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Top 3 Money Transfer Providers for UK to China

Provider Amount To Send Fee Exchange Rate Speed
TorFX TorFX GBP £10,000.00 No Fee 9.3148 1-3 days more...
Currencies Direct Currencies Direct GBP £10,000.00 No Fee 9.3148 1-3 days more...
Corpay^ Corpay^ GBP £10,000.00 No Fee 9.2773 1-3 days more...
FXcompared Country Guides
There are no exchange controls in the UK for the pound sterling (GBP), and transferring money to the UK and sending money from the UK is very easy Read More
In many cases, local foreign currency controls make it difficult to send money to China or to send money from China Read More

Send money from UK to China

Top 6 Money Transfer Providers

Latest prices for transferring money from UK to China
Exchange Rates as of 25 July 2024, 03:17


Est. 2004

Excellent exchange rates | No transfer fees | Thousands of 5 star reviews 

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FXcompared Rating
Amount Received
CNY ¥93,147.76
GBP £253.32
saved vs. banks

Currencies Direct

Est. 1996

Great exchange rates | Specialist services | No added fees, 24/7 transfers | Safe and secure

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Amount Received
CNY ¥93,147.76
GBP £253.32
saved vs. banks


Est. 2005

Great rates | One-off payments | Regular transfers | E-Money Institution | No fees for FXcompared customers

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FXcompared Rating
Amount Received
CNY ¥92,773.29
GBP £213.32
saved vs. banks

Smart Currency Exchange

Est. 2004
Smart is focused on helping clients to effectively and efficiently send and receive payments internationally
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Amount Received
CNY ¥92,679.68
GBP £203.32
saved vs. banks

Rates From The Average UK High Street Bank

Est. 1934

Banks are the most expensive way to do an international money transfer, the quotes from the providers above show you the typical savings that can be made. All providers on are regulated in the UK  by the FCA, in the USA by FinCEN, In Canada SSC and Australia, ASIC.

We check all rates regularly and this quote is an actual quote of the average from UK banks for this past month. It includes all major and some smaller banks. Bank of Scotland, Barclays, Co-operative Bank, HSBC UK, Halifax, Lloyds Bank, Monzo, NatWest, Nationwide, Santander GB, Starling Bank- tracked every month. For more information on how the price comparisons are calculated, see our IMTI page.

More InfoLess Info
Amount Received
CNY ¥90,534.04
No saving vs. banks


Est. 1979

One-off payments | Regular payments | Great rates | Safeguarded customer funds

More InfoLess Info
Amount Received
CNY ¥91,556.29
GBP £83.32
saved vs. banks

How to Transfer Money from UK to China

UK to China Guide


Relations between China and the UK are currently cooperative, friendly, and close. The two countries have a long history of bilateral agreements. The UK was the first country to recognize the new Republic of China, in 1954. Foreign currency controls make it relatively challenging to transfer money from UK to China, especially for business purposes. Individuals can exchange up to a maximum of US$50,000 of Chinese currency each year.


Citizens of the UK need a visa to travel to mainland China, but do not need a visa to travel to Hong Kong and Macao. For the remaining areas, a visa must be obtained from the Chinese Consulate General closest to you. You should ensure that you do not overstay your time or work illegally while in China. There is heavy monitoring and increased fines for visa violations.

Although a visa for China can be processed within one week it can take longer with the requirement of extra documentation or an interview. It is therefore recommended that UK expats allow at least a month for a Chinese visa application.

Chinese visas are divided into a several categories; courtesy visas, public service visas, diplomatic visas, and ordinary visas. There are multiple types of ordinary visas.

  • The C visa is issued to crew members of international transports.
  • The D visa is intended for those who want to live in China permanently.
  • The F visa is issued to anyone travelling to China for the purposes of exchanges, tours or such related activities.
  • The G visa is a transit visa.
  • The J1 and J2 visas are issued to members of foreign news teams.
  • Anyone travelling to China for vacations or sightseeing is issued an L visa.
  • M visas are issued to anyone travelling to China for commercial purposes.
  • Q visas are issued to family members who are living permanently in China.
  • S visas are for family members of anyone working or living temporarily in China.
  • If you will be studying in China you will require an X visa.
  • A Z visa is required to work legally in China.

Money transfer regulations in China

It is important to note that there are several restrictions that apply to capital account transfers and foreign direct investments. These vary based on the types of investors and investments. New rules have been implemented since April 2014 that should loosen some of the controls placed on local and foreign firms who want to conduct overseas money transfers across China’s borders. Firms which hold a minimum of US$100 million will be able to transfer large amounts of currency more freely.

