WorldFirst review

Enjoy competitive exchange rates and no transfer fees when you send large sums of money overseas with WorldFirst.

  • Good for large transfers and transparent margins on the exchange rate.
  • Not so great if you only want to send a small amount or pay by card.

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Details

Product NameWorldFirst Business
Pay byDebit card, Bank transfer
Receiving optionsBank account, Mobile wallet
Customer servicePhone, Live chat, Email
Available currenciesAUD, CAD, CNY, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, USD
Bank account required?No
Personal account manager?Yes

Must read: WorldFirst has closed its private customer business

WorldFirst has discontinued its services for private customers until further notice. Money transfers services for business customers will remain unaffected.

WorldFirst was launched in 2004 by two ex-Citibank colleagues in London. The pair wanted to use WorldFirst to make international money transfers cheaper and easier than what’s normally offered by banks. Although it has discontinued its services for private customers, its money transfer service for business customers offers competitive exchange rates.

Why should I consider WorldFirst?

  • Competitive rates. WorldFirst offers highly competitive transparent exchange rates to customers that are usually not too far from the interbank rate.
  • Same-day transfers for major currencies. If you’re transferring to USD, EUR and GBP, WorldFirst is able to deliver within a day.
  • FX tools. Choose between spot contracts, forward contracts and firm orders to get the best rate for you.
  • No maximum limit. With no limit, you can transfer as much as you’d like in one go.

What to be aware of

  • Only accepts bank transfers. You won’t be able to use your credit card or debit card to pay for a money transfer.
  • Some smaller currencies missing. WorldFirst has most of the major currencies covered, but not all of the smaller ones.
  • Business transfers only. WorldFirst only caters to international money transfers for businesses.
  • No cash pick-up. Transfers must be sent to your recipient’s bank account. You can check out other money transfer providers that offer cash pickup here.
  • Limited recurring transfer options. You can set up regular transfers but only to accounts in your own name.

How much are WorldFirst’s transfer fees?

WorldFirst charges a fixed FX fee and a small payment fee. Typically, FX transaction fees are up to 0.75% and payment fees range between £1.50 and £15. WorldFirst encourages you to speak to its customer service team to find out what the fees would be for your prospective transfer.

How are WorldFirst’s exchange rates?

WorldFirst adds a margin to the mid-market exchange rates. This means WorldFirst’s exchange rate won’t be as good as the one you can see on Google or the news.

On the most popular currencies, WorldFirst guarantees that the margin will only be 0.5% on top of the exchange rate. The more you send, the lower it gets. For the other, less popular currencies, you won’t pay more than about 1% on top of the exchange rate.

WorldFirst claims its exchange rates are up to eight times better than the Big Four banks, and backs this up with WorldFirst’s Best exchange rate guarantee.

WorldFirst's Price Promise

If you get a better quote from another international transfer service, WorldFirst will beat it. You just need to:

  • Register with WorldFirst.
  • Let WorldFirst know how much money you’re looking to transfer and the rate you were quoted, including the time of day you received the quote.

Conditions do apply:

  • You must have an active trading account with another provider.
  • You must have the quote in writing or email to send to WorldFirst within three hours of receipt.
  • WorldFirst cannot give you a rate better than the rate at which it buys the currency.
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What are the ways I can send money abroad with WorldFirst?

WorldFirst offers four main transfer types to help you get the most out of your transaction.

  1. Spot contracts. Make a one-time transfer at the time of payment.
  2. Forward contracts. Lock in today’s exchange rate and schedule a transfer now for up to two years later.
  3. Regular payments. Set up automated payments online or over the phone.
  4. Limit orders. Use these to execute a money transfer when your ideal exchange rate is met.

How to make an international money transfer with WorldFirst

You will need to sign up for an account with WorldFirst online. Once registered and verified, it’s quick and easy to make future transactions.

What are WorldFirst’s payment options?

WorldFirst only accepts payments via bank transfer.

After you’ve booked your money transfer, you’ll receive an email with WorldFirst’s bank account details for you to transfer your money to. You can organise your money transfer with WorldFirst either over the phone or online.

How long does a transfer with WorldFirst take?

A number of factors affect the transfer time: the currency, what bank is used and the size of the transaction. If you’re transferring to GBP, USD or EUR, the transfer is normally completed within the same day. With other currencies, you should allow one to four days for your money transfer to be completed.

Keep in mind that these times are from when WorldFirst receives your funds, so depending on how fast your bank processes money transfers.

Transfers typically takeClock icon for transfer speed

24 hours

Is WorldFirst safe to use?

  • Security and regulation: WorldFirst is government regulated and holds its customers’ funds separate from the company’s own.
  • Established: 2004.
  • Number of customers: Over 240,000* businesses globally.
  • Reviews: Trustpilot gives WorldFirst a score of 4.4* out of 5, based on over 1,998 reviews.

*According to WorldFirst and Feefo on 27 June 2022.

WorldFirst is regulated in the UK by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority), which is the body that regulates finance companies to protect consumers. Part of the FCA’s regulation means that WorldFirst has to keep its customers’ funds separate from its own. This protects its users’ money if the company runs into financial difficulties.

