Wise Business vs Personal: What’s the difference?

Wise was founded in the UK in 2011, with a mission to make it easier, cheaper and faster to transact internationally. Today, Wise has over 13 million personal and business customers around the world, and offers low cost international payments, as well as multi-currency personal and business accounts with transparent pricing and mid-market rate currency exchange.

Personal customers can open a Wise account online or in the Wise app for free, to hold 50+ currencies, send payments to 70+ countries, and get a linked debit card to spend and withdraw in 170+ countries. Wise business customers pay a one off fee to get full account access, and eligible businesses will get all of these features, plus multi-user access, batch payments, cloud accounting integrations and more.

We’ll cover everything you need to know about fees and features for both Wise personal and business services in this article.

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Wise business vs personal: Key points

Let’s start with some key features available with Wise personal and business accounts in the US.

Wise US personal accounts:

  • Free to open – apply online or in app, and upload your proof of ID
  • Hold and exchange 50+ currencies, send money to 70+ countries
  • Get local bank details for 10 currencies, to get paid fee free
  • Wise currency exchange uses the mid-market exchange rate
  • One time fee of 9 USD for a Wise card
  • Manage your money via the Wise app, with transaction notifications, and options to freeze and unfreeze your card
  • Wise is FinCEN registered – your money is safeguarded by Wise and held in top tier banks

 

Wise US business accounts:

  • 31 USD fee to open – apply online or in app, using proof of ID and business documents
  • Hold and exchange 50+ currencies, send payments to 70+ countries
  • Get local bank details for 10 currencies, to get paid by clients, marketplaces and PSPs
  • All currency exchange uses the mid-market exchange rate
  • Eligible business owners can order business debit cards and expense cards for team members, for 5 USD each
  • Multi-user access to add team members and manage their permissions
  • Batch payments to up to 1,000 people at once
  • Xero and QuickBooks integrations
  • Manage your money via the Wise app, with transaction notifications, and options to freeze and unfreeze your card
  • Wise is FinCEN registered – your money is safeguarded by Wise and held in top tier banks

What is the difference between a Wise business and personal account?

There’s plenty of overlap in what you can do with a Wise personal account vs Wise business account. Both account types have neat multi-currency functionality, options for low cost international transfers, ways to get paid for free from 30+ countries, and low, transparent transaction fees.

Wise personal accounts are designed to allow individuals to manage their international personal finances seamlessly in one place, with no account opening charge and no ongoing fees.

Wise business accounts are different in that they also offer some business friendly extras – with a low one time fee for full account access. As with the personal account, there are no ongoing fees to pay for Wise business.

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Wise personal pros and cons

Wise personal account prosWise personal account cons
  • Accounts are free to open, with low, transparent fees for the services you need
  • Currency exchange uses the mid-market exchange rate with no foreign transaction fee
  • Easy ways to hold, exchange, and spend money in 50+ currencies
  • Wise card can cut the costs of spending abroad and shopping online with international retailers
  • Local bank details can be used to receive payments from 30+ countries
  • Send and request payments from friends and family conveniently with just an email address
  • Transaction fees apply to some services
  • No cash or cheque deposit options
  • No branch network

Go to Wise Account

Wise business pros and cons

Wise business account prosWise business account cons
  • Pay suppliers and staff overseas in 70+ countries with the mid-market exchange rate
  • Use local bank details to get paid by clients, or collect from marketplaces and PSPs like Stripe in 10 currencies
  • Hold foreign currency balances until you need to send payments – no need to convert back to dollars every time
  • Offer debit and expense cards to staff members to help manage international business payments (available to sole proprietors and single member LLCs only)
  • Multi-user access allows you to add team members to your account, and manage their access permissions
  • Reconcile accounts with popular cloud based accounting software like Xero and QuickBooks
  • 31 USD fee to get full account features
  • No cash deposit facility
  • Businesses with multiple shareholders can’t get a Wise card

Go to Wise Business

Wise Personal vs Business: Quick comparison

Here’s a quick head to head of Wise business vs personal accounts, so you can see which features are available for each account type:

FeatureWise PersonalWise Business
Hold 50+ currenciesAvailableAvailable
Exchange with mid-market rateAvailableAvailable
Send overseas payments to individuals AvailableAvailable
Local bank details to get paid in 10 currenciesAvailableAvailable
Manage account online or in appAvailableAvailable
Spend with linked debit card in 170+ countriesAvailableAvailable (sole proprietors and single member LLCs only)
Order team debit and expense cardsXAvailable (sole proprietors and single member LLCs only)
Send batch paymentsXAvailable
Add team membersXAvailable
Cloud accounting integrationsXAvailable

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Wise Personal vs Business fees

ServiceWise PersonalWise Business
Open Wise accountFree31 USD
Hold 50+ currenciesFreeFree
Order a Wise card9 USD one time fee5 USD each
Send international paymentsFrom 0.41%From 0.41%
ATM withdrawals2 withdrawals, to 100 USD/month fee free

1.5 USD + 2% after that

2 withdrawals, to 100 USD/month fee free

1.5 USD + 2% after that

Receive GBP, CAD, EUR, AUD, HUF, NZD, RON, SGD, TRY and USD payments (non-wire)FreeFree
Receive USD wire payments4.14 USD fixed fee per transaction4.14 USD fixed fee per transaction
Batch paymentsXFree
Cloud accounting integrationsXFree
Add team members to WiseXFree

To sum up on Wise account fees: it’s free to open a Wise personal account but you’ll need to pay a one time fee of 31 USD to get a full feature Wise business account. Both Wise personal and business accounts allow you to receive money fee-free with local bank details for up to 10 currencies, hold 50+ currencies, and send payments to a broad range of countries.

