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Difference Between SWIFT Code and Sort Code

SWIFT Code vs Sort Code

SWIFT code and sort code are terms related to banking, specifically for the transferring of money. It is very common to transfer money between accounts in our modern world. The SWIFT code and sort code will help us in transferring money conveniently and securely.


The SWIFT, short for Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, code is a unique identification code for financial and non-financial institutions when doing international wire transfers and for the exchange of messages between banks. So, whenever you want to send money to your friends in another country, you get the SWIFT code of their bank as well as their account details.

Sort Code

The sort code is the UK and Irish version of the routing number and is used to route money transfers between financial institutions within their respective countries through their respective clearing houses. It is a six digit number, usually formatted in three pairs, and identifies both bank and branch where the account is. It is used only for domestic transfers.

Difference between SWIFT Code and Sort Code

The main difference between the SWIFT code and the sort code is where they are used. If you are living in the United Kingdom or in Ireland, you need the sort code of your recipient’s account to transfer money domestically into their accounts. If you want to send money between the two countries or anywhere else internationally, you have to get their SWIFT code and other required account details.

While the sort code is a 6 digit number in three pairs identifying a UK bank and its branch, a SWIFT code is actually an alphanumeric code identifying the bank and the country.

So keep in mind that if you are sending money internationally, you need the SWIFT code. If you are British or Irish, and want to send money within your country, you need the sort code.

In brief:

• The SWIFT code is an alphanumeric international code that you use in order for you to send money to another country. It identifies the country and bank of your recipient’s account.

• The sort code is a six digit code in three pairs (i.e. 12-34-56) that is used by British and Irish banks for domestic money transfers. Take note that a transfer from a British account to and Irish account is considered as an international transfer.


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  • http://swift-codes.blogspot.com Swift Code

    Also as far as I know, swift code is about international wires.

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