Need a UK bank cheque--how?

I am in the U.S. I need a bank cheque or postal order or bankers draft in pounds sterling. I’ve contacted six or seven banks and only one of them can do this for me, at an unknown cost and it will take a minimum of 8 weeks to get the damn thing.

There’s gotta be another way… Any suggestions?

8 weeks! You can get a foreign currency draft over the counter here in five minutes at any branch.

Does any of the big UK banks have an outlet where you are (Barclays, Lloyds TSB, HSBC)? Or an American bank that has a UK subsidiary? Perhaps they offer better service.

That’s crazy, I get foreign drafts for clients at least twice a month from the branch downstairs.

Who do you bank with? Go into a branch and say that you would like a foreign draft at the current exchange rate. If they give you guff it is probably because they don’t know how to do it (likely because they aren’t asked a lot) so ask to speak with the manager. But be polite about it.

It shouldn’t be any harder than that. Don’t talk to a phone banker though, go to a branch of your bank.

I have never used them myself (no need - I have a UK bank account), but I have heard good things about www.xe.com.

Thanks for all the suggestions. I’m going to walk into the Bank of America branch near my office tomorrow and hopefully get good news.

I believe Amex also have an international payments service, but also have never used them.

The quickest and cheapest way to transfer money between countries is to use Paypal. It’s almost instantaneous.

Cheapest? Probably not for a moderately large amount. From here

I’m not sure what the competitors charge, but 6.44% seems kinda steep.

I’m not sure what the problem is.

Before I come to the US, I get dollar travellers cheques from my UK bank.
If they have them in stock, it’s immediate - otherwise it takes a day.

I haven’t even checked the rest of the answers, but why not go to the Post Office? Either those or Western Union should be able to provide the postal order in GBP without a hitch and in minutes.

Six or seven banks… do you have an account at any of them?

I can think of several problems straight off.

  1. The countersignature on a traveller’s cheque needs to be same as the signature. So KSO would have to send unsigned cheques. Anyone intercepting them could therefore cash them. Short of sending cash, this is about as unsecure a method of payment as one could imagine.

  2. They leave no paper trail at the other end. Whoever it is that KSO sends them to would have to cash them with the bank. All the recipient gets is the cash. A cheque on the other hand would be paid directly into the recipient’s account and so would leave a record. This might not matter if the recipient is a private individual, but some businesses might consider this too unorthodox a transaction.

  3. And most importantly, they come only in fixed amounts.

I’m sure others are better qualified to answer the OP. But most UK banks will accept dollar cheques, albeit for a hefty fee. Which may well be why you’ve been asked to send one in sterling.

I’m in the U.S. and need to get a police certificate from the U.K. for immigration purposes. They will only accept payment in the form of “UK bank cheque, UK postal order, or bankers draft.” So Paypal and travelers checks are of absolutely no use to me and a US post office has no ability to issue a postal order in pounds.

In any event, Bank of America can do it within a reasonable time but I’ve had to get one of my friends who has an account there actually order it. My own bank is the one that would take a minimum of 8 weeks…

Anyway, thanks for all the responses.

I just went through this when my daughter went to Germany for college. At my bank (Wells Fargo) you can order them on line. It took only a day or two to get here, and it could have been faster if we paid. The problem was that that it takes six weeks to clear. If you’re paying someone with it, that shouldn’t matter. Her housing deposit was done this way, and it worked fine.

Now she has a bank account, we can wire money much more easily. It is claimed to take 2 days - we’ll see tomorrow if that is true.