Wise Review PROS & CONS (2021) – Wise Borderless Account Review

Wise is a company that launched in 2011. It was originally known as TransferWise, and it is a UK-based company. In this Wise review, I will show you what you get by opening account, all costs and fees charged, features you get, as well as pros and cons.

Opening a Wise account lets you spend, transfer, and receive funds in many countries worldwide. The Wise debit card can be used to spend funds online and in physical stores in any country, and your Wise account allows you to send and receive money in different currencies and various countries.

Affordable money transfer service is the company’s primary focus. Customers can send funds between bank accounts in various nations. They have low-cost money transfers and are continuously adding more options.

 

Wise Review

Wise’s transparent services and low fees have helped it gain popularity. People who need local bank information in different countries can take advantage of their borderless account feature.

After you open your Wise multiple multi-currency account, you can use the following features:

  • Account balances in 56 different international currencies.
  • Currencies can be converted fast with very low conversion fees.
  • Bank balances with account details can be received in the following currencies: Turkish lira, Hungarian forint, New Zealand dollars, Canadian dollars, British pounds, Romanian leu, Singapore dollars, Australian dollars, Euros, and United States dollars.
  • Direct debits can be set in Euros, British pounds, Australian dollars, and U.S. dollars.
  • As of right now, the Wise debit card is available for people living in Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, the U.S., and Europe.
  • The card allows you to spend funds in any currency. There are very minimal transaction fees.

All Wise multi-currency accounts are electronic money accounts. The ways that they differ from standard bank accounts are:

  • No overdrafts or loans are allowed.
  • You can’t earn interest.
  • The provided bank accounts merely serve as “address” for electronic money account. They aren’t real bank accounts, even though bank details are unique. You can still use your electronic account to receive money much like you would with a traditional bank account.
  • Money is protected and safeguarded but not guaranteed by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Wise has maintained a loyal customer base because consumers aren’t charged exorbitant international exchange fees or exchange rates. One account is all that’s needed to send, receive and convert money in different currencies.

The current exchange rate is always used, and their fees are the lowest you can find. You can use your Wise debit card to buy products with the funds in your Wise account, pay for items online or withdraw money from ATMs.

blank comparison
  • Name
  • Price for opening personal account
  • Personal account bank details fee
  • Price for opening business account
  • Business account bank details fee
  • Countries where you can open account
  • Countries where card is available
  • Available currencies for convert and hold
  • Receive bank details (currencies with account details)
  • Credit card payments fee
  • Currency exchange fee
  • Withdrawing money from ATM fee
  • ATM limits
  • Annual fee for holding EUR balance
  • 3D Secure payments
  • Card limits
  • Virtual cards
  • Type of card
  • Card contactless payments
  • Fee for card payments
  • Number of physical cards you can have
  • Number of virtual cards you can have
  • Disposable virtual cards
  • Integration with accounting software
  • Compatible with Apple Pay and Google Pay
  • Cryptocurrencies trading
  • Insurance options
  • Recurring payments
  • Direct debit
  • Loans
  • Lounge pass
  • Group bills
  • Stock trading
  • Commodities trading
  • Support
Wise vs Revolut comparison.
  • WISE (Formerly TransferWise)
  • Free
  • Free
  • Free
  • One-time fee between 16–21 GBP (or equivalent in your currency).
  • 230
  • UK, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, most of the EEA, and US.
  • 56
  • USD, GBP, EUR, CAD, AUD, NZD, SGD, HUF, RON, TRY
    Polish zloty is usually available, but currently that option is disabled.
  • Free as long as the payment is in a currency that you currently hold.
  • 0.24–3.69%
  • Free up to £200 (or currency equivalent) and then 1.75% on anything over 200 GBP/EUR. This fees can be different for other countries.
  • Daily limit is 1500 GBP (or currency equivalent) but you can increase it.
  • 0.4% if your balance is 15,000 EUR for persosnal account and 70,000 EUR for business.
    Holding any amount in any other currency remains free.
  • Yes
  • There are different limits for cardholders in different countries. But most can be increased via app.
  • Yes
  • Mastercard. Visa coming soon
  • Yes
  • No
  • 1
  • 3
  • Not available
  • FreeAgent, QuickBooks Xero, etc.
  • Yes
  • No
  • No
  • Yes
  • Yes
  • No
  • No
  • No
  • No
  • No
  • Email, live chat, phone

 

Wise Availability

Wise is available in 230 countries, including the United States and many Asian countries. But there are some countries where country it is not available.