The majority of trade with China is settled in US dollars as well as euros, although more recent swap deals allow UK firms to negotiate using the local RMB. This move has been favorable for some merchants who are able to negotiate discounts. It also makes the process relatively faster. Anyone wanting to import to China must apply to the SAFE for foreign currency at the time of an export transaction.

Banking in China

Banking in China is fairly straightforward and expats generally have some international options to choose from. The language barrier may prove an issue in some instances but there are many institutions that offer service options in English. It may be to your benefit to employ the services of a translator or seek the help of a Chinese friend.

Whether you opt for a local or foreign based bank will depend on your individual preferences. Consider that there are pros and cons with each option. Although an international bank such as HSBC or Citibank may be preferable especially if you already have an account with them; they usually require a large minimum balance and access to ATMs may be limited. Local options such as the Construction Bank of China, the Bank of China and the Agricultural Bank of China are usually much more accessible, with ATMs in numerous locations and a lower minimum deposit amount.

To open a bank account in China you will usually only need to present your UK passport and some amount of money as an opening deposit. Particular banks may also demand proof of residence or a copy of your visa.

Differences in taxes between the UK and China

UK nationals living in China for up to five years will have to pay taxes on any income earned within the country as well as any money transferred into China. After five years UK expats will be required to pay taxes on worldwide income. However, you may be eligible for deductions for taxes paid in the UK. The amount of taxes you pay will be dependent on how long you have been living in China. Taxes range between three percent to a maximum of 45 percent and tax laws change frequently. UK expats should consider engaging the services of a tax specialist to assist in dealing with tax issues in China.

Economic relations between the UK and China

Trade between the UK and China reached record levels in 2013, seeing an increase of 8%. According to UK Trade and Investment, exports from the UK went up by 15%. The UK is the most popular region in Europe for Chinese investment. Between 2013 and 2014 inflows of capital from China amounted to more than £8 billion, which safeguarded over 6,000 jobs for UK residents. On the flip side, the UK is the second largest European investor in China. Within the same period, UK investments exceeded $18 billion. The financial services of the UK also happens to be the global leader in offshore RMB trading.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are the money transfer companies shown above safe to use?

Yes, all the companies are safe and fully-regulated money transfer services. Each are authorised and regulated by the relevant authority such as the Financial Conduct Authority(FCA) in the UK, FinCEN in the US, FinTRAC in Canada or ASIC in Australia.

How long does an international money transfer take?

The speed of delivery will depend on where the money is being from and to and how you are sending and receiving the money. Transfers sent using bank to bank transfers can depend take anywhere from minutes to days and you should check the time estimates from the relevant provider. Debit and credit card payments sometimes allow for faster transfers for smaller amounts.

How do I use FXcompared?

First review the comparison results (such as for a table above) for a given amount of money sending from UK to China. Then select a provider based on factors such as price, speed, their rating and click the green button to be taken to their website. From there, you can register and sign up for an account. Once you have done that and the provider has verified your identity to ensure the money can be send safely, you will be ready to transfer money.

What payments methods can I use to send money overseas?

The results shown above are typically for bank to bank transfers. It is possible via some providers to pay in your funds for the transfer via cash, debit or credit cards as well but this is usually reserved for smaller amounts. Some providers also give you different options for how the money will be received - to a bank account (most common), to a debit card, to cash or to a digital or mobile wallet.

What if the price shown above isn’t exactly what I am offered when I try to transfer money?

There can be a number of reasons why the final price you are offered may be different to that shown in the table above. Exchange rates between two currencies change all the time and is the most common reason. Additionally, some providers offer different pricing depending what method you are using to send funds or how the funds will be received. Others may offer you a premium service for faster payments. In some cases FXcompared has a special rate with a provider and this is reserved for first time customers who sign up to the provider starting from FXcompared’s website. As prices do change often, be sure to confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

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All the providers listed are regulated by the relevant authority (e.g. the FCA in the UK, FinCEN in the US, ASIC in Australia) and have been vetted by FXcompared. is an fx money comparison site for international money transfer and to compare rates from currency brokers for sending money abroad. The website and the information provided is for informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer, solicitation or advice on any financial service or transaction. None of the information presented is intended to form the basis for any investment decision, and no specific recommendations are intended.  FXC Group Ltd and FX Compared Ltd does not provide any guarantees of any data from third parties listed on this website. FX compared Ltd expressly disclaims any and all responsibility for any direct or consequential loss or damage of any kind whatsoever arising directly or indirectly from (i) any error, omission or inaccuracy in any such information or (ii) any action resulting therefrom.