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Currencies Direct Money Transfer Review

 Currencies Direct has successfully stablished a presence worldwide, with offices in Spain, Portugal, India, the USA, China and South Africa. Due to their global network, the company facilitates transfers to over 120 countries in more than 60 different currencies. This makes it easy for private customers to send money home or to friends and family, and for corporate clients to pay international suppliers, overseas contractors and employees. In this review we will delve deeper into the defining factors of this London-based money transfer provider. 

Currencies Direct Icon Send Money with Currencies Direct

About Currencies Direct

Founded in London’s financial district in 1996, Currencies Direct is a company that has been championing bank-beating, easily accessible, safe and secure money transfer services for 25 years. The company has won many awards over the years, including the coveted Money Transfer Provider of the Year award in 2020. 

Eager to cater to customers from all four corners of the globe, the Currencies Direct website is available in 10 different languages: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Norwegian, Swedish, Deutsche, Chinese and Korean. This puts the company ahead of its competitors in terms of international accessibility. 

In addition to being multilingual, Currencies Direct also caters to both Personal and Business clients, with customised solutions for both. Personal customers can benefit from help with buying property overseas, expat emigration or simply transferring money to family in other countries; while Business customers can receive help with mass international payments, local collection accounts and risk management. 

In a bid to understand how Currencies Direct performs in comparison to the leading money transfer companies in the industry, we will be assessing cost, speed, global coverage and trust factors.

Currencies Direct exchange rates, fees and costs

The Currencies Direct business model is unique; rather than charging transfer fees, the company earns its revenue by adding a small mark-up to foreign exchange rates. This differs greatly from how banks calculate their fees, which is typically by charging a mark-up on the exchange rates as well as transfer fees and other bank costs. 

Exchange Rates 

As stated above, Currencies Direct presents customers with a list of live exchange rates around the clock, also known as mid-market rates. However, when it comes to initiating the international transfer, customers will be given a slightly lower rate. This is because the company makes its profits from the spread applied to the buy and the sell rates of the different currencies. Regardless of the mark-up, Currencies Direct exchange rates remain competitive, and far cheaper than any bank. 

Transfer fees 

Currencies Direct is known for its fee-free policy: the company doesn’t charge customers any kind of transfer fee irrespective of where they are sending money. 

Additional costs

Any other fees that may be incurred during an international transfer will be charged by third party providers and are out of Currencies Direct’s control. 

Top destinations to send money to with Currencies Direct

Currencies Direct serves a diverse customer base of private and corporate clients who send and receive money between multiple international transfer corridors. According to company data, the most popular countries Currencies Direct clients send money to and from are: 

Pros and cons of using Currencies Direct

Currencies Direct tends to attract repeat customers due to their competitive exchange rates, fee-free transfer options and handy rate alerts. However, customers should be made aware of any negative aspects of the company, in order to make an educated decision about whether or not Currencies Direct is for them.

No transfer fees: This is a trademark factor of Currencies Direct international transfers and continues to draw customers in
Customised, flexible solutions: Whether you arrange a peer-to-peer transfer or a business payment, there are tailored solutions to ensure all clients benefit from a smooth transaction. For example, business customers can apply for a multi currency account and set up forward contracts
Global coverage: Currencies Direct are able to facilitate transfers in more than 60 currencies with transfer services that reach countries in every continent
Limited pay-out options: Currencies Direct only support bank-to-bank transfers to overseas recipients; there is no option to arrange airtime top up or cash transfers
Limited African currencies: Customers sending money to Africa may be disappointed by the lack of currencies available

What type of transfers can you make with Currencies Direct?

You can only make bank transfers with Currencies Direct. However, there are numerous transfer options to choose from, depending on your circumstances and preferences. These include but are not limited to: 

  • Spot Contracts: Customers who want to make an immediate transfer can benefit from Currencies Direct Spot Contracts; by locking in a desirable exchange rate 
  • Forward Contracts: Customers who want to secure a fixed rate for a duration of up to one year, can do so with Currencies Direct, for a small fee; this transfer option helps bypass exchange rate volatilities
  • Limit Orders: This type of transfer lets customers target a particular exchange rate because until the rate is reached, no transfer can be initiated; this is a great option for customer who want to monitor a currency but are in no hurry to transfer funds right away

How long will it take to receive money using Currencies Direct?

Typically, Currencies Direct transfers take between 24 to 48 hours to get to the recipient; this is quicker than most high street banks. We recommend asking a member of the customer support team about the approximate delivery date, before initiating payment, to avoid any disappointment. Transfers where one or both currencies are classified as “exotic” take longer to complete compared to more popular major currencies. 

What payment methods can I use when sending money with Currencies Direct?

There are two ways to pay for a Currencies Direct transfer: debit card or bank transfer, however, the use of a debit card is more expensive than bank transfer. Payment can be made online, over the phone or through the mobile app.

What are the best reasons to use Currencies Direct for?

