TransferWise money transfers review July 2018 | finder.com

TransferWise international money transfer review

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Benefit from competitive exchange rates and low transfer fees when you send funds globally with TransferWise

finder.com’s rating: 4.25 / 5.0

★★★★★

How’d we get our score?

Fees & rates: 3.0 / 5.0
Speed: 4.0 / 5.0
Services: 5.0 / 5.0
User experience: 4.0 / 5.0

TransferWise aims to make the international transfer process as cheap and easy as possible. Using peer-to-peer technology — what it calls “Member Matching” — TransferWise matches you with someone sending funds in the opposite direction. For instance, if you’re exchanging US dollars to euros, TransferWise can match you with another customer looking to transfer euros to US dollars.

By taking this approach and charging minimal fees, TransferWise sends cheap international transfers all over the globe. Accurate delivery estimates and a five-star rating on Trustpilot rounds out this trustworthy provider.

Product NameTransferWise International Money Transfers
Min. Transfer AmountUSD 1
Max. Transfer AmountUSD 199,999
Transfer Methods
Online
Transfer Options
Regular payments, One off payments
Transfer Speed
Minimum transfer time
3 - 5 days
Banking PartnerTransferWise
Customer Service
Phone, Chat, Email
Available CurrenciesAUD, BDT, BGN, BRL, CAD, CHF, CLP, CNY, COP, CZK, DKK, EUR, GBP, GEL, HKD, HUF, IDR, INR, JPY, KRW, LKR, MAD, MXN, MYR, NOK, NZD, PHP, PKR, PLN, RON, RUB, SEK, SGD, THB, TRY, UAH, USD, VND, ZAR
Online Transfer Fee3.00%
Exchange Rate UpdatesReal time

Fair rates & fees with TransferWise

Unlike banks and many other services, TransferWise boasts that it does not skew exchange rates to make a profit. Instead, it offers the mid-market rate to customers when sending money overseas. The mid-market rate is what your money’s actually worth on the global market compared to another currency. It’s the midpoint between worldwide supply and demand for that currency — and the rate banks and transfer services use when they trade among themselves.

While you can’t schedule future transfers, TransferWise offers the flexibility of forward contracts and rate limits for certain currencies and transfer methods. It also guarantees its rates: as long as your money either reaches TransferWise by 4 p.m. Eastern Time on the next business day or you create a successful ACH payment during this time, your recipient will receive the amount you were shown at the time you completed the transfer creation.

Our experience transferring money with TransferWise

Here’s what we found when we sent live transfers to France and Mexico through TransferWise:money transfer awards logo-mobile

  • Our ultra competitive exchange rates were within 0.02% of the mid-market rate on average, with rates updated multiple times a day.
  • Our funds were deposited into our recipient’s French bank account in a speedy two days.
  • TransferWise’s easy-to-use website allowed us to sign up and initiate a transfer in under 2.5 minutes. You also have the option of initiating a transfer by phone.

We recognize TransferWise as a winner of four categories in the finder.com Money Transfer Awards 2017: Outstanding Product, Most Convenient, Best Transfer Rates and Most Trustworthy

How much does it cost to transfer money with TransferWise?

The fees that apply when sending money overseas with TransferWise vary depending on how much money you’re sending and where you’re sending it to. For transfers in common currencies — such as the pound, euro, Swiss franc or Australian dollar — you will pay:

  • $3 fee for transfers up to $300
  • A fee of 1% of the amount sent for transfers up to $5,000
  • 0.7% on any amount over the initial $5,000

Other fees may apply depending on the amount and currency type you send. For instance, if you’re transferring $5,000 to Indonesian rupiah, there’s an additional $2 charge on top of the 1% fee.

TransferWise’s fees are transparent and always visible when you’re calculating or making a transfer, so you won’t be surprised by hidden fees.

Calculate your fees and exchange rates

Compare conversion rates and fees for sending money using TransferWise. Personal and business rates are the same, though business accounts enjoy higher maximum transfer amounts.

I want to send

to

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
USD 1 3 - 5 days USD 50.00 0.857 EUR
4,241
Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks. Go to site Show details

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What types of transfers can I make with TransferWise?

