Raffles Money Changer Singapore: Your full guide

Aman Saxena

You may have seen the Raffles Money Changer counter when you’re passing through The Arcade, or even in Jurong Point. This stalwart in money changing and remittances has been in business since 1992.

Raffles Money Changer provides buying, selling and sending of 24 global currencies from Singapore. That being said, they haven’t been able to keep up with the innovation in digital money transfers- which means transfers can be more expensive than they need to be. Learn more about how Raffles Money Changer works and if it makes sense for your needs.

Take a look at Wise’s digital only multi-currency account which lets you hold, buy and spend in 40+ currencies

Raffles Money Changer charges and fees

There are 4 main areas that Raffles Money Changer works in: money exchange, remittances, bank transfers, and cheque issuance. The money exchange, bank transfers, and cheque issuance can only be done through the Raffles Money Changer counters in Jurong Point and The Arcade. The remittances can be done online through the Raffles Money Changer website.

For money exchanges, Raffles Money Changer offers 24 global currencies¹:


The exchange rate that you get would be inclusive of all fees and charges. Which is why you would find a discrepancy between the mid-market exchange rate and Raffles’ rate. The mid-market exchange rate is the rate you see on Google. And it is also the one banks use themselves. Raffles Money Changer weakens the exchange rate you get and pockets the difference as profit.

On top of this, to check the current rates, you will have to go down to the physical counter or give them a call at 6538-0080 or 6536-6800. You won’t be able to pull them up at all online. The exchange rates available through the currency converter on the website are not up to date.

The fees for the bank transfers and cheque issuance will also be given to you at the physical counter. Cheque issuance can be done in US dollars, Australian dollars, and Singapore dollars².

International remittance with Raffles

Remittances, on the other hand, can be done through the Raffles Money Changer’s website, as well as in person. But you will still need to call them to figure out what your exchange rate is going to be or head down to the counter to check the board. Once you have done that, you can fill out the online form for remittances. Remember, you will need to show identity documents for all remittance transactions.

You can make the payment cash, cheque or ATM transfer if you are doing it in person, or online transfer if you are submitting the remittance form online. After you’ve made the payment you will be issued a receipt, and then you will be sent a deposit slip when the money has been sent. Unfortunately, it may not be clear when the money will arrive but the beneficiary will be notified. ³

The true cost of money changing with Raffles Money Changer

The way that money changers have made money hasn’t changed in decades. What they do is give you a weak exchange rate whether you are buying or selling a foreign currency. You might have noticed the difference between the buy and sell rate for one currency on the board at all the money changers at the Arcade, including Raffles Money Changer. That difference is called the spread.

The spread is where money changers make their profits. By giving you weaker rates than the mid-market exchange rate, and creating a large spread, you get less in hand every time. And that is for every dollar you hand over, so if you are exchanging or selling or remitting large amounts, then you know Raffles Money Changer may have pocketed a healthy profit from your transaction.

But there are better ways to send money than having unclear fees, cumbersome processes, and unfair exchange rates. That is where Tranferwise comes in.

Wise always gives you the fully transparent mid-market exchange rate right on the website, which is the same rate you see on Google and Reuters. And is the same rate the banks are paying. And you see the exact fee you are paying upfront, before you put in your order. Plus right below will be the amount of time it will take for your beneficiary to receive the funds. It is that simple, easy and clear. And not to mention, all at a low cost.

A cheap, fast and transparent alternative: Wise

Wise makes spending money overseas easy. If you want to hold or spend in multiple currencies around the world, check out Wise’s borderless account. It is a multi-currency account that lets you spend online and in-person around the world.

With an award-winning app and an easy to use website, you won’t have to go down to The Arcade to send or exchange money overseas. All you will have to do is sign up online and you can then send money to over 150+ countries. Including popular routes like MYR, THB, and CNY. Or hold multiple currencies in one account with the Wise borderless account. So whether you are in your living room or on-the-go, you have access to low-cost money exchange any time of day.

On top of convenience, Wise gives you secure transfers through smart technology. And with a fully online process, the money is pulled directly from your bank account when you confirm the order and it is deposited directly into your borderless account. So you don’ t have to worry about carrying around cash. And you can easily pay with a bank transfer, credit card or debit card. Plus, on popular routes, your money can arrive in as little as 1 hour.

And you will know exactly what you are paying for a fee upfront with the mid-market exchange rate and a transaction fee. And even if you are sending money to Singapore, that fee can be as low as 0.5 SGD + 0.44% of the converted amount. So join the 7 million people around the world that use Wise and see how it can save you money on every foreign exchange transaction.

Sources used for this article:
  1. Raffles Money Changer Currency Options
  2. Cheque Issuance
  3. Remittances

All sources checked as of 15 April, 2020

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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