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Money transfer fees continue to hit the roof.
And worse, financial corporations charge hidden fees, inflating the cost of sending money internationally.
So whether you’re providing link building services, an affiliate marketer or even a freelancer depending on every single dollar- ultimately, you’re running a business and the lower your expenses, the better.
Thankfully, there are ways you can escape the hidden fees if you know the best way to send money overseas.
I’ll explore different services for international money transfers, how they work, and when to use each.
Let’s get to it.
|Platform||Transfer fee (% of the amount sent)||Processing time||Does the recipient need an account?|
Wise (formerly Transferwise)
0.25% to 1%, or more depending on the currency
Minutes for card payments 1 to 5 days for bank transfers
0.5% to 3%
Instant for Payoneer to Payoneer transfers 2 to 5 days for bank transfers
0.5% to 2%
Instant for economy transfer options
$2.99 to $5.99
3 mins for cash pickup 2 to 3 business days for bank transfers
fixed fee of $4.99 2.9% to 3.3% for debit card payments
Minutes for card payments and Paypal balance 3 to 5 days for bank transfers
A fixed fee of $0.30 per transaction 2.1% to 4.4% of the amount sent
Instant from one Paypal account to another. 3 to 5 days when sent through the bank
Paysend 0.5% to 2% of the international money transfer value
Instant for card payment Bank transfer takes 3 to 5 days.
Wise has the best exchange rates and low transaction fees, yet they don’t charge markup fees like other payment providers. Plus, they have decent customer support compared to other money transfer services.
You can send money to someone without a Wise account. You only need their bank account number and full name. You can also hold different currencies using the platform’s international bank accounts.
You’ll need an email address to register a Wise account. You may also verify your identity using your national ID and a photo of your face.
To send money on Wise:
Wise payments arrive within minutes when you pay using a debit or credit card. But bank transfers take 3 to 5 business days on average.
0.25% to 1% of the amount sent. But the fee could be as high as 7%, depending on the currency.
Different currencies have different transfer limits. For example, you can send up to 5 million GBP per transfer, but the maximum transfer amount for AUD is 1.5mllion.
Card, wire transfer, ACH, or Wise balance
Payoneer allows medium-sized businesses and individuals to send and receive money without a merchant account. It’s best for mass payouts, sending money via Amazon, and marketplaces like Upwork. But they charge $29.15 if you don’t use your account for 12 months. And they have some hidden fees.
Like Wise, the recipient doesn’t need a Payoneer account, only a bank account.
You need your ID card, email address, phone number (used for verification purposes), and bank account (with the same ID Card Name) to create a Payoneer account.
To transfer money to a recipient:
After receiving a confirmation email, it takes 2 to 5 business days to reach the recipient’s bank account. But expect a day or two days delay during holidays.
Sending money from one Payoneer account to another is free. But you’ll pay 0.5% of the transfer amount if you send it in a different currency. In addition, expect 3% charges for credit card payments and 1% for e-check payments.
If you send the money via Payoneer balance, the recipient will pay $1.50 to transfer funds from their local bank account.
Payoneer’s verification process is hectic. They can hold your funds or close your account if they suspect fraud, yet their system can sometimes be inaccurate.
Payoneer balance, ACH direct debit, credit card, and bank transfer.
Remitly has the best deals for cash pickups. Their services, available in Europe, North America, Singapore, and Australia, allow you to send money to developing countries. But it’s not suited for business payments.
Once you create your Remitly account using your email, you’ll verify your identity to make your first transfer. Verification may involve uploading your ID and your photo/video. The recipient doesn’t need a Remitly account to receive money in their bank account.
To send money via Remitly:
It takes 3 to 5 days for Remitly to process payments with the Economy transfers option, while ‘Express card transfers‘ arrive in minutes.
Their fees range between 0.5% and 2% of the international money transfer value.
Remitly imposes a $2,999 daily limit until you provide more information like your full legal name, ID, current home address, and bank statements.
Credit or debit card, Klarna, or bank transfer.
WorldRemit allows you to send small amounts of money overseas cheaply, and they provide many payment options. You can also send airtime pop-ups and pay overseas utility bills. But for large transfers, choose another alternative like Wise.
