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Old 26.09.2007, 15:38
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Re: To the Americans: Wamu Bank is an ex-pats best friend

No, you can not do an online wireless transfer for free. Someone in the US has to be on your account and they have to do it in person. And I believe Wamu charges a $10 incoming fee although I have no idea because all my money comes this way.

Schwab sounds good though, I might wanna look into as I have a fare amount of money sitting in savings that could be making me money at 4.25 %.

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Can someone tell me if the free outgoing wire transfers from the USA can be done online with WAMU? I was recently in the market for a new US checking account so I called them and was told that ex-USA wire transfers can only be done through a branch teller.

After hearing this, I instead opened a free Investor Checking account at Schwab. No minimums, no fees, 4.25% interest earned on any balance, all ATM fees are refunded (even foreign), free checks, free online bill pay, no fee overdraft protection, free check card, FDIC insured, free ACH transfers to other US bank accounts, and plus it's great if you already have an IRA or use their investment products. Everything in one easy account.

You can do ex-USA transfers online, but the fee is $25. I mostly transfer money to the USA and incoming wire transfers (domestic or forgeign) are not charged a fee. This already is saving me $200/year compared to my old bank's charge of $10 for incoming wires.

I did the entire application online using my parent's US address and everything arrived within a week. Their customer service has been fantastic. I was assigned a personal concierge with his direct number if I every have questions and they accept collect calls from abroad.

I've read other reviews about the Schwab checking account and they treat their bank customers *really* well and don't charge all these ridiculous fees in order to keep you hopefully using their brokerage products. A great choice even if you only use them for a checking/savings account.
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