This service is far better value for money than using a bank or another service such as Western Union and Money Gram as they use real middle market rates compared to the poorer exchange rates which other services offer. I compared the amount Transfer Wise was saying I would get with Google and both were very similar. Also Transfer Wise only charges £1 in fees (for transactions under a certain amount) which is far less than other services, my bank (Lloyds TSB charges £10 online and upto £25 in branch) and Western Union which charges £4+. I was transferring a relatively small amount (£40) and so using my bank would have meant that I the charge would have been about 1/4 of the amount I was transferring.
At first I thought it was too good to be true as I am quite a cautious online shopper, but after noticing that the company has been certified by the FSA (Financial Standards Authority) and reading lots of positive reviews I decided to go for it.
The service works by you placing a request on the website, then you need to transfer the amount you want to send plus the fee to their UK holding account using internet banking (instructions provided) and this is fee free for UK account holders (Eurozone users will use the Irish or Estonian holding account). When they recieve the payment (the same day if it is a working day or the next bank working day at the weekend) you money is swapped with someone else who is selling the currency you are buying and then the money is sent to the account you specified.
- Cheapest service in terms of transaction charge
- One of the best exchange rates offered by money transfer services
- Money arrives the same day it is sent out
- Full email notifications throughout the process with a receipt
- Best for GBP to and from EUROS (also supports buying other currencies such as swiss franks and polish zloty) - DOES NOT support USD
- Allows you to set a reference for the transaction but *Your Name will be appended to the reference you give which may not work if your recipient is using an automated system
- Doesn't work instantly (you can get instant conversion for a £7.90 fee though) and as money is converted at current rates (not the rate when you put the request in at) you could lose money (or gain) depending on the markets (my transaction lost €0.11 which is minor but with larger sums this may be noticeable).
- You have to pay money into their holding account so internet banking required (no credit/debit option)
Also if you know someone who has used this service and is a member ask them for their personal referral code as using this will mean new members do not have to pay the £1 fee on their first transaction (and the existing member will get £1 credit for the fees on another transaction). I found this out afterwards but it would have saved me £1! [I'm not going to put mine here or advertise mine in case people accuse me of spam, so ask someone you know who uses it or ask Google]
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