European payments (SEPA)

SEPA payment order allows consumers to send EUR throughout Europe to banks that concluded an agreement regarding SEPA standard payments.

What is SEPA?

SEPA is a Single Euro Payment Area and is based on cooperation between different banking systems of European Union countries using common rules. The settlement system for payments in EUR is dedicated to the financial institutions of the European Union, Iceland, Norway, Lichtenstein, Switzerland, Monaco and San Marino. You can make payments between banks that have concluded the contract for realizing payments within this system.

Transactions in EUR

All SEPA transfers within the European Union are carried out in only one currency - EUR.

No maximum limit of transaction value

One of the characteristics of a SEPA transfer is the lack of an upper limit to the transaction amount. The standard does not assume any limitations in this respect, which means that the amount of the transfer may be of any size.

Full transfer amount

Transaction is transferred in its full amount. The amount cannot be decreased by additional fees.

Shared cost option (SHA)

Costs are shared between both parties. This means that the sender covers a percentage of his or her bank and the remaining costs are covered by the recipient.

IBAN Only:

According to this rule, payment service suppliers will not demand a BIC code (identifies payment services suppliers in international settlements) when initiating payments that meet SEPA demands. A unique identifier of the Payment Recipient is his or her account number, which is presented in the IBAN format.

Comparison between SEPA and SWIFT

CurrencyEURAll currencies
AreaEU countries, Iceland, Norway, Lichtenstein, Switzerland, Monaco, San Marino.Worldwide
Cost optionsSHABEN – costs are covered by payment’s reciepient
OUR - costs are covered by payment’s sender
SHA – costs are shared by sender and recipient
DurationD+1 (money is transferred by the end of the following working day)D+3 (money is transferred up to three days after the transfer has been commissioned)
Established range of transfer costs5 PLN40-200 PLN
Costs of intermediary banksNo costsPossible costs


SEPA’s purpose is to create a homogeneous payment services market. In this market, consumers and entrepreneurs are able to make payments easily, quickly, safely and at the same cheap cost as in their countries-of-origin. SEPA impacts each payment in EUR within the European Union. In this way, it contributes to the creation of a homogeneous market for payment services. This is an area in which citizens, entrepreneurs and other economic entities are able to make, as well as receive, payments in EUR throughout Europe (internationally as well) according to the same simple rules, legal regulations and obligations, and regardless of citizenship status. The same is true of entrepreneurs.

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