I would like to transfer money from Argentina into Chile.

Usually, within countries, there are safe ways of physically (i.e. without a SWIFT or other wire) and inexpensively transferring money between accounts without cash. For example, marking a cheque as Account Payee, so that the money can only be moved into that account.

Is there a safe way to do something similar internationally, but without electronic means such as SWIFT or Wire Transfers? (I found that electronic means are quite expensive)

Do such cheques exist? Are there similar alternatives?

It's ok if, like with national cheques, the money is ultimately transferred or credited electronically behind the scenes, as long as it is made available immediately and there is no 1-7 business days wait as with SWIFT transfers.

  • 2
    Why not do the same thing internationally?
    – Michael
    Aug 1, 2017 at 22:38
  • Do what? Use a check? I don't think checks produced in one country are valid in another, even if they are in the same currency but I may be wrong.
    – Norbert
    Aug 1, 2017 at 23:25
  • Does anyone know why the question may have been downvoted? I'm new to money.stackexchange and I genuinely have no idea what's wrong with it.
    – Norbert
    Aug 2, 2017 at 3:44
  • 1
    The question is not whether there is a slow and expensive way to move money internationally. I'm aware there is. It is about whether there is a safe way to physically move money internationally.
    – Norbert
    Aug 2, 2017 at 3:49
  • 1
    An (ordinary) cheque will never do what you want. Even a "same country" cheque takes several days to clear before the money is (fully) available; it stands to reason that a trans-country cheque (if possible at all) will take even longer to clear. The only other non-electronic possibility (than travellers' cheques mentioned below) that comes to mind would be a trans-national equivalent of a cashier's cheque / banker's draft, but if these exist, I suspect they'd be both expensive and only work between limited institutions.
    – TripeHound
    Aug 2, 2017 at 7:25

3 Answers 3


Traveller's cheques. That's exactly what they were intended for. Their usage has dropped a lot since everyone can use ATMs in foreign countries, but they still exist.

  • 1
    Thank you. I tried upvoting but I don't have enough reputation yet.
    – Norbert
    Aug 2, 2017 at 5:54
  • @Norbert hopefully you have enough rep now. gave you an upvote on the question
    – CQM
    Aug 2, 2017 at 6:20
  • haha yes! Thank you. I could now upvote the answer.
    – Norbert
    Aug 2, 2017 at 6:52

I assume the same criteria apply for this as your previous question. You want to physically transfer in excess of 50,000 USD multiple times a week and you want the transportation mechanism to be instant or very quick.

I don't believe there is any option that won't raise serious red flags with the government entities you cross the boundaries of. Even a cheque, which a person in the comments of OP's question suggests, wouldn't be sufficient due to government regulation requiring banks to put holds on such large amounts.

  • Thanks. I too am not aware of any way of doing it. Hence the question.
    – Norbert
    Aug 1, 2017 at 23:24
  • You misunderstand @Norbert. It is not that there were not ways to do it. My answer is that there are ways to do it but not ways that won't raise serious flags with state entities.
    – Lan
    Aug 2, 2017 at 1:00
  • I'm not concerned about raising red flags since it is all perfectly (and provably, with a v) legal and legitimate. I would just show them the documents they ask for, no matter how many or how long. If you do know of ways, it would be tremendously helpful if you could share them.
    – Norbert
    Aug 2, 2017 at 3:38

There are checks, international wire transfers (SWIFT), depending on country pair remittance services.

  • Are you aware of checks being valid across national borders? Is this so in general or only between a few country pairs? Are they valid even if the currency in the check is different from the currency in the beneficiary account (hence requiring exchanging it at the beneficiary bank)? Much appreciated. SWIFT won't work because it is not a physical means of transport. It is electronic.
    – Norbert
    Aug 2, 2017 at 3:42

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