Remitly vs. Transferwise: A Guide to Money Transfer Services

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Remitly vs Transferwise

Stuck on what money transfer companies to choose? We’ve got you covered, comrade!

The two money transfer services that always stand out are Remitly and Wise (formerly Transferwise). Now, which one should you pick?

In this Remitly vs. Transferwise review, we break down the standout features, pricing, and overall benefits of each service.

Keep reading to find out which one between Remitly vs. Wise you should use to send money.

Table of Contents
Table of Contents

Overview of Remitly

Remitly

If you’ve regularly tuned in to our international money transfer service reviews, then you surely already know all about Remitly.

It’s arguably one of the most renowned services for sending cash domestically and internationally. With up to 57 locations around the world, Remitly is accessible to just about anyone.

People from 17 countries can transfer and receive money internationally without much of a hassle. Remitly now caters to a whopping 3 million users (and counting!).

What people love about Remitly is that it allows you to send your money using a variety of payout options. You can do direct transfers, wallet deposits, and door-to-door deliveries.

You can also check out our previous comparison article between Remitly vs. Xoom, if you need more information.

Pros

  • Various payout and transfer choices
  • Available in 57 locations and 17 counties around the world
  • Excellent customer support services
  • Transfer-scheduling and automation options
  • Reasonable transaction fees

Cons

  • Fixed transfer and monthly limits for international money transfers
  • No personal account management
  • Not compatible with travel debit cards

Standout Features of Remitly

Features & Benefits

Easy and Accessible Registration

To register for Remitly, you have two options: in-person or with the app.

If You’re Signing Up in Person…

  • All you have to do is go to the nearest Remitly branch and then ask for assistance from the staff. They will walk you through what you need to submit.
  • Usually, you’ll be asked to write down the recipient’s bank information. You’ll also get to choose the type of cash-out method you want.
  • After that, you’ll be all set. Don’t forget to check guaranteed exchange rates or currency fluctuations of whatever country you’re sending money to if it’s an international transfer.

If You’re Signing Up with the Mobile Application…

  • The first thing to do is download it. Once you have it, everything else is pretty straightforward.
  • You’ll be asked to input the same details that an in-person registration would require. Just be sure to check the app from time to time for any new updates.
  • But if using the app is still pretty overwhelming for you, Remitly has a customer support team that you can talk to. They’ll help you troubleshoot and navigate the app.

Money Transfer Options

As mentioned earlier, Remitly gives its users a number of methods to transfer funds, based on current exchange rates.

You can opt for direct transfers to your recipient’s bank account, virtual transfers to a direct wallet, or door-to-door deliveries wherein your recipient receives actual cash.

Your recipient can also choose to do cash pickup at his/her nearest Remitly outlet.

A number of foreign currencies are accepted. You can send money with your local currency, and your recipient can accept it according to the real exchange rate of their country.

And since Remitly has a mobile app, it’s easy enough to send money online at a fast transfer speed. In fact, your transfer amount gets reflected immediately once confirmed.

To add to the various payout methods, Remitly can support transfers using 30 different currencies. Just note that there are transfer limits, depending on the country you’re sending to and from.

Locations

Remitly allows its customers to send money abroad from 17 different countries. These are:

  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Singapore
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

In turn, users can claim money and do a cash pickup from over 100 receiving countries. The receiving locations widely per country you’re sending from.

For more information, it’s best to check with your local Remitly outlet or app.

Customer Support

The Remitly customer support team is highly competent and efficient at solving common issues.

You can chat with an agent in real-time via Remitly’s website. United States users can also opt to phone in via 1-888-736-4859.

Matters that aren’t too urgent can be sent through email at service@remitly.com. You can expect a reply within 24 hours or even less!

Remitly has a Help Center right on the website as well. There, you can browse through answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs). It’s a competent information service for all your queries.

Remitly Pricing

Remitly Pricing

On Remitly, the total fee is based on the exchange rates of the country of origin. That’s why it’s important to always be aware of the updated exchange rate of your recipient’s country.

  • The fixed fees can also vary depending on a specific country’s rules. For example, the fees in the US will be different from Australia.
  • And Remitly takes 2% of the total amount that you’re sending. Naturally, large transfers will entail a higher additional cost and percentage fee.
  • Lastly, Remitly’s competitive fees are vary depending on the speed of the transfer. Faster transfers mean a higher price.

