With its user-friendly platform and competitive exchange rates, XE has established itself as a trusted name in the money transfer sector.
But is it the best choice? And how do its rates compare with top competitors?
In this article, I’ll walk you through a detailed review of XE, explaining how it operates, the associated fees and exchange rates, its security level, and its advantages and disadvantages.
My goal is to give you all the information you need to make an informed decision.
» MORE Read our full article on The Best Money Transfer Providers
XE Review: My Verdict
XE presents a useful mix of features that make it a great international money transfer service. Its principal strength lies in its broad reach: it allows you to transfer money from 65 countries to over 170 countries, supporting around 100 currencies. This really sets XE apart from many competitors and makes it a viable choice if you need to send money to less common locations or in less widely-used currencies.
I was reassured by the backing of Euronet Worldwide, which lends the service an added degree of credibility and trust. The promise of completing most transfers within one working day is also attractive.
In terms of XE’s exchange rates, they are among the most competitive in the market, based on comparison.
However, I do need to point out the lack of transparency surrounding its fees. Although not uncommon in the industry, XE’s practice of embedding its charges within exchange rate margins makes it difficult for users to determine exactly how much they’re paying for each transaction. They often show the mid-market rates on their site, but when you click through to pay you see a slightly different story.
XE’s cash pick-up options are another benefit; with 500,000 locations globally this gives them a huge footprint for those wanting the convenience of sending cash to friends and family.
Who Should use Xe?
Typical users of XE will be those wanting a fast, convenient money transfer to the widest possible range of countries. The second key benefit is the ability to let someone pick up cash at any of over 500,000 XE pick-up locations around the world.
It’s unlikely to be the best option if you’re seeking the absolute cheapest rate, or you want the account management that comes with the more boutique FX firms.
How does XE work?
Here’s a brief overview of how the XE money transfer service works:
- Create an Account: To use XE’s money transfer service, you first need to create an account on the XE website or through their mobile app. You will need to provide some personal information, including your name, address, date of birth, and contact details for identity verification. XE complies with international anti-money laundering laws and regulations, so this information is necessary to prevent fraudulent activities.
- Quote and Transaction Details: Once your account is set up and verified, you can initiate a money transfer by entering the amount you want to send and the currency of the recipient. XE will provide you with a quote showing the exchange rate and any fees associated with the transfer. You can proceed with the transaction if you’re satisfied with the quote.
- Recipient’s Information: You need to provide the details of the recipient, including their full name as it appears on their bank account, their bank account number, and the bank’s SWIFT/BIC code. The SWIFT/BIC code is a unique identifier for every bank worldwide, and it’s necessary to ensure the money goes to the right bank.
- Payment to XE: After confirming the recipient’s details, you’ll need to transfer the money to XE. XE accepts payment via bank transfer, debit card, or credit card. Note that payment methods may vary depending on the country of residence.
- Transfer Completion: Once XE has received your funds, they will exchange the money into the recipient’s currency at the agreed-upon rate and send it to the recipient’s bank account. The time it takes for the money to reach the recipient can vary depending on the countries and currencies involved, but typically it takes 1-4 business days.
- Track Your Transfer: XE provides updates throughout the process, so you can track the status of your transfer. You’ll receive notifications when your funds are received by XE, when the currency exchange is completed, and when the money is sent to the recipient’s bank.
XE’s fees and exchange rates: How much does it cost to transfer money with XE?
XE is widely recognized for its competitive exchange rates and fee structures. Here’s a closer look at how these work:
XE utilizes live exchange rates, which are updated by the second during market hours. This means you get the most current rate when you initiate your transfer. However, do note that these rates may not be identical to the mid-market rate (the rate banks and transfer services use when they trade among themselves), as XE, like many other services, includes a margin on top. This margin is how the service makes a profit on the exchange. Despite this, XE’s rates are generally very competitive compared to most traditional banks and some other money transfer services.
One of the significant advantages of using XE is that there are no direct transfer fees for customers. This means you won’t be charged any fixed fee per transaction, regardless of the amount you’re transferring. However, it’s essential to be aware that while XE does not charge a direct fee, the difference between the mid-market rate and the customer rate effectively acts as an indirect fee.
Also, while XE does not charge any fees, it’s important to know that intermediary and receiving banks (the banks that process the money transfer before it arrives at the recipient’s account) might charge fees. These fees are not within XE’s control and are typically deducted from the transferred amount.
XE’s security and customer service: How safe is it to use XE?
XE takes security very seriously and has implemented various measures to ensure that your money and personal information are safe.
- Secure Website and App: XE’s website and mobile app use HTTPS with SSL encryption, the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This ensures that all data passed between the web server and browser remains private and integral.
- Regulation: XE is regulated by financial authorities in several countries. For instance, in the United States, it is registered with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), while in the United Kingdom, it is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Regulatory bodies ensure that XE complies with all the necessary security, anti-money laundering, and operational standards.
