TransferWise Review

TransferWise has rewritten the way consumers can send and receive money from other countries. The company makes online money transfers possible for less than banks or other money transfer services by approaching the process in a revolutionary way. 

Banks will typically issue a transfer from their location to the international financial institution. It can cost up to $50 to send an international wire transfer, which could take days to get to the receiver. TransferWise skips the actual international transfer and initiates two local transfers from the country of each currency instead.

TransferWise has accounts worldwide funded in the local currencies. If you’d like to send someone money from the U.S. to Europe, all you need to do is request the transfer and let the service do the rest. 

TransferWise will withdraw your funds and deposit the amount into the company’s dollar-based account. It will then calculate the equivalent in European currency and send your recipient the amount in Euros from the local TransferWise Euro account.

This method is interesting because money never technically moves internationally, saving you time and money. The currency rate the service uses is the mid-market exchange rate, which TransferWise claims it’s the fairest rate available.

How TransferWise stacks up

Pros

  • You’ll pay the mid-market rate on currency conversions
  • Hold more than 40 currencies for free
  • Debit MasterCard® available
  • Free international ATM withdrawals of up to $250 per month
  • No foreign transaction fees on debit card purchases
  • Lower fees for transfers than other international money transfer services
  • User-friendly mobile app

Cons

  • Limited financial products — no savings or checking accounts available at this time
  • Only available to send to a bank account

What’s interesting about Transferwise

International travelers or small business owners who sometimes do business with other countries will benefit most from TransferWise’s services. You’ll save money on transfers when compared to PayPal or other banks. Unfortunately, TransferWise is not a bank so the foreign currency account features are limited at this time.

Things to consider 

Transferwise’s foreign currency account is perfect for foreign nationals, frequent global travelers, or individuals with friends and families worldwide. The foreign currency account allows you to send and receive money in multiple currencies for limited fees. 

To make the transfer process easier, you’ll receive local bank numbers and codes for global banking institutions, so the companies can issue transfers the same way it would to any other local person. You’ll also be able to receive direct deposits and transfers from nearly anywhere. 

You can hold currency in over 40 currencies for no additional charge and receive a lower currency exchange rate. The bank account comes with a debit MasterCard so you can pay for goods and services anywhere MasterCard is accepted worldwide. And you won’t have to worry about foreign transaction fees. To make cash withdrawals, use your debit card at any ATMs worldwide. You’ll be able to withdraw up to $250 per month for free in whatever the currency is where you make the withdrawal.

FAQ

How do you access TransferWise for transfers?

You can create an account online and log in to send or receive money or use the TransferWise mobile app. Once on the user homepage, you have the option to send or receive transfers and check to see the rate and fees associated with the transfer request.

What countries can I send money to?

TransferWise supports over transfers to 60 countries, making it possible to send money to nearly any country. However, the types of transfers and whether you can send business transfers vary between countries.  

How much does TransferWise charge to send money overseas?

The cost of sending money depends on the real market exchange rate, which can change throughout the day and how you send the money. You can utilize TransferWise’s fees and pricing calculator to find out how much it will cost.

The bottom line

The world is becoming more globalized every day and TransferWise is simplifying the way you send and receive money internationally. The money transfer service takes a different approach to international transfers. Instead of sending a wire internationally, two local transactions are completed, cutting out much of the red tape that drives up the cost and speed of international transactions.

If you have friends, family, and business partners worldwide, TransferWise takes the hassle out of banking using multiple currencies. Opening a foreign currency account gives you the freedom to send and receive money in over 40 currencies for limited fees. The currency exchange rate is also lower than a traditional bank because TransferWise uses the real market exchange rate.

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