MUST READ: Is Instarem available in the Philippines?
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to send money from an account in the Philippines. However, you can still receive money through Instarem in most Philippine banks. You can check out the other options you have for sending money overseas from the Philippines here.
Instarem exchange rates and fees
While Instarem does offer the mid-market exchange rate, it doesn’t offer it for all currencies and at all times of the day. This means that for many of your transfers, there will be a margin on top of the quoted exchange rate. The company doesn’t make it clear what currencies or times this applies to.
Instarem also adds fees on top of this, which is often around 0.5% of the transfer amount.
Instarem sends money to over 20 currencies around the world. Some of the more popular ones include:
GBP British pound
INR Indian rupee
LKR Sri Lankan rupee
NPR Nepalese rupee
PHP Philippine peso
THB Thai baht
VND Vietnamese dong
What types of transfers can you make with Instarem?
Instarem only supports bank transfers at this time, meaning your recipient will need to have a bank account to receive the money. This also means you can only pay for your transaction through a bank transfer and not use cash or card.
While Instarem doesn’t offer forex tools like forward contracts yet, it does offer specialized help for business transfers.
How long does a transfer with Instarem take?
Most transfers with Instarem take between one and two business days. The exact time varies depending on what currency you’re sending to and the banks involved.
For your first transfer, you’ll need to go through the verification process which will take a bit longer. To speed things up, make sure the documents you upload (like your ID) are as accurate and up to date as possible.
Transfers typically take
Is Instarem safe to use?
Security and regulation: Government regulated
Reviews: Trustpilot gives Instarem a score of 7.7* out of 10, based on over 1,600 reviews
Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
Financial Transactions Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC)
Hong Kong Customs and Excise Department
Reserve Bank of India
Bank Negara Malaysia/Central Bank of Malaysia
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)
Another European Economic Area country that can offer products in the UK (Lithuania)
Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) Regulatory authorities vary by state
How does Instarem make money?
Instarem makes its money from the fees it charges. There’s also a margin added to the exchange rate of some currencies.
How to register an account
You can sign up for a free account by clicking the “sign up” button on the top right.
Choose whether you’re after a personal or business account, then create your account by adding your email address and password.
You’ll need to provide your address, phone number, full name, date of birth and nationality. You’ll also need to give information about where the money you’re planning to send is coming from. This is to comply with Australia’s anti-money laundering laws.
This is where you’ll need your identification and proof of address. You’ll need to add in your passport number, expiry date and upload a copy of it. Your proof of address can be either a bank statement, your driver’s license or a utility bill.
You should be contacted by Instarem within a few hours if your verification went through or asked for extra information. You’ll still have access to your dashboard, which you can see below.
How do I make an international money transfer with Instarem?
Sign in to your account after you’ve been verified.
Enter your recipient’s details, including their full name and bank account details.
Add how much you want to send and how you’ll pay for the transfer. You have the option of a POLi or bank transfer.
If you chose POLi, you’ll be redirected to its site to pay. If you chose a bank transfer, you’ll be given Instarem’s bank account details, which you’ll send your money to.
Instarem will let you know when the transfer takes place and when it’s completed.
What is Instarem?
Instarem was founded in 2014 by Prajit Nanu and Michael Bermingham and aims to make money transfers faster and cheaper. While the headquarters are in Singapore, Instarem has offices in Melbourne, India, the US and other major cities around the world.
In 2018, Instarem joined RippleNet to make transfers to Latin America and Southeast Asia even faster.
In a nutshell
Loyalty points program. You can earn points on your transfer and redeem them against your transactions.
One of the few services that send from India. While a lot of money transfer services can send to India, it’s a bit harder to find one that sends out of India due to strict regulation.
Fast transfers. Speed is one of Instarem’s specialities and your transfer normally arrives within one business day.
Doesn’t use mid-market rate for all transfers. Instarem only offers zero-margin transfers for some currencies and during certain hours. The company doesn’t make it clear which currencies and hours this applies to.
Doesn’t accept cash or card. You can only pay for your transfer through bank transfer.
Percentage-based fee can add up. Instarem is better suited to smaller transactions, as the fees on larger ones can get expensive.
How does Instarem compare to other providers?
Frequently asked questions
Yes, Instarem’s app works for both Android and Apple devices. You can use it to send money and track your transfers.
You can contact Instarem through email, live chat or phone 24/7.
Rosie is a writer at Finder, specializing in international money transfers. She's constantly planning her next trip overseas and is on a mission to make personal finance easier to understand.
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