Understanding Transfer Time: Why Does It Take Longer to Send Money Overseas

For all kinds of people who live and work abroad, sending money internationally can be an expensive problem. Banks and many transfer services charge big service fees, hide even more fees in exchange rates, and make the transfer process long and slow. For a long time there was no alternative. But now there’s TransferWise: a revolutionary international money transfer company that uses a peer-to-peer system to get your money to the country you need it in, securely.

What’s the difference? When it comes to getting your money across borders, banks that use traditional routes have to go through a lot of red tape. After accounting for the money that you put into the exchange system, they have to put it through a currency exchange. In cases where the bank doesn’t already own enough currency, they may have to buy more to fulfill your transfer order. Once that happens, the new currency is sent to a second bank, on the other side of the exchange, which must confirm the existence of the receiving account and the arrival of the money there.

TransferWise is different. Using a peer-to-peer matching system, money exchanged through TransferWise never leaves its currency of origin. This speeds up the process and keeps the price down: at TransferWise, you’ll always get the mid-market exchange rate, not one that a bank makes up to conceal unfair fees. It doesn’t happen in an instant, but that’s because TransferWise also uses rigorous security checks to keep your money safe. The TransferWise free structure is open and honest, too: for USD transfers, this means a flat fee of $3 for up to $500, a 1% fee on transfers from $501 to $5000, and a fee of just 0.7% for transfers over $5000. That’s it. 

TransferWise is backed by leading investors including Richard Branson and venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, but the proof is also in the numbers: over $4.5 billion sent internationally through TransferWise, with people saving a collective $200 million in hidden fees.

Learn more about how much you could save: Visit TransferWise Calculator


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