Reduce exchange fees when transferring cross border employee’s salary

Changing a salary into Swiss francs

The salary of a Swiss cross border employee is generally paid by the company, in Swiss francs. 2 transactions will then follow: the exchange of Swiss francs into euros, and the transfer of funds.

The two different operations are essential for the money to be available on an account in a bank operating in the country where the cross border employee needs access to his funds, (for simplicity, in the following, we will use a bank in France as an example), and a currency used, is here the euro.


Depending on how the cross border employee organises his banking, the exchange can occur before or after the transfer of his salary to his bank.
We present various options available to a Swiss cross border employee who would like to make an exchange transfer of his salary. We also present the b-Sharpe propositions that would save, on both the transfer of the funds and in the exchange of the currencies.

1st stage of the transfer: choosing the establishment into wich the Swiss cross border employee will pay his salary

To receive his salary in Swiss francs, a cross border employee may ask his employer to transfer his salary:

  1. to an account in Swiss francs in a Swiss bank
  2. to a CHF account in a French bank (this is only possible in a few French and foreign banking institutions)
  3. to a Swiss francs account with a specialist such as b-Sharpe, who will then make the exchange of the currency and transfer the euro into a bank in Switzerland, in France or elsewhere.


In practice, the employer may only pay the wages into a Swiss bank account (or similar). The way the cross border employee is organised (choose 1, 2 or 3) will significantly affect the amount of the costs they will pay.


The cross border employee who carries out a physical cash exchange by travelling to a bureau de change, will usually choose solution no. 1, others may choose solutions 1, 2 or 3.
What b-Sharpe can do for you: if you already have your bank in France and/or Switzerland, b-Sharpe will act as an intermediatary, without your needing to change establishments. In the latter case, b-Sharpe allows you, having no bank in Switzerland, to significantly reduce your costs while benefiting from the best foreign exchange rates offered by b-Sharpe.

Step 2: the swiss cross border employee’s salary is transfered to an account in Swiss Francs in a swiss bank

In this case, the cross border employee may decide to change his Swiss francs into euros and then to transfer the euros to his French bank or transfer the Swiss francs to the French bank and then make the exchange. If, finally, the euros are obtained, the fees charged by the banks will be accordingly, more or less expensive.

Where swiss francs have been exchanged into euros before their transfer to France

Swiss francs would be exchanged for euros at the Swiss bank, and then transferred to a French bank: in principle, there is virtually no transfer fee for euros from a Swiss bank to a European Union bank (SEPA). Exchange fees will be applied, however, at the Swiss bank.
NOur qdvice: Exchange your Swiss francs via b-Sharpe rather than at your Swiss bank, where you will get the best exchange rate and very low charges, with costs on average 70% lower than at the bank. To qualify, simply sign up, you do not need to change your Swiss bank.

When swiss francs are to be changed into euros after their transfer to France

Step 1

The salary would be transferred in Swiss francs from a Swiss bank to a Swiss franc account in a French bank (or other foreign bank), and the exchange would then follow: there will usually be transfer fees applied by the French bank in addition to, of course, exchange fees.

Our advice: Reduce the transfer costs (it’s more expensive to make transfers of Swiss francs than for euros), we advise you to change your Swiss francs with b-Sharpe before transfering them to your bank in France: you will benefit from better foreign exchange rates and reduced costs.

Step 2

The transfer of salary in Swiss francs in a Swiss bank is to be made to a euro account in a French bank (or other foreign bank): in this case, in principle, the Swiss bank will charge the transfer fee, and the French bank the exchange fees. The exchange is automatically made on the reception of the funds in the French bank.

Our advice: This configuration is to be avoided, because it is the one that guarantees the highest fees. We recommend you exchange your Swiss francs via a service like b-Sharpe, which not only offers reduced exchange fees and attractive exchange rates, but also free transfer of euros.

Step 2 (alernative): the swiss cross border employee’s salary is transferred to a swiss franc account in a french bank

This option is only offered by a few banks, and it is not accepted by all Swiss employers. Here, the exchange of Swiss francs into euros will be carried out by the bank in France, and therefore occur after the transfer of the funds.


In this case, the transfer of Swiss francs is generally limited, and exchange fees will be charged by the French bank.
Our advice: This sort of arrangement, applies transfer fee that you would not have when using a service like b-Sharpe. Thus, where you can remain with your bank, but make your exchange via b-Sharpe, allowing you to benefit from lower exchange costs than those of the bank, and at the best rates.

2nd stage (another variant): the swiss cross border employee’s salary is transfered directly to b-Sharpe

The transfer of salary in Swiss francs is made to a specialist, such as b-Sharpe, who handles the euro exchange, then transfers the euro to the French bank: in this case, costs are particularly low because the exchange is carried out by b -Sharpe (with margin costs averaging 70% less than other financial institutions), and where there is no charge for a transfer from b-Sharpe, and in principle no charges for transferring from the Swiss bank.

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An overall winning & trustworthy service with savings on (i) Money - I cannot find a better all-in FX rate! and (ii) Time - I moved from physically withdrawing & changing @Migros bank over w/e's to online (e-banking + email) with b-Sharpe. In addition you gain on better decision making - you choose anytime when and how much to change. the b-Sharpe team turns it around in 24h and I'm informed exactly what rate was applied. I see the transfers on my a/c within a further 24h!
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