Most of us need to transfer money to another person at some point. You may have to send money to your child who is studying abroad or pay your share of the party bill. Unfortunately, international money transfers can be expensive, especially if you are making a transfer via your bank. Money transfer apps have sprung up to solve this problem, giving a cheaper and often more convenient alternative to international bank transfers.
Online banking via an app on your phone may be the norm nowadays, but when it comes to sending money between two people across borders, third party money transfer apps really excel.
Whether you’re looking to send money back home as an expat, or transferring money for an international payment, money transfer apps have the ability to send your money across the world for a low fee and often in a matter of minutes, making the once expensive and stressful process of international payments now as painless as possible.
The money transfer app space is growing constantly, and it can be hard to find the right service for your needs – which is why in this guide, we’re pointing you in the direction of some of the best money transfer apps on the market in 2021.
A money transfer app is a downloadable application that allows individuals to transfer funds to other people, friends and family, and businesses all over the world. These apps tend to be free, and designed for use on smartphones and apps can be downloaded for both iOS and Android.
Money transfer apps make sending money convenient and easy, often with 24/7 access so you can make international transfers and track the transaction anytime, anywhere. Most of these money transfer apps have multiple layers of security to keep your money safe and are quickly becoming the go-to option for quick and efficient transfers on the go.
Money transfer apps have grown extremely popular over the years, and there are many options to choose from depending on which country you’re in and what currencies you want to send. There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to money transfer apps or services. You should choose an app based on your specific needs including what you are using the app for, where you are sending money and the amount you are transferring. Some points to keep in mind include:
If you need to transfer money from one bank to another and would rather avoid the higher fees and longer transfer times often associated with using your bank directly, your best option is to use a money transfer app service.
These services will typically cater to either domestic transfers (within the US) or international transfers for people looking to send money overseas.
There are a number of domestic money transfer apps for transferring money from different banks offering numerous advantages over using your bank account to initiate a transfer. Some of the benefits of domestic money transfer apps include:
Many of the apps available for sending money between bank accounts are very similar, following a peer-to-peer sending structure that enables users to get their money to their recipient as quickly as possible.
In our guide to sending money within the United States, we’ve covered some of the top-rated domestic money transfer apps to get your money to friends and family including PayPal, Venmo, and Zelle.
In the past couple of decades, numerous international money transfer companies have launched their services to offer cheaper, faster, and more efficient overseas transfers than ever.
Indeed, money transfer apps are often a far more cost-effective way of sending money abroad than a traditional financial institution. Likewise, these companies tend to have an emphasis on digital modernisation, with user-friendly apps designed to make sending money abroad as convenient as possible 24/7.
Here is the roundup of the six best money transfer apps available today.
Wise is one of the biggest and most well-known names in the international transfers space, and for good reason. Their platform lets you send money abroad quickly and easily, and places an emphasis on transparent rates with no hidden fees.
The service lets you hold and send money in 50 currencies and all transfers occur at interbank rates-there is no mark-up on the exchange rate. With thousands of reviews and a reported 8 million customers, the Transferwise app enjoys a rating of 4.4 on the Google play store and 4.7 on the Apple app store. Read our full Transferwise review.
The Wise app gives you access to almost every feature on the web platform, including allowing you to:
WorldRemit is an extremely popular money transfer service and well-known for being a reliable brand with prudent security measures. World Remit enables senders in 56 countries to send money in 90 currencies to over 150 countries across the world. It supports a wide variety of payment and delivery methods, and these can all be accessed through its mobile app.
You can send money to bank accounts, arrange cash pickups/home delivery, deliver to mobile wallets, or even carry out mobile top-ups. To fund your transfer, you can use bank transfer, credit/debit card, Google Pay, Apple Pay, and many other e-wallets. The WorldRemit app has a rating of 4.2 on Google play store and 4.8 on Apple app store. Read our full WorldRemit review.
The WorldRemit app gives you access to a wide range of features on the go, such as:
Azimo is a fantastic money transfer app well known for its sleek interface and excellent user reviews. Azimo currently has the capacity to provide transfers from 24 European countries to over 195 countries around the world.
Using their excellently-regarded mobile app, you can send money to any bank account, to more than 300,000 cash pick-up locations, and to mobile wallets. With a rating of 4.5 on Google play store and 4.7 on Apple app store, Azimo is a popular choice with migrants and expats looking to send money to family back home. Read our full Azimo review.
The Azimo app provides instant, easy access to money transfer services so you can manage your accounts any time of the day when you need to initiate a transfer. The multi-lingual support makes this a popular choice if you are frequently sending money to family members who may want to familiarise themselves with the app too. On the app you can:
XE enables money transfers from Europe to over 120 countries in 60 currencies. The service does not charge any transfer fee, only a margin on the exchange rate, making XE one of the most reasonable money transfer services around.
Even with no fees, the exchange rate margins you can access through the XE app are much lower than the rates offered by banks and some other financial institutions, making it a great choice for users who want to save money on their transfers. The XE app has solid ratings of 4.5 on the Google play store and 4.6 on Apple app store. Read our full XE review.
