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OFX Money Transfer Review

OFX is an international money transfer company with an excellent reputation. Known for offering competitive exchange rates and quality 24/7 customer service, OFX simplifies the process of moving money overseas, thanks to its global network of 195 countries. Read on to learn more about how this money transfer service differs from more traditional bank transfers.

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About OFX

Based in Sydney, this Australian remittance service has grown exponentially since its founding in 1998. The company now has offices in 8 locations across the globe: Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland, New Zealand, the United States and the United Kingdom

OFX estimates that over the course of the last two decades, the company has facilitated £80 billion GBP in transfers, with more than 1 million users around the world. The organisation is famous for promising fee-free transactions to its customers, as well as being able to send money to a vast array of locations. In this review we will consider the most important aspects  of this service provider, providing a comprehensive guide to OFX money transfers.

OFX exchange rates, fees and costs

Here we will divulge details about the overall cost of using OFX to send money overseas, looking at any exchange rate mark-ups, transfer fees and other costs that will contribute to the final price tag. 

Exchange rates

OFX makes its money from a percentage markup charged on top of the mid-market rate. In order to know how much money will be exchanged, customers are required to first open an account with the provider. It is important to note that the OFX currency converter tool will present the mid-market exchange rate, without including any indication of how much will be deducted as a mark-up. 

This mark-up – also known as foreign exchange spread – will range between 0.4% and 1.5% which is a great deal less than what banks charge for foreign currency. Although this mark-up is variable, it is far lower than banks which charge up to 5% over mid-market rates.

Transfer fees

This provider does not charge any transfer fees. Unlike with other money transfer companies, the amount you send with OFX will arrive as it is without any deductions.

Additional costs

Transfers sent to Japan and South Africa incur additional costs: please enquire with an OFX customer service agent for up to date details.

Top destinations to send money to with OFX

OFX helps customers send money transfers to more than 195 different countries. The company currently offer 55 currencies, divided up into Standard and Exotic varieties. For a full list of currencies please see this page on the OFX site. The most popular destinations for sending money with OFX customers are as follows:

Pros and cons of using OFX

Business owners, online sellers and individual clients with global remittance requirements all find OFX services appealing, mainly because of the competitive cost and the foreign currency risk mitigation measures that are in place. We want to know if OFX customers have been disappointed by any aspects of the service, and if so, what areas this may be. 

Pros
Low-cost transfers: Thanks to fee-free transfers and a competitive foreign exchange spread between 0.4 to 1.5% above the mid-market rate, customers can enjoy low-cost transfers to all parts of the world
Wide range of currencies: Whether you need to send funds in a Standard or Exotic currency, OFX offers options for a variety of global currencies
Flexible transfer options: There are several transfer options to choose from, including forward contracts and recurring transfers
Locked in rates: Customers can lock in a desirable exchange rate for up to 24 hours
Daily Forex Market News: The currency specialists at OFX publish daily updates discussing currency trading data, designed to help customers make informed transfer decisions based on currency performance
24/7 customer service: OFX leverage their global resources to make sure help is on hand at all hours of the day, via phone and email
Cons
Higher transfer thresholds: Customers must maintain a minimum transfer threshold of $1,000 per year or $200 per transfer to use OFX services. This can prove to be prohibitive, especially for individuals sending less frequent transfers
Limited pay-out options: Unlike other providers who offer cash pickups, airtime top-up and prepaid cards, OFX can only deposit funds to bank accounts. This may be an issue if your recipient does not have a bank account or access to banking services
Payment via bank transfer only

What type of transfers can you make with OFX?

In an ever-evolving money transfer industry, in which companies are constantly diversifying sending options, OFX has remained steadfast on their decision to keep bank transfers as the only way to send and receive money. This product structuring certainly limits some customers, but most business customers are happy with this set up. 

What OFX have done differently is that within their bank transfer service, the company can offer multiple options that cater to a variety of preferences and financial needs. These are:

  • Single transfers: One-off transfers also known as Spot Deals; customers are given the advantage of locking in a desired exchange rate and benefiting from faster transfers
  • Recurring transfers: If you are sending money overseas regularly, albeit for school fees, mortgage payments or a property purchase, this is a great solution for you; simply set up a transfer schedule and OFX will manage the rest 
  • Forward contract: If you want to lock in an exchange rate for future use, OFX’s Buy Now, Transfer Later forward contract option is best for you. Simply set a target rate which, if reached, will become automatically locked in for you by OFX. Customers have up to six months to make your transfer using this method
  • FX option: This permits customers the right, but not the obligation, to make a transfer at a certain time, using a desired exchange rate. This service comes at an additional premium cost, but customers will get the benefit of protecting future transfers against volatile shifts in exchange rates

How long will it take to receive money using OFX?

Due to the fact OFX transfers are sent from one bank to another, they can take a few working days to arrive. Although the company estimates transfer speeds of 1 – 2 working days, some customers note transfers arriving before or after that window. 

In general, transfers to North America and Europe can arrive the same day or the following day; whereas transfers to Asia, Africa and South America are more likely to take up to 2 days to arrive. Bank holidays, weekends and currency pairings also determine the speed of an international transfer.

This delivery speed is within the normal limits of bank transfers, but compared to other specialist money transfer companies, OFX is not as competitive. 

