When a vendor sends you their bank account details for payment, sometimes it may not be clear what type of payment these details are for: ACH, wire transfer (domestic), or wire transfer (international). 

This guide helps you identify what details you may have received and what type of payment or transfer is supported. 

IMPORTANT: If you have any doubts before submitting a payment, we highly recommend reaching out to your vendor for clarification. This will help you save money on costly fees from multiple transactions. 

ACH Payments

Of the three payment options mentioned in this article, sending ACH payments from one US company to another US company requires the least amount of information in order to initiate your payment. Typically you will receive:

  1. A 9-digit ABA/Routing number of the receiving bank
  2. The recipient's bank account number
  3. The recipient's name (as listed on the account)
  4. The recipient's address (as listed on the account)

The ABA/Routing number is formatted as follows:

Characters 1-4: Federal Reserve Routing Symbol
Characters 4-8: ABA Institution code
Character 9: Check digit

Wire Transfers (Domestic)

When you receive details for a domestic wire transfer, they will look similar to the details you receive for ACH-supported payments — in that they have an account number and something that may look like a routing number — however not all bank accounts can accept ACH payments. 

Typically wire accounts will include similar bank information as one that can accept ACH payments, however note the additional details about the receiving bank:

  1. ABA/Routing number of the receiving bank
  2. Name/address/phone number of the receiving bank
  3. Recipient's bank account number
  4. Recipient's name (as listed on the account)
  5. Recipient's address (as listed on the account)

You may also see the inclusion of a number identified as a “wire transit number” or something else that specifies it’s a “wire” in the recipient’s bank account details. 

Note: Routable cannot send domestic wire transfers at this time. The wire transfer can be sent via another service and then tracked manually in Routable. 

Wire Transfers (International)

Payments requiring an international wire transfer are easier to spot because, in addition to the banking details mentioned above for domestic transactions, you will receive either:

  1. Recipient bank’s SWIFT or BIC code (if applicable)
  2. Recipient bank’s IBAN (if applicable)

The SWIFT/BIC code is an alphanumeric code that includes details about the receiving bank in the following format:

Characters 1-4: identifies the bank
Characters 5-6: identifies the country
Characters 7-8: identifies the location
Characters 9-11: identifies the bank’s branch 

An IBAN (International Bank Account Number) is also an alphanumeric code, but it can contain up to 34 letters and numbers that identify more details about the receiving bank account.

International wire transfers are the only time you will see either of these alphanumeric codes, as the information is not required for domestic wire transfers.

Note: Routable cannot send international wire transfers at this time. The wire transfer can be sent via another service and then tracked manually in Routable. 

👍 A good rule of thumb to follow is this:

  • Bank account details that contain the word “wire” anywhere will most likely require a wire transfer.
  • Bank account details that have an alphanumeric SWIFT or IBAN code require an international wire transfer.
  • If you’re not sure what kind of details you received, ask your vendor for clarification before sending any payments. 
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