilians that want to send money from Brazil must have a bank account in BB. For sending or receiving less than 3000, not much paperwork is required, if you want to send or receive more than 3000, the sender must sign an Authorization provided by the bank. Western Union is not intended for commercial transactions. Information on receiving varies and is confusing. BB claims that the limit is 10,000 if you have an account in BB, but Western Union claims that if you want to receive amounts higher than BRL 4,000 you must have a bank account in BB (source: For more information check with your bank or the Western Union Booth in your country (not Brazil).

Then there is Remessa Expresso, mostly offered by travel agencies in Brazil. All these services request Brazilian documents. This is unbelievably ridiculous as it´s supposed to be an international service. The Brazilian government has probably made up this new rule to prevent immigrants from sending part of their wages to their families. If you want to RECEIVE via Western Union, you must have a valid passport or a Brazilian document and the 10-digit code. If possible, take the name of the person that is sending and the amount. The Caixa Economica Federal also has a money transfer service via Caixa Internacional.

The Brazilian government is also controlling services like Paypal. Brazilians companies can no longer use PayPal to make payments to people or companies in Brazil. If you do manage to use it, there is limit and they charge 6% to transfer the payment to your Paypal account. Then you must have a bank account in Brazil to transfer the money to. It´s free for payments over 250 R$.

Other services
Most countries offer other methods of sending and receiving money from Brazil or other countries. In Brazil, there is the so-called “parallel” market and services based on this market are mostly offered by travel agents. The line between legal and illegal in this case is extremely thin although some services are not approved by the Central Bank. I get lots of messages from these companies and most foreigners use these local money transfer services, but they can always cause delays if the money goes to a regular Brazilian bank account because they are not always “recognized” in Brazil although they are perfectly legal.  Some companies offer rate-free transfers, but I cannot comment on those as I have never used these services.


Sending money from Brazil
Sending money from Brazil abroad is always a nightmare. Besides Western Union, you don´t have many easy options. The bureaucracy is so suffocating, I almost gave up immediately.  You must justify the reason for sending the money, with contracts and agreements and invoices, or, if for personal use, you must prove family/blood/marital bond. Without this information, Brazilian banks are not authorized to send money.

Update 10/03/2012

Just a short update to say that there is a service called Dinheiro Certo (changed to Vale Postal Eletronico) provided by the Brazilian postal service (Correios) that allows sending of money from partner countries. Check the following link (in Portuguese) to see the countries. They charge 28 reales and 0,75% for sending cash to Brazil. The recipient has to have Brazilian documents but, unlike Western Union, the sender does not need to have any Brazilian document and there is no limit of transactions for Brazilians (WU can only be used if you have CPF and Brazilian documents in Brazil and the annual limit is 2000 dollars).

Link to partner countries of Dinheiro Certo (Vale Eletronico)

A great article from the Administradores website on this service (in Portuguese)

Some advice before you start…

  1. If you have to send or receive money from/to Brazil, arm yourself with lots and lots of patience, take a deep breath and make sure you have all the information you need because you are in for a very bumpy ride. Brazil is one of the worst countries to send or receive money, believe me.
  2. Get all the information you possibly can from the recipient. Gather all documents that prove your bond with the recipient and hand them over to the bank clerk. Ask them to include all this information even if it´s not requested on their side. It´s requested in Brazil and your money will get stuck in limbo if you just send it with a swift code and bank info.
  3. Monitor the status of your remittance. Ask the receiver to go to the bank and check the process on their end. Don´t assume it will simply fall into the account. Chances are, it won´t.
  4. Think twice before sending small amount or very large amounts. The rates here are unreal, almost alien. On this side, the receiver will be charged a new “international transaction” charge and IOF (financial transaction charge), even if the money is exchanged outside Brazil. Some banks are using foreign account to exchange and filter the money so be more competitive, but you cannot escape the claws of the central bank once the money is in Brazil.
  5. Whenever possible, use PayPal, Moneybookers and the like for small amounts. They exchange the money outside Brazil. Keep in mind that if you use Western Union and the Itau money transfer service, the money is exchanged in Brazil. The advantage of these services is that you do not need a Brazilian bank account and you can collect in cash. The ridiculous aspect, is that you have to have a Brazilian document to receive or send money via Western Union, and proof of residence as well via the Itau service.

454 thoughts on “Sending and receiving money in Brazil (swift, iban and other horrors) – Update 23/07/2012


    • The information you request is all in the post. If you need further assistance, consider the following:
      NOTICE: I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL, SO ALL QUESTIONS REQUIRE EXTENSIVE RESEARCH. IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION YOU WANT ANSWERED, DONATE FIRST (Paypal button…sidebar). I will no longer answer queries without prior donation. A cup of coffee will do:)

  2. Hi
    I have lived in Brazil for 12 years and am think of buying a home for 200.000 reais. I am trying to come up with the best way to pay for the house as my money is in a bank in The USA. I heard that a bank transfer to here has a 10k reais limit but that would ake 20 transfers. I read that you can transfer all the money to the seller’s bank and that the money would be released to the sellers bank by the central bank after showing the sellers bank the purchase agreement documents on the home. Is this correct? Is there a better way or is that yhe correct way? I am tempted to go to the USA and stuff my pockets and bring it back on the plane but 60k dolars is a lot to bring on a plane. Thnks in advance for any advice., John

    • Please donate if this information is useful. Yes, if you buy property in Brazil, the money must go directly to the seller’s account. The seller must go to the bank manager and present all the purchase documentation (that he/she has) because the Central Bank retains the wire until these documents are presented. There is a communication gap in the process, and they never bother to tell the recipient that the money is retained awaiting the documents, so it is best to go there and present them so the money flows smoothly into the account when it gets there.