What payment methods can I use when sending money with OFX?

When arranging an international payment with OFX, customers must first send a bank transfer to OFX to fund the transfer. There are several ways to do this: 

  • Domestic Funds Transfer– You must quote the Client Reference number as indicated in the email confirmation sent to you.
  • Electronic Funds Transfer– This option is available in most banks globally.
  • BPAY– If you are transferring from Australia, you can use BPAY to pay for your transfer.
  • Direct Debits– Corporate customers can pay for their transfers easily through direct debits from their designated accounts.

After you lock in your transfer, you’ll get an email with a full list of transfer payment options you can choose.

What are the best reasons to use OFX?

International money transfer providers position themselves to cater to different markets. OFX is best for businesses and personal transfers.

Business

If you run a small or medium scale enterprise, OFX can help you:

  • Pay your overseas suppliers
  • Pay your staff and contractors
  • Make transfers to your overseas accounts

Online sellers who need to maintain transactional accounts in different currencies can benefit from the unique products offered by OFX. Every business looking to enjoy what OFX has to offer is first required to open a business account.

Personal

Apart from businesses, OFX also helps individuals to send money to their families and friends through personal transfer solutions:

  • Send tuition fees to your children or siblings
  • Send a regular stipend to your family to beef up their household income
  • Transfer money for savings and investments overseas
  • Pay mortgages and other loan obligations

The structuring of OFX products makes it easier for businesses and individuals to plan their transfers and enjoy the best rates across countries. However, if OFX doesn’t fit your needs, read our guide to find the best way to send money overseas.

Can I trust OFX?

OFX, the brand and trading name of OzForex Group Ltd, is registered in Australia and has been operating for over three decades (since 1988). Over time, the provider has extended its global reach by opening up offices in different parts of the world, signing agreements with 155 banks and supporting 55+ standard and exotic currencies.

Currently, OFX has over 1 million active customers on its platform and to date, it has transacted more than USD100 billion.

It holds an Australian Financial Services Licence (“AFSL”) issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (“ASIC”).The licensing gives the provider the authority to deal in and offer financial product advice in regard to derivatives and foreign exchange contracts.

Apart from Australia, OFX is registered and regulated in the United States, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Canada. The regulations require that OFX holds the client’s funds in segregated accounts separate from its business accounts. This ensures the safety of customers funds even if the company goes through financial turbulence. It is also required by law to observe a minimum capital threshold.

When you register for an OFX account online, you will receive a call from the company to verify your details before you begin transacting. This is important for security reasons. Also, beginning September 30, 2019, OFX is introducing 2-Step Verification through SMS for any major changes that you do on your profile.

Most of the information about OFX and how it does business is readily available on their website. For instance, their online calculator gives you a close estimate of how much you should expect to pay in exchange rate margin fees. In case there is anything you need to confirm, their 24/7 phone and email customer support are there to help. On top of this, OFX has a detailed FAQ section where almost all questions are addressed.

What do users have to say about OFX?

In general, reviewers on Trustpilot praise OFX for its excellent 24/7 support, favourable exchange rates and minimal transfer costs. Setting up on the platform is also very simple and fast. In less than 5 minutes, you are ready to send money to your business associate, supplier, staff or family and friends.

With 3,677 reviews, 80% of which are rated as excellent, users cited the following as the main reasons for using OFX in place of other international money transfer services.

  • Affordability- With $0 transfer fee burden, most users claim to have saved hundreds of dollars by choosing to transfer their money through OFX.
  • Professional Customer Support- More than just being reachable, the OFX customer support team has received kudos for helping customers out when stuck, enabling them to complete their transfers as smooth and as fast as possible.
  • Reliability- When sending to different countries, users have praised the constant communication and updates on their transfer until their money gets to the recipient.

The 7% who rated OFX either as poor or bad, pointed to the phone verification process as being tedious and unnecessary. Though we know this is part of OFX’s internal control system and regulatory requirements.

How to get started with OFX to send and receive money?

Sending and receiving money with OFX is designed to be a breeze. Remember you can send money on the website, using a mobile app, or even on the phone in less than 5 minutes. For example, imagine you’re sending money from USA to Australia, below are the steps to follow:

Sending money

Step 1: Sign up for an OFX account online

Step 2: Wait for OFX customer support to call and complete the account verification and set up process

Step 3: Submit additional information if you’ve been requested to

Step 4: Login to your OFX account and check the live exchange rate

Step 5: Enter the recipient’s details and counter check for accuracy

Step 6: Send your funds and OFX will ensure the transfer is completed.

Receiving money

Since the money is deposited into your bank account, there is nothing much you are required to do. Probably as part of business ethics or personal etiquette, you may inform the sender that you’ve received the money.

Does OFX have a mobile app?

Yes, OFX has an easy to set up and use mobile app available as a free download on both Android and iOS platforms. Through the app you can:

  • Register for an online OFX account
  • Transfer funds from your bank account to the recipient bank account
  • Get live exchange rates
  • Lock in exchange rates
  • Get updates on your transfers

On Google Play, the app has a rating of 3.6 with 1,760 reviews. On the App Store, the OFX app has two reviews. Users are yet to get along on the mobile to bank account transfer.

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