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XE vs. InstaReM
Exchange rates, transaction fees and transfer speeds compared.
If you need to send money overseas, XE and InstaReM both offer quick and convenient online transfer services. But which one should you use for your next international transfer?
The fees and rates used in this comparison are accurate as of May 7, 2019.
Which has lower fees?
XE doesn’t charge any fees on international money transfers.
InstaReM’s transfer fees vary depending on where you are sending your money and the amount you want to transfer. The fee amount is generally 0.25-1% of your transaction amount. For example:
- If you send $1,000 to India, the fee is $5
- If you send $10,000 to India, the fee is $50
With zero transfer fees, XE takes the win in this category. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that XE offers cheaper transfers than InstaReM. You’ll need to also consider the exchange rate when calculating the total cost of your transaction.
Let’s crunch the numbers: Sending $1,000 to the UK
To get a better idea of how XE and InstaReM compare in the real world, let’s take a look at the example of sending a $1,000 transfer from the US to the UK.
Sending $1,000 to the UK
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 0.7534 GBP||1 USD = 0.7684 GBP|
|Transfer speed||2–4 days||1–2 days|
|Total pounds received||GBP£753.40||GBP£764.56|
|Receiver gets||GBP£11.16 less||GBP£11.16 more|
While XE charges less in fees, InstaReM’s better exchange rate makes it the better deal in this case.
Which offers better exchange rates?
XE adds a margin on top of the mid-market exchange rate. This margin varies depending on the currency you’re sending. For example, if you wanted to send a transfer to the United States:
- If the mid-market rate is 1 USD = 1.4282 AUD
- XE’s rate might be 1 USD = 1.4004 AUD
InstaReM offers its customers the mid-market rate, which means it doesn’t add any margin when exchanging your AUD for foreign currency. Using the same example as we did for XE, if the mid-market rate is1 USD = 1.4282 AUD, that’s what you’ll get for your transfer.
XE offers competitive exchange rates but these simply can’t match the mid-market rate. InstaReM’s higher exchange rates mean that more of the money you send ends up in your recipient’s bank account.
Which is faster?
XE generally completes wire transfers in one to three days, while electronic funds transfers take about two to four days.
Transfer times vary depending on where you’re sending money and the banks involved in the transaction. However, most transactions are completed within one to two working days, but the process can take longer when sending to some countries.
While InstaReM can sometimes be slightly faster for electronic funds transfers, XE’s wire transfers can arrive in as little as one day.
|Payment methods||Receiving options||Minimum and maximum transfer amounts||Transfer speeds||Currencies|
|XE||Bank transfer||Bank account||Minimum: $0
Maximum: No limit
|1–5 days||40+ currencies|
|InstaReM||Bank transfer||Bank account||Minimum: $50
Maximum: No limit
|1–2 days||20+ currencies|
To send funds, you’ll need to sign up for a free account and then specify the amount you want to transfer and where it will be sent. Once you’ve reviewed the exchange rate on offer and submitted your transaction, you’ll receive an email/SMS notification when the transfer has been completed.
You’ll need to register for a free account to send a transfer, and you can submit a transfer request either online or via the InstaReM app. The funds are deposited into your recipient’s bank account and you can pay for the transaction via bank transfer, BPAY or POLi payment.
While XE’s fee-free transfers make it seem like a better option than InstaReM’s percentage-based fee system, we found that InstaReM’s higher exchange rates meant that transaction costs often evened out between the two providers. The best deal will depend on how much you’re sending and in what currency.
To get the most competitive rates on your next transfer, compare other providers before getting started.
Looking for more options?
Use our calculator below to see how the exchange rates, fees and transfer speeds offered by XE and InstaReM compare to those of other international money transfer services.
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