      • Hello,

        I just made transfer to a bank in brazil with swift code and conta.
        Conta: 0001xxxx-1

        My quenstion is, since I did not include Agencia in the conta, would this transfer go through the correct account?
        Before making payment, I asked the lady and she said she only need the conta not the agencia.
        And now I am worried that it will be stuck as it is incomplete.

        If I can make revision, how is the correct format to write agencia and conta into 1 line?

        • NOTICE: I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL, SO ALL QUESTIONS REQUIRE EXTENSIVE RESEARCH. IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION YOU WANT ANSWERED, DONATE FIRST (Paypal button…sidebar). I will no longer answer queries without prior donation. A cup of coffee will do:)

        • Thanks for the donation. Did you manage to send the money? I contacted Caixa and got this message (if you need a translation, just shout):

          Para comunicação entre nós e o banqueiro no exterior sobre os dados das remessas, é utilizado o código SWIFT CEFXBRSP.

          Você precisa ter CPF regular perante a Receita Federal para que possa receber a ordem de pagamento.

          Ao solicitar o envio de ordem de pagamento para o Brasil para crédito em sua conta, o remetente precisará informar o seu nome, CPF, banco, agência, tipo (conta corrente, poupança ou não residente) e o nº da conta com o dígito verificador do destinatário. Esses dados podem ser substituídos pelo código IBAN e você poderá solicitá-lo ao seu gerente. Esse código é individual para cada conta que você possui conosco.

          No Brasil, o código IBAN é composto por 29 caracteres, observe:

          • Os 2 primeiros caracteres numéricos são correspondentes ao código do país;
          • 2 dígitos verificadores;
          • 8 caracteres numéricos correspondentes ao identificador da instituição financeira (conforme ISPB – código identificador atribuído pelo Banco Central do Brasil à instituição financeira participante do STR – Sistema de Transferência de Reservas);
          • 5 caracteres numéricos correspondentes à identificação da agência bancária;
          • 10 caracteres numéricos correspondentes ao número da conta com dígito;
          • 1 caractere correspondente ao tipo de conta; e
          • 1 caractere correspondente à identificação do titular da conta.

          O código IBAN considera a ordem de titularidade, o número da conta e a agência em que a mesma está cadastrada, de forma que, caso haja alterações nesses parâmetros, um novo código deverá ser gerado.

          Temos parceiros em algumas regiões no mundo, se for o caso, o remetente precisará comparecer nas seguintes instituições financeiras:

          • Nos Estados Unidos, comparece a qualquer correspondente do Citibank;
          • Em Portugal, comparece aos pontos de atendimento do Millennium BCP;
          • No Japão, comparece aos pontos de atendimento do Iwata Shinkin Bank;
          • Nas demais localidades do mundo, qualquer instituição.

          Após o envio, por gentileza vá até uma de nossas agências para solicitar o recebimento da remessa do exterior, os documentos necessários são os mesmos que o remetente utilizou para enviar a ordem de pagamento, a apresentação do seu CPF é obrigatória, você receberá em Real, mediante cobrança da taxa de conversão.

          Operações com valor superior a US$ 3.000,00 ou o equivalente em outras moedas, além dos seus documentos de identificação, é necessária a apresentação de documentos relativos à natureza da operação, que é definida de acordo com a finalidade, fato motivador da remessa, e deve ser verificada na agência.

          Clique aqui e saiba mais sobre as remessas internacionais.

          • Hello,

            Yess, my transfer succeed.
            Just with swift, conta and name:)
            It took 3-4 days.

            Next time will difintely use IBAN.

            Thanks for all the information, it help us alot.

  3. Hello!
    I need to receive a compensation for a damaged baggage from British Airways, and they keep asking my “NIF” and my “Sort Code”. What am I supposed to write? I can’t find what this is anywhere on the internet. I’m clueless and very worried that I might not receive the compensation only because I don’t know what those codes mean.

    I would really appreciate if you guys help me.


    • This answer required time and research. If it was helpful, donate!! (see paypal button on sidebar).
      The sort code is the branch code. You have the bank code, the branch code and the account number. See this example: Sort Code: 400443. Account nr: 00131332. Beneficiary Bank: HSBC. They cannot transfer if they don´t have these three numbers or codes.
      The NIF is the Numero de Identificação Fiscal, which is the equivalent of the CPF in Brazil or the tax code in other countries. If you came from Portugal, they will ask for a NIF, which you probably don´t have. If you are going to receive your compensation in Brazil, enter the CPF number. If not, any national equivalent.

  4. Bom dia
    Minha duvida eu trabalho no exterior e recebo mensalmente meu salario via transferencia swift no banco da caixa economica federal e recebo normalmente.
    Mas no mes de janeiro vim de ferias ao brasil e a empresa optou por enviar meu salario + ferias deu em torno de 5400 U$.
    Mais a caixa reteve os valores bloqueando, pois a matriz da minha empresa que fica em Lobito – Angola onde tenho contrato de trabalho valido , enviou por uma de suas filias com razao social diferente via portugual.
    Criando este conflito .
    Ja entreguei ao banco , ordem de pagamento em meu nome , contrato de trabalho , contra cheque , e declaraçao da minha empresa declarando que a empresa paga salarios dos coloboradores via filias espalhadas pelo mundo.
    Mesmo assim ainda continua travado a ordem de pagamento.
    O banco pode bloquear mesmo eu comprovando que é subsidio de salario.?
    Falei com minha gerente de investimentos ela me disse que a burocracia é esta para remessa acima de 3000 mil dolares .
    Mas que o banco esta analizando os documentos , em qt isso minhas ferias estao terminando e não consigo resolver.
    sera que vou ter que contratar um advogado para desbloquear meu salario.?


    Douglas de Magalhaes

    • Se já entregou tudo e os gerentes estão cientes do problema, eu esperaria. É muito lento mesmo. Para remessas acima de 3000, tudo é bloqueado, mesmo quando está em ordem. É coisa do banco central. Conheço pessoas que esperaram meses.

