Quick tip – Wiring money to the Netherlands

If you’re ordering records from municipalities or archives in the Netherlands, chances are that you will not be able to pay by credit card or PayPal. Most government agencies in the Netherlands are only set up to accept bank payments.

To wire money, you will need the IBAN-number of the bank account that you’re sending the money to, and the SWIFT-number of the bank. If you live in the European Union, wiring money is free, but if you live outside the EU, it could be expensive.

A cheaper alternative is to set up an account at Wise. This lets you wire money to bank accounts in many countries, including the Netherlands. The recipient does not need a Wise account, only you do. So you can use this to get the money into the bank account of the government agency for a much lower fee than your bank would charge.

Buying groceries, 1955.

Buying groceries, 1955. Credits: Willem van de Poll, collection Nationaal Archief

Hattip: Ursula Krause, for introducing me to TransferWise. Ursula is a professional genealogist who specializes in German research for international clients.

About Yvette Hoitink

Yvette Hoitink, CG®, QG™ is a professional genealogist in the Netherlands. She holds the Certified Genealogist credential from the Board for Certification of Genealogists and has a post-graduate diploma in Family and Local History from the University of Dundee. She has been doing genealogy for over 30 years and helps people from across the world find their ancestors in the Netherlands. Read about Yvette's professional genealogy services.


  1. Lis Drew says

    I kept a note of this information at the time and in the past few weeks I’ve used Transferwise to make a couple of international transfers – and saved the exorbitant fees charged by my own bank. All went very well. Thanks so much for passing on this tip!

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