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General Issues

SeaPay® provides digital money management solutions to customers all over the world, empowering them with cutting-edge technology for efficient financial operations. You can open an account with us if you are a resident anywhere outside of the USA no matter what your financial history; however, there is a list of countries that we do not onboard clients from. You can find the full list of jurisdictions that we cannot currently serve below. 


List of Prohibited Countries


American Samoa








British Indian Ocean Territory


Burkina Faso 



Caribbean Netherlands

Central African Republic


Christmas Island

Cocos (Keeling) Island



Congo (the Democratic Republic of)





Equatorial Guinea



Federal Republic of Somalia


French Polynesia

French Southern Territories







Guinea Bissau






Ivory Coast






















New Caledonia




Norfolk Island

North Korea (Republic of)

Northern Mariana Islands


Palestinian Occupied Territory





S Georgia & S. Sandwich ISL

Saint Kitts and Nevis


Sao Tome and Principe

Sierra Leone

South Sudan

Sri Lanka

St Pierre Et Miquelon

St. Helena


Svalbard and Jan Mayen






Tokelau IslandTongaTunisiaTurkmenistan

Turks & Caicos Islands


UgandaUS Minor Outlying Islands

US Virgin Islands



Wallis and Futuna

Western Sahara




Applying for a SeaPay® account is simple and can be done remotely. To apply click on the corporate link or individual link and follow the instructions.

After the submission of an application form, our Compliance department will review it. This step can take up to 7-10 business days. In some cases, we may ask you to provide additional information in order to complete the procedure in accordance with regulatory requirements.

Upon the submission of your application, you will need to set up a password, which you will use to log into your account. For this purpose, you will receive an email from SeaPay® with a password setup link.

The link is valid for 24 hours; in case of link expiration, please request a new one by contacting our Customer Support team at info@seapay.me.

You will also receive an email with a link to complete your ID verification. You will need the frontal camera of your smartphone along with your passport or a national ID to complete identity verification. For more information on completing your electronic verification please click here.

At the moment, the minimum age for becoming a SeaPay® client is 18. We are working to lower it down in the future, developing products for younger generations.

SeaPay® account for Business is available for the following types of incorporations:

Private limited company (LTD)

Public limited partnership (PLC)

Limited partnership (LP)

Limited liability partnership (LLP)

Sole traders

All businesses shall have a clear and demonstrable connection with the maritime industry. We are an industry specific company and do not cater to general public.

A SeaPay® Client Transfer is an internal transfer to another SeaPay® user. This is the fastest way to send a payment to another SeaPay® user, you will only need the account number of the recipient.

Choose the “Internal transfer” payment type in your Client portal, enter the account number, and the system will automatically search the database. After selecting the beneficiary, you will be requested to enter the amount of the transaction and confirm the payment. The transfer will be executed instantly.

If you need to reset your password or you have forgotten it, you can create a new password using the “forgot password” functionality in your login page.

You are able to download your account statements directly from the SeaPay® account portal or app.  Please follow the instructions below. 

  • From the main screen of the portal click on Accounts.  
  • Click on the individual account that you would like the statement for 
  • Click Download Statements on the top righthand corner 
  • Choose the dates that you require the statement to cover  
  • Choose the format you would like to receive the statement in (PDF/XLS/CSV) 
  • Click Download 

Feedback can be submitted via two channels:

Registered mail sent to our office address 71-75 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9JQ, UK.

E-mail info@seapay.me 

We welcome any constructive critical feedback from our customers, we kindly ask you to provide a detailed explanation of the issue/s you are experiencing. This will help us take appropriate action immediately.

Our business hours are from 9:00 to 5:00 CET – Monday to Friday.

Our business hours are from 9:00 to 5:00 CET – Monday to Friday.

If you wish to contact us, you can do so via the following channels.

Via email: info@seapay.me

Via live chat: on the SeaPay® app or client portal

Via telephone: +44 7480 045 023

Account Opening

To open a SeaPay® Business account, we need to confirm the details of the directors and primary shareholders of your company. This policy is in line with the “Customer Due Diligence” (CDD) regulatory procedure, which helps Businesses verify the identity of its clients.

You will need to provide the details of individuals who own more than 25% of the cumulative shares of your Business. These shareholders and directors will need to provide a high-quality photo of an official ID, which is valid for at least the next three months as well as a valid proof of address. 

You can invite them to submit their ID check autonomously or upload the documents on their behalf. Please note that we may ask for additional documents.

