10 Reasons Why Online Money Transfers Can Be Delayed More Than Usual

  • June 27, 2021
  • 10 minutes read


The invention of online banking has transformed a hectic and lengthy process into a quick and secure method of sending money. According to the Nilson report, around 1.01 billion online transactions occur worldwide. 

While online money transactions have many benefits, we all know that online money transfers can be sometimes delayed than usual.

This article will discuss 10 reasons why online money transfers can be sometimes delayed more than usual. 

Why does it take time for your money to be transferred online?

Let’s start by answering this common question, why does it take time for your money to be transferred online? The answer is simple, to prevent fraud. Banks deliberately slow down the process to safeguard the whole transaction and ensure security.

The process occurs in steps where banks send transactions in batches to an automated cleaning house. In the cleaning house, these transactions are sorted and are sent to the receiving bank. This usually takes two to four hours. Sometimes, the amount is transferred to the receiving bank on the same day.

However, on other days, the transfer can get moved on to the next day. For instance, if you send the money on Tuesday night, it should be available to the recipient on Wednesday. 

Why Do Online Money Transfers Get Delayed more than usual?  

Now you know why online money transfers take time before the funds are sent. But what about the times when it takes more time than usual? In those instances, the money transfer is delayed, and it can be due to any of the following reasons listed below: 

  1. Holidays

One of the reasons why your online transaction is delayed can be very simple, a holiday. Since banks process your transaction only during business days, your funds remain pending until the bank reopens after the holiday. 

The exact situation depends on each international bank. Some banks close entirely on holiday, and some banks remain partially open. 

To avoid this delay, you can do some research on the holidays in the sending country and your own country. For example, if you are receiving money in Rupees, you need to keep in mind the bank holidays in India. 

Similarly, if you receive money in AED, keep in mind the holidays in the UAE. A simple google search will let you know all about the banking holidays in different countries. 

Sometimes holidays happen back to back. For instance, the sending country might have a holiday one day, and the receiving country might have a holiday the next day. This further increases the time delay for your online money transfer. 

  1. Differences In Time Frames 

Another widespread reason why online money transfers are delayed is due to differences in regulatory time frames. For most banks, the funds are transferred within the average time frame of 3-4 days. But in some instances, the time frames might be different. 

Ensure that when you are receiving or sending money, you do some background research into the regulatory time frames in the respective countries beforehand. Differences in the regulatory time frames will give you how long you need to wait before the online funds are transferred. 

  1. Differences In Time Zones 

Though not always, whenever you are receiving funds from an international bank, the online transaction can be delayed if the gap between the time zones is significantly more significant. 

For instance, if you are receiving online funds from the USA while you are located in the UAE, you will have to wait until the bank in the USA reopens due to the different time zones. 

You can’t avoid this if your money recipient or sender lives in a country with a widely different time zone. There’s no other option but to wait. 

  1. Time Of Transfer 

The time of initiation also plays a role in delaying online transactions. For example, let’s say that the initiation time for your transaction was somewhere after the end of business hours. 

This will increase the total time it takes for your transaction to be processed and delay the online transaction.

If the transactions are initiated at the end of a business day, they will not be processed until the next business day starts. This is because most banks have business hours that end somewhere around the afternoon. 

Furthermore, most banks are closed on the weekend. Therefore, when you have a transaction to process, try to ensure that your transfer is within banks’ business hours. 

  1. Weekends 

Weekends are one of the big reasons why online money transfers can take longer. For example, if you live in the UAE and have sent your funds after Thursday, you have to wait for two whole days before the amount is transferred. 

Also, keep in mind that weekends vary depending on the country. For instance, in Pakistan, the workweek is the same as in the United States, i.e., Monday to Friday. 

However, in countries like UAE and Qatar, the workweek is from Sunday to Thursday. Therefore, you need to ensure that there are no weekends in both countries to avoid payment delays when you initiate your transaction. 

  1. The Countries Rules & Regulations 

Believe it not, but if you or the sender lives in a country with some strict laws regarding online money transfers, you can do nothing about the delay. Due to pressure from the country’s government or the local organizations, some countries have stricter rules and regulations. 

When transferring money or receiving money, you need to consider the following things regarding rules and regulations. Firstly, you need to know what the limits are on transactions. Depending on which country you are sending your money to, there can be limits per transaction, per day, per week, or month. 

The second thing is reporting requirements. Again, depending on whether you are receiving or sending money, there will be different reporting requirements. Typically, more files are asked to be reported with the IRS when you send over $10,000. More on this later. 

When you don’t abide by the above rules, it’s self-explanatory why your online money transfer has been delayed or outright rejected. Keep in mind that countries like North Korea, Iran, and Cuba enforce much stricter limitations that can delay the payment. 

  1. Incomplete Details On The Money Transfer 

Another thing that can explain why your online money transfer has been taking so long is partial or incomplete details on your online money transfer. It doesn’t matter what application or medium you are using to send money; if the details are not precise, they can always take time. 

Institutions apply some formal criteria to do an identity check on the person sending and receiving the funds. This is mainly done to avoid fraud, as discussed above, and to make the process more secure. 

Different institutions have different requirements. However, you typically need a government-issued ID, proof of your address, and your social security number (SSN). Therefore, it’s a good idea to keep scanned copies of all these documents on your mobile phone or laptop. 

When you send higher amounts, such as those mentioned above 10,000 us dollars, you might encounter more rigorous identity checks. For example, you will have to show the proof of your funds, provide a reason for your transaction, and additionally, you might have to show receipts. 

Make sure that whenever you send money to someone, you add precise details to your transaction so it can be safely delivered. 

  1. The Nature Of Currency 

Sometimes the nature of currency can end up delaying your online money transfers. For instance, if you are sending a foreign currency such as Pakistani rupees to the United States, Chinese Renminbi to Australia, Japanese yen to Europe, etc. 

If that is the case for you, you need to wait until your transaction has been sorted. 

  1. Outdated System 

If the sender or the receiver lives in a country with an outdated banking system, it can also be a big reason why your online money transfers are taking longer than usual.  

  1. Your Transaction Requires Investigation 

The last reason why your online money transfer has been taking longer than usual is that your money transfer is deemed suspicious by the authorities and may be under investigation. 

Depending on the bank and the country you are sending funds to, there can be different reasons why your transfer is being held under investigation. 

Final Words 

Those were all the reasons that can explain a delay in your online money transfer. However, if you do not receive your money within seven business days, you need to contact your bank to ask them about the payment. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *