A guide to multi-currency accounts in CIBC


A Guide to Foreign Currency Accounts At CIBC

Whatever the reason is that made you search for a foreign currency account — whether it’s transfering money to your family, studying abroad or business activities — this guide will help you understand foreign currency accounts with CIBC and a possible alternative.

CIBC foreign currency account basics

The only foreign currency accounts for consumers offered by CIBC according to what we could find on their website, are US dollar accounts.
This isn’t where the story ends though, keep on reading. You definitely have more options. We’ll also be covering a possible alternative.

CIBC Dollar Aventura® Gold Visa Card

When it comes to cards, you can get a CIBC U.S. Dollar Aventura® Gold Visa Card. It has a $35 US dollar yearly fee and a requirement for a minimum income of $15,000 per household to be eligible. The interest rates for the card are 9.99% for purchases and 22.99% for cash.

CIBC US dollar personal account (USD)

The CIBC US dollar account is a savings account that is offered without a monthly fee. Since it’s a savings account you will earn 0.25% interest regardless of your account balance. There’s a charge of US$0.75 for cheques, withdrawals (including ATM), transfers, pre-authorized payments, bill payments and debit purchases.

CIBC Bank USA Smart Account™ is for frequent travellers, that offers access to ATMs in the US and you can move your money in a convenient way between your Canadian and United States accounts. There is a monthly fee of $4.95, which lets you to make up to 12 debit transactions. After the 12 free debits, they cost $1.25 per transaction until you make 20 and further from that it is again free. The monthly fee is waived, if for the whole month you maintain a balance of at least $3000. Also, if your debit transactions fee is capped at $14.95, anything after is free.

Exchanging the currency back from or to USD of course means paying for your chosen currency at the selling rate that CIBC gives you. Since generally currency exchanges and banks set the rate at which they sell you the currency, it may help to shop around to get the best rate. There’s also a different rate — the mid-market rate — which sits between the selling and buying rates. It’s the one you see on Google for example. This is the rate, at which the banks trade among themselves. You could use a modern financial service, that offers the mid-market rate on all conversions — Wise. But more on that later.

A versatile multi-currency account from a different provider, like Wise

If all of the above doesn’t quite fit your needs or you’re looking at different options, then you may want to check out the Wise multi-currency borderless account. With no monthly and opening fees, it’s easy to fund it straight from your Canadian dollar account. You’ll have access to 40+ currencies to store and convert your money into.
Take a look at the borderless account overview:

  • There are no monthly fees or account balance minimums
  • Both business and personal accounts are available
  • You can transfer money to over 50 countries
  • The exchange rate used for all the transfers is the mid-market rate
  • You’ll get local currency bank details in the United Kingdom, Eurozone, US and Australia regions — this means people can pay you like a local in those areas.
  • A debit card for Canadian residents is coming in 2019

Available foreign currency balances

If you’re looking for a multi-currency account, that serves you well as a global citizen, then you’ll be especially appreciative of the wide range of currencies that payments can be made to and from. Here’s a few of the major ones:

CIBC foreign currency account fees

Here’s an overview of the fees, that CIBC lists on their website for their foreign currency accounts:

Account Monthly fee Transaction charges Physical statements
CIBC US$ Personal Account none $0.75 for following: US Cheques, Withdrawals (including ATM), Transfers, Pre-authorized payments, Bill payments, Debit purchases Monthly statement – $2.25 U.S./monthQuarterly statement – $0.75 U.S./monthInterim statement – $5.00 U.S. each.
CIBC Bank USA Smart Account™ $4.95, monthly fee waived if a $3000 balance is maintained throughout the month 12 debit transactions included in $4.95 monthly fee, starting from 13th transaction the fee is $1.25 with the maximum fee $14.95, no matter how many debits are made. CIBC ATM withdrawals in US and Canada, online bill payments free Paper statement ( monthly) - $2.25

You’ll definitely want to always consider the rate as well, to understand the total cost that you will end up carrying. Comparing rates is a great way to see, where you can get the best deal.

CIBC multi currency account for business

Alongside the US dollar account CIBC also has other foreign currency accounts for businesses. The rest of the currencies we couldn’t find specified on CIBCs site, so you’d need to contact them, to find out which ones.
Saving money on currency conversion and easing the transfer process is always a priority, so these accounts are in demand.
Some of the typical US dollar business current account charges are the monthly account fee of $6.00 and for each transaction you’ll pay $1.00 to $1.25.
Here’s what the US dollar current account offers:

  • Cheques and withdrawals
  • Over-the-counter deposits at any CIBC location accepting business deposits
  • Access to CIBC ATMs, CIBC Telephone Banking, Online Banking or a CIBC Banking Centre for U.S. dollar balance and account activity inquiries
  • Ability to transfer between CIBC accounts in person at your CIBC Banking Centre
  • eStatements available at no additional charge through online channels

You also may be interested in the Wise business account. The attractive mid-market rate is applied to all conversions. With no opening or account maintenance fees, this account is definitely worth a look.
Some of the Wise business account features are:

  • Local bank details for the Eurozone, US, Australia, and UK to get paid like a local — from Amazon for example
  • Send money to 50+ countries, hold money in 40+ currencies.
  • Integration with the popular Xero accounting software
  • Bulk payments
  • Monthly statements for all balances you hold
  • Automated payments through the Wise API

How much does CIBC charge my account to receive foreign currency?

When you receive money in a currency other than Canadian dollars into a CIBC account, then the bank may accept it and convert it to the accounts currency at its own discretion, when it comes to business accounts. There also may be fees for receiving the transfer for both personal and business customers.

Can I deposit or send another currency to my CIBC account?

Yes, you can send currencies other than Canadian dollars to your CIBC bank account, although fees may apply for receiving — as explained above.
The fees also depend on where you are sending your money from and which transfer method you are using. The best thing to do is to ask for information on fees and any restrictions from the sending service and the receiving one, as these will vary.

CIBC foreign currency order

With CIBC it’s also possible to order foreign cash and pay for it with your Canadian dollar CIBC account. This may be an alternative to a foreign currency account, if you don’t need one frequently. The simplest way to use this service is to sign into the CIBC Online Banking service where 65 currencies can be ordered over the internet.
With this service, there are three main ways to get your foreign currency in cash.

Foreign cash collection option Fee Maximum order Available in
From a CIBC Banking Centre None None Up to 3 days
Sent to Your Home Address None C$2,500 Up to 3 days
Collected from Toronto Airport None None Up to 3 days

To conclude, CIBC has options for account holders who wish to have access to USD personal accounts for online purchases and travel. Some people will find that gaining access to a service like the borderless balances from Wise is more suitable to their needs. Regardless, of the choice you make, all the best with your overseas travel and purchases.

All sources checked on 22. November 2018

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