The countries where opening Wise account is not available are Afghanistan, Congo Republic, Crimea (sub-territory), Cuba, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Burundi, Central African Republic, Republic of South Sudan, State of Libya, Sudan, Chad, Sevastopol (city), Somalia, Syrian Arab Republic, Territories of the United States, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Iraq, Malaysia, North Korea, United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, and Yemen.

 

Wise is available in many countries.
Wise is available in various countries around the world.

 

The Wise card is available for people and businesses in the UK, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, most EEA, and the US. There are a few exceptions, so check the list of eligible countries.

 

Wise Borderless Account Review

The time required to complete money transfers can vary by currency and country. All transactions are usually completed within two business days. But most transfers are done in less than two days.

The transfer speed of the receiving bank will affect the transfer time. The specific payment methods allowed in the country that you’re sending money from can impact the transaction processing time.

Certain methods are slower, and some are faster. Bank transfers typically take more time, and card payments are often completed in a matter of minutes. You can see how long it will take after you set the transfer.

Check the list of countries that you can use with Wise to send funds. The currencies being transferred and the payment method used determines the sending limits. The currencies article on the official site has additional information about the various currency limits. If you attempt to send funds above a particular limit, you will be informed by Wise.

 

Wise borderless account review.

 

It’s free to transfer funds between different Wise accounts with bank details. If you’re trying to send money to a bank that isn’t in Wise’s network, a fixed charge will be applied to the transaction.

Transactions with funds being converted into different currencies will have a conversion fee added to them. The pricing page will tell you what the specific fee will be.

Your account can hold and convert money in 56 currencies. Opening a balance in a new currency only takes a matter of moments. Funds can be sent to more than 70 countries using the money in your multi-currency account.

 

Receiving Money

Your Wise account operates much like a standard bank account in terms of receiving money. All you need to do is give the person making the transfer your account bank information in the currency you wish to receive.

Even though you can hold and convert money in 56 currencies, you can only receive local bank information in 10 currencies. You can share these details with people to receive funds.

 

Wise money transfer feature.

 

You can get bank details for Hungarian forints, British pounds, Singapore dollars, Australian dollars, Canadian dollars, New Zealand dollars, Polish zloty, Euros, Turkish lira, Romanian leu (only for EEU and Switzerland residents), and United States dollars (this option isn’t available in all countries).

 

Costs & Fees

You can open a Wise account for free at any time. Wis always charges mid-market currency exchange rates. All transfers that occur outside of Wise have transfer fees.

The country you’re in at the time, the currency being sent, and the currency that the receiver will get determine fee amounts. All of their minimal fees are very transparent. Transfer fee information will be presented to you before the transaction.

There are no fees for using the Wise card to pay for items if you’re paying for products with a currency you already have in your online account.

Conversion fees from 0.24 – 3.69% will be added on automatic exchanges by Wise if there isn’t enough of a particular currency in your account to pay for a transaction. These fees are updated on Wise’s website regularly so that you can refer to them for additional information.

You can make two withdrawals per month for up to £200 (or currency equivalent) at ATMs for free. A fee will be charged after that based on the country where your Wise debit card was issued.

The fee is generally around 1.75%. An additional 50p/withdrawal fee (or currency equivalent) will be added if you make more than two ATM withdrawals in a month. You may want to visit their fee section for multi-currency accounts to learn more.

Wise offers a guaranteed exchange rate. This means a particular exchange rate is guaranteed for a given time period. Exchange rates are guaranteed from two to seventy-two hours.