  5. My dear friend
    My name is Jose Alves de Lima, the dwell time in Brazil and I need to make a transfer from a bank in England, specifically from London to my account at a bank in Brazil specifically in São Paulo.
    The London bank requires me to report in a certain field of a certain code system – “non-residential tax code” – I do not know such código.- “non-residential tax code”
    I need to know this code !!! Could you help me?
    my e_mail

    • The only tax codes I can think of are the CPF/CNPJ which are for residents, the code issued by the CVM which is for non-residents investing in Brazil and the code attributed by the Receita Federal when Brazilian leave the country and will no longer pay income tax. It is a code that the RF uses to acknowledge that you no longer live in the country. The CVM is provided by the CVM and is compulsory for investors. If you are not investing, maybe you can leave the field blank. Tell the person who will receive the money to ask the bank what code the system is referring to. If it is this code, you will need someone in Brazil to help you.
      This is the information I got from the non-resident investor’s guide.
      • Before beginning operations and after filling in the identification form, the investor must, through his representative,
      register at the Brazilian SEC (CVM);
      • Registration is carried out through the CVM website (;
      • CVM provides the registration within 24 hours of the representative’s request;
      • The registration number (code) assigned by CVM must be included in all operations performed in the name of each
      investor participating in a collective account or holder of an individual account;
      • Code structure (aaaaa.bbbbbb.cccccc.X-Y): aaaaa-representative code, bbbbbb-holder of individual or collective
      account, cccccc-individual investor code, X-equal to 0, if own individual and equal to 1 if collective account,
      Y-verification digit;
      • CVM may suspend or cancel the registration of a non-resident
      investor who does not comply with the requirements
      established by the regulation

      I used my own time and research to obtain this information. I am not a specialist. If it was useful, please donate (paypal button on sidebar).

  6. Hi . Friend
    My self hemant and I live in India . And my girlfriend is brasileiro . She want come to India . Because she want marry with me . The matter is . She want my help . How to send money to brasil . She have caixa economica federal banco conta . And I have indian bank account. The name is State bank of india . I want to send money for his trip . 25000 indiano dhinero = 1500 brasil dhinero . I want to send 25000 RS . I need your help. I have swift code . And IBAN number. And her full name and bank details.
    I just want your help . How can I do . Because I want to send money only 25000 .
    Please help me . Fast my friend

    • Thanks for your comment. Please donate as I have stopped offering advice for free. The answers to all your questions are in the comments under this post and in the post itself. If you have all the information, just go to the bank and send a wire transfer. But I warn you. There are a lot of “ladies” asking foreigners for “help” who immediately disappear or continue asking for “help” until the foreigner realizes he is being swindled. I do not recommend sending anything to people you do not know.

  7. Hi, I want to do a money transfer to Brasil to one of my friend. what is the maximum I can send which will be tax exempt. My friend does have a well paying job, so if I send this as a gift , how much should I send so that the money is tax exempted.

    • They will not charge you anything extra when you send, but your friend will have the IOF deducted when it goes into his account. That is standard and there is no way around it. All financial transactions in Brazil are subjected to IOF (Imposto sobre Operação Financeira).
      If this was helpful, how about buying me a coffee? Donate using the Paypal Button on the side bar.

  8. Hello a business partner is send $60000 from brazil to canada or usa what is the best way to send it and how can he send all without getting much problem now that their having strike in banking sector

    • You will have to do it online via the person’s account or using an international money transfer service. There are some in Brazil, like Banco Rendimento. Always check the exchange rate and service charges before choosing which service to use. Brazilians tend to be abusive and “invent” their own exchange rate.
      If this was helpful, how about buying me a coffee? Donate using the Paypal Button on the sidebar.

  9. hi i am visiting brazil for three month can you please tell me which the best bank i can take cash from it by my debit visa card i try to take 1000 real from the santander bank ATM its give me only 500+12 commission two times to get 1000 real are there is any bank ATM give me 1000 real one time and pay only one time commission?or all the banks the same ?

    • You can only use ATMs with the Maestro logo, usually. That includes HSBC (which is leaving Brazil) and most other international banks. The problem is that they usually have a limit so they will charge you commission when you try to withdraw every time. Maybe you should check the limits in other banks/ATMs before withdrawing. It´s usually 500 though. We also have to pay charges every time we withdraw the limit from national accounts.

  10. Hello….we are currently in brazil….we are needing to transfer brazilian money to the U.S….as of now how is it the best way to transfer money?

    • If you are in Brazil, there is no real best way. Just check the exchange rate and any embedded fees. I would just use a bank wire for large amounts and an international transfer service for small and large amounts. The exchange rate is the catch. Some services charge less and some charge a lot more than the official rate.

  11. Hello Cipriana, I’m Jesse from Poland, I am trying to receive money (Swift Transfer) from Brazil. How long do you think its going to take before it gets to my account in Poland? Its been days now and still no remittance in my bank account and the sending bank in brazil ” Itau Bankline ” confirms that the remittance has been sent. Any Idea you want to share?

    • Hi Jesse, thanks for the comment. It all depends on the bank. Go to your branch and ask your manager to check. They have a sort of queue and if anything is wrong the transfer is blocked. If Itaú says it´s there, it must be blocked on your side. Good luck.

  12. Hi, I am trying to send money to an Brazil Bank Account.
    I have the Swift Code, the Iban and these two number

    1.) AGENCIA
    2.) C/C

    Any chance you might know what these are?


    • Thanks for the comment. You should not need the last two bits because you have the iban, but it’s agency numer and current account number. The cc or current account has to have a digit. Something like 1234-5.

      • hello Cipriana we are ttyying to send a larg aount from bank of brasil and each day there an excuse and swift dont go to our account in europe, belong to your experience what can make that occur??