You can find the list of required documentation below:

SeaPay® Required documents for Individuals

  • Completed Application Form
  • Identification Document (Valid Passport or National ID Card)
  • Proof of Address (either Utility Bill or Bank Statement dated within the last 90 days in the residential address of the applicant) **Mobile phone bills are not accepted
  • Electronic ID Verification (eIDV), a link is sent upon completion of your application form and must be completed before an account can be opened. see link for further details
  • Proof of Funds (Account Statement dated within the last 90 days from which the initial funds will be deposited into the P3 account)

SeaPay® Required documents for Businesses

  • Completed Application Form
  • For the Authorised signatory (if not a director or major shareholder in the company), all Directors of the Company and any Shareholder / Beneficial Owner who has a more than 25% share ownership (direct or indirect)
    • Identification Document  (Valid Passport or National ID)
    • Proof of Address (either Utility Bill or Bank Statement dated within the last 90 days in the residential address of the applicant) Corporate Documents
  • Company Certificate of Incorporation
  • Memorandum of Articles of Association or similar
  • Registered list of Directors
  • Registered list of Shareholders (we will require supporting documents where Directors or Shareholders differ from provided registers)

Additional Documents that may also be required

  • Ownership structure
  • Board Resolution for authorised signatory or users if there are multiple directors. 
  • Certificate of Good Standing / Incumbency (for companies older than 1 year)
  • Supporting documents on clients/suppliers (invoices, contracts, draft contracts)
  • Documents with supporting information about initial funding (if the first transfer has been made from a bank, a bank statement is needed; if the first transfer has been made from a partner, an invoice or a contract is needed)

PLEASE NOTE: The above is a guideline only and you may be asked to provide extra documentation on request.

It is an electronic identity verification procedure powered by our partner and performed once you have completed your application form.

We are legally required to verify your identity before we can open a SeaPay® account for you. The ID verification procedure through the email link is a legally compliant remote identification process, designed to comply with the latest banking regulations and laws, as well as the Anti Money Laundering Act (AML).

To successfully capture your ID document, we recommend the below best practices:

  1. Do not hide visible areas with your fingers
  2. Avoid too dark or bright places
  3. Steady your document and cameras as much as possible
  4. Keep your document in the centre of the canvas
  5. Make sure the network quality is good
  6. You will need a good quality colour photo so please use the original document and not a copy.

If you have any issues capturing your ID document, contact our support team info@seapay.me

We carry out the electronic ID verification thorugh our trusted partner.

Our partner has developed a safe, secure and convenient method for digital ID verification. 


After successfully completing the account opening form, you will be prompted to verify your Identity.

There are 2 ways to innitiate the verification process:

  1. Upon successful account opening form submission
    You will receive an email to set up your password. After clicking the “Set password” button and successfully setting a password in the Client Office, you’ll will be able to access the “Verify your identity” button in the client portal.

Please note that the Mobile application has the the same button, however,  the verification process is web-based so when clicking on “Verify your identity“ you will be redirect to a mobile web browser.

  1. Via email
    In some instances, you might receive the eIDV link via email. 


Verification process

In order to complete the verification process you need to go through the following steps:

Step 1
Agree with consent for personal data processing.

Step 2
Select document type. We strongly advise you to use your passport or national ID. Drivers license might not be supported in some countries.

Step 3
Document capture. Take a clear picture of the document. Ensure that the image is clear, the data is readable and no data is covered.

Step 4
Document capture confirmation. Once the image is taken, you can asses if the quality is good. If so you can submit it, if not you can try again.

Step 5
Face capture. You will have to take a selfie. Please make sure the image is clear.

Step 6
Facial analysis in progress. It will take a few seconds for our system to run the verification

Step 7
Automatic check in progress.
When the auto check countdown is finished user sees either “Success” or “Repeat verification“ status message.

Step 8
Profile confirmation in progress.
Once the verification process is completed, the account opening is pending. The access to the client office functionality is limited until the compliance team has checked your application, which can result in approval or rejection.

Step 9
Access to the Client office.
Once our compliance team has reviewed your account opening form and approved it, you client portal will be set up and you will be notified via email.

If you are in the process of doing your eIDV ( Electronic ID verification) and you are having issues completing the process, please check the below:

  • You must use an original document and not a copy
  • Take the images in a well-lit environment. Avoid too dark or light places
  • Ensure your document is captured in its entirety and that it is readable

If you are still unable to complete the process or your link has expired, please contact info@seapay.me

Please check your junk mail as sometimes the email may be directed there.

