An ABA Routing Number is a nine-digit code held by every bank in the USA and is used to identify the location of the bank with which an account is held. An ABA Routing Number is used to process a payment to a US account through Fedwire. This code can be commonly referred to as a Routing Number, a Bank Routing Number or a Routing Transit Number (RTN), which can lead to confusion for those looking to make a payment.
With such a large population and landscape, different regions of the US hold different Routing Numbers. Therefore, it’s very important to provide the right code when making a wire transfer.
What do I need a Routing Number for?
When making a payment to a US bank, you will most likely be asked to provide the ABA Routing Number. This is because most payments are transferred through Fedwire, which requires a Routing Number to identify the recipient bank. The bank Routing Number will need to be provided alongside the account number of the recipient for the payment to process successfully. If the correct information is not provided, this could result in a delay to the payment.
Do I need a Routing Number to make an international transfer?
The USA is the only country that uses Routing Numbers, even when receiving money from a foreign bank account. The majority of countries around the world rely on IBANs for their banks to receive payments from abroad. However, if you wish to make an international bank transfer to a US account from a bank account outside the USA, you will need to provide their Routing Number in order for the funds to reach the account safely.
Alternatively, if you are receiving money to your US account from someone in another country, you will need to provide them with your Routing Number.
Receiving an incoming payment from abroad may also require you to provide the sender with your banks's BIC / SWIFT code. Read our full guide on BIC / SWIFT codes for everything you need to know and how to find them.
How to find my Routing Number
An ABA Routing Number can typically be found in the left hand corner of each check in a checkbook. Alternatively, it will most likely be displayed in the account section of your online banking account. If you are unable to locate your ABA Routing Number through either of these methods, you should contact your bank to ensure you locate the correct number before providing it to the sender of the payment.
Still have questions about your ABA Routing Number? Contact our foreign exchange experts today!