Best International Money Transfer Companies 2020

Wise
18.09.19
6 minute read

As more people move and travel, global money transfer companies have been sprouting up to meet globetrotters’ needs. But with so many options, how do you cut through the noise and find the one that best suits you? Well, we’re here to help. Read on to see our breakdown of the top 10 international money transfer companies in 2020.

To compare exchange rates and know exactly how much money you will receive, check out our honest rate comparison tool.

Remit2India

This to-India specific remittance company is an attractive option for large transfers with time on hand
remit2india-logo

  • Remit2India has been in the business for over 16 years
  • Only for residents of the US, UK, Ireland, Canada, and Australia
  • You can send transfers directly to bank accounts in India

Remit2India is an online platform for transfers specifically geared towards Non-Resident Indians. If you are a resident of one of the countries they operate in, you can send money through the Remit2India website. They have two options for the exchange rate, a guaranteed one or a market-based indicative exchange rate.

There are no hidden fees with Remit2India- all the fees are upfront. Plus there are 0 transfer fees for UK residents. The maximum you can send by online transfer is £100,000, and £200,000 for wire transfers. The typical transfers can take 2+ days with Remit2India, but you can pay extra for instant transfers.¹

Remitly

Remitly offers fast and convenient money transfers and often provides an attractive rate for first-time customers, but you may lose a chunk of change on their set exchange rate.
remitly-logo

  • Transfers to over 130+ banks in India
  • Fast and with a higher fee, or slow and a low-fee
  • A fixed exchange rate set by Remitly

Remitly is an online money transfer company that is available in the US, UK, Australia, and 13 more countries. They are well-rated on Trustpilot and guarantee total satisfaction on all transfers. Remitly has two options for sending money, Express or Economy. Express transfers can be done within 4 hours but with a fee, while the Economy has a better rate but can take 3-5 business days. They set their own exchange rate, which is weaker than the mid-market rate - the rate you see on Google. But they do provide fee-free transfers on $1,000 or more, even with debit cards. So for large transfers to India, Remitly remains a strong contender.²

Wise

Wise gives the real exchange rate and low fees upfront so you can make low cost, easy and fast bank transfers to India

transferwise-logo

  • No maximum or minimum on transfers
  • Smart technology helps pass on savings to customers
  • Easy to use app and website for quick transfers

From the people who brought you Skype, Wise with 5 million customers already and growing. Wise is available in 59 countries around the world, and lets you send money directly into local bank accounts. Customers love the transparent mid-market exchange rate, which is the same rate the banks use between themselves.

That plus a low upfront fee has customers paying almost 8x less than banks per transfer. Wise is a digital-first company, so no physical cash locations for pick up are available. But if you want to send money online or at your fingertips with an app, this is a go-to.

Moneygram

Moneygram has been on the remittance scene since before the internet and has been a go-to for cash pick up money orders, but they may no longer be the cheapest on the block.

moneygram-logo

  • In-person and online transfers both available
  • Cash pick-up in India or money directly in the bank account
  • Fees can start to add up for credit or debit card payments

Moneygram is the second-largest money transfer provider in the world with over 350,000 agents in 200 countries³. They set their own exchange rate which can eat into how much your recipient gets. On top of that, there may be a transfer fee that correlates to the time it takes for the transfer to make it over. While a bank account has 0 fees, it can take 3-4 days for the money to arrive, while a credit or debit card carries a fee but the money can be there in minutes. So while Moneygram is a good option for cash pickup in India, for frequent direct to bank account transfers there may be cheaper options out there.⁴

OFX

OFX has over 20 years of experience in money transfers but they are not fully transparent in their rates and pricing.

ofx-logo

  • 0 transfer fees, but they don’t state the rate you get clearly
  • The minimum transfer amount is £100
  • 80% of all major currency transfers are processed in 24 hours

If you are a resident of Australia, the US, Canada, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Singapore, and the UK, then OFX can be a money transfer option for you. They transfer directly to any bank account in India. While they do get good reviews, OFX isn’t fully clear on what you are getting when signing up with them. They don’t state the rate or total cost of your transaction directly on their website. So if you are comparing companies upfront, it is hard to say how OFX will fare.⁵

WorldRemit

Online money transfer service, WorldRemit, is a popular and strong option for sending money to India quickly.