        • Hi yannick. I am not sure I understood. Who is giving the excuses. You need an IBAN to send to Europe. Find out the IBAN of the European account and send it to the exchange office of bb. Ask your mamager for the email or ask him or her to do it.

  13. Hi Cipriana, I am entering a contract to purchase a condominium in Sao Paulo (capital). I need to send 2 wire transfers, the first a deposit (sinal) 10% and the second the final payment 90%. The Seller’s bank is Itau and is a local branch in Bauru. The second concern is I have been told that for real estate transactions it is critical that the wire transfers are sent directly from my bank account directly to the Seller’s bank account. I am using HSBC in the USA. I am sending money in USD, and guessing at what the conversion will be in reais. Is there any advice on how to accurately predict how much will be received at Itau in Brazil? I have seen a lot of comments about fees and taxes in this blog. Since this is for a real estate transaction are fees and taxes the same? How can I predict what these will be? After reading your blog, I am very anxious about this. Thanks!

    • Thanks for your comment. I would go directly to HSBC in the US (your branch or email to the exchange office) and ask them to tell you exactly how much you have to send so that the exact amount goes into the right account. Make them sweat it out and figure out all the rates for you. HSBC has lots of branches in Brazil and knows the ropes very well. They tend to stand by their customers and are used to dealing with different currencies in Brazil (in my experience, anyway). It might be a good idea for the seller to open an account in HSBC. Either way, the rates are not too ridiculous when sending to Brazil. They are only a mess when you send out of Brazil. If you were using any other bank, I would recommend an independent transfer service, but HSBC has always been good at this. Good luck.

  14. Want to transfer 10-15k $ from US to Brazil to brother-in-law who has bank account in Itau. Have done WU transactions in past (<$3,000). It works but is a bit inconvenient. What services would you recommend, especially those that are reliable and minimize fees and spreads? Thanks so much!

    • I would use an overseas money transfer service (Moneycorp or similar) or an independent broker. Western Union is only good for small amounts. Sending money to Brazil is not that bad. It´s sending money out of Brazil that´s expensive.

  15. there is no better way to send money to a brazilian bank account than via transferwise. it’s a money transfer service, and they use mid market rate for conversion to real. for their service they charge 2% of the amount transferred. but on the bright side – there is NO IOF tax and no bank rip off rates! i was like, how is that possible?? the trick is that your euros are wired to transferwise account in the EU, when the money is on their account, then they wire reais from their transferwise account in brazil to a local brazilian account of choice. as you see, there is no actual money changing involved. just simple ingenious money service. i’ve used it couple of times already and the money is transferred within 2 working days. they are present in many countries, like Australia, GB, New Zealand, EU and USA.

    • Their website says:

      Brazil – Brazilian Real (BRL)

      TransferWise can only deliver BRL to bank accounts based in Brazil. Currently we can only send out BRL and not receive it, but this is something we are working on and will announce when it’s ready.

      We send BRL out via domestic transfers within Brazil.

      Perhaps someone can translate.

      • I´m not sure what you want to translate. It basically means they can send money into Brazil and inside Brazil, but not out of Brazil. Is that what you meant?

  16. Hi! I have a man from Brazil. He wanted to send me some amount so I told him to just send it through my bank account. I am from Asia. I am just confused because he keeps telling me that he only needs my ID. I am so do not understand him because he said that he will send it frm his bank. So if thats the case all he needs is my bank infos, right? So why is he asking for my ID alone instead of my bank infos? Ridiculous!

  17. Hi Cipriana, thank you for your very useful blog. I need help. My parents (step-dad Brasilian & mum Spanish) want to relocate from Brasil and sell their land and come to the UK and buy something small from what they get from their land and house. They have an account with Santander bank and they thought I could open an account in the UK with Santander and then send me the money of what they get through Santander bank. Once here then the idea would be for them to open an account and the money to be transferred back to them. Would this be a way of doing it? Or would there be a better way? I have a current account with Natwest, but they think it’s better for me to open a Santander account as they have a local Santander account there….

    • Thanks for the comment. Yes, you could do it that way. It´s always better to use the same bank. You have to be careful with the exchange rate though. Brazilian seem to always use the highest possible rates of the day, which are usually different to the rates used by overseas money transfer services like MoneyCorp. You can also use a broker if you already know one (people who deal with Forex). They usually work in travel agencies. If you don´t have one, just check the rates Santander is using on the day you plan on sending and check the rates with another reliable foreign exchange/money transfer service.

  18. i need to transfer some money to my friend in brasil . he given me his bank agency as bradesco 0699-8 . what all the other details i need from him . he has given me his name… agency name and address … and i will be transferring 5000 R$ … please guide me i will be greatful

    • You generally need, swift (the other end has to get it for you at their bank or use the generic listed in this post), IBAN (Brazil claims it uses it, but most bank employees don´t even know what it is. Ask your friend to ask the manager), bank code (the bank will also provide that), agency, account number, full name and address of recipient. Bank code, agency and account number are not necessary if the bank recognizes the swift and iban.
      I tried to send money to Israel the other day via Itaú and the transfer was stuck because I was supposed to send the iban. They never told me, they just waited until I got in touch to ask what the heck was happening. If the money is coming into Brazil, it´s best to tell the manager so he can call or clear it when the wire arrives. You have to involve people in Brazil, because nothing is automatic.

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    content from you later on as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my own, personal website now😉

  20. Howdy this is somewhat of off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you
    have to manually code with HTML. I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding know-how so I wanted to get advice
    from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly

    • Thanks for the (off) topic:) I use the wordpress interface within wordpress. I don´t use manual code and did not download wordpress to my computer. It´s all online. Hope that helps. If you want to customize, I suppose you have to know some code, but I’m happy with the things this theme offers.

    • How did he send it? Do you have an account at this bank? You have to ask the bank how to pick it up. Go to an agency with the transfer number and a document.