Certain email formats are not supported by the system, so you may need to provide a different email address. To check this please contact info@seapay.me

If you want to sign up for a personal account:


If you want to sign up for a corporate account:


SeaPay® Cards

Your Pre-paid card settings offer a variety of options to manage your cards:

  • View card details
  • View PIN code
  • Change PIN code
  • Temporarily block/unblock the card

IMPORTANT: Before changing your PIN, you must have fully activated your card by doing a PIN transaction or an ATM for a balance inquiry. 

How to change Card PIN

Web Browser Client Portal

Go to Cards Click on the SeaPay® Card → Go to the card Settings tab → Press change button in the change PIN-code section → Change PIN-code → Set a new PIN code

Mobile App Client Portal

Go to Cards Click on the SeaPay® Card → Go to the card Settings tab → Press the change button in the change PIN-code section → Change PIN-code → Set a new PIN code

You can order a Prepaid card via our client portal, Click Cards tab > Click Order new card > Click Card type > Click Virtual or Physical > Select Tariff plan > Select Currency > Click Next > add Address you wish the card to be sent to > Add Tel number > Chose Delivery method. > Click Next

Once you have requested the card the shipping costs for a physical card will be pre-authorised on your account, however they will not be confirmed until the card has been authorised and sent out. 

If you are unable to access the portal please contact our support team via info@seapay.me, or the live chat option on the app.

Note: You can only order a prepaid Mastercard if you have a current account with SeaPay®. 

At the moment, cards can only be issued in EUR. You can still use your SeaPay® card in other currencies, but it will be converted back to EUR.

Unfortunately, this option isn’t available. In order to get a card, you have to open a current account with SeaPay®.

Yes, we are able to offer prepaid cards for your employees.  To order these we require the following for each employee you wish to receive a card. 

  • ID (Valid photo ID such as a Passport or National ID card)
  • Proof of Address (a Utility Bill or a Bank Statement, dated within the last 90 days), in your name and residential address) please note we are not able to accept mobile phone bills.

If you would like to go-ahead, please either email info@seapay.me or contact your relationship manager and they will be able to assist.

SeaPay® Client Account

At SeaPay® we aim for an improved user experience, while maintaining high security standards. For this purpose, we have Two-factor Authentication (2FA) in place for your SeaPay® account. This adds an extra layer of security that protects your account from unauthorized access and keeps your money safe at all times.

With 2FA you will be required to enter both your password and a One-time Password (OTP) sent to you each time you sign in to your SeaPay® account, as well as any time you are making an outgoing transfer.

The two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security. It allows the system to simply verify your identity to ensure that only you have access to your client portal.
We strongly advise you to always have your 2FA enabled. 

To Enable your 2FA, access your SeaPay® application click on your profileclick on 2-factor authentication, and press Enable.

To Disable your 2FA , access your SeaPay® application click on your profileclick on 2-factor authentication, and press Disable. 

Please note that we do not recommend that you do this unless requested to as it will significantly reduce the security levels on your account.

Please contact your Relationship Manager for details of the tariff applied to your account. We have different tariffs that are applicable to your current setups and particular needs.

Unfortunately, there is no possibility to reactivate an account that has been closed. If you wish to use our services again, please re-apply by submitting a Personal or Business account application form.

You can access your account anywhere online via the web browser client portal  https://portal.seapay.me/#/login

You can also download the P3 Mobile app on either iOS or Andriod :

The username is your registered email address. A link to create your password is sent to you via email upon account application. 

Your account details are sent to you by email as part of your opening pack. You will receive a separate letter for each of your accounts, we suggest that you save these letters somewhere safe. If you need to request duplicates of these please contact info@seapay.me

You can also find your account details, including the IBAN, by taking the following steps:

SeaPay® Web Client office → Sign in to your SeaPay® account using a One-time Password → Go to the Accounts tab on the left side of your screen → Click on the Account that you need the information for → Click on the Funding Instructions tab and expand the details.

SeaPay® Mobile app → Sign in to your SeaPay® account → go to the Accounts tab → Click on the Account that you need the information for → Click on the Funding Instructions tab.

As your SeaPay® App and account are associated with the phone and not your mobile number, you will need to deactivate your 2FA prior to changing your phone. This will enable you to then download the app on to your new device and login as normal.  Once done you should re-activate your 2FA again.  

Please contact info@seapay.me and they will arrange for the 2FA to be disabled.  This may take up to 2 working days. Please ensure once you have updated the SeaPay® App on your new device that you activate the 2FA again.