worldremit-logo

  • WorldRemit allows for direct transfers to all Indian banks or Airtime popup for mobile phones
  • 90% of bank transfers to India arrive in less than 10 minutes
  • The WorldRemit app is well-reviewed for iOS and Android

WorldRemit has over 4 million customers globally and was used for almost 1 million transfers to India in 2018. It is available in over 50 different countries for to-India transfers. The exchange rate is set by WorldRemit so keep that in mind when calculating the costs. There is an upfront fee on all transfers, although new customers should check for the promocode to get the fees waived. With quick service and an easy to use website, WorldRemit can be a great option but for consistent and frequent transfers, make sure to shop around to ensure you’re getting the best deal.⁶

Xoom/ PayPal

Xoom makes it easy to send money transfers to bank accounts in India, but without using the real exchange rate and transfer fees, frequent or small amounts can be costly.

xoom-paypal-logo

  • Xoom charges a transaction fee plus an exchange rate they determine
  • Sends deposits in minutes to popular Indian banks like HDFC, Axis Bank, Yes Bank, and PNB
  • No transfer fees when sending £1,000 or more

If you’ve used PayPal, you might have seen that money transfers are done through their subsidiary, Xoom. Xoom does quick and easy money transfers directly to bank accounts in India. So whether you are sending to popular banks or even smaller banks in the country, you can expect the money to get there within 2 hours typically. They do set their own exchange rate, plus round to the nearest rupee, and so are able to make money off of the transaction. If you are sending large amounts, like £1,000 or more, they do waive the transfer fee. For an additional fee, you can arrange for a cash pickup in India as well.⁷

Ria Money Transfers

A legacy money transfer company, Ria is a strong contender for those with cash-pickup needs, but may not be competitive on fees and rates as more modern companies.

ria-money-transfer-logo

  • Charges and fees are not clearly listed
  • Transfers are capped at £4,999 over 30 days
  • Allows for cash pick up in India

For outbound money transfers to India, Ria is only available for residents in the US, UK, Spain, and Australia. That being said, the 30-year-old company has online transfers to bank accounts and cash pickup in over 377,000 locations across the globe. Their exchange rate is also set by the company, not the mid-market exchange rate. Their fees are hard to figure out upfront as the amount you will be charged depends on how much you are sending, the mode you sending them, the payment method and how it is to be delivered. In some cases, there may not be a fee, but that is more clearly stated once you are signed up. ⁸

Azimo

Azimo is an online platform that has direct to bank transfers and cash pickup available in India for Eurozone residents, but keep an eye on your costs after their initial promos end.

azimo-logo

  • Offer fee-free on the first 2 transfers
  • Possible 1 hour delivery time to 15,000 cash pick up locations in India
  • Direct to bank account and Swift transfers with delivery the next day available

Azimo is only available for residents within the 24 countries in the Eurozone, and surrounding it such as the UK, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland. They are a reliable and safe provider of money transfers to India quickly. For first time users, they provide attractive promotions such as stronger exchange rates and no fees. But the offers don’t last so do some research on whether Azimo is still the best around once the promos expire.⁹

Skrill

Skrill is an online wallet that makes it convenient and free to transfer between Skrill wallets but may not be an efficient partner for pure money transfers.
skrill-logo

  • An online wallet platform that specializes in e-commerce, transfers, cryptocurrencies, gaming or betting
  • The benefit of Skrill wallet is the fact that you wouldn’t have to share your personal bank details
  • No fees to receive money into your bank account or to sign up

Skrill is a global payments company that was started to make it easier to send, deposit and pay online. You can send money to local bank accounts in 45 different countries through the Skrill platform. How it works is that you have to sign up for a Skrill account and then pre-load your Skrill wallet. You use that wallet to make transfers. But watch out for the fees that really begin to add up. From a €5.50 processing fee to a 3.99% exchange rate fee, plus the time to move money into the wallet and then out, Skrill could possibly feel like more hassle than pure money transfer companies.¹⁰

Sources used for this article

  1. Remit2India
  2. Remitly
  3. About Moneygram
  4. Moneygram
  5. OFX
  6. WorldRemit
  7. Xoom
  8. Ria Money Transfers
  9. Azimo
  10. Skrill

All sources checked as of 18 September, 2019


This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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