Wise vs Xe

Not sure whether to use Xe Money Transfer or Wise for your next international payment? This Wise vs Xe review has got you covered. We’ll look at:

  • A full side by side feature comparison
  • Which provider is cheaper?
  • Which is faster?
  • Which is safer?
  • Which gets better customer reviews?

Summary: Xe Money Transfer supports more countries and currencies than Wise. However, Xe transfers can take a while to arrive, and come with a markup added to the exchange rate. Wise is usually faster and has more transparent fees. In our comparison, Wise came out cheaper in both GBP and EUR payments.

Learn more about Wise

Learn more about XE

Wise vs Xe: side by side

FeatureWise Xe
Send payments to80+ countries, 50+ currencies130 countries, nearly 100 currencies
Multi-currency accountsAvailable for 50+ currencies with Wise AccountNo
Debit card availableYes, Wise Debit CardNo
Cash pickup serviceNoYes
Fully licensed and regulatedYesYes
Currency risk management for businessesNoYes
Business accountsYes, Wise Business AccountYes

So, to summarize:

  • Xe supports more countries and currencies
  • Wise has a multi-currency account to support 50+ currencies, while Xe doesn’t offer this
  • Wise has a linked debit card on offer for personal customers - Xe does not have that option
  • Xe offers payments to select countries for cash collection - Wise does not
  • Wise and Xe both offer business services - Xe has currency risk management options for businesses, which Wise does not
  • Both providers are fully regulated

Wise offers a faster service and more straightforward charging on the payment routes they cover. However, Xe has a more extensive global reach. If you’re looking for a payment to an exotic currency, Xe may suit your needs. But if you need a multi-currency account or you’re looking to make a speedy transfer in a major currency, Wise may work better for you.

 

The important bits

XeWise
RatesExchange rate includes a markupMid-market exchange rate with no markup
FeesNo feeLow fees, varies by destination
Speed1 - 6 days depending on destination and payment type50%+ of payments are instant, 80% arrive in 24 hours
ServiceOnline, in app and by phoneOnline, in app and by phone
SafetyFully regulated and licensedFully regulated and licensed
Reviews (TrustPilot)4.3 star, Excellent, 53,000+ reviews4.5 star, Excellent, 169,000+ reviews

Rates: Wise uses the mid-market rate, whereas Xe adds a markup to the rate used

Fees: Xe does not charge a transfer fee when sending from the US. Wise has variable fees which are based on the destination country

Speed: Xe transfers can take a few days to arrive, Wise payments can be instant

Service: Both providers offer multilingual service in a range of languages, online, in-app and by phone. Wise has more languages covered than Xe.

Safety: Both providers are fully licensed and regulated

Reviews: Both providers score Excellent review ratings on Trustpilot - but Wise has significantly more listed customer reviews showing

 

Learn more about XE

Learn more about Wise

 

Pros and cons

XeWise
Pros
  • Impressive range of currencies and countries covered
  • Transfer online and in-app for convenience
  • Business services include currency risk management solutions
  • Mid-market exchange rates + low fees
  • Transparent pricing
  • Send to 80+ countries
  • International accounts for personal  and business customers
  • Hold and manage 50+ currencies
Cons 
  • Exchange rate markups apply
  • Overall fees may not be the cheapest available
  • Delivery times are not market beating
  • Online and mobile payments only - no branches
  • No option for cash payments
  • Transfer fees vary by destination country
  • Multi-currency accounts are not interest bearing

Wise vs Xe : The verdict

Whether Xe or Wise win for you will probably depend on the specific services you need, and where you’re sending money.

Xe’s stand out feature is the sheer number of currencies and destination countries available. You can send even unusual currencies - and more or less every corner of the globe is covered. For business customers, Xe also offers some services not available from Wise, including currency risk management solutions.

However, Wise tends to be faster for international transfers, and in our comparison was also cheaper. If Wise supports payments to the country you’re sending to, they may be your best bet.

Finally, Wise also offers a multi-currency account for business and individual customers - and there's also a linked international debit card for personal customers. Xe doesn’t provide this option.

 

 

About Wise and Xe

Wise was launched as TransferWise back in 2011 as a low-cost international payment provider. These days, Wise has upwards of 13 million customers, and also offers personal and business accounts to hold and manage currencies, accept payments and send money around the world.

With Wise you can send payments to 80+ countries, in 50+ currencies.

Xe was founded in 1993, and is now part of Euronet, one of the largest money transfer companies on the planet. You can send payments in nearly 100 currencies with Xe. Aside from money transfer services, Xe is famous for providing tools to monitor and track exchange rates - these are available online and in the Xe app.

Xe business accounts offer some extra services as well as international transfers, including currency risk management solutions and mass payments.

How do they work?

To use Wise you’ll need to create an account, and depending on the type of payment you want to make you might need to provide some ID for verification.

Once your account is up and running make payments online and in the Wise app:

  1. Log into your account
  2. Type in how much you want to transfer, or how much you need the recipient to get
  3. Enter the recipient’s details - bank account number or email
  4. Check over the details
  5. Fund your payment using a card or bank transfer
  6. Confirm and your money will be on the move

Wise transfers are made through Wise’s network of local bank accounts, so they arrive faster and don’t incur intermediary fees. When you want to pay for your transfer in dollars you’ll send the money to Wise’s local US account. Then Wise will make a payment of the equivalent amount in your preferred currency, from their account in the destination country. No money actually moves across borders, so it’s faster and cheaper than traditional international payments.

