There's a new sheriff in Forex Town!

Always on the look out, as I am, for money saving tips, my radar started pinging when this particular service was brought to my attention. For those of you who make foreign currency (forex) transfers, read on.

Their model is remarkably simple and transparent, instead of giving you a poor rate of exchange and potentially also charging you a fee for the transaction as many banks will, Transferwise will almost certainly give you the best rate you will find, they make their money by charging you a small fee which is clearly stated before you do the deal.

The system is based upon a peer to peer model whereby your requirements are paired with other businesses and individuals, using the mid market rate of exchange to swap the money between local bank accounts so you'll never occur bank charges.

Make a transfer now

Not only will you be saving money on the rate (I made a transfer this morning and was unable to find a better deal elsewhere) it is super simple to use. Using their website I was able to setup the transfer in under ten minutes, I received an email confirmation and updates on the status of the transfer throughout the process.

So not only have I cut out the bank's poor rate and hefty fee, I have managed it all online on an easy to use website. They don't even have a minimum transfer amount.

Founders Taavet Hinrikus and Kristo Käärmann

Launched in 2011 and based in the UK friends and founders Taavet Hinrikus and Kristo Käärmann, who have previous experience at Skype and PayPal, had this to say about the service, “We use real exchange rates to help expats, foreign students and businesses wire money securely, conveniently, and at a very low cost. Finally, a financial service built for people, not banks.”

What the media had to say;

“TransferWise cuts out banks and their commissions“ BBC

“Using the Skype principle to slash the rates that people pay to send money abroad“ The Economist

“TransferWise is looking to use the internet to spark a digital revolution in financial services“ Financial Times

“TransferWise has every chance of carving out a sizeable niche in the currency exchange market“ The Guardian

Thumbs-up from Mr Branson

“This innovative idea for shaking up the financial services sector while helping start-ups in a practical way has caught the eye of many new businesses already - as well as established brands like Virgin.”

Don’t just take my word for it, have a look at what their customers say, an astounding 9.7 out of 10 on Trust Pilot, unheard of in the financial sector.

There is no catch, just how we like it!

Try it out for yourself here

TransferWise is listed on the UK FInancial Services Register as an Authorised Payment Institution

SFN Affiliate

Yes Hilary but beautifully tiled ;-)

Concrete overcoats a speciality, eh John ?

Yesh orficer Sir!

Shouldn't that be 'Metroploditan Police'?

Oh yeah I used to deal with swimming pool people but lived to tell the tale. The worst was when one of the swimming pool "brethren" introduced me to one Michael Winner, of that ilk. (Sad to see his widow has been attacked by thugs in the UK this week). I also admit being member of an international clique intent (it is alleged) on world domination. I read it on the internet decades after I joined it , but I never knew it was intent on any domination (with apolgies to Mosley). I must admit it took a great deal of delving to find the connection and anybody here who manages to work out the name of that very devious organisation and give it to me has my great admiration. Nothing to do with Piers Gaveston, dead pigs, Piers Gaveston or secret handshakes. Neither was I involved with the Metroplolitan Police or any former disk jockeys. Meanwhile I must get back to plotting obscure world changing schemes, and getting lunch ready.

Well I have always had my suspicions :) but now we know.

And in the same then and presupposing John really is a swimming pool contractor, you would cheerfully give him your bank details, your address, phone number, email address etc which since he can clearly launder money :) he has already started the process of collecting data about you.

Well I will come clean! I am part of a global criminal gang! It's called the Swimming Pool Industry

Hi Brian

This is a perfectly normal procedure. And yes I share your concerns about confidentiality but if you haven't experienced it yet, you will be going through very similar steps with all your financial and legal services providers.

Just so you know your data and mine on TW is stored outside the EU, God knows where, and is shared with the American Gov't which has a well established reputation for being grossly incompetent in protecting database records.

I have just been asked the same information from my lawyers, even though I have known them for 15 years, know the managing partner personally, generated very large fees for them over the years, etc. But the regulations say "this is the process" so we go thru the process so they can say when and if audited this is what they have done.

As for our personal data, it is scattered all over the world, nothing about any of us is "secure" - see constant reports about hackers into so called secure service providers - and all you can do is to continually monitor your bank accounts and investments to make sure your money is safe.

Your being on this web site is in itself a security risk, since everything you do not know which member is a good honest citizen and who is part of a criminal gang collecting personal data about ex-pats in France!

Be cheerful!

After using TW for several years for occasional transfers they have now asked for evidence of identification. I understand that they need to comply with laundering regulations but I'm uneasy about the possible security risk ofsending a copy of my passport and utility bill for them to retain on their system - should I be?

Steve, on Monday I actually got slightly more than they originally advised!

Roger my moan is that the website says

send £1000 receive €1388.07 but actually you'll get +/- 3% ie it could be as low as €1346.43

and it's only the smallprint that tells you this (you actually have to click on tiny writing saying details to get the least indication). I understand that rates vary, but they just disguise this,; I made a big tranbsfer and got about 100€ less than I expected; ok I made a fuss and they paid up, but it just upsets me that what you see isn't exactly what you get.

Steve, TransferWise make it clear that they charge 0.5% on all transactions. That for me could not be more transparent. I used to use TorFX before I switched to TransferWise. On one occasion they sent me their internal contract note in error - I discovered they took a slice of £60 from my transfer amount of £2000 before they converted. Until that moment I was totally unaware that they were doing it, and believed there were no charges! This month I transferred £2000 and TransferWise charged me £9.95, and told me that would be the charge. I don't see the problem!

I don't agree with the commenst about "totally transparent charges", when the rate they quote is just an estimate (not that they make it obvious). Currencywise seems more straightforward to me.

I'd be happy with €140 to the £ too Bryan, lol.

Thanks Bryan...but as I have said, I DO continue to use them as you are doing, and all at a swift and excellent rate, just not when I have to play with the big boys for any future crucial transaction!

The final rate was 1 GBP = 1.4019 EUR, and the fee charged was £4.98.
Sorry David things are not working out but keep trying with this sort of rate it must be worth it in the end. Good luck

Yes Bryan, but I feel some contributors who have so far had good service are rather missing a point! A company can stand or fall on how they deal with things when a problem hits, and this company are letting themselves down...And the point about other financial service providers also having ID requests, a former revenue inspector (sorry!) I do understand the ins and outs of money FX, and also various ID and background needs, having had many a time to learn about them...what I'm alluding to is that, having provided the ID checks deemed needed to set up account, it doesn't seem reasonable to me to then move the goalposts 3 days AFTER an important transaction has been confirmed actioned, and then be unable to provide fax, line and mail contact to do so, especially when things are going wrong and become crucial.

So, good for you all the ones who so far have no beef....wish I was one of 'em!

I use transfer wise every month and have done now for around a year. Never had a problem. Just used it again 5 minutes ago almost got €140 to the £ so I,m sure as hell more than happy

Well I transferred £10K with no problem at all so whilst I am sorry to read your experiences they haven't happened to me.

And yes, I was asked a year after using them for EOI and when I asked why was told they just work thru their list of clients on an as ands when basis.

Nothing that they ask for in reasonable, it is exactly the same when you apply for say P Bonds or 65+ Bonds and other financial institutions anywhere in Europe, not least France of course when you open a bank account.

When I decided to pay off the mortgage a few months early, the receiving bank almost had a conniption, same nonsense about money laundering, even though I had been paying them monthly the same amount for 15 years but the banks are between a rock and hard place. If they do not know the source of the funds and they get it wrong with another client, then they are investigated and every "odd" transaction will be investigated.