This is a TransferWise review. One of the best services I found for sending money abroad safely and almost for free.
TransferWise, a revolutionary fintech startup, has changed the rules of international money transfers for good, revealing banks’ unfair & hidden fees.
TransferWise is a currency exchange service for the next generation, lead by the charismatic and youthful founders Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus (ex Skype and PayPal).
The company have received a great media attention since 2011 thanks to their fair and customer-centric business model and famous investors (the company is backed by Richard Branson,Max Levchin, Peter Thiel and more).
Over £500 million is transferred with TransferWise every month – which means the users are saving more than £22 million each month.
TransferWise solves real people’s real problems turning a very traditional industry (banking) upside down.
There’s certainly an element of taking from the rich to give back to the people, which I really like about it.
How does TransferWise work & why is it so cheap?
Since TransferWise does peer-to-peer currency swapping rather than “buying” and “selling” between countries, users get their money converted at the real mid-market rate. That’s the rate you see on Google search, for example.
TransferWise matches you with people, who need the opposite currency to you, so unlike banks they transfer money between people rather than countries, which means the money never crosses any boarders, it’s simply rerouted to those who need it.
Read more about peer-to-peer money transfer and compare TransferWise with CurrencyFair.
TransferWise holds bank accounts in different countries and currencies and uses their customer’s to facilitate currency trades between each other.
As a result, TransferWise is in position to offer cost-effective service for incredible £1 for transfers up to £200 and 0.5% for everything above that without any hidden fees.
This means that on a £1,000 transfer to Euros, banks could charge you £50. With TransferWise, it’s only £5, meaning it’s 10X cheaper.
My experience with TransferWise
The first time I received an international bank transfer from my overseas client, I remember being unpleasantly surprised at how little money I had left from all the fees, commission and exchange rates.
PayPal wasn’t any better alternative. It charges 3% per transaction, which in my case would be more than what I would pay through bank.
Naturally, I wanted to find a service provider that will give me the best rate possible.
I found that TransferWise is by far the best platform out there for any kind of international money transfers. Do check their Request Money feature (also, it’s tax deductible).
If you are a business owner, who needs to send salaries to different countries or a freelancer with international clients or an expat who may want to send money home, TransferWise is probably the best option out there.
Is TransferWise safe to use?
TransferWise has been operating successfully for over five years now, and has a large and loyal customer base that trusts them with £500m every month.
TransferWise ongoing business success is directly related to keeping people’s money safe. Hence, security is paramount to their business and reputation as a reliable and honest financial service.
To maintain financial security, TransferWise maintains compliance in a few four key areas:
TransferWise is authorised with the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is a regulatory body that ensures that they operate in accordance to all relevant regulations and rules laid down by FCA. This is crucial for any credible financial service provider and for your peace of mind.
Customer funds held in trust
TransferWise uses trusted bank accounts and banking partners Worldwide for transferring money and, of course, they keep customer money separately from their operational accounts.
Customers’ money is kept in separate trust accounts.
Website secure & encrypted
All your transactions are protected by industry standard HTTPS encryption, which means that card payments are processed via their secure debit card processor and your CVV/CVC number is never stored. This keeps all of your information safe.
TransferWise is completely online-based business, without the tightest of security, there is no TransferWise. Security is as important to them as it is to you.
Managing exchange rate
When you complete your transaction, TransferWise does everything it can to provide you with an accurate quote of the exchange rate. Because exchange rates are known to constantly fluctuate, you have two options:
- Guaranteed exhnage rate
- Estimated exchange rate
If you choose ”Guaranteed rate” then this means you have a timed locked rate, usually 24h to 48h.
If you decide to go with “Estimated exchange rate”, this means that your payment will be converted with a floating rate, so TransferWise will use the mid-market rate at the time of conversion.
PS! With “Estimated exchange rate”, you can always set your limit rate, in other words your “tolerance” for currency movements, so if the mid-market rate suddenly moves outside of your tolerance level, the trade will be canceled, providing you with total piece of mind.
NB! Best rate guaranteed
To ensure that you’ll be 100% happy with your rate, TransferWise even have a “cheapest money guarantee”, which means that if you receive a quote from another provider, offering a better deal than the mid-market rate, TransferWise will match it – even if you find it after you’ve already made your payment.
How good is that?
Sign up and make your first transfer today!
Ready to send money abroad? Good stuff!
Below is a super simple step-by-step guide to help you to get started:
1. Go to TransferWise homepage
When you hit TransferWise homepage, select the currency you want to send FROM and the currency you want to send TO.
You can also specify the exact value you want to transfer.
Then hit “Get Started” button.
2. Quick sign up
You will then need to sign up with your email and password (or Facebook/Google+ if you prefer)
3. Enter your recipient bank details
You are now on the transfer page, where you can enter your recipient bank details and see the mid-market exchange rate.
You can also see how much are you saving compared to your bank.
Hit “Pay For the Transfer” when you’re done.
4. Send money
You can select debit/credit card or bank-transfer.
If you select credit or debit card, you need to enter all your card details similarly to when you pay for goods online.
If you prefer bank transfer, then TransferWise will show you their bank details in the country that you’re sending money to, which will include their sort code, bank account number and reference number you need to use for the transfer.
Your part is now done!
5. Money received!
Within a few days (usually 2-3), your cash is delivered to the recipient in the requested currency.
All parties (you and your recipient) are notified by email along the way, to keep your peace of mind.
It’s this simple.
Oh, and their customer support is fabulously friendly, should you have any questions along the way.