Review: Opal Transfer international money transfers

Send money speedily to countries across Europe using this London-based service’s range of transfer options.

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  • Good for fast, secure payments to countries across Europe
  • Not so good if you need to send money anywhere else

Opal Transfer exchange rates and fees

Opal Transfer charges set transfer fees ranging from around 30p to £3. It says the transfer fee will always be the same, no matter how much you send.

It also adds a small margin to the inter-bank exchange rate margin to cover costs.

Available currencies

You can use Opal Transfer to send money to all countries in Europe and other selected countries including Russia and Israel. You can also receive payments into your UK bank account from Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Slovakia (the transfer fee is £3).

Some of the more popular currencies that Opal Transfer lets you send to are:

  • EUR Euro
  • RUB Russian ruble
  • HRK Croatian kuna
  • CZK Czech koruna
  • DKK Danish krone
  • SEK Swedish krona
  • HUF Hungarian forint
  • NOK Norwegian krone

What types of transfers can you make with Opal Transfer?

Opal Transfer is best for making one-off or regular payments directly to a recipient’s bank account.

How long does a transfer with Opal Transfer take?

If you complete the transfer before 11am on a weekday the recipient will get the money on the same day. Otherwise they’ll get it on the next business day.

What payment methods does Opal Transfer accept?

Opal Transfer only accepts payments by debit card or bank transfer. You can transfer money through your online account, via the free mobile app, over the phone or in its East London branch.

Is Opal Transfer safe to use?

  • Security and regulation: Regulated and authorised by the FCA
  • Established: 2003
  • Number of customers: More than 300,000
  • Reviews: Trustpilot gives Opal transfer a score of 4.5* out of 5 and an “Excellent” rating, based on around 110 reviews.
*According to Opal Transfer and Trustpilot on 23 January 2020

Additional security measures include an extended SSL Certificate (you’ll see the small padlock image on your browser address box on its website), meaning your data is encrypted and anonymous using the SSL protocol.

How does Opal Transfer make money?

Opal Transfer charges transfer fees ranging from around 30p to £3.

It also adds a small margin to the inter-bank exchange rate to cover costs – this is why the exchange rate you see on Google or XE is different to the one being quoted to you.

How to register an account and send your first transfer

You can send money in four different ways: online, via the free mobile app, over the phone or in its East London branch. This is how to send money through your online account.

What is Opal Transfer?

Opal Transfer was set up in London in April 2003 by Gita Petkevica. While working at another money transfer business, she wondered why the whole process of sending cash back home to her native Latvia was so slow and expensive, and decided to launch her own business.

Since Opal Transfer was set up it claims to have transferred more than £1.8 billion for private individuals and small businesses across Europe.

In a nutshell

Pros

  • Flexible options. Send money online, via the app, by phone or in-branch.
  • Free app. You can transfer money on the go with the Opal Transfer app.
  • Multi-lingual. Opal offers an international customer service team and foreign language options on its website.
  • 24/7 access. Send money any time using the app or online account.
  • Extra security. Opal uses encrypted data and extra ID for amounts above £800.
  • Good customer service. You can contact Opal Transfer for help seven days a week.

Cons

  • Limited currencies. You can only send money within Europe and a few select locations.
  • No cash pick-up. You can only transfer money to the recipient’s bank account.
  • No cash or credit card. You can only pay via bank transfer or debit card.
  • No live chat. If you have questions, you’ll either need to call or fill out an online form.
  • Only one branch. It’s located in East London, so it’s no good if you’re nowhere near there.

How does Opal Transfer compare to other services?

Table: sorted by a combination of service offering and the amount your recipient will receive

The table below shows the fees and exchange rates you can expect from other money transfer specialists compared with Opal Transfer. Compare it with the other providers to see if it’s the best option for you.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
GBP 2,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Get bank-beating exchange rates and no fees when you transfer with TorFX. Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 Same day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Universal Partners FX offers competitive exchange rates and same-day transfers for 100+ currencies. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Make transferring money abroad as simple and safe as possible with bank-beating exchange rates - online, via the app or over the phone. Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Take advantage of fee lock-ins and live bookable rates, helping you save up to 85% in hidden bank fees. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,500 Same day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Central FX’s dedicated private client team will guide you through the money transfer process from first call to final payment. Go to site Show details
GBP 1 Same day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Whatever amount you transfer, XE will not charge you a fee for using their service. Go to site Show details
GBP 3,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.097 EUR
10,975
Get no fees as a Finder customer when you transfer your money overseas with Global Reach. Go to site Show details
GBP 1 1 - 2 days GBP 1.99 1.088 EUR
10,873
Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Quick, affordable transfers around the world with both express and economy options.
Go to site Show details
GBP 5 2 days EUR 3.00 1.096 EUR
10,964
Special offer: Zero fees on your first 10 transfers.
Get bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
Go to site Show details
GBP 10 Within an hour GBP 2.00 1.096 EUR
10,958
First two transfers free for new customers.
Instant or 1 hour transfers to over 50 countries, send money directly to bank accounts or over 280,000 cash pickup points.
Go to site Show details
GBP 50 Same day GBP 2.99 1.091 EUR
10,905
Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Conditions apply.
An online money transfer service with cash pick-up, bank account to bank account and airtime transfers available.
Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

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