Two-factor authentication (2FA) allows you an extra layer of security. It requires you to use two types of verification when you’re logging into your account. These are usually your password and a number either sent to you by text or generated by an authenticator.

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How does WorldFirst compare to other money transfer services?

Table: sorted by promoted deals first
Our table below lets you compare services you can use to send money abroad. Compare fees, exchange rates and discounts from different money transfer services, and when you have made your choice, click Go to site.
1 - 20 of 20
Name Product Filter values Ratings Pay by Receiving options Fastest transfer Fee (pay by bank transfer) Key benefits
OFFER
TorFX
Finder rating
★★★★★
Debit card, Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
£0
Rate improver guarantee: TorFX will match and beat any rate you're offered by a competitor. T&Cs apply. Get a £50 Amazon voucher for each friend you refer who transfers £5,000 or more. T&Cs apply.
Key Currency
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
£0
OFFER
Wise (TransferWise)
Finder rating
★★★★★
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Bank account
4 hours
From £3.75
Refer 3 friends to receive up to £50 referral bonus
OFX
Finder rating
★★★★★
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Bank account, Mobile wallet
24 hours
£0
CurrencyTransfer
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
£0
OFFER
Currencies Direct
Finder rating
★★★★★
Bank transfer
Bank account, Mobile wallet
24 hours
£0
Get a £50 Amazon voucher for each friend you refer who transfers £5,000 or more. T&Cs apply.
OFFER
Xe
Finder rating
★★★★★
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Cash pickup location, Bank account
Within minutes
£2
Refer a friend and you'll each get a £25 Amazon voucher when they transfer over £1,000. T&Cs apply.
DISCOUNT
PassTo
Finder rating
★★★★★
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Cash pickup location, Bank account, Mobile wallet
Within minutes
From £0.99
No fees on your first 2 transfers. Refer PassTo to 3 friends to earn £50 once they each make a transfer of £200 or more. They'll earn £5 too. T&Cs apply.
OFFER
Atlantic Money (iPhone only)
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
Within minutes
£3
Pay no fees on your first Atlantic Money transaction with this link.
Remitly
Finder rating
★★★★★
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Cash pickup location, Bank account, Mobile wallet, Home delivery
Within minutes
From £1.49
OFFER
CurrencyFair
Finder rating
★★★★★
Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
£2.50
New customers get unlimited fee-free transfers for their first 3 months. T&Cs apply.
OFFER
Revolut
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
Within minutes
From £0
Sign up and get a free £10 top-up plus 1 month of Revolut Premium. T&Cs apply.
OFFER
WorldRemit
Finder rating
★★★★★
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Cash pickup location, Bank account, Mobile wallet, Prepaid phone credit
Within minutes
From £1.99
Use promo code 4FREEFINDER to send your first 4 transfers with no fee. T&Cs apply.
OFFER
Airwallex multi-currency business account
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
Within minutes
£0
Connect your Airwallex account to Xero at no additional cost. Plus, generate Airwallex payment links to share with your customers anywhere in the world so they can pay in the currency and payment method of their choice. T&Cs apply.
OFFER
TorFX Business
Finder rating
★★★★★
Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
£0
Rate improver guarantee: TorFX will match and beat any rate you're offered by a competitor. T&Cs apply.
Currencies Direct Business
Finder rating
★★★★★
Debit card, Bank transfer
Bank account, Mobile wallet
24 hours
£0
OFX Business
Not rated yet
Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Bank account, Mobile wallet
24 hours
£0
CurrencyFair Business
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
£2.50
Zero fees on your first 10 transfers. T&Cs apply.
WorldFirst Business
Not rated yet
Debit card, Bank transfer
Bank account, Mobile wallet
24 hours
£0
Lloyds Bank International Transfers
Not rated yet
Bank transfer
Bank account
24 hours
Varies
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6 Comments

  1. Default Gravatar
    julius
    October 5, 2018

    I would like to transfer exactly 11700000 HUF (approx. £32000)to Hungary to a bank account from my UK bank account. The pound sterling seems to be a bit stronger today than it was a few days ago. How can I set up a Spot Contract/Forward Contract to transfer the money in early November?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      Joshua
      October 9, 2018

      Hi Julius,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      You can set up spot or forward contract with World First by visiting their website. Click on the “Go to site” green button to be redirected to World First’s website. From there, create an account if you haven’t done so. Sign in to your account and from there, you should be able to start setting up your spot or forward contract.

      If you want to know more about forward contracts, please go to this page.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  2. Default Gravatar
    Dora
    August 30, 2017

    I would like to know it is possible I transfer money from an UK account to an Algerian account? And the rate is how it show in the exchange sites? Look like unreal. Thanks

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      Anndy
      September 5, 2017

      Hi Dora,

      Thanks for your question.

      If you are looking to send money to Algeria, you can check our guide and your options here.

      The exchange rate is based on the real-time rate on the provider’s website.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

  3. Default Gravatar
    Maurizio
    February 16, 2017

    Trying to transfer money from a US bank to a Russian bank account with either a debit or credit card or a US checking account. I need to transfer $100 to family in Russia on a monthly basis, what is the best way to do so?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      Millie
      March 3, 2017

      We would recommend using Azimo or TransferWise for this, please visit these provider pages for more information. If you require more information on how to send money to Russia, please visit our information page here.

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