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Moving Back To Ireland From Australia? Watch Out For These Hidden Costs

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World events like COVID-19 can mean personal circumstances change suddenly and the plans
of many of those working overseas are impacted.

Now some Irish expats in Australia are planning to return home earlier than expected and preparing to move home to Ireland.

And depending on how long you have lived in Australia it can be an extremely daunting task. Some people have cars, own houses and need their pets shipped. 

This is exactly why I set up my Facebook group for Irish expats returning to Ireland a few years ago.

It is a support group where you can discuss with other people who are either making the move home or already settled back in Ireland. Join the Facebook group here.

But what are these hidden costs you were talking about Stephen?

For anyone sending money home to Ireland from Australia, there are costs and fees with a
money transfer of Australian Dollars to Euro that you might not be aware of.

Here are some tips on how to avoid them and unexpected costs you might overlook:

1) Shop around:  

I know the last thing you want to be doing is comparing currency transfer fees and rates. Honestly, it is as boring as it sounds. But at the end of the day, it will likely mean an extra €100 – €1000 in your bank account. 

Yes, I did say €1000! You would be amazed at just how much money banks for example take on their “free transfers”. 

For example, I use Revolut all the time it is fantastic. Even for transferring money, it is pretty much instant. But you might not be aware that exchanging in your Revolut card at weekends they apply a markup of 0.5% or 1% (depending on the currency pair).

Or some providers such as Transferwise have fees that increase the more you send. 

CurrencyFair has a flat-rate fee of €3 on transfers of all sizes. Plus we have an exclusive ten free transfers if you register with this link.

Another option is OFX where you get a dedicated broker and free transfers for life with my link here

2) Keep an eye out on the exchange rate

Falling asleep yet? Yes, I am telling you not only to compare exchange rates with different companies but also keeping an eye on what the currency pairs are doing. 

checking the exchange rates before moving from Australia to Ireland

Most of the above sites have calculators to compare exchange rates and fees. Exchange rates rise and fall throughout a trading day.

But even a week of just reading a few articles and comparing the rates on XE/Google can also make a huge difference to what you get in your bank account back in Ireland.

Let’s face it we are not doing this for fun, comparing and reading about currencies puts most of us asleep.

But would you rather see €5000 or €4750 in your bank account because you spent a little bit of time comparing the rates? 

This is entirely optional but it really does pay to send money at the right time. Especially now with all the COVID things happening currency fluctuations are more common. 

One of the reasons I like Currencyfair is they have a marketplace that allows customers to exchange with other customers at even better rates.

You can set a rate that is better than what you are seeing on at that time – why not trade at a really unique rate with someone who needs the AUD you are selling? 

At any time you can cancel being in this marketplace and just exchange right away.

Get ten free transfers with Currencyfair here. They are also an Irish company 🙂 

Other options?

sending money from Australia to Ireland other things to avoid

Again you can spend time doing your research on rates and ultimately get more money in your bank account when you move from Australia to Ireland. 

If you don’t have time for all that OFX can offer the help of a broker who lives and breathes currency exchange rates haha. They also specialize on larger transfers so great if you have a large sum to transfer. Sign up with our dedicated broker here.

But hey, I encourage to do your own research and check out online reviews, Facebook feedback and of course ask on my Facebook group. You quickly find out that there is a hell of a lot of money transfer companies. 

The ones I recommend in this article I have done so and used myself since 2013! Yikes, I feel old. 

But honestly, for anyone sending money home to Ireland from Australia, there are costs and fees I just encourage you to find the best rate and company for you. 

So enough about money transfers! Here are some tips for moving back to Ireland from Australia: 

moving back to Ireland views

  • Moving from Australia to Ireland is not as straight forward as it used to be because of COVID-19. But these previous articles shared by Irish expats who returned to Ireland are have been a great help:  

19 Thoughts For Irish Expats Returning To Ireland

What To Do When You Are Leaving Australia Forever

Cheapest Way To Send A Bag From Australia To Ireland (2 – 3 days)

What To Do When You Are Returning To Ireland – Tools, Cars And Costs

Claiming Your Super Back When Leaving Australia

  • Setting a departure date and planning back from your remaining time in Australia will be
  • Also due to COVID-19 restrictions, track the latest updates on the HSE website. Find out what quarantine obligations are in that place with which you must comply with when you arrive.
  • If you are transporting household items and furniture, do you need to send these earlier to have them arrive in time?
  • Are there new requirements for people travelling with pets from Australia.

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this article and thank you for stopping by. I hope to see you on my Facebook group soon and if you are moving back to Ireland from Australia soon I wish you a safe journey back! 


Stephen Palmer

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