If you are making a payment on your client portal via the web browser, you can check the live rate before confirming your payment. 

If you are using the app, please contact client operations via the chat function and we can provide you with an indication of the rate.

Please bear in mind this is indicative, FX rates fluctuate constantly so it might be different by the time you instruct your transaction.

Please note that an FX Margin as per your tariff will apply.

The confirmation code is part of our security features. It is a unique code that we set up when we create your accounts and that is required in order to submit payments that you initiate in your client portal. We have sent you the code in a separate email, please make sure you store it safely and you do not share it with anyone.

To maintain the security of your client portal, we encourage you to download the Mobile app and enable two-factor authentication on your mobile app (see settings). This way you will not need the confirmation code to submit your payments, instead easily submit the payment from your trusted phone device or use the OTP code sent to your mobile app (OTP codes are unique for each transaction) if you are using the web client portal.

If you made a transfer to a wrong IBAN, please immediately notify our Customer Support team at info@seapay.me or via chat, our team will assist you in the recall of the payment or amending the details when possible. 

Please note, that if the transfer has already been credited to the recipient’s account, we might not be able to reverse the transaction. 

To make an internal transfer to another SeaPay® user, you will only need the account number of the recipient.

Choose the “Internal transfer” payment type in your Client portal, enter the account number, and the system will automatically search the database. After selecting the beneficiary, you will be requested to enter the amount of the transaction and confirm the payment. The transfer will be executed instantly.

Please make sure that its standard processing time has passed. 

If the standard processing time has passed, please contact our support team at info@seapay.me or contact us on live chat via the portal or app. Please provide the team with the beneficiary’s name, amount and the Transaction ID. 

You can download a payment confirmation/SWIFT copy from the P3 App or Portal.

The fastest way to instruct several outgoing payments at the same time is to use our bulk upload functionality.

To send funds to multiple recipients, go to start a new payment > Mass Bank Payment> download the CSV template > complete the fields and upload the valid batch file.

This file should have a .csv format and contain the following data:

  • Sender account (your P3 account)
  • Beneficiary type (company or private)
  • Beneficiary name
  • Beneficiary address
  • City
  • Zip code
  • Beneficiary country
  • Bank name
  • Bank address
  • Bank country
  • Account Number
  • IBAN
  • SWIFT code
  • Amount
  • Currency
  • Payment reason
  • Express transfer (yes/no)
  • Reference

You can also request the Mass Bank Payment batch file template by contacting our support team at info@seapay.me

We process all payments as quickly as possible. We advise you to contact us immediately via the live chat option on the portal or app if you wish to cancel a payment or update your payment details. Please make sure you have checked the beneficiary details before you instruct a payment.

Changes to already processed payments are not always possible and can incur additional bank charges. Our team will always advise you in advance if this will be the case.

Our support team are here to assist you either via info@seapay.me or on our live chat via the portal or the app.

If you are expecting an incoming payment and this has not been credited, please contact our support team either via info@seapay.me or on live chat via the portal or app and provide a payment confirmation and/or a SWIFT copy. 

Our team will verify if we have received the funds. Note that we have no control over incoming payments until they arrive in our account. We handle these requests in the shortest delay possible but it can take up to 3 days to get back to you.

Note:  Please try to ensure that the reference provided on your wiring details is added to the notes section by the Payee to enable ease of credit.

In order to smooth the process of receiving incoming funds to your SeaPay® account, please ensure to ask that the customer reference details mentioned in your welcome letter and which can also be found in your SeaPay® Client office are stated on any transfer made to your account.   


Instructions to find the details in your SeaPay® Client office:

SeaPay® Web Client office → Sign in to your SeaPay® account using a One-time Password → Go to the Accounts tab on the left side of your screen → Click on the Account that you need the information for → Click on the Funding Instructions tab and expand the details.

SeaPay® Mobile app → Sign in to your SeaPay® account → go to the Accounts tab → Click on the Account that you need the information for → Click on the Funding Instructions tab.

Yes, we strongly recommend including supporting documentation with all of your payments. Attaching documentation to your outgoing payment is very simple, after entering your payment details, you will have the option to upload your documents or drag and drop them. 

Supported file formats – png, pjpeg, jpeg, pdf

Max. file size = 5 Mb

Max. file name length = 100

Max. number of attached files = 25

The attachment should be relevant to your payment and reflect the purpose of the payment. 

Kindly note that a payment can be rejected if the purpose of the payment is unclear or there is no documentation provided.