To use Xe you’ll need to register an account - once you’re up and running you can make transfers all around the world easily online and in the Xe app:

  1. Sign into your account
  2. Select your starting currency and recipient currency
  3. Enter the amount you want to send to get a quote
  4. Add your recipient’s bank details
  5. Pay by card or bank transfer
  6. Check the details, then hit Confirm to send the payment
  7. You’re all done - you can now track the payment in the app

 

Learn more about Wise

Learn more about XE

Wise vs Xe Transfer Fees

All Wise personal accounts are free to open. There’s a one time fee of 31 USD to open a Wise business account.

Wise has low transaction costs for the services you use - currency exchange is from 0.41%, and international transfer charges vary by destination and currency. Read Wise fees to learn more.

It’s free to make an Xe account, and there’s no transfer fee when sending from the US. However, a markup will apply on the exchange rate applied. To see the rate applied for your transfer you'll need to first create an account, and then generate a quote.

Wise vs Xe : which is cheaper?

Choosing an international payment specialist is almost certainly cheaper than sending money using your bank. However, as fees and rates do vary, it still pays to compare a few providers before you pick.

Let’s look at how a few different payments from Xe and Wise work out. This table looks at how much will be received if you send a payment to a friend in GBP or EUR. Payments are funded by bank transfer and delivered to the recipient’s bank account:

Amount & CurrencyWith Wise recipient gets:With Xe recipient gets:Winner?
1000  USD> GBP849.65 GBP842.92 GBPWise
5000 USD> GBP5,250.76 GBP4,221.86 GBPWise
1000  USD> EUR988.93 EUR981.22 EURWise
5000 USD> EUR4,947.68 EUR4,915.29 EURWise

*Fees and exchange rates correct at time of research - 31 August 2022

As you can see, on all our comparisons, Wise worked out cheaper. However, for the lower value payments there’s a relatively small difference, so choosing between these providers for small transfers may ultimately come down to speed and convenience.

 

Wise vs Xe : which is faster?

50%+ of Wise payments get to their destination instantly, and 80% arrive in 24 hours. However, the exact delivery time will depend on where you’re sending money to, and how you want to pay. You’ll see an estimated arrival time when you set up your payment.

Xe payments can take several days to arrive - you’ll see an estimate of the delivery time when you set up your transfer. Delivery speed depends on a range of factors:

  • How long it takes for your funds to be received by Xe. Card payments are fastest, bank transfers could take up to 3 days to be received, depending on your own bank’s processes
  • How long it takes for your funds to clear - this may take a day or so
  • How long it takes for the funds to arrive at the recipient’s bank - this can take up to 3 days depending on the processes in place at the receiving bank

Safety

Both providers are fully licensed and regulated, and use both smart technology and dedicated service teams to keep customer money safe.

Wise and Xe Money Transfer are both regulated by FinCEN in the US, and other global regulatory bodies around the world.

 

Learn more about Wise

Learn more about XE

Ease of use

  • Creating an account: Create your account online or in app with both Xe and Wise
  • Making a transfer: Both providers allow customers to fund payments with a bank transfer or card. Wise also allows Apple Pay payments
  • Ways to send money: Send payments to your recipient’s bank account directly with both Xe and Wise. Xe will also offer cash collection transfers to select countries
  • Languages: Xe services are available in 10 languages, with multilingual customer support. Wise offers 15 languages, plus multi-lingual support services
  • Minimum & maximum amounts: Sending limits can vary by destination country, and based on your account type

Supported currencies

Xe supports nearly 100 currencies on major payment routes which cover over 130+ countries. Wise supports 50+ currencies, and lets you send payments to over 80 countries.

Conclusion

Both Xe and Wise allow international payments direct to bank accounts. Xe has a broad global reach and allows transfers to 130+ countries, in an impressive range of currencies, with cash collection options in some regions. However, depending on where you’re sending to, Xe’s processes can slow down delivery times.

Wise on the other hand has its own approach to processing international payments which makes it faster - and usually cheaper, too. If you’re sending money on a currency route supported by Wise you’ll probably find you get a better deal and a faster transfer with them. However, if you want an exotic currency, Xe may suit you better.

Finally, Wise has its international account which isn’t an option with Xe. If you want to spend while you travel, make ATM withdrawals and shop online with international retailers with no foreign transaction fees, the Wise multi-currency account could work well for you.

 

Learn more about Wise

Learn more about XE

FAQ

Is Xe or Wise cheaper?

For instant payments, Wise is cheaper, as it offers the real exchange rate with no markup, and low transfer fees.

Is Xe or Wise faster?

Wise is usually faster than Xe - exact delivery times depend on a range of factors for both providers.

How many currencies do Xe and Wise support?

Xe supports nearly 100 currencies and Wise supports 50+ currencies.

 

Learn more about Wise

Learn more about XE

By Justin Rampono Updated September 6th, 2022