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Who offers the best currency rates, Western Union or Transferwise?

Western Union and Transferwise are direct competitors who both want the market of remittances. The remittances are worth $600 every year. The online market is growing by more than 10% every year whereas the offline one is growing way slower. In this market Western Union has already around 50%… And Transferwise got 4% in 5 years… So who is the best?

1/ Does Western Union offer the best currency rates?

Western Union exist for more than 150 years. It’s currently one of the most powerful financial institution. The company offers money transfers almost everywhere in the world. However it’s not the most cost- effective with currency exchange rates. Indeed Western Union is very convenient because there are offices everywhere and you can send cash directly in another currency. On the other hand the company has so many real estates and employees that it costs a lot.

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2/ Does Transferwise offer the best currency rates?

Transferwise entered the market 5 years ago. They got an impressive organic growth because they offered very cheap rates at their beginning. The thing that in 5 years more than 345 other money transfer operators have entered the market. They also offer cheap rates. So the best currency rates don’t have to be always at Transferwise. We need to compare. The best currency rates could be Transferwise or Western Union but there are hundreds of other operators who also offer very effective rates. I suggest to use a comparison before transferring money abroad. It’s the best way to send money abroad.

Neither is the best. Both have their own specificities. We have to compare before sending money abroad. Otherwise we are not going to get the best currency rates at the moment we need them. And because the money transmitters have ever changing rates you can’t know which one is the best in advance. It has to be in real-time.

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Does CurrencyFair offer the best currency rates?

CurrencyFair is among the new online money transfer operators. It’s a successful one because it offers good currency rates but mostly because using the service is quite easy compared to the competitors.

What is a good exchange rate though? The mid-market exchange rate is the official one and CurrencyFair offers rates between 0.7% and 3%. The problem is the fact that the service offers different rates at different times. From one hour to another the rate is different.

1/ CurrencyFair is competitive and stands among the best currency rates providers

Money transfers cost on average around 7%. CurrencyFair costs on average around 1.7%, according to money transfers studies. Even though the operator doesn’t offer the best currency rates the ones which are offered are quite good. Much better than banks for sure. By taking a look at exchange rate comparison websites for money transfers you can see that this operator is very often among the 3 best operators. It makes money and offers good rates. That’s a good business actually.

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2/ There are cheaper alternatives depending on the moment when you need to send money

One of the reasons why I would recommend to always make a comparison before using one money transfer operator is the fact that money transfer services offer different rates at different times. Yes it has to because the mid-market official exchange rate is moving. The strange thing is the fact that the amount and the percentage of charges evolve too. It’s not necessary and I hope it is because their system is more or less profitable depending on when you do a money transfer. As a result to get the best currency rates you need to compare each time you want to send money internationally.

CurrencyFair is competitive and easy to use but the rates change all the time so it’s best to use a comparator every time before making a money transfer, especially if it’s a big amount.

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The nightmare behind exchange rates

Have you ever needed to compare exchange rates for personal and/or professional reasons ? If so, you might have felt you were losing time and energy like I used to. Well, there are ways of nearly enjoying exchange rates and I will show you how!

Compare exchange rates: a real nightmare

As you must know, exchange rates evolve all the time depending on many different factors. Indeed, they evolve depending on the current economical, political and even social situation of your country. As you can imagine, these free sectors already imply thousands of different parameters which will make it impossible to easily anticipate and compare exchange rates throughout the time.

Take for example what happened in Switzerland in January 2015. How many people guessed that the National Swiss Bank was going to stop guaranteeing the exchange rate between swiss francs and euros to always be around 1€ = 1.20 CHF ? Not much I guess and the consequences have been terrible for some (people with loans in CHF living in France) and awesome for others (people working in Switzerland and living at the border in France, Germany or Italy for example).

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Well, unfortunately I am sad to say that this is only one amide thousand of different situation which makes it impossible to compare exchange rates which easily becomes a nightmare. Unless you have found the same magic tool as I have…

Can someone compare the exchange rates for me ?

My magic tool is called Moneytis. And yes, it compares the exchange rates for me and alerts me only when I want to be alerted! Therefore, instead of trying to guess the impossible, I simply need to specify the currencies in which I am interested and will receive alerts via e-mail or Facebook messenger depending on what I prefere. This allows me to not have to bother anymore in trying to predict the unpredictable and act when the exchange rate is in my favor. Another tool named Neomy also provides this service which I personally find awesome. This could have helped my financial manager in my previous company. Indeed as we had a lot of small business in many different companies around the world, the impact of invoicing our clients at the good moment for example was huge!

Feel free to try them out if you wish to put an end to your nightmares like I did 🙂