Currencies Direct has created a tailored product list of Personal and Business transfer solutions for corporate and private clients. The best of these solutions include:

Business transfers

  • Receiving overseas payments- Currencies Direct offers multi-currency accounts which customers can use to receive foreign currency transfers. An email or SMS notification will alert customers when the funds are available
  • Online sellers: Currencies Direct work with online marketplaces such as eBay and Amazon to facilitate transfers of earnings direct to customer bank accounts
  • Mass payments: Customers can pay more than one business or individual at a time by uploading files containing relevant payment data to their Currencies Direct account. This feature reduces errors and speeds up the process of multiple payments 

Personal Transfers

  • School fees and mortgage payments: The Currencies Direct regular payment service can assist with regular scheduled payments; this is only available to UK customers
  • Sending money with zero fees: Irrespective of the country, Currencies Direct will deliver its promise to never apply transfer fees

Can I trust Currencies Direct?

Currencies Direct is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the UK to operate as an Electronic Money Institution. It is also classified at level 1 credit rating by Dun & Bradstreet Corporation. This means the company is a low-risk organisation.

The other countries where Currencies Direct is regulated include:

  • France- Here Currencies Direct Ltd is authorised by Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Resolution (ACPR) as a provider of cross border payment services.
  • South Africa- Currencies Direct is regulated by the Financial Services Board (FSB) and registered under the Financial Intelligence Centre Act.
  • Canada – Here, the company operates under the Financial Transactions and Report Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) as a money service business.
  • In Spain, it is regulated by the Bank of Spain while in the United States, Currencies Direct is registered with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”).

The regulation is important for the safety of client funds and private information. Barclays Bank Plc are Currencies Direct bankers and PriceWaterhouse Coopers LLC are the auditors. Together, they ensure clients funds are held in separate accounts from the business finances and that the company follows standard procedures in carrying out its day to day businesses.

Since its establishment, Currencies Direct has served more than 325,000 clients in both the private and business categories. On average, the company carries out 550,000+ transactions valued at more than £7.5bn annually. The 22 global offices Currencies Direct operates employ a total of 500+ skilled professionals.

Clients interacting with the website are assured of data protection through TLS encryption. Also, the website has useful content and an FAQ section that tackles most of the common questions customers ask.

What do users have to say about Currencies Direct?

Currencies Direct has received excellent reviews on Trustpilot and attracts positive comments across various social media channels. 

Currently, the company has more than 6,000 reviews on Trustpilot, with a near-perfect rating of 4.9 out of 5. Only 3% of reviews are categorised as ‘Poor’ or ‘Bad’ feedback. 

To add to its credibility, the company has bagged several awards including three consecutive wins for Money Transfer Provider of the Year, as awarded by MoneyAge. 

How to get started with Currencies Direct to send & receive money

Sending and receiving money through Currencies Direct is a simple process that can be executed within minutes using the following step-by-step instructions. 

Sending money

Step 1. Sign up with Currencies Direct by selecting from the Personal, Business or Online Seller account options and completing the application

Step 2. After you have submitted your details, including bank account information, you will receive an account verification email or call from a Currencies Direct account manager. You will then receive an SMS or email containing your PIN; use this to activate your account

Step 3. Set up your first transfer by choosing the currency and amount you want to send, and enter the recipient’s details

Step 4. Once you have checked over the details of your transfer, in full, complete the payment for your transfer using a debit card or bank transfer

Step 5. As soon as Currencies Direct receives your payment, it will send the funds directly to your recipient

Receiving money

Transfers sent to a Currencies Direct customer will be instantly credited into the recipient’s bank account. Apart from the acknowledgement, there is nothing else the recipient is meant to do.

Does Currencies Direct have a mobile app?

Currencies Direct has its own free mobile app which is available to download for Android and iOS, via the Google Play and App Store. The mobile version of Currencies Direct platform makes it easier for you to do a number of things including:

  • Tracking your transfer status
  • Checking exchange rate movements
  • Setting rate alerts
  • Adding and managing recipients
  • Buying currency to use in future
  • Making transfers
April Summers

April is a trained journalist and the Content Editor for MoneyTransfers.com. She has 10 years experience writing about a diverse range of subjects, from financial services to arts and entertainment. When she’s not writing about global remittances she can be found daydreaming about her next holiday abroad.

Customer reviews

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I made a few transfert with them but once it took more than 15 days to get the moneythey didn’t know where it was… Recently they make me loose a month for a transfer which was refused several times because the RIB of their bank had changed and they even didn’t know it.

By France Soude
26 July 2020 - 02:33am

I used currencies direct recently, all went well until my last payment of three got lost.
My own bank spent a considerable amount of time trying to trace the payment, as Currencies Direct bank insisted it wasn’t lost in there system, ultimately that’s where it was found.
This would put me off using them again, even if it meant getting a lower rate.
Wrote to there CEO didn’t even have the courtesy of a reply.

By Robert Geddes
26 April 2020 - 08:48am