  21. Hi,
    I am an Australian and my girlfriend is Brazilian, we both live in Sydney together. She needs to transfer 300,000 (brazilian currency) to Australia as she now resides here. Do you know what the rate of tax is the Brazilian government will charge for such a transfer? Also what is the method of transfer that attracts the lowest tax rate.


    • Sorry for the delay. I am no expert, but she will have to declare that value in her income tax. That done, she should contact a money transfer company such as moneycorp or similar, or find a broker. The bank will charge rates. Its very difficult to give advice on these issues because in Brazil we use methods are very unorthodox, but I would find a broker to find the cheapest way to send the money.

  22. Dear Cipriana,
    Question: in the IBAN, there is a 5 digit field for “Agencia”.
    My “Agencia” number is of the form xxxx-y where I think xxxx is the main number and y is the “dígito verificador” (check digit). The guidance from Banco Central do Brasil in Circular 3.625 concerning composition of IBAN states:
    For the “Agencia: “5 caracteres numéricos correspondentes à identificação da agência bancária (sem dígito verificador)”
    Whereas for the “Conta” it is “10 caracteres numéricos correspondentes ao número de conta do cliente (com dígito verificador)”
    My Bank has given an IBAN with the “Agencia” part as 0xxxx WITHOUT the check digit. But when I try to use that IBAN, my bank (outside brazil) says the IBAN is invalid for transfer to Brasil ! Whereas when I try to modify the IBAN to include Agencia number xxxxy it says valid !
    So any help to explain would be great !\

    • Unfortunately, in Brazil they are always making up laws and then no one is trained or notified about these laws. The amount of people complaining that their bank does not even give them the IBAN, probably because they don´t know it, is amazing. We just aren´t ready for these things. Some banks, like Banco Rendimento, offer an online service that generates the IBAN for you. But most all-Brazilian banks don´t even bother.
      That said, I did some research and according to people who have managed to send, you have to add a 0 before the agency number to complete those 5 digits. So, if your agency number is 1505, for example, you should type 01505. I hope that works. Either way, as long as you don´t add any other number (only zero), it should get there.
      Good luck
      (main source:

      • Hi,

        I need to send money to Brazil too and here is the information I have. Please kindly help.
        Agencia 0919
        Operacao 013
        Conta 2xxxx-x

        If I arrange this together, does it make an IBAN?
        I ask for Swift code but received does not understand it.
        Please kindly help..

        • NOTICE: I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL, SO ALL QUESTIONS REQUIRE EXTENSIVE RESEARCH. IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION YOU WANT ANSWERED, DONATE FIRST (Paypal button…sidebar). I will no longer answer queries without prior donation. A cup of coffee will do:)

  23. I have the account no, bank code and agent no. How do I turn this into a swift no? My internet banking says I need 6 nos for a sort code, which oi do not have? Any help gratefully received x

  24. hi, I’m back, I have another question, if this person is scamming me, as I think it is, What i have to do once i get to rio de janeiro? Works the police or some other agency to report this? please if you can explain and help. Thank you.

    • Go to the police with the person’s info and all the emails, and the receipts and register a bo (boletim de ocorrencia). Also, contact the recipient bank and try to find out what happened. That email address of the bank looked a little strange. You should ask if they have anyone with that email address.

      • but the police can do something? can solve the problem? we are going to be 11 days, at that time may do something?

        the sad thing about all this is a holiday in the police solving this.

        • I don’t think they can do anything. You have to prove the money was collected first and then go to the tribunal de pequenas causas for legal help, or register the bo for theft. I would warn the person first to see if they give up. Just try to track down the money.

          • ok, thanks cipriana, i know that not everyone in Brazil will be irresponsible as this person but first time this happens to me, we have traveled to several countries and never happened this. very sad that still are people like that.

  25. Hello, I would like you to help me, I made a transfer from bank of america to Brandesco in Brazil and the person tells me I still can not see the payment, have already been 2 semamas and says the same, the bank asked me the swift mt 103 but as far as I have understood it is the transfer recivo already gives you. this can last as for the see the money? that problem can be presentadose lest they see the money in your account?

    Thanks for your help and excuse my English.

    • Tell your friend to go to bradesco and find out what is missing. Brazilian banks do this all the time. They secure payments coming in because some document the Brazilian central bank needs is missing and they wait for the recipient to appear. The payment is probably there, in their computers waiting to be claimed. You’ll only solve it on the Brazilian side.

      • he told me that it is in contact with the bank but they say they still do not see any transfer to his name, I will send the bank transfer receipt and to my statement that the transfer observed, but the bank asked the MT103 swift and really not know that’s it. I send he the swift code and the number of transfer at my bank told me that this information should be enough for them to locate the transfer. There is something else that you would recommend? is normal in these situations banks brazil?

        • Well, money can’t simply disappear. Your friend has to get the swift of his or her bank, and then you could add that info or get the money back and try again. You can also ask your bank for its swift code to help your friend track it. Is this friend reliable? Sorry to ask, but friends of mine have sent money only to hear “what money?” on this side. Brazilian banks are fussier than other banks. They have their own rules. Get the swift and iban from your friend’s account, cancel the transfer, and send it again, or add the info so they can see if hereq.

          • well he is not a friend, is someone who I are renting an apartment in Rio as we vacation in August over there and they recommended it as responsible, so far I answer all emails and calls seeking a solution, I I contacted my bank to cancel the transfer but was told they no longer can because as the money was transferred and is for waiting to be claimed, but according Brandesco they see no transfer on behalf of the company, the bank said today we that are happening in the problem department full of international transfers but I already fear for my money. I’m afraid to say that this lost and quite.

            • Insist, don’t consider it lost. Keep insisting with this person and ask your bank for more details, then email the bank in brazil, to the cambio department. It can’t just disappear. They have to track it.

