Wise Money Transfers

Find out more about Wise and compare international transfer companies with Savvy.

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, updated on August 18th, 2023       

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Although Wise is only relatively new to the money transfer game in Australia, it’s already one of the most popular services for transferring money to a wide range of countries around the world.

If you’re looking to send funds overseas, it’s important to find out more about Wise and what they offer, as well as compare your other money transfer options side-by-side. Savvy can help you do this right here, so start the process today and get your transfer underway.

*All product information is correct as of August, 2022.

Wise money transfer review

About Wise

Wise (formerly known as TransferWise) was founded in London in 2010 by two friends who wanted an efficient and affordable way to send money to each other. It has since grown to offer money transfer services to over 80 countries, offering forex services in more than 50 currencies.

Just five years after its foundation, Wise was named Best Tech Pioneer by the World Economic Forum and listed on the London Stock Exchange in July 2021, valued at US $11 billion. Wise is now one of the best-known online money transfer companies in the world and offers a wide range of services to customers around the globe.

What products and services does Wise offer?

Money transfer service

Wise offers an international money transfer service both through an online platform and a mobile app. This service allows you to send money overseas quickly and cheaply, with many transfers arriving on the same day and almost all landing at their destination within two days. In some cases, your Wise transfer can be completed and received in a matter of seconds.

Wise offers money transfer exchange rates either at or very close to, the advertised mid-market exchange rate, helping you purchase the most foreign currency with your Australian dollars. The maximum you’re able to transfer is $1.5 million, with no minimum transfer limit set.

International multi-currency account

Wise also offers an online transaction account, which it calls a multi-currency account (formerly known as a Borderless Account). This account is only available to customers in Australia, New Zealand, the USA, the UK, Europe and some select Asian countries. Linked to this international account is a debit Mastercard, which you can use to spend your money online and in shops and restaurants, just like any other debit card. There is also an equivalent business multi-currency account on offer.

The unique thing about a Wise multi-currency account is that you can store up to 53 currencies in the account at any one time. You can choose which currency you wish to use to make a payment. For example, if you’re travelling in Europe, you may have euros and British pounds in your account, in addition to Australian dollars. When you go to make a payment in Europe, you can choose to pay in euros, then switch to paying in British pounds when you arrive in the UK. If you run out of the currency you need, you can simply transfer more of your Australian dollars into euros or pounds.

How does Wise charge for transfers?

  • For international transfers, Wise charges a fee based on a percentage of the transfer amount. This percentage starts at 0.41%.
  • If you pay someone else who has a Wise account in the same currency, the transfer is free.
  • If you make a payment to a traditional bank account in one of over 80 countries, Wise charges a fixed fee for that money transfer service
  • The price charged is calculated using Wise’s online calculator, which is located on their pricing page. Simply enter the amount you wish to send and specify which currencies are involved and you’ll see exactly how much the fee will be and the exchange rate you’ll achieve.

How to open a Wise account

Accounts can be opened either online on the Wise website or using the Wise mobile app. As Wise also offers business multi-currency accounts, you’ll need to specify if you want a personal, or a business account.

You’ll need to verify your identity to open an account. Acceptable forms of identification are:

  1. Passport (a picture of the photo page is required)
  2. Photo driver’s licence
  3. National identity card with photo (issued by a government agency)

You don’t need to open a multi-currency account to transfer money, though. If you simply want to transfer money to another person’s bank account, you can apply to make the transfer and the process will take less than two minutes. This can be done simply by inputting the amount you’d like to send, your recipient’s bank details, proof of your identity and your payment information, after which you can send it off.

However, if you also wish to open an international multi-currency account and order a debit Mastercard, the process will take a little longer, up to five minutes. You’ll need to verify your identity with photo ID, after which you can transfer money into your multi-currency account. You may have to allow up to ten days for your account to be established and receive your debit Mastercard in the post.

The pros and cons of Wise money transfers


Fast transfer service

Wise claims that over 80% of their transfers arrive by the next day, which is a very short transfer time. This compares favourably with banks, which can take three to five business days to transfer money.

Extremely competitive exchange rate

The exchange rate you’ll be offered for your transfer with Wise will often be the mid-market rate, which is the halfway point between buy and sell orders on the forex market, and is the best exchange rate possible.

Low fees

The fees you’ll be charged to make your transfer are very low compared to using a bank, often costing just a few cents and frequently under $5, which makes Wise a very economic solution for your international transfers.

Useful multi-currency debit card

If you’re travelling overseas and visiting multiple countries, having just one card which you can use in whichever country you are in is extremely handy.


Not the cheapest option for large transfers

If you are planning to transfer a large amount, such as over $5,000, Wise may not be your cheapest transfer option, as their fees are based on a percentage of the transfer amount.

Limited customer support

Wise relies on its online help information to assist customers. It has recently closed its online live chat service, so the only other way to contact Wise is via an email address.

No cash or cheques

There is no way to fund your transfer, or to get money into your multi-currency account, without using a regular bank account. There is no way to use cash or a cheque to fund your transfer or open your account.

Not all countries are supported as yet

Although Wise operates in over 80 countries using more than 50 currencies, there are still many countries where you can’t use your Wise card (such as most of Africa).

Compare international money transfers

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Disclaimer: Savvy is not advising or recommending any particular product to you. We provide general information on products for the purposes of comparison, but your personal situation or goals are not considered here. Although we try to make our comparisons as thorough as possible, we do not have information on all products on the market on our site.

If you decide to initiate a money transfer with one of the providers listed above via our website, you will not be dealing with Savvy; any applications or enquiries will be conducted directly with the provider offering that product.

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