International Organization for Standardization (ISO) came up with the unique BIC code to identify banks and their respective branches. These codes are only issued to those financial institutes who conduct business between banks, make interbank transactions and wire transfers. BIC code generally comes with 8 or 11 digits, both with a meaning of its own. While 8 digit code refers to the primary office of a bank, 11 digits refer to a specific branch location. This code is extremely essential because it specifies the bank, specific location (country, city) and the branch.
Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication or SWIFT code serves as a synonym for Bank Identifier Code (BIC). Both the codes are alpha-numeric usually containing eight to eleven characters. Today there are more than 9,000 financial institutions that use identifications codes in over 209 countries worldwide. These codes are always followed by a bank account number to identify the bank account of the beneficiary. All international fund transfers are therefore made via this advanced system as it lets banks to exchange financial data concerning money transfers, account debit and credit, account status and other linked processes.
This code is of utmost importance because it is impossible to identify a payment or transfer by a bank without these. Whenever you make a transaction every bank will preferably ask you to provide the recipient’s code. Therefore it is mandatory to know about it in advance. But, if you do not have one, you need not worry. You will still be able to make money transfers without this bank identification. You can use the services of a money transfer company or a non-banking provider. This is because a money-transfer company uses a kind of internal transaction system to transfer funds. All that a sender or receiver need to do is to provide a valid ID.
It is highly recommended to make yourself acquainted with the particulars of the local banking system of the country you are approaching to before sending money or traveling overseas. This will come handy to keep you away from common mistakes and confusions related to International money transfers and the use of various codes in the process. Approach an experienced money transfer specialist or expert money transfer consultant to get detailed information on international bank wire transfers available and also on exchanging messages between banks.