              • well I do not know him, I hope to be a serious and trustworthy person, he has been sending me copies of emails that goes to the bank, send email to this person who told me is change department (4902.jessica @ . br) for domain of the email account I guess it’s true that he is communicating with they and I get emails that the bank replied. I hope everything is true.

  26. Bom dia,
    I have a Brazilian friend who has to send me 3000 Reais to Spain (996 euros aprox.). He has an account in Banco do Brazil and it seems that the fee is almost 100 euros! I don’t understand the reason. He sent me this:
    Nome do acessório Valor em moeda nacional
    What does it mean? Is there a cheaper way? Correios is still expensive, around 76 euros…
    Thank you!!

    • Ask your friend what those expesas externas are. I think they have nothing to do with the bank. Have you considered western union? It works through banco do brasil. I suspect those “external expenses” are not exactly “necessary”.

  27. A very good article. I am selling my Brazilian house and the client is prepared to pay the R$ 700,000 direct into my UK account. Do you think there will be a problem? Is that best done bank-to-bank? Will I be taxed? Thanks for any replies…

    • I´m sorry I took so long to answer. Just moved to the country and the internet connect is really bad.
      Are you Brazilian? You will probably have to pay the tax (2%) when you do the paperwork. If I were you, I would use a money transfer service, like money corp, or a private broker. Other than that, I don´t think you will be taxed in Brazil, only in the country of origin. Not sure though. Sorry. Ask the buyer to ask all the questions at his bank before sending the money.

  28. What a great blog post – thanks for your efforts! I have recently moved to Brazil with work, and I’m trying to send US$200 to a friend abroad. What are the best options for this amount? I have an account with Bradesco but bank fees are high. Western Union seems to be the “best” at 10-15% fee. Paypal doesn’t seem to work for personal transfers abroad from Brazil. Options seem limited for any amount less than US$1000(!) Any insights or suggestions would be gratefully appreciated:)

  29. Hi Cipriana,
    I live in the U.S. and I’m in the process of purchasing a popsicle machine from a Brazilian manufacturer and the process has hit a huge snag. I’m hoping you can shed some insight on the situation. The machine is being purchased thru 2 swift wire transfers. The first went thru back in January without a problem. However, the second transfer made in early March is where the nightmare begins. Long story short, between the transfers, my wife had to change her middle name on the account from her actual middle name to her maiden name. So, according to the company in Brazil, Itau bank isn’t accepting the second transfer as being from the same person as the first, even though the account # and everything else remained the same. My bank has sent numerous documents thru email and swift stating the two names are the same person. The wire dept. for my bank received a message from Itau bank stating that the beneficiary has yet to provide documentation to claim the funds from their bank. However, the company keeps telling us that it’s the bank that is the bottleneck in the process. The person in charge of finances for the company has briefly corresponded with our bank officer and has stated that Itau has sent them numerous emails, which isn’t true according to our bank officer. From the 8 months of research I performed prior to this purchase, this company had an impeccable reputation as being the world leader in popsicle machine manufacturing. So, I felt comfortable making this transaction. However, I can’t help but feel they’re being dishonest with us based on what the wire transfer dept. is telling us. The company has suggested that they will return the first wire and that we have our bank recall the second wire, then send the whole amount in one transfer. We’ve agreed to this, but when we initiated the recall of the second transfer the wire dept. says the company will need to approve this recall, which they’ve yet to do. Now they keep telling us “give it 24 more hours and hopefully we will have it resolved.” As of today, we have been dealing with this issue for 4 weeks, with no end in sight. Any help is much appreciated!!

    • Thanks for your comment. Please keep in mind that everything in Brazil takes a long, long time, especially when it comes to banks and transfers. Products take 3 months to pass through customs, against 1-2 days in Argentina or even less in most other countries. Delays and bureaucracy are something we have to deal wit on a daily basis. That said, I would send an email to the company saying you are still interested in purchasing the machine and that you simply cannot understand why they are taking so long to clear the recall. Brazilians need a good nudge to react to things and will not usually quicken their pace when you are too nice and patient. Also, stick with the recall and avoid any other ideas because they will only delay everything further. Do you have anyone in Brazil that could go to the bank for you? The name problem seems genuine and would, in fact, cause the problem you mention, so I just think it´s a lack of effort of the company that is causing this new delay.

      • Hi Cipriana, Thanks for the reply and info! Unfortunately, there’s nobody that can go to the bank for us other than the company. We call and email the company multiple times every business day, so I feel we’ve been assertive at demanding a quick resolution. However, we probably haven’t been as insistent as we should on recalling the funds. So, tomorrow my plan is to insist that they immediately refund the wires and reassure them that I will resend the funds as a single wire soon as the funds are returned. Thanks again for you help and for your blog!!

  30. Hi
    My sister and I are in Brazil on a tourist visa and now we’re running outta cash, my sister’s husband sent us some $$$ via western union bank but there is no way to get the money!!!!
    We just came back from Caixa they don’t even know how it works or what is WUB

    Is there any way we can transfer some money from the US to São Paulo ?????
    Plz help we are left with no freaking money

    • You have to use the number issued when they sent the money via wu and go to banco do brasil, the only bank that uses wu. Take your docs and name of the sender.

  31. Hi Cipriana,

    My name is Mark. I’m from London UK but my partner is a brazilian citizen and he is with business in Brazil right now. We need to move money from Brazil to UK, the amount vary (from 10,000BRL to 20,000BRL or maybe higher). Can we do it by wire transfer? Can we transfer the money from his brazilian account to my british account in UK? What documents, paper or information does he need to provide to the brazilian bank when he is making the transfer?
    You said that if you transfer less then 10,000BRL at a time the money transfer will go much smoothly and the brazilian bank will not ask you to prove the relationship between the sender and receiver or extra documents like contracts and agreements and invoices? All you need for the transfer to take place is the name and address of the sender and the account details right? Also can he make the transfer online? Or he needs to go to the bank in person? If you can respond to my questions will be much appreciated!
    Thank you for your time!

