When making international money transfers, some of the questions you ask yourself revolve around the transfer fees, exchange rates, and turnaround time. But with so many money transfer providers available, it might be hard to pick the one to fit your needs.
A quick glance at both companies reveals global titans that pretty much size up each other. It takes an independent comparison to clearly bring out the differences in features such as transfer speeds, exchange rates, transfer fees, and reliability. This TransferWise vs OFX comparison also seeks to bring out the pros and cons of each provider and the verdict.
TransferWise is a UK-based international money transfer service provider that uses mid-market rates to process transfers. It provides an excellent platform for both small and large transfers subject to upper transfer limits. Currently, the limits are GBP 1 million, USD 1 million and EUR 1.2 million.
Previously known as Exchange Solutions Ltd, TransferWise has been in the industry for about a decade. It serves over 6 million customers who collectively transfer more than £4 billion monthly.
OFX has been in the industry for about two decades. It is one of the most trusted online money transfer operators with network coverage that connects over 1 million customers globally and supports 55+ currencies. Since its inception, customers have transferred over $100 billion through the platform. Out of the many features that OFX has, the one that gets mentioned the most is the $0 transfer fees the company charges on all transfers it processes.
How much a transfer will cost you is an important decision-making point you cannot afford to ignore. Money transfer providers have different fee structures mostly dependent on the currency pair and the amount you are transferring.
TransferWise fees vary depending on the currency pair, the payment method and the amount transferred. According to TransferWise, the fee it charges is a percentage of the amount sent. The higher the amount, the lower the percentage fee. The pricing calculator on the TransferWise website is the surest way of knowing how much you’ll be charged for your transfer.
OFX carries the day with zero transfer fees
XE is most certainly the winner at zero transfer fees.
If you’re looking for the money transfer provider with the lowest fees, use our simple guide to find the cheapest way to send money abroad.
When talking about exchange rates, the point of reference should always be the mid-market rate. Also known as the interbank rate, the mid-market rate is the midpoint between the buy and sell prices of a currency pair. This rate gives a good benchmark for comparison.
OFX charges an average margin of 0.4% above the mid-market rate. However, you may encounter cases where transferring amounts between $5,000 and $50,000, attracts margins of about 0.8% to 1.2%.
Once you agree on the currency pricing, OFX locks in the rate for the duration of the transfer to guard you against exchange rate fluctuations.
TransferWise doesn’t charge any margin on exchange rates. All transfers are priced at mid-market rates.
TransferWise emerges top in the exchange rate category.
TransferWise network coverage brings together a total of 59 countries that you can send money to through their platform. The number of currencies they support currently stands at 52.
OFX allows its customers to send money to more than 195 countries and territories globally. On the currency front, the provider gives a comprehensive list of 55 currencies (18 standard and 37 exotics) that it supports. The popular transfer corridors are Australia UK, Australia – USA, USA – UK, USA – Canada, Canada-UK, and UK-Spain.
OFX has the widest network coverage and supports the most currencies hence carries the day.
When transferring money through an online money transfer, there are two phases involved. The first phase is getting the money from your payment method to the provider. The second phase kicks in to transfer the money to the recipient.
Transferring money through the TransferWise platform takes about 1-2 business days. Smaller transfers may take hours to get to your recipient while large transfers may take a little longer than 2 days.
OFX takes between 3 and 4 days from the time you initiate the transfer to the time it gets to the recipient.
TransferWise has an edge over OFX in transfer speeds.
If you’re looking for the fastest provider, use our simple guide to find the fastest way to send money internationally.
The options open to paying for your transfer on OFX are Electronic Funds Transfer (ETF), BPAY if you are in Australia and direct debits for corporate customers. Once you lock in the transfer, OFX sends you a list of payment options. The only payout option available on OFX is bank transfer.
TransferWise accepts bank transfers, debits cards, credit cards, ACH bank debit, Bank wire transfer, and even Facebook Messenger when sending to Australia, UK, Canada and Europe. For bank transfers, you can make them in person at the branch, online, and over the phone. The main payout channel for TransferWise is bank deposits. However, in countries like Ghana, Kenya, Bangladesh and the Philippines, the provider allows for deposits into mobile phone e-wallet accounts.
Based on the variety of transfer payment and payout options, TransferWise wins.
On Trustpilot, TransferWise has 76,548 reviews, 86% rated ‘Excellent’ and 8% ‘Great’. The trust score is 4.6/5. The main advantages customers cite include:
However, n Reddit, some customers complained of delays and inefficiencies on some routes.
OFX has 3,717 reviews with 80% ‘Excellent’ and 10% ‘Great’. The trust score is 4.4/5. Customers had the following to say
Despite the handful of negative reviews on both ends, TransferWise wins in the number of reviews and trust score.
TransferWise website supports 12 languages: English (both US and UK), Germany, French, Portuguese, Turkey, Spanish, Japanese, Polish, Romanian, Italian, Hungarian and Russian. Customer support is available on live chat, email and phone.
Through the TranserWise mobile app, you can send money, track transfers, check rates and do so much more. The provider has put in place institutional-grade security with two-factor authentication as a security layer.
OFX supports 6 languages through its website: English (US and UK), Hong Kong, Australian, Canadian, New Zealand, and Singaporean. Customer support is through email and phone. Just like TransferWise, OFX has a mobile application available both on Android and iOS platforms. In terms of security, OFX has invested in sophisticated technology for identity protection and fraud prevention. They also have Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption for web security.
The language support and customer helpdesk channels give TransferWise a clear win over OFX.
Other features that OFX offers its customers over and beyond what TransferWise offers are limit and stop-loss orders, forward contracts and FX options.
TransferWise doesn’t offer any additional features when compared to OFX.
OFX is most certainly the winner in this category. They offer everything else TransferWise offers plus the above features.
To bring the above features into perspective for the two providers, below are some 3 scenarios involving money transfer to Danish krone that you should consider.
|Transfer speed||1-4 days||Up to 4 days|
On all the three scenarios, Transferwise comes out as the better option.
Based on our findings, both OFX and TransferWise excel in different categories as shown below:
The overall winner is TransferWise. It scores highly in most of the categories but in other areas, it is too close to call. Depending on the specific transactions you are carrying out, you may need to check out their separate reviews.