The kind of currency being transferred will determine how long the exchange rate is guaranteed. When your transfer has been set, Wise will let you know how long your specific rate is guaranteed. They will use the live rate if the money arrives after the guarantee’s time period has expired.

Once the exchange rate reaches a level that you specify, Wise can inform you. You can also request a daily email about the rate between the currencies.

 

Wise offers affordable currency exchange.
Wise offers affordable money transfers and currency exchange.

 

Wise always uses the current exchange rate and has very transparent fees, regardless of how much money you transfer. Sending larger volumes of money regularly may qualify you for a monthly volume discount.

Having larger amounts of EUR in your account has a 0.4% annual fee. The fee was added because of negative interest rates in the Eurozone. It costs Wise money to hold Euros in their clients’ accounts.

Personal accounts can have as much as 15,000 EUR in their accounts without fees. Business clients can have up to 70,000 EUR in their accounts free of charge. Individual and business accounts can hold funds in other currencies without being charged a fee for doing so, like with EUR.

 

Wise Bank Account Review

Wise borderless account (now called a Wise multicurrency account) allows you to add funds in 19 currencies: USD, AUD, CAD, CZK, EUR, HRK, JPY, NZD, RON, SGD, BGN, CHF, DKK, GBP, HUF, NOK, PLN, SEK, and TRV. You can’t keep Brazilian real (BRL) in your Wise account, but you can add other currencies and pay for them with BRL.

Wise multi-currency accounts can hold funds in more than 50 different currencies. Real-time exchange rates are used whenever you want to convert these currencies. There aren’t any setup fees or subscriptions to worry about.

 

Wise bank details.
You can get local bank details for 9 currencies.

 

You can also receive bank details for AUD, EUR, GBP, USD, HUF, NZD, CAD, TRY, RON (this is only available to EEA and Switzerland residents), and SGD. PLN bank details are not currently provided to new users until improvements are completed. Those who already have PLN bank details can still use them without issues.

Wise account funds can be sent to bank account whenever you’d like. Money transfers to another currency will have both a fixed fee and a conversion fee applied to them.

 

Wise Cards

MasterCard is currently the only Wise card option. You can pay for purchases with any currency in your account balance when paying by credit card. Conversion fees are nominal, and the card doesn’t have any transaction fees.

People living in Australia, New Zealand, the United States, the UK, EEA countries, Switzerland, and Singapore can sign up for the Wise card.

 

You can increase Wise limits.
Limits can be increased with one click either via app or via website.

 

The maximum amount of money that you can withdraw at no charge will depend on where your card is based. The Wise app can be used to monitor and set those limits. The limits are:

  1. Cards issued in the UK or Europe allow for 2 free monthly withdrawals up to 200 EUR/GBP. After that 1.75% fee is charged to all withdrawals above over 200 GBP/EUR. There is also a 50p/withdrawal fee for each additional withdrawal over 2 free available.
  2. Wise cards issued in New Zealand, Australia, or Singapore can have two withdrawals per month of up to 350 NZD/AUD/SGD. After that 1.50 SGD/NZD/AUD + 1.75% fee is charged.
  3. U.S. issued cards can have two withdrawals per month of up to 100 USD. After that, a 1.50 USD + 2% fee is charged on any withdrawals over 100 USD.
  4. If you’re using a different currency, the sum will be equivalent to the currency your card was issued in.

You can use a Wise debit card in all places that already accept debit cards. You can also pay for items purchased online with your card. The Wise app, SMS, or text message can be used to approve or verify transactions.

Wise card supports 3D Secure (3DS) online payment, which is an added security measure mandated by certain websites. Verification must be done before payments can be processed in those instances. Fund withdrawals at ATMs can also be accomplished with your card.

 

Wise debit card.
Wise debit card can be used to pay in any currency.

 

Card spending limits can be modified on the Wise website or app. Wise also offers virtual cards. To get a virtual card, you’ll first need to open an account and then order a physical card. From there you can hold up to three virtual cards simultaneously. You can instantly replace these card details if needed or delete them.

