Commonwealth Bank has announced it will absorb correspondent bank fees on all offered currencies for foreign exchange (FX) transfers in a move that is set to save customers millions of dollars every year. With international borders opening and more Australians sending money home for the holidays, it’s an ideal time for International Money Transfers (IMTs) to become simpler and cheaper.

Correspondent banks help move money between countries, however, they can deduct fees from an IMT. In some cases, they deduct a percentage of the amount, often leaving customers surprised as to the amount that has been deducted from their payment transfer.

CBA is now absorbing these correspondent bank fees for IMTs on behalf of our customers, meaning no more surprises from correspondent banks. This change will save our customers money and take the complexity out of FX transfers by providing greater pricing transparency and certainty in the end transfer amount.

CBA Executive General Manager, Payments, Ethan Teas, said: “Our customers have told us it’s hard to predict the cost of IMTs, especially when correspondent banks around the world deduct fees from a customer’s transfer amount. Last year, we started absorbing these fees from our top four currencies – USD, EUR, GBP and NZD. We received such positive feedback from our customers that we decided to extend it to all of our offered currencies to more than 200 countries.”

“We understand it’s been a particularly challenging period for many and IMTs shouldn’t be a point of stress or confusion. We’re continually reviewing our FX costs and working to improve our IMT digital experience for customers. Today’s announcement follows a number of IMT and FX changes from CBA, all designed to simplify the process for our customers, increase transparency and lower fees for anyone wanting to transfer money overseas.”

In addition to absorbing correspondent banking fees, CBA’s FX and IMT updates include:

  • New Zealand: CBA will reduce IMT fees on AUD to NZD transfers from $6 to $1 when using NetBank or the CommBank app until 21 January 2022.
  • South Pacific: CBA has waived transfer fees for IMTs for five South Pacific currencies* to support migrant workers and Australians who wish to send funds back to their friends and family. In 2020, CBA reduced FX rates for Pacific communities and they are amongst the lowest rates CBA offers.
  • India: To support the Indian community during the pandemic, CBA waived transfer fees for three months from June – August 2021, for any customers sending IMTs in Indian Rupee (INR).

“We know IMTs play an incredibly important role for communities. Money sent to friends and family contributes a significant amount of household income and helps enhance overall economic conditions for many around the world. We want to make it easier and more affordable to send money around the world to better support our customers,” said Mr Teas.

CBA’s intuitive FX platform gives customers fast and 24/7 access to overseas transactions from NetBank or the CommBank app, so they can send money around the world in moments. It’s also secure, with powerful digital security to provide the assurance that our customer’s money is safe, even when it’s travelling across the globe.

CBA will initially absorb correspondent banks fees for all IMTs made in NetBank, the CommBank app and in-branch, with CommBiz to follow in 2022. For more information visit:


*The IMT fee waiver applies to transfers from an Australian account in the following Pacific currencies:

  • Fijian Dollar (FJD)
  • Papua New Guinean Kina (PGK)
  • Solomon Islands Dollar (SBD)
  • Vanuatu Vatu (VUV)
  • CFP Franc (XPF)