Express Transfer

For instant bank transfers and international transfers, users can opt for Express Transfer.

Payment for fast transfers and regular transfers can be made using a credit or debit card. Different credit card companies do have additional transaction fees, though.

The rate for the Express Transfer starts at $4.99 up to about $99.99 per transaction. These rates depend on the full amount you’re sending.

We recommend that you opt for Express Transfer if you need to send money urgently or if you’ll be sending money abroad.

Economy Transfer

For non-urgent bank transfers and international transfers, you can select Economy Transfer. You can send money and then have your recipient claim it in 3 to 5 business days.

Economy Transfers are much more affordable than Express Transfers. They cost about $3.99 per transaction.

Payment options remain the same, though. You can use your credit or debit card to pay the fees.

Overview of Transferwise (aka Wise)

Transferwise

Previously called Transferwise, Wise is a fast-growing company that offers transfer services both domestically and internationally.

Since it’s based in London, Wise is recognized by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. It’s one of the most trustworthy money transfer companies in the world.

Wise has 8 million customers all over the world. Users can transfer money with a digital wallet and use different foreign currencies.

What sets Wise apart from all its competitors is the existence of the Wise debit Mastercard. With it, you can do multi-currency transfers, transactions, and withdrawals.

Also, one fun fact about Wise is that it was founded by the same people who created Skype.

Pros

  • Approved by the UK Financial Conduct Authority
  • Multi-currency and local bank transfer services
  • Transfer automation and scheduling
  • Wise debit Mastercard
  • Accessible mobile app
  • Option to transfer money to recipients’ email address

Cons

  • Has a minimum transfer amount
  • Not every multi-currency account can do automated international money transfers
  • No option for cash pickups

Standout Features of Transferwise

Features & Benefits

Mobile Application

Signing up for Wise is very simple. All you have to do is download the mobile application from the Apple Store or the Google Play Store.

From there, you just have to follow the registration process.

Wise will ask for your bank details and personal account numbers. You won’t be able to transfer money without an existing bank account, and the same goes for your recipient.

Once your account is confirmed, you’ll then get to start sending and receiving funds with your Wise Borderless account.

Transfer Route and Process

Wise mainly offers direct bank transfer services in different currencies. You can only send money if you and your recipient already have existing bank accounts.

There are some countries and currencies that will let you transfer funds using a credit card, though. Google Pay (aka Android Pay) and Apple Pay are also available, depending on the rules of your chosen currency.

Usually, the entire money transfer process takes 1 to 2 business days. However, this is still subject to change depending on:

  • Chosen payment method
  • Type of currency being sent
  • Time of sending
  • Rules of the country of origin
  • Rules of the country of receipt

You can check out Wise’s website to find out how your chosen currency will affect the transfer time. Transferwise fees can also be viewed on the site.

Transfer Fees

For every transaction you do on Wise, it takes a small portion of the total amount you’re transferring. This can be calculated using the application on the Wise website.

Many customers are impressed by the way Wise deducts their fees because it’s much cheaper than how a usual money transfer service would.

Other providers tend to include a miscellaneous charge and then a third-party fee on top of that, depending on the bank used. Wise eliminates all the hidden fees and just gives you one single fee to pay.

The application on its main page ensures that your transaction charges are always kept transparent.

Receiving Money

All you need to receive money is to have your bank account ready. The amount you’ll receive will always be in the currency of the country you’re in.

Sending Money

The same rules apply to sending money. All you need is your own bank account.

The money will be charged in the currency of the country you’re in. Wise will be in charge of converting it to the currency of your recipient.

Multi-Currency Compatibilities

As mentioned, Wise lets you send and receive many different currencies. They base their fees on updated exchange rates.

The final exchange rate that is accepted and used by Wise is called the Mid-Market Rate. They base it on Reuters, which updates the real exchange rates in real-time.

You can check out the current Mid-Market Rate on Wise’s rate tracker.

Wise Debit Mastercard

One interesting feature you can get when using Wise is the option to start your own debit card. This is called the Wise debit Mastercard.

This debit Borderless account lets you send money with waived fees. You can use it for USD, AUD, GBP, and EUR transactions.