If you need to replace your Wise debit card, you will need to pay a fee to receive a new one. Ordering a Wise card costs 5 GBP, and a replacement card is charged 3 GBP. There are also different card limits depending in which country the card was issued.

For more info about Wise card, you can check my in-depth Wise debit card review.

 

Wise Business Account Review

It only takes a few minutes to set a Wise personal account. But when setting a business account, there are a few additional verification steps. There’s no fee for opening a Wise business account. You can send payments and receive money using real-time exchange rates. It can be used to buy inventory, pay invoices and manage payrolls.

Business accounts are great for various organizations, from independent freelancers and entrepreneurs to big corporations. You can conduct personal transfers in any country that Wise is allowed to operate in by law. Certain business transfers may have restrictions or limits. You can check the business transfer restrictions section page for additional details.

 

Wise business account review.

 

Your business debit card can be used to pay for company expenses or buy products at physical or online retail locations. Every company that you manage can have a separate Wise business account.

A small setup fee is required so that you can have your own bank data. It’s a one-time charge. You can receive money in multiple countries after this fee has been paid. The fee is typically anywhere from 16 to 21 GBP (or currency equivalent). Once verification has been finalized, you’ll get your bank information. If Wise can’t verify your company, they will refund this fee.

There’s also a small fee for conversions made between different currencies. The fee applies when you send money in a currency you don’t currently have in your online account. When funds are converted, the real exchange rate is always used.

 

Other Services

Inexpensive money transfers between Wise accounts and bank accounts are the company’s primary specialty. Their mobile app works on iPhones and Android mobile devices. You can use the app to send money, check transactions, set limits, etc.

You can track the status of each transfer and cancel the action if necessary. It only takes a few minutes to send and receive funds using Wise’s app.

Jars are a unique service that Wise offers to its customers. Jars hold money that’s kept separate from the Wise account balances. The funds in a jar can’t be spent with your debit card or used to pay direct debits.

This feature is usually used to save money. These funds can be used to buy big-ticket items, take a vacation or holiday, or just to save for a rainy day. They can also be set aside to transfer funds in another currency or to pay for future expenses or bills.

Your Wise account can be integrated with your FreeAgent, Quickbooks (check how to connect WooCommerce with Quickbooks), or Xero account (see WooCommerce Xero integration). It’s also compatible with both Apple Pay and Google Pay.

 

Wise Review Conclusion

Wise’s transfer fees are low. Their website calculator can help you determine each transaction’s fees. Typically, they charge a small percentage of the overall transfer amount, then add on a fixed fee. Their charges do vary depending on where you’re sending money.

Wise always uses the base mid-market exchange rate. The best available exchange rate will be used every time.

Transfers can take as long as several business days or just a few seconds. The actual length depends on the currencies and countries you’re sending money between, how you’re paying when you pay, and if you need to verify who you are. In most cases, it takes fewer than two business days.

The Wise app is available for Apple and Android devices. The app simplifies control of your Wise debit card, accessing your Wise Borderless account and your fund transfers. It’s very intuitive with plenty of helpful features.

You should be able to find the answer to many commonly asked questions in Wise’s thorough help sections and comprehensive guides. You can also call, email, or start a live chat with their dedicated customer service personnel for further assistance if you have questions or issues.

If you are interested in how Wise compares to Revolut, then be sure to check Wise vs Revolut comparison.

Wise

9.2

Easy to use

9.5/10

Features

8.2/10

Costs & Fees

9.4/10

Overall

9.6/10

Pros

  • Affordable and fast money transfers
  • Free to open account
  • No hidden fees
  • Uses current exchange rates
  • Supports vast number of currencies
  • You can get local bank details
  • Wise debit card

Cons

  • Only MasterCard debit card (Visa soon)

DISCLOSURE: Posts may contain affiliate links. If you buy something through one of those links, I might get a small commission, without any extra cost to you. Read more about it here.

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