Personal Finance

International Money Transfer - TransferWise

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 15th, 2019 8:33 pm
[OP]
Member
Dec 3, 2009
244 posts
44 upvotes

International Money Transfer - TransferWise

Hello All,

I'm trying to transfer some money to S. Korea, but am finding it very difficult... I tried both my banks (TD and BMO), and neither was able to send a KRW wire transfer. Tried PayPal and XE as well, but KRW is not a supported currency apparently...

So after some googling, found a company called TransferWise (https://transferwise.com/ca). Has anyone had any experience with this service before? Wondering whether it is legitimate...

Otherwise, anyone aware of some other options I can use to transfer CAD to KRW?

Thanks
69 replies
Newbie
Aug 29, 2012
45 posts
22 upvotes
Toronto
Transferwise is a legitimate business and I have used them several times before. The good thing with them is they show their fee upfront before you commit to the transaction. You should ask them if they use a local domestic account to deliver the funds to your destination account in KRW as that way you will be sure that there are not any inbound wire fees that typically occur from swift transfers inwards and instead they just do a local EFT transfer.

I did take a quick look at CurrencyFair and KRW does not appear to be a currency they support so transferwise.

There is another thread here that may have some useful resources for you : best-place-exchange-korean-won-1617475/
Deal Addict
Feb 29, 2012
2654 posts
1435 upvotes
Richmond
Yes, Transferwise is legit. They have been discussed in the news and in a few previous threads in this forum. I've used them several times.

Pro:
- They use the proper mid-rate for currency exchange calculation and don't bury their fee in a poor exchange rate.
- Their total cost including fee is less than most other services.
- It goes straight into the receiver's bank account by a local direct deposit, usually avoiding any fees at their end.

Con:
- The only cheap way to send money in Canada is to give them direct access to your bank account, which is very insecure, especially since they go through third party processors unknown to you. They have alternatives, but they all cost more, losing the price advantage.
- One of the ways they stay cheap is that they don't maintain any float in the different currencies, so it takes them a couple of days to match up balancing exchanges between countries. It can take from 3 to 5 business days to complete a transaction.
[OP]
Member
Dec 3, 2009
244 posts
44 upvotes
Thanks for the advice guys.

Good to hear that they're reputable. And the heads-up regarding local vs wire deposits on their end.
Member
Mar 7, 2011
254 posts
145 upvotes
Ottawa
I've used it a couple of times to send to Korea and it worked just fine.
[OP]
Member
Dec 3, 2009
244 posts
44 upvotes
sky417 wrote:
May 9th, 2017 12:29 am
I've used it a couple of times to send to Korea and it worked just fine.
Can you confirm whether the receiver ended having to pay any fees?
Sr. Member
Feb 17, 2017
743 posts
458 upvotes
Calgary
I transfer money from my UK account to my Canadian account all the time with them. Normally get the money the same day (arrives late evening) as sending. They usually send the payment out via a local bank so no receiver fees.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Aug 29, 2012
5115 posts
2784 upvotes
Great service, I used to send Philippine pesos many times and it always worked perfectly.

I know you have to give them access to your bank account, but if that concerns you, you can just use a secondary bank account for that, something that you only use for such purposes (like Tangerine or PCF).
Member
Mar 7, 2011
254 posts
145 upvotes
Ottawa
pentiumvi wrote:
May 9th, 2017 12:34 am
Can you confirm whether the receiver ended having to pay any fees?
I actually sent it to my own account, and I didn't see any extra fee charged on the receiving side.
Member
User avatar
Dec 28, 2010
444 posts
162 upvotes
CanadianSpruce wrote:
May 9th, 2017 3:00 am
I transfer money from my UK account to my Canadian account all the time with them. Normally get the money the same day (arrives late evening) as sending. They usually send the payment out via a local bank so no receiver fees.
ditto.

The person transferring the money pays the fee. I had some issues in the beginning where my Canadian bank didn't allow access but the other way around: no problem. Very good service!
Actions speak louder than words
Member
User avatar
Dec 28, 2010
444 posts
162 upvotes
Faith24 wrote:
May 8th, 2017 11:30 pm
- One of the ways they stay cheap is that they don't maintain any float in the different currencies, so it takes them a couple of days to match up balancing exchanges between countries. It can take from 3 to 5 business days to complete a transaction.
I use a secondary PC account on my Transferwise, one only used for international transfers.
Actions speak louder than words
Newbie
User avatar
May 12, 2017
1 posts
Have you used their Direct Debit method to transfer funds from a CAD based account before?

Despite the risks, I attempted it with both TD and Tangerine and was unsuccessful. It seems to fail during the MFA phase. I contacted Transferwise directly about it and they indicated that they have been having some issues with access to Canadian bank accounts. I'm unsure why they can't have it setup as an EFT link to avoid having the user input their login credentials on a 3rd party site.
Deal Addict
Dec 20, 2004
4642 posts
299 upvotes
Toronto
Faith24 wrote:
May 8th, 2017 11:30 pm
Yes, Transferwise is legit. They have been discussed in the news and in a few previous threads in this forum. I've used them several times.

Con:
The only cheap way to send money in Canada is to give them direct access to your bank account, which is very insecure, especially since they go through third party processors unknown to you. They have alternatives, but they all cost more, losing the price advantage.
If you choose the "Bank Transfer" method, you can actually do a bill payment to send them the money, in addition to a normal wire transfer (which would incur wire fees). I just did a transfer using Transferwise and was able to fund the transaction by making a bill payment to Transferwise from my BMO account, which incurs no fees at all.

This is great since it's fast, no fees, and I can make the bill payment online without having to go in to my bank or call them. The catch is that they only support this payment method from BMO and National Bank.

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