High cost of sending money home is one of the problems of those working abroad. In the Philippines, bank charges are normally around 5 percent of the amount sent, up to 10 percent if coming from certain countries.
I do not know the mechanics in sending the money why some 5 percent or more is taken away by the banks. But I suspect that certain government taxes and fees should be among the biggest factirs why remittance charges are generally high.
Below is a portion of a news report on the subject.
Filipinos Abroad Pay a Lot to Remit Money Home
Inquirer.net, News Feature, Posted: Aug 19, 2009
MANILA, Philippines—Filipinos around the world pay between $6.93 and $19.05 to remit $200 to their families back home, the Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) quoted a World Bank study of global money transfer charges as of the first quarter of 2009.
In a statement, the TUCP secretary general Ernesto Herrera said Filipino workers in
a) the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia pay an average of $6.93 remittance fee, whether they transmit $500 or $200.
b) Spain follow next, shelling out an average of $12.42 to dispatch $500, or $10.64 to transfer $200.
c) Germany pay out an average of $13.06 to forward $500, or $11.07 to convey $200.
d) United States spend an average of $12.79 to send $500 home to their families in the Philippines, or an average of $11.45 to remit $200.
e) United Kingdom shell out an average of $17.75 to wire $500, or $14.40 to transfer $200.
f) Italy spend an average of $22.28 to send $500, or $19.05 to remit $200....
See the news report here,