PNB International Transfer

Looking to send a payment overseas with PNB (Punjab National Bank)? This guide covers all you need to know about the PNB international bank transfer process, how much it costs, the exchange rate and limits. 

PNB is the second largest government owned bank in India, with an impressive 180 million+ customers. However, it may not be the best option for sending your transfer overseas, thanks to relatively high costs and restrictive terms. Specialist services like Wise and Western Union may be able to offer a more flexible international payment, which you can arrange online or from your phone.

Learn more about Wise

PNB international money transfer comparison

Like most traditional providers, Punjab National Bank international money transfers can come along with several different fees:

  • Transfer fee - this varies based on the amount being sent

  • Exchange rate markup - a percentage rolled up in the exchange rate 

  • SWIFT and correspondent fees - SWIFT fees are paid in advance, but additional correspondent fees may also apply which are paid by the sender

To give an idea of how PNB compares with other payment services, let’s look at an example. Here’s what you’d pay if you were sending an online transfer of 100,000 INR to a GBP denominated account, with PNB and a few specialist services.

ProviderTotal costTransfer time
Punjab National Bank

1,000 INR transfer fee + 500 INR SWIFT fee + exchange rate markup 


Correspondent bank fees may also be applied

SWIFT payments can take 3 - 5 days

Wise2,102.12 INR transfer fee 80% of payments arrive in 24 hours
Western UnionNo transfer fee, but a markup is added to the mid-market exchange rate 

0 - 1 business days

Go to Wise

PNB has a low headline transfer fee, but the costs overall can be pushed up by SWIFT and correspondent charges, plus an exchange rate markup. In fact, the fee wrapped up into the rate applied may end up being the highest of all the charges you pay - we’ll look at that in more detail later. 

It’s also useful to know upfront that PNB can only offer online international remittances to customers who have had an account for a year or more. 

If you’re looking for an alternative, check out online specialist services like Wise and Western Union which let you create an account, get verified and send a payment, without a wait period, and without needing to visit a bank branch. 

Read our comparison article to learn how Wise compares to international bank transfers.

PNB international transfer fees

Here’s what you need to know about Punjab National Bank international remittance fees:

Transfer typePNB international transfer fee 

Standard telegraphic transfer - online

Payments valued at up to 20,000 INR:  500 INR transfer fee + 500 INR SWIFT fee + exchange rate markup 


Payments valued at over 20,000 INR:  1,000 INR transfer fee + 500 INR SWIFT fee + exchange rate markup 


Correspondent bank fees may also be applied - these will be added after the payment is successfully processed, and paid by the sender

Receiving an international paymentFees may apply, depending on the account type you hold

PNB exchange rate

When you submit your transfer request through NetBanking you’ll be able to see the indicative PNB international transfer exchange rate. However, it’s worth noting that this rate is indicative only - the actual rate which will be applied is the live rate at the time the payment is processed. This may vary a little - and can vary a lot if you’re setting up a transfer outside of banking hours, as the applied rate won’t be known until markets open again and your payment gets moving through the PNB system.

The PNB exchange rate applied to your transfer is likely to include a markup on the mid-market exchange rate. That’s an extra fee rolled up into the rate applied, which can be in the region of 3% or more. 

To give some context, here’s  how a 3% fee rolled into the exchange rate would add up up for different transfer amounts:

  • Sending 50,000 INR - a 3% exchange rate markup adds 1,500 INR to the total

  • Sending 100,000 INR - a 3% exchange rate markup adds 3,000 INR to the total

  • Sending 500,000 INR - a 3%  exchange rate markup adds 15,000 INR to the total

Here’s a reminder of the total costs - including exchange rate markups - from the providers we looked at earlier. This is what you’ll pay with each if you send 100,000 INR online, to a GBP denominated account:

  • PNB:  1,000 INR transfer fee + 500 INR SWIFT fee + exchange rate markup 
  • Wise fees: 2,102.12 INR transfer fee and no markup on the mid-market exchange rate
  • Western Union: No transfer fee, but a markup is added to the mid-market exchange rate

PNB additional fees

Punjab National Bank international payments are processed through the SWIFT network - which is the preferred payment route for most large traditional banks. However, SWIFT can mean some additional costs - which may not be entirely predictable as they’ll depend on exactly how your payment is routed.

When you send a payment with PNB you’ll pay a 500 INR SWIFT charge on top of the transfer fee. However you’ll also need to be aware that extra costs can be levied, which are paid by the sender and will only be known once the payment is already in motion. These costs are charged by correspondent banks which help to move your money to where it needs to be - but as there are many potential correspondent banks which may work together to route your transfer, you may not get full visibility of all charges upfront.  

