Please note: You should always refer to quotes you receive from transfer services themselves directly for exact amounts as they may vary from our estimates.
When you’re transferring your British pounds to another currency, you want to make sure you’re getting the best deal. We’ve compared Xe and TorFX, two popular international transfer services, to see which one is better value, faster and most likely to offer what you need.
Xe and TorFX at a glance
|Arrange transfers online|
|Arrange transfers through app|
|Arrange transfers by phone|
|Based||Newmarket, Canada||Penzance, UK|
|Link||Go to site|
Which is cheaper: Xe or TorFX?
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
The fees and rates used in this comparison are accurate as of 10 Aug 2022.
Which charges lower fees?
With Xe, you pay £2 on money transfers below £250. The fee is scrapped for transfers above that amount. TorFX doesn’t charge any fees at all.
The £2 fee to pay if you’re sending less than £250 means that TorFX pips Xe to the post if you’re purely looking at fees. However, both providers add a margin to their exchange rates, so pay close attention to the total cost of your transfer. TorFX focuses primarily on larger transfers, so may be less competitive at the bottom end.
Which offers better exchange rates?
While Xe tends to have better exchange rates, TorFX offers a price-match guarantee, meaning you can get the rates that Xe is offering. For this reason, we’re calling it a tie.
Xe adds a margin of around 0.6% to 1.4% to the mid-market exchange rate on popular currencies. Keep in mind that the rate you’ll pay is different to what it shows on its homepage currency converter tool – you’ll need to be logged in to get an accurate quote.
TorFX also adds a similar margin to the exchange rate. This gets lower the more you send.TorFX guarantees competitive rates, even offering a price-match guarantee. The price-match guarantee has some terms and conditions, including that you must have an account with the other provider, but most accounts are free to set up and it could save you money overall.
Example: Sending £5,000 to South Africa
Let’s take a look at what a £5,000 transfer to a South African bank account looks like with both Xe and TorFX. Keep in mind that the exchange rate margins will be different for other currencies.
|Exchange rate||1 GBP = 19.208 ZAR||1 GBP = 19.4694 ZAR|
|Transfer speed||Same day||1 day|
|Total received||R 96,040||R 97,371|
In this example, TorFX would give your recipient R 1,331 more (or you could send the same amount of Rand for less!). However Xe can come out on top for other quotes.
Coverage and payout
|Number of available currencies||77 |
(including: EUR, USD, INR, PHP, PKR, ZAR)
(including: EUR, CNY, INR, PHP)
|Number of supported countries||218||172|
|Cash pick-up facility|
|Fastest transfer speed||Within minutes||Within minutes|
|Link||Go to site|
Which is faster?
Generally, Xe transfers are completed within the same day, often within a matter of hours. Some currencies may take longer, but it depends on where you’re sending the money and the financial institutions involved. When you set up your transfer, Xe will estimate the time to give you an idea of how long it will take.
TorFX transfers vary from being the same day to two business days, depending on the currency. Less-popular currencies take longer, while popular currencies like USD are often delivered that day.
Xe just about pips TorFX to the post. However both providers offer a pretty speedy service and can get your money there within a day. Both are similarly dependent on a range of external factors that can influence transfer speeds.
|Link||Go to site|
|Recurring transfer facility|
|Forward contracts facility|
|Limit orders facility|
|Stop loss orders facility|
|Customer service||Phone, Email||Phone, Live chat, Email|
|Personal account manager|
|Price matching facility|
|Link||Go to site|
Signing up and making your first transfer
With Xe you sign up for an account online or over the phone. Once set up, get a quote. If you’re happy with the quote and agree to the transaction, you send Xe the payment and the company will convert and send your money where it needs to go.
With TorFX, after registering for a free account, you secure your rate online or with your account manager. If you’re happy with the rate, you set up the transfer, send your funds to TorFX and the company will transfer the money to the desired location.
The verdict: Which is better: Xe or TorFX?
TorFX’s strength lies in the fact that it’s a broker – scouring multiple services to find you the best deal. It specialises in supporting those moving large sums across borders, by providing expert human account handling to help you leverage exchange tools like a pro forex trader.
However Xe is the stronger of the two for super-quick, self-service transfers of smaller sums. Xe does add that £2 fee on those smaller sums, but it’s offset by great rates and a slicker process.
So while Xe can be slightly faster, for many currencies TorFX works out cheaper, and especially so when you’re transferring several thousand (at which level the simple calculators these sites provide to win your custom don’t tell the full story). Add that to TorFX’s price match guarantee (in fact it pledges to exceed competitor quotes) and TorFX can’t be beaten.
Overall winner: TorFX
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