In turn, you can receive money in different currencies. Your debit account lets you hold multiple currencies in one place.

Business Profile

Finally, Wise is also capable of creating a separate business Borderless account for you. The Wise Business Profile is great if you need an account for your supplier and client transactions.

All you have to do is sign up through Wise and then go through an easy verification process.

Once Wise confirms your account, you can then start sending and receiving money with your business Borderless account.

Transferwise Pricing

Transferwise Pricing

One thing to remember when using Wise for international money transfers is that its fees are based on the total amount you’re sending.

The final percentage it takes from the amount is technically the overall service fee for the transaction. It’s how much is needed to get your money to its destination.

Total Cost of Transfer

To understand how Wise does its pricing, let’s break down the three factors that the fees are based on. These are:

Amount of Transfer

Again, the total amount you’re transferring is the basis of the fee. Wise will take a percentage from this.

It’s important to note that different currencies have their own policies on how to compute this. The total portion Wise takes from a USD transfer will be different from an AUD transfer.

It’s best to check the calculator on Wise’s website to see the full breakdown of the fees.

Payment Method

Your payment method will also affect the transaction fee. Paying with a debit card will be different from paying with a credit card.

This is also since Wise will be dealing with different currencies, and so that also means different banks from around the world. These banks may have their own set of transaction rules and charges.

To be sure of the total fees that each payment method requires, we suggest you head on over to the Wise main page. The calculator will help you out.

Real Exchange Rate

Wise also bases its fees on the updated exchange rates of whatever country you’re sending to and from.

The main rate it bases the fees on is called the Mid-Market Exchange Rate (as mentioned earlier). It’s based on the real-time exchange rates compiled by Reuters every day and every hour.

Since exchange rates tend to change rapidly, Wise assures its customers that whatever the true Mid-Market Rate was at the time of filing, the transaction will be the final one charged to you.

This means that if you locked in a LOW EXCHANGE RATE at the time of filing the transaction and then the exchange rate SUDDENLY increases the minute after, your final fee WILL NOT change. It’s called a guaranteed rate.

Verdict: Remitly vs. Transferwise

Remitly vs Transferwise

We think that Wise (or Transferwise) wins this battle.

When comparing Remitly vs. Wise, we found that Wise is simply more accessible and easy to use. Other providers tend to have too many variables for their processes.

  • You simply have to download the mobile application, and you’ll get to instantly create your own account. Sending and receiving your funds will then go smoothly from there.
  • We also like that the Wise home page has the rate calculator readily available. It enhances the transparency of the required fees and also reassures customers of how much they’re actually paying.
  • The fees to be paid on Wise are also much more affordable and straightforward, especially when we compare Remitly. Wise makes it a point to take a reasonable percentage from the total amount.
  • You can use Apple Pay and other virtual wallets on Wise. Remitly only accepts participating bank transfers and traditional credit cards.
  • The option to create a separate business account on Wise is also a nice touch. You can do money transfers with your customers and suppliers.

But that’s not to say that Remitly isn’t any good.

  • Remitly is great if you need more payout methods for your international money transfer. It allows cash pickups, which Wise doesn’t.
  • It also has a variety of the same payment options that are accepted on Wise. You can pay via credit or debit card.
  • And though Remitly’s fees are somewhat higher than Wise’s, they’re still pretty affordable compared to other international money transfer services.
  • You can also do automated transfers and payment scheduling on Remitly. It’s convenient if you’re busy and have no time to do those tasks manually.

Conclusion

Conclusion

In the end, the choice is up to you. We trust that you’d know which one between Remitly vs. Wise will suit you and your needs better.

Both Transferwise (aka Wise) and Remitly are trustworthy services. They’re competent and have millions of users worldwide.

Our last tip for signing up for any transfer service is to just make sure that you have your bank accounts ready. It’s the sole requirement for a smooth process.

We hope that this Remitly vs. Wise review has helped you out! Go on and enjoy the convenience of money transfer services.

About the author

jack_morris

Jack Morris

Jack has worked on the video production, audio mastery, and physical coursework for over one-hundred popular online courses to date. He’s here to share his experiences with you, as well as show you what tools are worth your time, how to spot those that aren’t worth a penny, and above all else, how to keep yourself informed about how to navigate online course creation efficiently and effectively.