How long does an PNB international money transfer take

PNB transfers which are initiated by 16:00hrs IST will be processed on the same working day. Out of hours transfers will start to be processed on the next working day. Once your money is moving, it’ll take a few days to make its way through the SWIFT network. Usually from start to finish, SWIFT payments can take 3 - 5 days to arrive depending on the destination.

Here’s how that compares with the other providers we looked at earlier:

  • PNB: SWIFT payments can take 3 - 5 days to arrive

  • Wise: 80% of payments arrive in 24 hours

  • Western Union: 0 - 1 business days

Go to Wise

Pros and cons of transferring money abroad with PNB

Pros:

  • Familiar and reliable service 

  • Send in a range of global currencies

  • Online payments for convenience

Cons:

  • Overall costs can be high, including third party fees 

  • Exchange rates are likely to include a markup

  • Limits per transaction and per year are lower than those allowed under LRS 

Before you choose PNB to send your international transfer, take a look at specialist online services like Wise or Western Union. Providers like these operate online or in-app and tend to be easy to use with more transparent fees and lower overall costs.

How to make an international transfer with PNB

You can make Punjab National Bank international money transfers online by registering your PAN Card, mobile number and email address. Your PNB account must have been open for a year to use this service.

You can arrange your PNB payment most easily online:

  1. Log into your PNB NetBanking

  2. Select Transactions tab

  3. Select Transfer to other bank accounts, then LRS Submission

  4. Choose the correct bank account number to transfer from

  5. Click to confirm you accept the terms and conditions

  6. Complete all the required information

  7. You’ll receive your reference number and your payment will be processed

What information do you need to make an international transfer with PNB?

You can follow the online prompts to set up your PNB international bank transfer, adding the following details:

  • Beneficiary full name

  • Beneficiary bank account number or IBAN

  • Beneficiary bank name and address

  • Additional information based on the country - like a sort code for the UK or routing number for the US

  • Reason for payment

Transfer limits and available countries

You can send a Punjab National Bank international transfer as a resident Indian up to an annual limit of 100,000 USD or the currency equivalent. Individual payments can be up to 10,000 USD each, and you can make up to 2 payments in any given month.

You can send a PNB international money transfer in 12 major global currencies: USD, GBP, EUR, CAD, AUD, JPY, HKD, SGD, CHF, SEK, AED and NZD

Receiving money from abroad with PNB

When you receive an international payment into your PNB account it’s routed through a correspondent bank via the SWIFT network. However, the exact correspondent used will depend on the currency and where the payment is coming from. Before you arrange your incoming payment, you’ll need to check out the PNB website to get the correct details for your currency and the originating country, including:

  • PNB's correspondent bank name

  • PNB Nostro account number 

In addition the sender will need the following information about the payment and your own account:

  • Your account number 

  • Your name and address 

  • The purpose of the remittance

  • PNB SWIFT Code 

Read our article to learn more: Best Ways to Receive Money Internationally in India

PNB SWIFT code

It’s important that your sender uses the Punjab National Bank SWIFT code to make sure your payment arrives safely in your PNB account. 

SWIFT codes are just a few letters - but they’re crucial in making sure international transfers can be processed quickly and without any risk of your money going astray as it’s processed through the SWIFT network. 

The PNB SWIFT/BIC code is: PUNBINBBISB

Conclusion

Sending your transfer with a Punjab National Bank international money transfers can seem like the obvious solution - but it may not actually be the fastest or cheapest way to send money from India to someone overseas. PNB does have handy online transfers - but you’ll need to have held your account for a year or more, and you won’t be able to send the full amount allowable under LRS.

Instead of making your payment with PNB, check out specialist providers like Wise or Western Union, which offer an easy online and in-app sign up process with fast transfers which can cost less than using your normal bank.

Go to Wise

FAQ

How much does an PNB international transfer cost?

PNB international payments valued at up to 20,000 INR cost a 500 INR transfer fee + 500 INR SWIFT fee + exchange rate markup. If you’re sending a payment valued at over 20,000 INR that rises to 1,000 INR transfer fee + 500 INR SWIFT fee + exchange rate markup

How long does an PNB international money transfer take?

PNB international transfers are processed through the SWIFT network, which will usually mean a delivery time of 3 - 5 days.

How to transfer money internationally with PNB?

The easiest way to send an PNB international transfer is by logging into the PNB NetBanking service.

By Seyma Mektepli
Updated 29 August 2022