You’ll be able to order a Wise card for yourself as a personal customer – and if you have an eligible business account you can order cards for yourself and your team for easy expense management. Business customers also get perks like batch payments and accounting integrations which can save time on admin.

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Do I need a Wise personal or business account?

Wise personal accounts come with all you need to manage your personal finances across multiple currencies.

If you’re running a US registered business, a Wise business account offers all the perks of the Wise personal account, plus some extra business friendly features which can make your life easier.

Freelancers can choose either a Wise business or personal account. Both options let you receive client payments in multiple currencies easily with your Wise local account details – but a Wise business account may be handy if you’d also value the extras available, like Xero and QuickBooks integrations.

How to open a Wise business account

Here’s a brief step by step guide on how to open a Wise business account:

  • Open the Wise app or desktop site
  • Select Register and add details about your business, and yourself as the account holder
  • Pay the one time 31 USD fee
  • Upload your personal and business documents to complete the verification step
  • You’re ready to go once the Wise team has verified your account

The exact information and paperwork needed to open your Wise business account can vary based on your business type.

You’ll be guided through the process by online prompts, and can always reach out to the Wise team in the app if you need more information. If you don’t have everything required to hand when you start the process you can simply save and come back to it later. Easy.

Go to Wise Business

How to open a Wise personal account

It’s easy to open a Wise personal account – and the process can be completed entirely online or in the Wise app. Here’s what you have to do:

  • Open the Wise app or desktop site
  • Register with your email, Facebook, Apple or Google ID
  • Upload your ID document to complete the verification step
  • Top up your account, order an international debit card or set up your first transfer

Usually to open a Wise personal account you’ll need to upload an image of your photo ID – like a passport. You may also be asked to show a proof of address, and/or a selfie with your photo ID for verification purposes. You’ll be able to do all this from your phone, and can get help from the Wise team any time if you run into difficulties.

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Can I have a business and a personal account on Wise?

Yes. You can have a personal Wise account to manage your own money across currencies – and also open a separate Wise business account for your company finances. That makes it easy to keep your own and your business’ finances separate, so you can keep on top of everything.

Can I open two Wise accounts?

You can open one Wise personal account, and add in one or more Wise business accounts, depending on how many different US registered companies you operate.

Can I change my Wise account from business to personal?

You don’t need to change your Wise Business account to a personal one. You can simply open a personal account alongside your business account. Personal Wise accounts are free to open, with no minimum balance and no monthly fee.

Conclusion: What is the difference between personal and business Wise account?

Wise personal and business accounts both have some really helpful features for anyone who lives, works, travels, or runs a business internationally. Being able to hold and exchange multiple currencies in the same place makes life easier – and because Wise offers the mid-market exchange rate whenever you exchange currencies in your balance, spend with your card or send a payment, you can also cut your overall costs.

Use this guide to figure out if Wise personal or business is best for you. Wise personal covers all you need to manage your money across borders day to day – while Wise business adds in extras that can help save even more time and money for freelancers, entrepreneurs and business owners.

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FAQs on Wise personal vs business account

Is a Wise business account worth it?

There’s a one time fee of 31 USD to open a Wise business account, but no ongoing maintenance fees after that. If you transact internationally – paying people overseas, or getting paid by customers and clients in foreign currencies, Wise can help save money with mid-market rate currency exchange, and free ways to get paid from 30+ countries.

Can Wise be used for business?

Wise offers business accounts to US registered business owners, sole proprietors and freelancers. These come with pretty much all the benefits of a Wise personal account, plus some extras to help cut business admin time.

What is a Wise personal account?

A Wise personal account is a digital multi-currency account with a linked debit card for easy spending. You can open a Wise personal account for free online or in the Wise app, to hold 50+ currencies, send payments to 70+ countries, and get paid like a local in 10 currencies.

What is a Wise business account?

Wise business accounts can be opened by US freelancers, sole proprietors and business owners, to hold and exchange 50+ currencies with the mid-market rate, receive payments from clients, ecommerce sites and online marketplaces in 10 currencies for free, and send payments to 70+ countries around the world.

Can I get a Wise business debit card for my business?

Wise business cards are available to sole proprietors and single member LLCs only. While businesses with multiple shareholders may be eligible to open a Wise account, Wise cards are not available for this business entity type at present.

 

Claire Millard
Fintech Content Writer
Claire Millard is a content and copywriter with a specialty in international finance. Her work has featured in The Times and The Telegraph, as well as industry magazines and leading personal finance blogs.
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Seyma Mektepli
Editor-in-chief
Seyma is an experienced content writer and editor-in-chief at Exiap, delivering informative articles on personal finance, and money transfers.
Read more
Last updated
June 16th, 2023