TransferWise allows you to make secure one-off transfers to a range of destinations around the globe. However, there currently is no option to set up recurring transfers.

US customers can pay by:

  • Debit or credit card. These payments reach TransferWise immediately.
  • Bank transfer. This option requires a maximum three business days to reach TransferWise, depending on the currency.
  • Facebook Messenger. Send money to Canada, Australia, the UK and Europe using TransferWise’s integration with this popular chat service.
  • ACH bank debit. You’ll need to allow one to four business days for your funds to reach TransferWise.
  • Bank wire transfer. Allow up to one working day for your transfer to reach TransferWise.

The funds are deposited directly into your recipient’s bank account once TransferWise receives your payment.

Pros and cons of TransferWise

Pros
  • Easy to use. We were able to sign up and initiate a transfer in under 2.5 minutes.
  • It’s affordable. Compare the costs for a TransferWise international money transfer with the expenses charged by banks and other money transfer companies.
  • Offers the mid-market rate. This approach offers better rates than many other providers.
  • High daily transfer limits. Individuals can send up to $49,999 a day and $199,999 a year.
Cons
  • Bank account transfers only. Funds are sent to your recipient’s bank account only, with no option for cash pickups.
  • Two-step process. You must first wire your money to TransferWise, which then deposits the money to your recipient’s bank account.
  • Requires a Social Security number. You’ll need an SSN to send money.

How do I transfer money with TransferWise?

TransferWise prides itself on offering an easy and convenient transfer service.

  1. The first step is providing your transfer details — how much money you wish to transfer, which country you’re sending it to and who will receive the funds.
  2. Specify your full name and address, your Social Security number or photo ID and your recipient’s full address.
  3. Send your funds to TransferWise, which you can do with a bank account transfer, through Facebook Messenger, or using your credit or debit card. TransferWise will convert your US dollars into your recipient’s currency using the mid-market rate and then pair you with a customer sending funds in the opposite direction.
  4. The funds are then deposited into your recipient’s bank account, and both you and your recipient are notified by email when your transfer is complete.

What do I need to transfer money using TransferWise?

To make an international transfer with TransferWise, you will need:

  • Your name, address, phone number and email address
  • Your date of birth
  • Your bank account or credit card information
  • The full name, address and email address of the recipient
  • Your recipient’s International Bank Account Number (IBAN)

Step-by-step instructions with screenshots

How to fund your transfers with Apple Pay

To make sending your money even simpler, TransferWise has linked with Apple Pay. Sending funds internationally from Apple’s digital wallet via TransferWise works just like a normal Apple payment would work: just click the Apple logo that says “pay.” You’ll see an error message if your payment doesn’t go through.

You’re in luck if your digital wallet is linked to your debit card, as there is no additional fee. If your Apple Pay is linked to your credit card, there is a 2% fee. TransferWise transactions using Apple Pay are not available in Illinois, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Vermont and Virginia.

apple-pay-transferwise-image

What happens next?

You can track the status of your money transfer through your TransferWise account. Log in to your account and click “Transfers” in the upper-left corner of the screen. TransferWise will let you know when your payment is processed and when your recipient receives their money.

If you have questions about your transfer, contact TransferWise online or by calling a local call center. Select your country from the drop-down menu for your local call center’s number and hours of operation.

Bottom line

TransferWise offers a cheap, innovative solution to sending money overseas. However, be sure to compare its services with other transfer companies before deciding which is best equipped to handle your international funds transfer needs.

Frequently asked questions

Methodology

Our team analyzes money transfer providers offering services in the US — from big names to digital upstarts. We rank rates and fees, speed, services and user experience for:

  • TransferWise
  • World First
  • HiFX
  • OFX
  • WorldRemit
  • Currencies Direct
  • Western Union
  • RIA Money Transfer
  • MoneyGram
  • Remitly
  • Payoneer
  • Remit2India
  • Xoom
  • PayPal

Learn the details of our methodology and scoring.

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Adrienne Fuller

Adrienne Fuller leads the publishing team at finder.com. She has one goal: to deliver the accurate and transparent information she wishes she had when she made some of life's important financial decisions. When she's not helping folks save money, she's hiking with her two Catahoulas around her home in San Diego.