- Identity Verification: When you create an account with XE, they perform identity verification checks to ensure you are who you say you are. This helps to prevent identity theft and fraud.
- Secure Money Transfers: XE uses trusted global partners to facilitate its money transfers. This ensures that your money is secure during transit.
XE’s pros and cons: What are the advantages and disadvantages of using XE?
- Competitive Exchange Rates: XE offers competitive exchange rates compared to many traditional banks and other money transfer services. This can result in savings, especially for large amounts.
- User-friendly Platform: XE’s website and app are intuitive and easy to use, making it simple for users to initiate and track their transfers.
- Wide Range of Currencies Supported: XE supports money transfers to over 170 countries in 60 different currencies, offering a wide array of options for international transfers.
- Availability: XE’s services are available in 22 countries, giving a broad customer base access to their platform.
- Fees for Certain Payment Methods: While XE doesn’t charge direct transfer fees, certain payment methods may incur additional costs. For example, credit card payments can come with higher fees due to processing charges.
- Limited Availability: Despite its wide coverage, XE is not available in all countries. This could limit its usefulness for people in regions not served by the platform.
- Customer Service Delays: While XE generally offers good customer support, some users have reported delays in response times, especially during peak hours or high-volume periods.
XE’s APP: How user-friendly is XE’s platform?
Based on my experience using XE, both their website and mobile app offer a highly user-friendly experience. The interfaces have been well-designed with simplicity and usability in mind. They are responsive and mobile-friendly.
Navigating the menus is clear, straightforward, and easy to use. The real-time exchange rate updates and fee transparency are displayed prominently, which I really appreciate as it allows me to make informed decisions about when to make my transfers.
The platforms also offer several useful features to enhance the user experience. The rate alert and transfer tracking options, for example, provide great convenience. With just a few clicks, I can set up alerts for specific exchange rates, track the status of my transfers, and even cancel or refund if necessary.
However, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing. I’ve noticed that the website and app can occasionally be slow, which can be quite frustrating, especially when I’m trying to make a quick transfer. The platforms can also seem a bit cluttered with information, sometimes making it difficult to locate the specific features I need.
Another downside is the limited range of features. For instance, I can’t send money to recipients in cash or via wire transfer. Plus, the platforms are predominantly English-focused, presenting a potential barrier if English isn’t your first language.
XE’s customer reviews: What do other customers say about XE?
XE has 59,757 reviews on Trustpilot, with an overall rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars. This rating is based on over 50,000 reviews from verified customers.
- Positive reviews: Many customers praise XE for its ease of use, competitive exchange rates, and fast transfer times. Some customers also appreciate XE’s customer support, which is available 24/7.
- Negative reviews: Some customers have complained about XE’s fees, which can be high in some cases. Others have also complained about the time it takes for transfers to be processed.
XE’s alternatives: What other money transfer companies are similar to XE?
|Wise (formerly TransferWise)||Low-cost transfers, fast delivery, available in over 80 countries||Highly competitive exchange rates, intuitive interface, responsive customer service||Transfer times may be longer compared to competitors, service not accessible in all countries|
|TransferGo||Cost-effective, quick transfers, operates in over 200 countries||Offers competitive exchange rates, user-friendly platform, dependable customer assistance||Transfers might be slower compared to other services, limited availability in certain regions|
|Remitly||Low fees, speedy transfers, accessible in over 150 countries||Attractive exchange rates, seamless user experience, excellent customer support||Transfer durations could be longer relative to other services, not provided in every country|
|WorldRemit||Affordable transfers, prompt service, present in over 140 countries||Provides appealing exchange rates, easy-to-navigate platform, dedicated customer support||Delivery times may exceed those of some competitors, not universally available|
|Revolut||No fee transfers, instant global transfers, available in 37 countries||Interbank exchange rates, sleek and modern interface, versatile financial services||Only available in a limited number of countries, customer support may be lacking at times|
|CurrencyFair||Competitive fees, fast transfers, available in over 150 countries||Peer-to-peer exchange allows for potential savings, straightforward to use, commendable customer service||Not available in the US, may be slower than some other providers|
|OFX||No maximum transfer limit, operates in over 80 countries||Better rates for larger amounts, 24/7 customer service, secure transfers||Minimum transfer limit may be high for some users, transfers may not be instant|
|PayPal (Xoom)||Operates in over 130 countries, offers fast transfers||Familiar interface, backed by PayPal’s security, can pay directly from PayPal account||Higher fees compared to other services, exchange rates may not be as competitive|
|Azimo||Offers transfers to over 200 countries, fast transfer times||Competitive fees and rates, user-friendly platform, good customer service||Transfers to some countries may take longer, not available in the USA|
|Skrill||Instant transfers, operates in over 200 countries||Supports a wide range of currencies, intuitive platform, provides a prepaid Mastercard||Fees can be high depending on transfer details, customer service may be inconsistent|