Payments Report 2024

Transfers abroad are perceived as safe but expensive

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More common for foreign-born persons to send money abroad

Published: 14 March 2024

According to the Riksbank’s surveys, foreign-born persons in vulnerable areas are much more likely to send money abroad than the population as a whole. Just over 60 per cent have made a transfer to another private persons abroad at some point during the year, which is almost four times more than the national average in the Riksbank’s survey on payment habits. Foreign-born individuals in vulnerable areas are most likely to send money to other private persons in Europe, followed by Asia and Africa. The most common amounts sent are between SEK 500 and 2,000.

Transfers abroad are perceived as safe and easy, but expensive

Most people feel it is easy and safe to send money abroad, as shown in Figure 8. Many also feel that the money reaches the payee quickly and that the information about the cost and when the payment reaches the payee is clear. On the other hand, more than 75 per cent think that sending money abroad is expensive.

Figure 8. Sending money abroad is perceived as safe, fast and easy but expensive

Percentage of respondents who think the following statements are fairly or very true, 2023.

Figure: Figure 8. Sending money abroad is perceived as safe, fast and easy but expensive

Download the data from the diagram by clicking on the arrow to the right, above the diagram.

Source: The Riksbank.

There are several reasons why cross-border payments are more expensive than domestic payments. For example, the payment process usually includes more steps, such as currency exchange, and involves more actors than domestic payments. However, there is extensive international work under way to improve cross-border payments, which you can read more about in Section Are payments in Sweden efficient?. The Riksbank is also working on developing its payment system RIX to enable smoother payments within Europe. It is also possible that an e-krona, if introduced, could facilitate payments between different currencies. You can read more about the Riksbank’s work in Chapter The Riksbank´s work and policy.