As for any expected incoming transactions, you can always send it by email to your client relationship manager.

The only option to fund your account is a bank transfer from a different financial institution. You can find your account funding instructions in the account opening and welcome package sent to you via email or in your client portal:

SeaPay® Web Client office → Sign in to your SeaPay® account using a One-time Password → Go to the Accounts tab on the left side of your screen → Click on the Account that you need the information for → Click on the Funding Instructions tab and expand the details.

SeaPay® Mobile app → Sign in to your SeaPay® account → go to the Accounts tab → Click on the Account that you need the information for → Click on the Funding Instructions tab.

Payment confirmations are now available from the SeaPay® client portal and via the app. Please follow the instructions below to access. 

Web Portal:
1. From the main screen, click on History
2. Click on the transaction of your choice
3. Click on the button named ‘payment confirmation PDF’ at the bottom of the transaction details.

1. Go to Accounts
2. Click on the account related to the payment
3. Click on the payment

Single Euro Payments Area is a payment integration initiative of European countries, which simplifies the execution of transfers in euro, both in terms of speed and cost-efficiency.

What are the use cases of SEPA transfers?

European citizens and residents use SEPA for different motivations. These include but are not limited to billing for services or products, receiving salaries, pensions, various regular payouts, sending money to friends and family, etc. Many businesses fully rely on SEPA within Europe, as the system helps them satisfy their main needs: purchasing raw materials, buying and selling ready products, sending salaries to their employees, clearing money obligations with their partners, and the list goes on.

Although certain banks may apply small commissions for the Single Euro Payments Area transactions, the system is completely free on a general scale. Moreover, as all payments are in Euro only, customers also save on exchange rates. Any given transfer that amounts to less than 50,000 EUR will only require a couple of hours to reach the beneficiary. Besides, the instant credit transfer option which takes 10 seconds at most, is being gradually integrated all over Europe.

The Euro currency and its coverage

Euro has the status of national currency in nineteen countries of the Eurozone, as well as in nine other non-EU territories, including two states outside Europe.

Euro is the only available currency in the SEPA system, as it covers not only the EU member-states, but also Norway, Denmark, Poland, and other countries. Open financial and customs borders give businesses in these countries an opportunity to conveniently trade and operate in Euro, alongside the local currency.

SEPA countries

The thirty-six territories that support SEPA greatly boost the economic capacity of the region. At the moment, the SEPA zone consists of twenty-eight EU member-states: Germany, France, Estonia, Belgium, Spain, Denmark, Italy, Greece, Finland, Hungary, Austria, Slovenia, Ireland, Bulgaria, Malta, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Poland, Croatia, Portugal, Sweden, Cyprus, Latvia, Romania, the Czech Republic, Luxembourg, Slovakia, and the United Kingdom.

However, SEPA is not only about the EU countries. Such territories as Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Andorra, San Marino, and Monaco, are also part of the network.

Considering the population of the above-mentioned states, almost half a billion people reside in the SEPA area and generate more than 120 billion SEPA transactions each year.


This makes SEPA the primary means for Euro transactions in the EEU. All citizens and businesses residing or possessing bank accounts in the countries of the SEPA zone can enjoy international Euro transactions of the same speed and convenience as the ones executed domestically.

SEPA and the UK

Despite the fact that GBP is the national currency of Great Britain, SEPA transfers are still available for its citizens and residents.

Despite Brexit, the UK has retained its SEPA membership, as the system is an excellent tool that currently has no analogs for private and corporate transactions in Euro. This payment method combines a perfect set of standards for improving the efficiency of cross-border transactions and merging separated local markets into one.

In Europe, any customer can make a transfer Euro to a UK bank account using the SEPA system. Moreover, such transactions won’t require currency exchange or any relevant commissions. Euro accounts in the UK come with IBANs that are no different from the ones issued in Europe.

A SEPA transfer can also be chosen to execute a transaction between the USA and the United Kingdom, given that the American party has a Euro account opened in an EU banking institution.

In order to open a current account in Euro, UK citizens and businesses only have to provide the very basic personal data, which falls under European requirements.

EUR currency account

So, what are the privileges of having a Euro current account? Because current accounts in Euro allow you to transact without inquiring extra commissions and extensive waiting times.

You are free to open a Euro account anywhere beyond the Eurozone; the conditions will be quite similar as those relevant for the local currency in that jurisdiction. Most banks also offer very competitive fees for the conversion of local currency to Euro.