Create your WorldRemit account using your email address. You’ll need to verify your identity using your national ID or proof of address.
The recipient does not need to have an account.
To transfer money:
WorldRemit has the fastest processing time. It takes 3 minutes to get your money for cash pickup, mobile money, and airtime top-up.
Bank transfers take 2 to 3 days, while door-to-door processing takes 24 hours to 7 days, depending on the location.
WorldRemit charges $2.99 to $5.99 depending on the currency, country, and delivery method.
Money transfer limits depend on your country, the recipient’s country, the payment option, and the local partner’s transaction limit. (WorldRemit facilitates money transfers through a network of local partners like banks)
Bank transfer, Card, Klarna, Mobile money, and Apple pay
Xoom is similar to WorldRemit, but it’s a Paypal service. You can send money to over 130 countries, pay bills, and top-up airtime. But it’s suited for personal transfers.
You need a Paypal account to send money using Xoom. But the recipient does not need one. They can receive money through bank deposit, debit card deposit, a pickup point, or doorstep delivery. All you need is their name, address, and bank account information.
To send money via Xoom:
Sending money using a debit card, credit card, or PayPal balance takes minutes. But a bank transfer takes 3 to 5 business days.
The fixed fee is $4.99 plus a variable commission of between 2.9% and 3.3% of the transaction amount for debit card payments.
The maximum you can send with Xoom is $3,000 per day if you’re in the US. That’s until you verify your legal name, current home address, and bank account details.
Bank transfer, card payments, or PayPal balance.
Paypal is a popular money transfer service operating in more than 200 countries. It’s easy to use and safe. But they’re quick to limit new accounts. Once they limit your account, things become complicated because their customer support tends to respond with generic responses.
You, and the recipient should have Paypal accounts.
To send money abroad:
Paypal offers instant delivery for money sent from one Paypal account to another, but 3 to 5 days for bank transfers.
Paypal charges 4.4% for international transfers plus a fixed fee that varies depending on the location.
A verified Paypal account can send up to $10,000 per transaction.
Nonetheless, Paypal has high transfer fees and lower exchange rates than other money transfer services.
Paypal balance, Card, and bank transfer
Paysend is best for low-cost international card payments. Unlike other money transfer providers, it charges a low fixed fee for card-to-card transfers and Paysend-to-card transfers.
First, create your Paysend account. You’ll enter your phone number, name, and date of birth as shown on your ID, residence address, email address, and the security code they’ll send you.
To transfer money using Paysend:
Card-to-card payments are instant. But card-to-bank transfers can take up to 3 days, depending on the receiving country and bank.
Paysend’s fees depend on the currency – each currency has a flat rate:
Paysend limits are quite low – $999 or 5 transfers for US users (until you verify your account). Unfortunately, the review process can take up to 3 days.
Bank transfer and card payments
Online money transfer services are the best way to send money to remote areas worldwide. But how do you pick one option over another?
Let’s get into that.
All money transfer services will charge you an exchange rate fee. Sometimes these fees may not be shown upfront, which adds to the hidden cost, especially when you send a large amount of money. To be safe, use providers who are upfront about their mid-market rate, like Wise.
If sending a small amount of money, we have providers who charge very low fees for such transactions. For instance, Revolut won’t charge you for sending less than $1000. When sending large amounts of money, like $100,000, you may need to choose a company specializing in big transfers like Authorize.net.
Delivery time is essential, especially if you send money to cater to emergencies. If you want to pay with your card, use Paysend because their card-to-card transfers are instant.
On the other hand, WorldRemit is super fast for cash pickup and mobile money deliveries.
Many service providers charge a flat fee or a percentage of the transfer value. And the fee will be higher if you use a credit card to send money.
If you want to save some coins, use a bank account or direct debit deposit. But remember that bank transfers take longer (2 to 3 business days).
Wise is the best way to send money overseas. It guarantees safety and the best exchange rates. Wise’s upfront fees are also low compared to banks. Plus, banks take days to deliver money while Wise is instant.
The option you choose comes down to your needs and the recipient. How much money are you sending, to which country, and what does the recipient need to receive the money?
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