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Using a specialist service to send an international payment can mean you save money compared to using your normal bank. If you’re planning on making an overseas payment then using an OFX¹ transfer could cut the overall costs. That’s because the OFX exchange rate is typically better than the rate used by traditional banks, and OFX fees are fairly competitive, particularly for high value payments.
However, while OFX is a great service it’s not necessarily the best on the market for all transfers. This OFX Singapore review covers all the OFX costs and considerations you’ll need to know about. And to help you decide if OFX is the best option out there for your international payment we’ll also compare OFX to Wise.
If you're looking to use OFX for your company - we also reviewed the OFX Business Account in our blog here.
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OFX is a specialist in international payments and currency risk management solutions, as well as offering multi-currency accounts for business customers. It’s available in Singapore and around the world. Here’s what you can do with OFX Singapore:
- Payment services available for individual and business customers
- Make one off and recurring transfers
- Access currency risk management solutions like target rate transfers
- Get a 24/7 personal broker service - you can also transact online and in the OFX app
- Business customers and online sellers can open OFX Global Currency Accounts to pay and get paid internationally
Yes. OFX is regulated in Singapore by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, and as an international company is also overseen by global regulatory bodies as required.
When you send a payment with OFX there are a couple of different costs you’ll need to know about:
- The OFX transfer fee
- Exchange rate markup
- Third party costs
Here are the OFX transfer fees when sending a payment from Singapore:
|OFX transfer type||OFX transfer fee²|
|Payment under 10,000 AUD (about 10,200 SGD)||15 AUD (just over 15 SGD) + exchange rate markup Third party charges may apply|
|Payment over 10,000 AUD||No transfer fee - exchange rate markup will still apply Third party charges may apply|
When you send an OFX international payment you’ll find that the upfront transfer fee is low - or may even be entirely waived for higher value transfers. However, that doesn’t mean your payment is free, as other costs can still apply.
One charge added is an exchange rate markup or margin - a percentage fee added to the exchange rate being used when OFX convert your SGD to the currency you need. This markup is likely to be lower than the markup that would be used by a regular bank - but it’s not necessarily the cheapest way to send your payment, making it well worth comparing a few providers before you get started.
The other cost you’ll want to know about is not actually paid to OFX, but to intermediaries involved in the transfer. If your payment is processed using the SWIFT network, intermediary banks may be invovled, which can all charge a service fee which is deducted from the transfer as the payment is processed. This can mean your recipient gets less than you expect in the end.
OFX transfers can be made from the equivalent of 150 USD³ - that’s around 210 SGD, depending on the live exchange rate at the time. That means OFX isn’t suitable for low value payments. It’s also worth noting that the transfer fee might not work out to be great value if you’re sending a low amount, as it’s a fixed price for any payment under the equivalent of 10,000 AUD. For smaller transfers you might be better off looking at an alternative service.
Before you decide to send your internataional transfer with OFX, compare the service and costs against some competitors. You might find you get a better deal, and a faster delivery time with an alternative provider. Here’s a quick rundown of how OFX measures up compared to Wise - formerly Wise:
|Regulation||Monetary Authority of Singapore + global regulatory bodies as required||Monetary Authority of Singapore + global regulatory bodies as required|
|Minimum payment value||150 USD (about 210 SGD)||No minimum|
|Maximum payment value||Unlimited||Usually based on the equivalent of around 1 million GBP|
|Transfer fee||Under 10,000 AUD (about 10,200 SGD)- 15 AUD (just over 15 SGD) Over 10,000 AUD - no transfer fee||Low, transparent fees based on destination and payment value|
|Exchange rate||Exchange rates include a markup on the mid-market rate||Mid-market exchange rate|
|Available payment methods||BPay or electronic bank transfer||Bank transfer, credit or debit card, PayNow|
|Delivery time||Usually within 24 hours for major currencies - up to 5 days for exotic currencies||45% of payments are instant, 80%+ arrive in 24 hours|
|Multi-currency account services available||For business customers||For business and personal customers|
|Debit card available||No||Yes|
|Currency risk management services available||Yes||No|
Wise is a specialist in international payments and multi-currency accounts for individuals and businesses. Whenever you send a Wise transfer, you’ll get the real mid-market exchange rate with low, transparent fees which make it easy to see exactly what you’re paying for your transfer. That can work out cheaper than using a traditional bank, and may also mean you pay less than you would with a specialist competitor like OFX.
To make a transfer with OFX you’ll first need to register an account and get verified - here’s how⁴:
- Download the OFX app or head to the OFX desktop site
- Register your account by adding your name, DOB, address, occupation and contact information
- Wait for a call back from the OFX team
- Get verified - this may be done automatically or you might need to provide documents to support your application⁵
If you’re required to send in documents to support your application you may need to wait a few business days before your account is up and running⁶. Once your account is verified you’re ready to go. You can make a transfer 24/7 in the OFX app, or by phone through a personal broker. Here’s the process for making an OFX Singapore transfer:
- Log in to your account or call the OFX support team
- Get a quote for the exchange rate available
- Give your recipient’s bank account details
- Lock in your transfer at the agreed rate
- Send your money to OFX using bank transfer or BPay
- Once the payment is cleared it will be sent to your recipient automatically
When you sign up for an OFX account you’ll usually need to provide documents showing your identity and residential address. However, exactly what you’ll need to prepare to show you’re eligible for an account will depend on the account type and the payment you’re making. The OFX team will guide you through the application process to make sure you’re eligible and ahve everything you need.
OFX transfers are usually delivered within 24 hours - 2 days for major currencies. However, it can take up to 5 days for exotic currencies to arrive.
OFX international transfers are very likely to work out cheaper than using your normal bank. That’s because OFX uses a smaller exchange rate markup than a regular bank would, with low or no transfer fees, depending on the payment value. However, OFX international payments aren’t free - there’s still a small margin added to the exchange rate which pushes up your costs.
Before you decide if OFX is the right service for your international transfer, compare a few providers including Wise, to see which offers the best balance of cost, speed and convenience.
- OFX Singapore
- OFX transfer fees
- OFX minimum transfer
- OFX FAQ - signing up
- OFX FAQ - verification process
- OFX FAQ - how long does it take to verifiy my account
Sources checked on 15.07.2022
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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