Remitly vs Wise (TransferWise)

We take a look at two money transfer services to see which one will get your money there cheaper and faster.

When deciding on an international money transfer service, you want to compare fees and exchanges rates as well as features to ensure you’re choosing the provider that works best for you. We compare providers Remitly and Wise side by side to give you all the facts before you commit.

The fees and rates used in this comparison are accurate as of 6 March 2020.

Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer) Learn More
Wise (TransferWise)
Within an hour
From £3.75

View details
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
Remitly
Within minutes
From £1.49
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Free transfers and better exchange rates for new customers

View details
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Which has lower fees?

Remitly

The Remitly fee structure is varied. Fees change depending on whether you do an “economy” or “express” transfer, what currency you’re transferring and how much you’re transferring.

Express transfers have higher fees, which tend to get higher the more you send. Slower economy transfers often stay quite low, around £1 to £3 no matter how much you send.

Wise

Wise charges two fees – a percentage of the transfer and a small flat fee that’s normally only a few pounds. The percentage fee ranges from 0.45% to 1.5% and can make the fee add up on larger transfers.

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Winner: Remitly

Although it’s a close call, Remitly’s transfers tend to be cheaper across the board, especially for economy transfers. This doesn’t necessarily mean your transfer will be cheaper with Remitly – each provider offers different exchange rates, which we’ll go into below.

Let’s crunch the numbers: Sending £1,000 and £10,000 to the Philippines

Let’s put both providers to the test. We’ll look at sending £1,000 and £10,000 to the Philippines to see whether Remitly or Wise gives you a better deal.

For the purpose of this comparison, we’ll look at sending the money via an economy transfer with Remitly.

Sending £1,000 to the Philippines
RemitlyWise
Transfer fee£1.99£6
Exchange rate1 GBP = 65.21 PHP1 GBP = 66.091 PHP
Transfer speedSame day2 days
Total Philippine pesos receivedPHP 65,210PHP 65,695
Receiver getsPHP 485 lessPHP 485 more
Sending £10,000 to the Philippines
Remitly Wise
Transfer fee£1.99£60
Exchange rate1 GBP = 65.21 PHP1 GBP = 65.956 PHP
Transfer speedSame day2 days
Total Philippine pesos receivedPHP 652,100PHP 655,607
Receiver getsPHP 3,507 lessPHP 3,507 more

Wise is the clear winner as its Philippine peso exchange rate is better than the rate Remitly offers you. Even though Remitly offers a lower flat fee of £1.99 for all Philippine peso express transfers, it still doesn’t save you money.

Which offers better exchange rates?

Remitly

Remitly doesn’t have a standard rate rule, meaning its exchange rates can vary a lot. The margin normally ends up being 1% to 2% added to the exchange rate. For example, these are the rates for a transfer to Poland:

  • Mid-market rate: 1 GBP = 4.94 PLN
  • Remitly’s exchange rate: 1 GBP = 4.87 PLN

This is a margin of 1.4%.

Wise

Wise converts money at the mid-market rate, meaning it never adds an additional margin on top. This means that, using the same example, if the mid-market rate is 1 GBP = 4.94 PLN, that’s the rate you’ll get.

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Winner: Wise

Both Wise and Remitly offer competitive exchange rates, but Wise guarantees the mid-market rate on all currencies. Remitly’s exchange rates vary currency to currency.

Remitly often offers deals for first-time users with exchange rates that are slightly better than the mid-market rate, so it’s good to keep an eye out for that. In general, however, Wise has the best exchange rates. That won’t necessarily mean it’s best overall – fees have to be considered too.

Which is faster?

Remitly

Remitly offers two transfer options: economy or express. Express gets your transfer there on the same day, often in a matter of minutes, but you pay a higher fee. Economy transfers take between one and five business days.

Wise

The speed of Wise transfers depends heavily on the currency and the payment method. If you pay with a card, your money often arrives immediately. However, if transferring via a bank transfer, it can take up to four business days.

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Winner: Tie

There isn’t a clear winner as there are too many variables. Both services can get your money there within hours, depending on the payment method and the fees you’re willing to pay.

General features

Payment methodsReceiving optionsMaximum and minimum transfersTransfer speedsCurrencies
RemitlyBank transfer, debit card, credit cardBank account, cash pick-upMinimum: £1

Maximum: £15,000

Same day or up to 5 days30+ currencies
WiseBank transfer,
POLi transfer,
debit card,
credit card
Bank accountMinimum: £1

Maximum: £15,000

2 days20+ currencies

Remitly

Once you’ve signed up for a free account, you just enter the amount you want to send, your recipient’s information and your payment information. You can do all of this using either the website or the Remitly app.

Wise

Wise also has a simple process. After you’ve created a free account, you input the transfer amount, send Wise the money, then Wise converts it and sends it to the recipient’s bank account.

Bottom line

Remitly and Wise are neck and neck in most categories, with Wise winning out when it comes to exchange rates, while Remitly has slightly lower fees. It’s always worth checking both providers, and depending on the currency, the fees and the amount, you may want to use either.

But be aware that the currencies Remitly offer are more exotic than most transfer services, so check whether Remitly has the currency you need.

Looking for more options?

Table: sorted by promoted deals first
Our table below lets you compare the services you can use to send money abroad. Choose if you want to send under or over £10,000, and you’ll be shown a list of services that can help you.
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer) Learn More
Wise (TransferWise) for large transfers
Within an hour
From £3.75

View details
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
TorFX
24 hours
£0

View details
TorFX sends money overseas in 30+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
Central FX
24 hours
£0

View details
Central FX's dedicated team will guide you or your business from first call to final payment.
Currencies Direct
Within an hour
£0

View details
CurrenciesDirect makes transferring money abroad simple with bank-beating exchange rates.
CurrencyTransfer
24 hours
£0

View details
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace.
XE Money Transfers
24 hours
£2
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ £25 Amazon voucher when you refer a friend

View details
XE has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
Wise (TransferWise)
Within an hour
From £3.75

View details
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
Azimo
Within minutes
From £0.99
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ First two transfers free for new customers.

View details
Azimo sends money directly to a bank account or over 280,000 cash pick-up points. It also has fast transfers to 50+ countries.
Remitly
Within minutes
From £1.49
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Free transfers and better exchange rates for new customers

View details
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
WorldRemit
Within an hour
From £1.99
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Conditions apply.

View details
WorldRemit sends money to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposits, cash pick-ups or mobile top-ups.
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