    • Hi Mark. Yes, in my experience, up to 5000 USD runs smoothly but only if you say it´s for “manutenção no exterior” (sending money to someone you know that is living in the UK), otherwise you will be asked to show contracts, etc. Even when sending 5000 USD they might ask you for documents or an exchange agreement (you print it, sign and hand it in at your bank). Yes, you can do it online if you have an account in a Brazilian bank. When you finish the transaction, all the requirements are listed. They also provide an email address. It´s a good idea to write to that address, say you just completed a transfer and ask if they need anything to clear it. In my case, they asked for the IBAN although there was not field for that in the transfer form. Communicate with your bank and all goes quite well. I know there are other options for sending money, but I always prefer the less hassle method for over 2000 USD, which is a bank-to-bank wire transfer. Good luck.

  32. Have you ever thought about including a little bit more than just your articles?
    I mean, what you say is fundamental and everything.
    But think of if you added some great pictures or videos to give
    your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and clips, this site could definitely be one of the best in its field.
    Wonderful blog!

    • Thanks for the tip. Yes, I have thought about it but I don´t like putting third party stuff because of copyright and all that. If I put images and clips, they would have to be mine and I hardly leave my office😦 I know it would make a huge difference, but that is basically why I haven´t done that, yet. I´ll make an effort.

  33. Hi,

    What all information and documents required for making a wire transfer to other country from Brazil ? What all we details are required of the money receiver.

    • All the info is in the post. It all depends on how much you are sending, but you need IBAN/SWIFT (depending on the country), receivers name and address, bank details and that´s about it. The money receiver has to get the receipt number or money order number.

  34. I am an american with a residence visa to Brazil, I am not married to a Brazilian and I don’t speak much Portuguese. I have a Brazilian bank account at Citibank. I want to transfer a large amount from the USA to Brazil to purchase real estate. I am told that I will be charged some sort of tax, apart from all the wire transfer fees, something ridiculous like 4 percent ! Is this true ? Is there anyway to avoid this ? I am going to transfer $300.000 USD, over $R700.000

    • Prezado David, a informação que vc obteve não é correta. Você pode ser investidor estrangeiro no Brasil de 02 formas, constituir uma empresa e trazer o capital e integralizando-o no Banco Central do Brasil e sendo investidor direto exatamente como você descreve. Se vc tem visto de residencia, tem conta aberta do Citibank, basta trazer a grana como transferencia de Patrimônio transitando sua conta nos EUA diretametne para o Brasil. Você precisa mostrar a Origem deste dinheiro, ou seja, sua declaração de Imposto de Renda dos EUA e extrato de Investimento do seu Banco. Com estes comprovantes vc já pode fechar a Operação de câmbio. Os Bancos no Brasil, colocam empecílios para fechar determinadas operações, (papeladas).

      • Can you reply in English ? I am not an investor. The money would be used for a real estate purchase, a home in which I will live, not something I expect to produce income.

        What is “02 formas” ?

        What documents will suffice to prove that I paid tax on the money ? If I show US federal tax returns with after tax income totaling more than the amount I am transferring, will this suffice ?

        • The longer comment was not written by me. The replier always comments in Portuguese. Let´s see if he replies in English for you. If I were you, I would ask all these questions to the Citibank manager. They have always helped me. Proof of tax is your income statement, and yes, it should suffice as most banks do not ask for translated documents. They only need to have all the documents available in case the Central Bank asks for them. 02 formas is two ways, he is listing two ways in which you can transfer money into Brazil, through a company and and integrated capital. Regardless, I insist you ask your Brazilian bank manager because purchasing property in Brazil is very common. If you have a permanent visa and a CPF you will not need much to transfer for purchasing your own home.

          • I have a residence visa now, and I will open the citibank account soon. I have a CPF.

            But I will not have a residence visa when I plan to transfer the money and purchase the property. I am here on a diplomatic visa. I will depart Brazil at the end of this year.

            I am assuming that my CPF will not go away after I leave Brazil, that it will always be reserved for me. I am told by Citibank that I will be able to keep my bank account after I depart Brazil. Will I run into problems if I try to transfer the money (let’s say in 2017) and I don’t have a residence visa at that time ?

            • You have a resident visa but will not have one when you transfer? I didn´t understand.
              I checked and rechecked lots of real estate websites that give advice on purchasing real estate from outside of Brazil and they all state that as long as you have the property deed or “contrato de compra e venda” and a valid passport and CPF (which is always the same number and will not expire), you can and should transfer directly from your account overseas to the sellers account in Brazil. There are, of course, other ways to do this, such as taking out the money and paying in cash, which seems more complicated. Have you considered getting legal help? There are lawyers who specialize in the entire process and can help with the purchase documents, too. You do not need to have a permanent visa to buy property but buying does not give you the automatic right to reside in Brazil. You will have to deal with that when the time comes. Most people complain because they don´t get the right help and that is soooo necessary in Brazil because of the red tape and bad or lack of information. The problem is that there is a lot of tax evasion and property deeds have prices that are far lower than the selling price, so people prefer to transfer, withdraw and then pay for property. If that is not an issue, a direct transfer with the right documents to prove the purchase should be enough, and get a lawyer that specializes in this sort of transaction. It´s worth it.

