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Currencies Direct is a UK based international payment service, with offices in 20 locations around the world. If you’re based here in Singapore, you can create a Currencies Direct account online, and arrange your transfers using the website or by phone. There’s also a Currencies Direct app for both iOS and Android, if you’d rather manage your money that way.
This Currencies Direct review will cover the features and fees you need to consider if you want to use their service. It’s always best to research a few international payment options before deciding which will work best for your transfer, so we’ll also touch on low fee international payments from Wise as a comparison.
Wise cross-border payments use the same exchange rate you’ll find on Google, with just a simple, transparent fee to pay. You could find your international transfer is 12x cheaper compared to your bank when you use Wise - and with the handy borderless account you can also save yourself time when setting up payments to friends and family overseas.
When you’re choosing an international payment provider, you want a company which balances cost and convenience, and keeps your money safe throughout. Let’s take a look at the process for using Currencies Direct, and the charges and fees you need to know about, to help you find the best available deal for your payment.
Open a Currencies Direct account online by visiting the website and following the prompts on screen. Currencies Direct state that getting an account up and running will take just a few minutes¹- although you might be asked to provide additional documents such as copies of your passport and bank account information, depending on your location and the transfers you want to make.²
When you want to make a payment with Currencies Direct, you’ll need to request a quote for your transfer by phone or online. This quote will detail the fees and exchange rate used for your transfer. Currencies Direct state that they do not charge hidden fees or commission, and 90% of transfers are done for free.²
If you’re considering using Currencies Direct for a payment, it’s well worth looking carefully at the quote you’re offered, including both the upfront fees and exchange rate. Some currency services which state they provide fee free transfers simply wrap their fee into the exchange rates they offer. This means that there is a markup added to the exchange rate you’d find using an online currency converter or a Google search, which the provider can then keep as a profit. This isn’t transparent and can mean you pay more than you expect for your international transfer.
|It’s worth noting that Currencies Direct show currency exchange charts online, which reflect the mid-market rate - the one you’ll find on Google. However, they highlight the fact that this is not the rate you’ll get for your transfer. To understand the rate offered for your particular transfer you’ll have to get in touch online or by phone for a quote.³ ⁴|
When you get your quote, you’ll also need to ask whether or not you’ll be liable for intermediary fees. When we researched placing a transfer from Singapore dollars to British pounds, as an example, we were told by Currencies Direct that there may be additional fees charged by either intermediary banks involved in the payment, or the recipient’s own bank. These charges do not apply on all currency routes, but can add an extra fee of up to $25 to your payment. Check if your particular payment may be impacted before you decide to get started with Currencies Direct.
We’ll talk a little more about smart ways to cut out fees and get the Google exchange rate for your cross border payment, later.
Currencies Direct don’t publish any transfer limit online. In fact you can request a quote for transfers ranging up to the currency equivalent of GBP250,000 or more. That said, you might find that you need to provide additional paperwork to Currencies Direct to make high value transfers, because of legal requirements either in Singapore or in the destination country.
The transfer time for Currencies Direct international payments varies depending on the currency being sent, the receiving bank, and the time your transfer is processed.
Currencies Direct state that payments to Europe will be processed on the day you arrange your transfer. Most other transfers will take 24 to 48 hours after Currencies Direct receive your payment.²
You can simply call or message Currencies Direct to find out the expected delivery time, or check up on the status of the transfer you have sent. You’ll also receive an email when your payment has been processed.
If you need more help, you can get in touch in any of the following ways²
- Call Currencies Direct on +44 (0) 20 78479400, or request a call back online
- Email the service team using the online form available on the Currencies Direct website
- Visit a branch - there are no offices in Singapore, but with 20 global locations you might find this useful if you’re travelling yourself
Currencies Direct do not publish exchange rates online. Instead you need to get a quote for your transfer, either by calling their service line or using the website or app.
When you get your quote, be sure to compare the true cost of your transfer against alternative providers. You might find that there are costs you didn’t expect, which can really mount up if you’re making a large overseas transfer.
Luckily it’s easy enough to compare costs with different providers. Wise, for example, are entirely transparent about their exchange rates and fees - which means you can simply look up the price of your transfer online, with no obligation and no waiting for a quote.
Because international payments with Transferwise use the Google exchange rate, you know there’s no hidden markup to worry about. And with smart new approaches to making international payments, Wise also avoid intermediary fees on the majority of currency routes - so no nasty surprises there, either.
Make frequent overseas payments? With a borderless account from Wise you can make life even easier. You’ll be able to hold dozens of currencies in the same place, and switch between them using the Google exchange rate whenever you want. Send and receive payments globally, for a lower fee than your bank is likely to offer - and get your own linked debit card for easy spending wherever you are.
Wise payments are arranged online for convenience and often arrive faster than regular banks or alternative payment providers, while using the same security technology as banks to keep your money safe. Get your free Wise account and start saving money on international transfers today.
Sources used for this article
All sources checked as of 15 Nov, 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 Wise Payments 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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