The XE app provides access to a wide range of features, as you would expect from a company as trusted as XE. Through the app, users can:
Western Union is among the best-known names in the world of international money transfers and has been operating for over 145(!) years, so it’s fair to assume they know what they’re doing.
The Western Union app allows you to transfer money on the go via a variety of payment methods: using a debit/credit card, directly from your bank account, or via Apple Pay. In case you wish to pay cash, you can visit one of the thousands of agent locations spread worldwide. Western Union has one of the widest disbursing networks of any provider, allowing users to send money to more than 500,000 agent locations in over 200 countries. The company’s app has a rating of 4.8 on the Apple app store and 4.5 on Google play store. Read our full Western Union review.
Western Union’s app gives you access to a range of Western Union’s services easily through your phone. If you want to transact in cash, you’ll still have to visit an agent location, but with the app, you can:
PayPal is an extremely popular company for sending money and purchasing items online – but it also offers international transfers as a service. With the Paypal app, you can send money online, request money or even collect money from people around the world. With a wide geographic presence across the world and a huge user-base, it is among the most popular and best-known money transfer providers.
Alongside this, PayPal is integrated as a payment method with many shops and service providers, enabling you to keep all your financial activity in one place. The Paypal money transfer app has impressive ratings of 4.8 on Apple app store and 4.4 on Google play store.
PayPal’s app has been helping people to manage their accounts and make payments on the go for years. Here are some of the things users can do through the app:
Money transfer apps themselves are always free to download (if you discover one that isn’t, you can definitely find a free app that is just as good!). The real answer to this question is found in the kinds of fees charged by the money transfer services they allow you to use. These are the costs usually involved when using a money transfer service:
Yes, money transfer apps are available on all major operating systems such as iOS and Android. Outside of this Google Pay and Apple Pay are regularly supported.
While all major international money transfer companies have an app, it is not necessary that every provider has one. Providers that don’t have apps will usually at least have a mobile-optimised web platform you can use on the go. However, many people like the convenience of having an app on their phone to handle their money transfer need.
✔ 24/7 access to your account and transfers
✔ You can initiate a transfer even on the go
✔ Makes transfers quick, easy, and convenient
✔ Secure verification processes to keep your money safe
The introduction of Apple Pay and Google Pay has made it easier than ever to go cashless – and even wallet-less! Nowadays, it’s possible to make payments online, in-person, and to other people using just your smartphone, with contactless and BlueTooth options reducing the number of details needed for transfers even more.
Introduced in 2017, Apple Pay makes it possible to send money to your contacts within the Messaging app itself. The one requirement is for the sender to have a debit or credit card synced to Apple Pay, from which the payment will be taken.
To receive a payment with Apple Pay, the money will be sent to the recipient’s Apple Pay Cash card within the Wallet app. This can be transferred to a bank account or used to make Apple Pay purchases online or in-stores.
This feature is similarly available to Android users with Google Pay, although sending money to friends or family is only available to US customers at the moment.
Money can be transferred to a contact using their phone number or email address within the Google Pay app, with a $10,000 USD limit on single transactions.
Once you have chosen the right money transfer app for your needs, you can download the app from the Google Play store or the Apple app store depending on the device you are using.
You will be asked to register and set up an account by providing your personal and payment details (you may have already done this step online, in which case you can just log into your account on the app). You will also need to verify your details by providing a Government approved ID such as a driver’s license or passport. These requirements may vary depending on the regulations in your country and on the app you’re using.
After this has been approved, you can link one of the payment methods accepted by the provider and start using the app to transfer funds and manage your account.
Money transfer apps provide a convenient and efficient way to transfer money around the world, giving you instant access to some of the best-known names in the money transfer industry directly through your phone. There are many IOS and Android apps money transfer apps available and choosing the right one for your needs can be difficult to navigate. That’s why we always strongly recommend doing your research and comparing providers before downloading to ensure you’re going to get the best deal for your transfers.
Before choosing the best money transfer app, check the fees and exchange rate margins applied to the transfer you want to make, whether it supports your country/currencies, and how fast the transfer speeds it offers are. Reading some overall reviews to ensure the app you are looking at is highly rated and secure is also a good idea.
Each provider listed in this review has a great reputation for providing industry-leading services to their users, but there’s no one-size-fits-all solution to money transfers. Every provider has its own features and pros and cons and you can choose the one that best meets your money transfer needs.
Just because one app works best in one situation, doesn’t mean it’ll be the best option in another. By comparing your options, you can ensure that ultimately, you make the right choice for the best money transfer app and your transfer needs every time.
Jonathan is the founder and editor of MoneyTransfers.com. Jonathan is highly experienced in the currency transfer market, having previously worked in the FX trading industry, alongside being an avid traveller. Using his knowledge he identified a need for transparency and further education to help people save money on their money transfers, leading to the creation of MoneyTransfers.com