Americans Expend $12B a Year on Intl Transfer Fees: Coinbase Report

  • The traditional remittance systems took ten days to deliver despite the $12B.
  • However, sending Bitcoin to another wallet costs an average of $1.50 per transaction.

Coinbase, the leading US-based crypto exchange, recently published a report highlighting that US citizens spend over $12 billion a year in fees to send an estimated $200 billion to friends and family abroad.

The exchange argued that despite the extraordinary costs of international transfers, the traditional remittance systems were incredibly slow, taking up to 10 days to deliver to a beneficiary. On the other hand, the average wait time for crypto transfers is 10 minutes.

Paul Grewal, the chief technology officer at the Coinbase exchange, commented that cryptocurrencies could reduce the cost of sending money internationally by up to 96.7% compared to the current system. He said:

It can be hard to see crypto in tangible terms. So consider this:  Sending Bitcoin to another wallet costs an average of $1.50 per transaction, and Ethereum costs an average of $0.75.

Last month, Changpeng Zhao, the CEO of Binance, stressed the gap between using crypto and fiat currencies for cross-border payments when a friend asked him to send $200 to a family. Zhao highlighted that it cost him $30 fees to send $200 via fiat while sending the same amount via crypto cost only $0.01.

A few days later, Zhao commented the fiat money took three days to complete, while the crypto transaction only took three seconds to reach the beneficiary.

Notably, the high cost of international payment is due to multiple intermediaries and payment processors who charge fees for the services. In contrast, crypto transactions are peer-to-peer, with no intermediaries.

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