Keeping more of your hard-earned money if you’re living in Canada and getting paid in U.S. dollars.
U.S. Account Holders
If you already have a U.S.-based bank account, it will be easy for you to collect your paycheque. The majority of these companies pay directly into U.S. bank accounts that have ACH or ABA numbers. This means you can get paid without paying any banking fees.
However, if you do not have a U.S.-based bank account, it can be costly to get paid. Most of the companies will pay via international wire transfer and cover some of the costs, but if you are working over 20 hours a week, you can lose up to $100 in banking fees.
A number of Canadian banks offer U.S. currency accounts, however they are actually not based in the U.S. and getting paid into these accounts will still require your employer to use an international wire transfer.
Two Canadian banks (TD and RBC) actually offer U.S.-based accounts. The problems with these accounts are:
you may have to visit the branch to open the account
you may have to pay monthly banking fees (in addition to exchange fees) if you do not maintain a minimum balance
you may have to call the bank to move your money from your U.S. account to your Canadian account
you have to pay your bank’s exchange rate (usually higher than market value)
The solution for non-americans
As Canadians working for a few of these companies, we use and recommend TransferWise. TransferWise is a U.K.-based company. TransferWise’s Borderless Account allows you to create a virtual U.S. bank account (complete with an ACH number) so that you can get your paycheque deposited directly with no fees. From there, if you want to move the money from your Borderless Account into a bank account in your home country, they exchange your currency at the market rate (Google rate) and add their transparent, low-cost fee.
We like TransferWise because:
it’s free to sign-up for
you can set up your account from the comfort of your home
there are no monthly fees
you can move money from your computer
you don’t pay an inflated bank exchange rate
their fees are quite low, and
you can calculate your total fees before proceeding with any transaction
Check out their fee structure here.
*If you use the links on this page to sign up for TransferWise, you will pay ZERO FEES on your first $650 in transfers.