Wise (TransferWise) takes a radically different approach to international payments and currency exchange compared to banks and traditional money transfer companies. The way Wise charges for services is also different.
While some providers bundle costs together or hide fees in the exchange rates used, Wise is transparent about pricing so customers only pay for what they need, and always know in advance exactly what the service will cost.
TransferWise fees: an overview
Wise fees are structured around 3 key principles - costs are fair, transparent, and progressively being lowered to allow customers to get the best possible value. These commitments mean that Wise doesn’t hide or bundle fees like other providers.
All costs are shown upfront - and while that can be a lot to take in, it does mean you’ll always know exactly what your transaction is costing you.
Here are the key Wise costs you’ll want to know about.
|Open your Wise multi-currency account||Free for personal customers|
Business customers can open an account for free, or pay 54 SGD for full feature access
|Hold 54 currencies||Free|
|Get local bank details for 9 currencies||Free|
|Hold a balance of over 3,000 EUR (personal customers)||0.07%|
|Hold a balance of over 30,000 EUR (business customers)||0.07%|
|Order a Wise debit card||10 SGD for personal customers|
4 SGD for business customers
|Spend currencies you hold using your card||Free|
|First 2 ATM withdrawals up to 350 SGD/month||Free|
|ATM withdrawals over 350 SGD/month||1.75%|
|Over 2 ATM withdrawals/month||1.50 SGD/withdrawal|
|Convert a currency using your card||Low fee from 0.41%|
|Receive money in EUR, GBP, AUD, NZD, RON, HUF, TRY & SGD||Free|
|Receive USD by ACH or bank debit||Free|
|Receive USD by wire||4.14 USD|
|Send international payments||Low fee from 0.41%|
|Send high value international payments||Volume discounts|
of up to 0.17% on payments over the currency equivalent of 100,000 GBP/month (around 170,000 SGD)
TransferWise currency conversion fee
Currency conversion with low, transparent fees is what Wise does best. Unlike traditional banks and other money transfer services, Wise currency exchange uses the mid-market exchange rate with the conversion fee shown clearly so you can check you’re getting a good deal.
While many banks and money transfer services may claim to offer zero commission, or fee free currency exchange, all that means is that they’re not charging an upfront currency conversion fee. Providers still need to cover their costs, so they tend to simply hide their fees in the rates applied, by adding a margin to the mid-market exchange rate.
These costs get called a lot of different things - but whether it’s described as a margin, a markup or a currency exchange spread, it’s still an extra fee which can be around 3%. It might not sound like much, but it does push up the costs significantly. Here’s how a 3% margin would mount up over a few different transfer values:
Sending 1,000 SGD - the exchange rate markup adds 30 SGD to the total
Sending 5,000 SGD - the exchange rate markup adds 150 SGD to the total
Sending 50,000 SGD - the exchange rate markup adds 1,500 SGD to the total
Wise transfer fees
Wise international transfers have a couple of different transparent costs:
Fixed fee: covering the fixed costs associated with the transaction. For major currencies this is usually $0.36 - $0.60
Variable fee: covering the cost of the currency exchange. For major currencies this is typically 0.41% to 0.45% of the transfer value
You’ll always see the full fee before you confirm the transaction. Here are the Wise transfer fees for a few major currencies as an example:
|Sending 1,000 SGD to||Variable fee (SGD)||Fixed fee (SGD)||Total fee (SGD)|
*Fees correct at time of research 6th May 2022
TransferWise fee calculator
When you arrange a Wise international transfer online or in the Wise app you’ll be able to instantly see the full cost, the exchange rate available, and the estimated delivery time, using the TransferWise fee calculator.
Choose the currency you’re sending to and from
Enter the amount you want to send, or how much you want the recipient to get
Choose how you’ll pay for the transfer
The Wise fee calculator will show you the variable fee as a percentage and a total, the fixed fee, and the total cost. You’ll also see exactly what your recipient will receive, and when it’s likely to arrive in their account. Take a look at the Wise fee calculator here, to see how much you could save on your international payment.
How does TransferWise pricing work?
Wise has disrupted the international payment market with its approach to pricing. As we mentioned earlier, Wise’s commitments include:
Being radically transparent about costs
Charging as little as possible - and lowering fees over time
Using fair pricing so you only pay for the services you use
The price you pay with Wise varies based on the service you’re using, how you want to pay, and the currencies involved. However, you’ll always see the full fee upfront, with no sneaky hidden fees to worry about.
Sending large amounts with Wise
Wise is a safe provider to choose for high value international transfers. In fact, you can even get a discount on your costs if you regularly send Wise payments for yourself or your business.
Wise high value payment discounts are automatically applied with no need to pre-arrange the fee. That means everyone gets the best possible deal, every time.
If you send more than the equivalent of 100,000 GBP a month - that’s about 170,000 SGD - you could get an automatic discount of up to 0.17%:
|Under 100,000 GBP/month (around 170,000 SGD)||0|
100,000 GBP - 300,000 GBP/month (around 170,000 SGD - 340,000 SGD)
300,000 GBP - 500,000 GBP/month (around 340,000 SGD - 850,000 SGD)
500,000 GBP - 1million GBP/month (around 850,000 SGD - 1.7 million SGD)
1 million+ GBP/month (around 1.7 million+ SGD)
How does Wise pricing compare?
Before you choose a provider for your international payment it’s a smart idea to compare a few options, to make sure you’re getting the best available deal.
The good news is that specialist providers are almost always cheaper than using a traditional bank. However, even some specialist providers hide a part of their fee in the exchange rate they use. That means you’ll need to look carefully at the overall costs to find the cheapest provider for your payment.
At Exiap you can compare providers transparently, to find the best money transfer service for your needs based on both the fees and exchange rates available.
Wise takes a radically different approach to pricing compared to traditional banks and international money transfer services. You’ll see the full cost of the service you need upfront before you commit, with no hidden charges or exchange rate markups. This can be a lot to take in, but it’s more transparent than bundling costs or hiding a charge in the exchange rate, which is what many other providers do.
Overall, Wise’s low fees and transparent approach to pricing makes it a market beating service for many customers. For more, read our full Wise review.
Wises fees vary based on the service you need, how you’re paying and the currencies involved. However, you’ll always be able to see the full cost upfront before you arrange your payment.
Currency conversion with Wise uses the real mid-market exchange rate with no markup. All services have low, transparent fees which you can see before you make payment.
Wise transfer fees include a low fixed fee (often $0.36 - $0.60), covering the costs associated with the transaction, and a variable fee covering the cost of the currency exchange. For major currencies this is typically 0.41% to 0.45% of the transfer value.
Wise currency conversion and international payments use the mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees. This means they’re often among the cheapest - if not the cheapest - provider available.