How to Find my SWIFT Code for a Bank

This article outlines the importance of SWIFT Codes and the easiest ways to find them online and offline.

How to Find my SWIFT Code
How to Find my SWIFT Code

The statement - how to find my SWIFT code - is commonly asked by people who perform frequent international remittances and for good reasons. Essentially, learning how to find your SWIFT code is very important, especially for foreign immigrants who have to send money to their loved ones living in their home country.

Although finding this code may sound like an impossible task, you’ll soon find out that it is not as hard as you think. There are different ways to search for your SWIFT code, and each of these ways will give you the same result. This and more art are discussed below.

Understanding SWIFT codes

SWIFT codes or BIC codes help to facilitate safe and fast international payments via the SWIFT system. Essentially, financial institutions need to use this code to confirm the identity of the receiver’s banks during international transfers. This ensures that the cash is transferred to the right account.

SWIFT codes are 8 and 11 characters long and each of the characters provides distinct details about the account. These characters give information about the bank, the receiver's country of origin, and the branch location. Once the bank is duly authenticated, the financial institution will be able to make secure transfers.  

Why was the SWIFT/BIC Code System Created?

SWIFT, short for Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication network, was designed majorly to provide financial institutions with a standardized and safe way of executing international payments. Essentially, SWIFT is a messaging system that enables numerous banks to send and accept information electronically. Its standardized configuration allows it to avoid chaos between banks located in different countries. This makes payments easier and quicker with less little or no errors.

Recommended - What is the Difference Between Swift Code and Routing Number?

How does a SWIFT Code Work?

SWIFT codes help to identify different bank branches for international transfers. By doing this, they enable banks and other financial institutions to transfer your cash to the right place. If you want to make international transfers you must find your recipient’s SWIFT code.

Who uses the SWIFT and BIC Code System?

Globally, More than 200 countries and 11,000 financial institutions make use of the SWIFT / BIC system. Currently, it’s the largest international payment system network globally. By processing these codes, the system detects where the funds should be transferred to by assessing the unique character codes in the transfer to be sent against the global database. If you’re hoping to execute international transactions through your bank, you’ll most likely be asked for a SWIFT code.

Do I need to use a SWIFT or BIC code to make an International Payment?

No matter what country you live in,  if you want to send or receive international payments via your bank, you need the SWIFT code. Without this code, the transaction can’t be executed. Also, you will have to provide your International Bank Account Number (IBAN) when making this transfer.

How to find my SWIFT Code

Most banks include their unique SWIFT code on their website, mobile apps, bank statements, and their customer account details. To find your unique SWIFT/BIC code, search for it in any digital banking statements, or just check your account details you can find your online banking profile.

Also, you can search for this code using an online SWIFT/BIC search tool.  Just provide your country as well as your bank location data. Alternatively, you can ask for your SWIFT code at your bank branch. This is the best option if you don’t want to go through the stress of looking for it online.

What does a SWIFT Code look like?

A SWIFT code primarily consists of 8 to 11 unique alphanumeric characters. The first four characters depict the bank code, the next two characters represent the country code, the subsequent two characters are the location code, and the last three characters are the branch code.

It looks something like this: AAAABBCCDDD

Bottom Line

Nowadays, banks have made it very easy for you to find your SWIFT code. All you have to do is to visit your bank’s website and search for it. Alternatively, you can check your bank statement to find the SWIFT code. However, if you don’t want to go through the stress of searching online, reach out to your bank’s customer service and request the code.

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