No matter what EU country we are speaking about, having a private or business account in Euro has become an essential requirement for hassle-free international travels and smooth cross-border trade.

Although currency exchange is very simplified within Europe, it is best to open a Euro current account in countries that use Euro as national currency.

SEPA Direct Debit vs SEPA Credit Transfer (CT)

Even though the two may sound quite similar, SEPA CT and Direct Debit are two different ways to send money and come with different requirements. Both support transactions in Euro, but the mechanism is distinct for each.

SEPA Credit Transfer is a simple money transfer, which only requires the recipient’s IBAN. It is most frequently used to make single payments for services or goods within the SEPA network. For instance, if a person living in Italy purchases an item from a supplier in the Netherlands, he can use SEPA Credit Transfer as a payment method. In most cases, the beneficiary receives the payment in one business day after the transaction is executed.

Alternatively, SEPA Direct Debit is managed by the customer’s bank, credit union or another money institution, on his behalf. This process works under the conditions of signed authorization.

Having a much simpler option like the SEPA Credit Transfer on the other side, this may sound too complicated, however, sending a Direct Debit payment doesn’t require immediate personal approval of every transaction by the customer.

Most of the Direct Debit transfers are recurring payments of a certain amount that are executed every month, or another set timeframe; they can also take the form of conditional cashless payments, like sending a particular amount to the beneficiary after the account balance hits an indicated threshold. Direct Debit is widely used to subscribe for services, pay debts or rent. Businesses heavily rely on this option, as lengthy contracts may include several predefined payments.

What is an IBAN and a BIC?

Within the SEPA system, all transactions require the sender’s and beneficiary’s IBAN, or International Bank Account Number, which is a unique code that serves as an address from and to which the payment is sent. IBAN contains the bank identifier, the country code, and the account number in the bank itself, which makes it sufficient to execute most payments, especially Credit Transfers.

An IBAN contains the bank chain number or code, a two-digit country code, a checksum to ensure its integrity, and the account number in the financial institution itself. A regular IBAN looks like this:

DE89 3704 0044 0532 0130 00

Here, DE — is the code for Germany, 89 is the control number, calculated using all other digits, 3704 0044 is the code of the bank, as well as of the bank office the account was opened at, and 0532 0130 00 is the account number. Such a precise coding system minimizes the possibility of errors and ensures that every transaction reaches its recipient.

It is worth mentioning, that in different countries IBANs may contain extra letters together with digits; however, the length and overall appearance is generally identical.

Business Identifier Code, or BIC, is a unique short code that serves for the identification of banks, their branches, credit unions, and other money institutions. For SEPA CT within the Eurozone, these are usually not needed, but sometimes a bank may require this information to issue Direct Debit payments.

A BIC contains four digits that stand for the bank code, a two-digit country code, and two to five digits (letters or numbers) that indicate the exact bank office.


SWIFT is another cross-border wire transfer network, which is accessible from pretty much anywhere. Currently, over 10,000 banking institutions in 210 states are connected to SWIFT. Its rules are practically identical to those of SEPA; however, SWIFT transactions are executed in pretty much any currency. Businesses located in Europe use SWIFT for their financial operations, but there are several key differences that make SEPA much more convenient for Euro payments.

Unlike SEPA, SWIFT is not free. Any bank is allowed to set and charge commissions, for both incoming and outgoing transactions. Not all financial institutions are connected to SWIFT without third parties, but instead use correspondent banks that act on their behalf, following mutual agreements. Thus, one simple transaction may sometimes be subject to fees from a couple of different institutions!

Another difference is transaction speed. While SEPA instant credit transfers only need ten seconds to be executed, some SWIFT transactions may take up to a few working days.

SWIFT supports any currency, and this is both an advantage and a drawback. Let’s say, the recipient and sender operate in two different currencies. In this case, the funds will be converted automatically using exchange rates that are not beneficial to the parties, along with institutional commissions.

SWIFT is a fundamental worldwide payment instrument that is, however, slowly giving up to SEPA transfers, as more and more businesses outside of Europe are opening Euro current accounts to operate within the system.

It is worth mentioning that since these two methods are different, SWIFT transfer cannot be received on a SEPA account, and vice versa.

SEPA Instant Credit Transfer

Since 2017, financial institutions in eight Eurozone countries started offering SEPA Instant Credit Transfers, also known as SCT Inst. Essentially, these are credit transactions that are usually processed in under 10 seconds, and under unusual circumstances – in up to 20 seconds. Currently, SEPA Instant payments are executed in all the Eurozone states.

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