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12 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    MirjanaJuly 17, 2018

    Hello,
    Beside all TransferWise fees when sending money, is there any bank fees when receiving money on recipient bank account?
    Thanks

    • finder Customer Care
      nikkiangcoJuly 18, 2018Staff

      Hi Mirjana!

      Thanks for your message.

      The money transfer recipient does not incur any fees for the transaction. Fees are usually shouldered by the one sending it. Ultimately, this will depend on the mode of transfer or the recipient’s bank. Before making any transfer, it would be safe for your recipient to ask her/his bank if there will be any fees involved in the transaction.

      Hope this helps!

      Nikki

  2. Default Gravatar
    ZatyJune 29, 2018

    Apart from all the fees that TransferWise charges, will there also be a charge on my, say, debit or credit card, or my bank account when using the service?

    • finder Customer Care
      AshJune 29, 2018Staff

      Hi Zaty,

      Thank you for contacting finder.

      Yes, apart from the Transferwise Fee there will also be Extra Fee if you will be paying by Debit/ Credit Card or SWIFT. The Extra Fees will be in percentage of the money that you will transfer wherein it depend on the currency that you are sending.

      I hope this helps.

      Let us know if there is anything else that we may assist you with.

      Cheers,
      Ash

  3. Default Gravatar
    DanJune 28, 2018

    Does Transferwise operate in Costa Rica? Just bought a bnb there and this would be an option to accept payments from guests if so.

    Thanks!
    Dan

    • finder Customer Care
      joelmarceloJune 29, 2018Staff

      Hi Dan,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      Unfortunately, CRC is not available on the list of currencies available to transfer to. To weigh your options in sending money to Costa Rica, you can click HERE.

      Cheers,
      Joel

  4. Default Gravatar
    LydyaApril 8, 2018

    How long should I wait to receive money sent to me (am in kenya)through transferwise from UK London?

    • finder Customer Care
      joelmarceloApril 8, 2018Staff

      Hi Lydia,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      They always move your money as quickly as possible. You can see an estimate of how long it’ll take by putting some basic details into their transfer calculator in their website.

      But when you actually set up your transfer on TransferWise, your estimate will change. The reason for this is simple — the more information they have about your transfer, the more accurately they can tell you how long it’ll take. And it depends on these four things:

      1. The countries you’re sending from and to — every currency and country is different. Converting your money can take a maximum of two working days, but it’s very rare that it takes this long. And how quick your transfer arrives depends on how quickly your recipient’s bank can process your money, as well as the ways you’re able to pay in the country you’re sending from.

      2. How you pay — some payment methods are quicker than others. For instance, card payments are normally instant, while bank transfers take longer. You’ll see how long each payment method takes when you set up your transfer.

      If you’re sending money from GBP, they offer different types of transfers like Low Cost transfers and Fast & Easy transfers. In this case, the speed of your transfer will depend on the type you choose.

      3. What time you pay for your transfer — they can only handle your money during normal banking hours. And things may take a little longer if the country you’re sending to has a national holiday.

      I hope this information helped.

      Cheers,
      Joel

  5. Default Gravatar
    frankFebruary 24, 2017

    where do i cash out money sent to me through Transferwise?

    • finder Customer Care
      AnndyJune 27, 2017Staff

      Hi Frank,

      Thanks for your question.

      You should be able to get the money through your bank account. Transferwise will transfer it using real-time exchange rate.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

  6. Default Gravatar
    BruceFebruary 2, 2017

    I am having my wedding overseas in Chile. I looked at the Transferwise website and it doesn’t list Chilean Pesos as a currency they work with.

    Is it possible to pay my wedding suppliers in Chile using TransferWise? If so, will they receive USD or CLP?

    • finder Customer Care
      AdrienneFebruary 2, 2017Staff

      Hi Bruce,

      Thank you for your question. I checked the Transferwise website and I can confirm that Chilean pesos are available, so you should have no problems using the service. Since Transferwise is a peer-to-peer service, your suppliers can receive funds in CLP into their bank account.

      If you’re ready to get started, click “apply now” to be taken to the Transferwise website and get started.

      Cheers,
      Adrienne

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