            • David which means 02 ways: you can be a foreign investor ( you already said that it will not be ) and the other is to bring the capital to a particular purpose , which in your case is to purchase a home . In Brazil you can close a foreign exchange transaction , you need to have an account in a bank in Brazil to settle the trading of currencies and deposit Reals ( Brazilian currency ) account you already said you have an account with Citibank . I wonder how is the situation in Brazil this account because you are not a resident and the Bank may place obstacles to close this shipment rates and you may need to take back to the U.S. this shipment . A quick and easy way is to elect someone with possessions to be able to represent you in Brazil , usually an attorney , who can receive the rates for you and also help you with the payment of the purchase of the house . The transfer mode of equity from one country to another is simple to make , because it is from you to yourself! I’d rather you talk to your manager at Citibank pair whether he can receive this order for you. I forgot to tell you that the tax of 4 % you said in the first post is not true , for this exchange transaction is charged only 0.38 % of the IOF operation rates . I used the google translator to send you this text in English. My English is still very basic .

              • Fernando, sempre apago qualquer dado de contato ou convite para contato nos comentários. Já tive más experiências e optei por não permitir dados de empresas/pessoais e qualquer tipo de marketing no blog. Espero que entenda e continue oferecendo seus conselhos.

              • I’m aware of the 0.38% fee, but I’m pretty certain the 4% tax is real. I know at least one US citizen individual who transferred the money from the US and wound up paying it. Like I said before, there aren’t many US citizens posting on this blog and I think this tax is specific to the USA because there is no tax treaty between the US and Brazil.

                • The 0.38% is tax, transferred to the government, not a fee. Banks might charge a transaction fee for transferring the funds. That´s why it is so important to contact your bank manager also.

            • David, why do not you come to Brazil, buy property, open registration because the seller has no cost, and the return to the U.S., u sends the rates directly to him and closes the transaction with the agreement of purchase and sale that you have signed (the contract of purchase and sale)! Simple, easy and fast!.

    • Who gave you this information? What is the tax called? There is only IOF as far as I know, which is no where near 4%. You should contact your citibank manager, or the citibank cambio department. They are usually very helpful and will help the transfer run smoothly. Keep us posted.

      • I’ve already spoken to 3-4 americans who complained about this. One is a business owner, who was advised by his lawyers to route the money through the Cayman Islands and document that it was a loan from his personal account in the US to his business in Rio. Another was an individual looking to buy property who wound up taking a hundred thousand dollars out of ATMs over a six month period.

        So far, I’ve only heard rumors and no one has been able to give me solid information.

        My contact at the US Consulate tells me that there is no tax-treaty between the US and Brazil. It could be that US dollar transfers from the USA into Brazil are penalized because of this. The posters on this blog are mostly from countries other than the USA. I am not seeing any Americans posting here who talk about transferring large amounts of money, only amounts under $10,000USD. So this tax might exist

        It could exist and it might be avoided by routing the money through another country. I am able to route through my bank accounts in Thailand, so that might be a possibility.

  35. Boa tarde, pessoal.

    Alguém saberia me dizer se, para eu solicitar uma remessa do exterior via Caixa Econômica Federal, é obrigatório enviar o dinheiro para algum banco correspondente no exterior (que consta no site deles) ou posso solicitar o envio diretamente à Caixa aqui no Brasil?

    No caso, seria o envio de dólares americanos, referente a operações no mercado de capitais lá fora. A corretora em questão não faz depósito em conta de terceiros, logo, não haveria como utilizar o banco correspondente da Caixa.

    Alguém já fez esse envio de dinheiro diretamente para Caixa, sem terceiros? É tranquilo?

    Muito obrigado!

    • De acordo com minha experiência, pode ser diretamente. Tem que ter todos os dados da conta para remessas. O que não entendi é a parte de “solicitar o envio”. Vá até sua agência e pergunte ao gerente quais dados precisa para receber uma remessa diretamente em sua conta. Não recebem remessas em nome de terceiros então tem que ser sua conta mesmo.

    • Samuel, os Bancos Brasileiros podem enviar remessas ao Exterior SIM,, para qualquer Banco, basta que informar os dados do Banco destinatário, a Caixa Ecômica é um pouco burocrática mas é um Banco e tem este serviço SIM, basta procurar o seu gerente e falar que vc quer enviar uma remessa ao exterior. Importante , é necessário saber ” a que ” se destina esta Ordem e ter os documentos respaldam esta Operação. Se o destino for comprar Ações e Papéis de Empresas Americanas, vc poderá comprar qui mesmo no Brasil, na Bovespa, as ADR’s, agora se for operar outros mercados, importante ter conta no Banco do País que vc deseja investir. Após envio dos Dólares, fechar a Operação com o seu gerente no outro País. Ao enviar câmbio para terceiros, nem sempre é possível, mas sempre vc precisará demostrar a Origem e a que se destina, é possível. Estou a disposição caso precise.

    • Samuel eu sou um correspondente Caixa Economica e minha empresa tambem presta serviços de assessoria em cambio, que é a principal atividade. Você pode fechar uma remessa de câmbio na CEF diretamente com seu gerente mas o grande problema é que a CEF é bastante exigente com a documentação para respaldar a operação. Ela faz, sim.. ela faz ! Você tem outras alternativas para envio da remessa, basta abrir cadastro em Bancos de câmbio ou corretoras especializadas em câmbio. Com o cadastro pronto, vc prepara a documentação para justificar origem e destino e envia a remessa. Compra os Papéis que desejar no Pais que vc pretende investir. Sobre depositar em contas de terceiros, nunca fala isso ! Se for comprar papéis, veja quem é o custodiante , normalmente é um Banco e faça a remessa de câmbio para o próprio. Fale com o gestor responsável pela operação dos Investimentos que vc quer adquirir lá fora. Estou a disposição, caso precise..

  36. Does anybody have any experience using Western Union Online FX (for values higher than U$3k)? I’m having some trouble understanding the recipient’s bark details form.


      I used these to transfer about 70keur from Ireland to Caixia, absolutely no problem. I aslo setup internet banking with Caixia. My misses is Brazilian so its all in her name, I know what your thinking but we have 2 kids and if the banks go bust in Europe I’d prefer to be screwed over by the mother of my kids who will use the money for their benefit rather than some banker….

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