Transferwise vs Revolut: Which Is Best in 2020?

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Transferwise vs Revolut: Which Is Best For You?

TransferWise and Revolut offer services that are quite similar. They are both offering cheap money transfers in many different currencies. How can you decide between both services?

I have both cards. But, I am mostly using my Revolut card. So, many of my readers asked me why I was mainly using my Revolut card, where I could have only used my TransferWise card. Today, I am going to answer the question: Which is better between TransferWise and Revolut?

Both companies will help you save money on foreign currency exchanges. However, they are still different in their fees and their offers. They both have some pros and cons. And that is precisely what we are going to go over in this post.

For this comparison, I am only going to go over the personal accounts, not the business accounts. Both TransferWise and Revolut offer accounts for businesses. But this is out of scope for this article. So, let’s compare TransferWise vs Revolut. Which should you use?

TransferWise

TransferWise

TransferWise offers a credit card with very low fees for currency exchange.

TransferWise is a private company based in the United Kingdom. It was launched in 2011. It is a money transfer service. From your TransferWise account, you can transfer money to any other users in almost any currency. You can also transfer money to a bank account. You can use money from your account with the Borderless MasterCard.

The main focus of TransferWise was for people working abroad. These people can receive a salary in a currency different than the country they are living in. TransferWise can help them save a lot of money on fees.

TransferWise has been profitable since 2017 and now has more than four million users. It has about one thousand employees over the world. Their services are available in Europe and the United States.

Revolut

Revolut is a private company based in the United Kingdom. It was launched in 2015. They offer money transfer services. From your account, you can transfer money to other users as well as directly to bank accounts. You can do transfers in almost any currencies. You can use your money on your account with the Revolut MasterCard. They also offer virtual cards that you can use on the Internet. They also have started providing access to cryptocurrencies.

The original focus of Revolut was for people traveling abroad. By using their credit cards in another country, these travelers need to pay a lot of fees. Revolut can save them a lot of money.

Revolut announced that they had about four million users in 2019. They have about 600 employees over the world. In the beginning, Revolut was only available in Europe. But since 2020, they are now available in the United States as well. And they will probably increase their coverage in the years to come.

I have been using Revolut for a while now. You can learn more about it in my full review of Revolut.

Availability

Both services are very well supported in Europe.

However, Revolut is mostly available in Europe. Overall, Revolut is available in 32 European countries. They are already available in Australia. And since 2020, they are now available in the United States as well.

On the other hand, TransferWise is available in more than 50 countries, including the United States. It makes TransferWise generally more popular since they have more coverage from the U.S. Also, TransferWise can be used in many Asian countries (Indonesia, for instance). At the same time, Revolut is absent from these countries.

Revolut supports 140 currencies, while TransferWise only supports 96 currencies. But, Revolut only lets you hold money in 24 currencies in your account. On the other hand, TransferWise allows you to hold money in 50 currencies!

So, TransferWise can hold more currencies. If you are traveling to a lot of countries, this could make a difference. But this is not a significant difference for me.

Money Transfer Service

Both companies focus on money transfer as their primary service. They both offer a debit card that you can use everywhere. You can charge your debit card from your bank account. You can then use it as a physical card or online. In both cases, you can also withdraw money from your debit card.

Both TransferWise and Revolut offer a way to do money transfer from one account to another or another bank account. Generally, people believe that TransferWise is a bit faster in executing payments. However, my transfers with Revolut have always been swift. Revolut has always been faster than my bank account.

There is a difference when receiving money. In Revolut, you can only receive money in GBP, EUR, and CHF. With TransferWise, you can also receive money in USD. It is convenient if you get paid in dollars or have investments in USD.

You can use TransferWise from a website and a mobile application. On the other hand, you can only Revolut from their mobile app. From my user point of view, they offer the same usability.

As for the cards themselves, Revolut offers a Mastercard and a Maestro, while TransferWise only offers a Mastercard. The offer of a Maestro is a good point in favor of Revolut. It can be convenient to get a Maestro card in Switzerland. But it is not critical anymore.

So, for money transfer services, Revolut and TransferWise are a tie!

Other services

TransferWise is very focused on the single service of transferring money at low-cost between bank accounts or between TransferWise accounts.

On the other hand, Revolut has many features. For instance, they started offering cryptocurrencies in 2018. That means you can hold cryptocurrencies in your account. On the other hand, this is not a free service. You will pay a 1.5% fee for each buy or sell of cryptocurrencies. And you cannot get your cryptocurrencies out of your Revolut account. For instance, you cannot move them into your cryptocurrency wallet. So this is not a replacement for other cryptocurrencies exchanges.

Revolut also started offering insurance for several things. And they also have Vaults, a system with which you can round purchases and save spare cash. And they have many budgeting capabilities in the mobile application. Moreover, Revolut has a banking license. It means they could become a bank in the future.

Recently, Revolut started working with Google Pay and Apple Pay. So you can use your smartphone directly to pay with your Revolut card. Being able to pay from a smartphone is good news for many people! But this only matters if you want to use this feature.

Finally, Revolut offers three different accounts:

  1. Standard. It is the free account I am focusing on in this article.
  2. Premium. This account costs 6.99 EUR per month. It adds to Standard account with priority support, higher withdrawal, no more monthly limits, and several forms of insurances.
  3. Metal. This account costs 12.99 EUR per month. This account adds to the Premium account a concierge service and 0.1% cashback on European purchases and 1% cashback abroad.

For me, I do not have any advantage in having the Premium or Metal accounts. It seems like most people will have enough with the Standard account.

So, when comparing TransferWise vs Revolut, Revolut has many more features than TransferWise. However, I am not sure these features will appeal to everybody. I think it is good that TransferWise focuses on doing one single thing very well rather than trying to do everything at once. Having more features does not mean it is better if you do not use them.

Limits – TransferWise vs Revolut

Both services have different limits. For my usage, I never hit any of the limits. But if you plan to rely on either TransferWise or Revolut heavily, you need to be aware of these limits.

TransferWise has a small default limit on each operation. But you can change the default from the mobile application. So I am going to talk about the maximum limits you can set. Also, TransferWise has different limits for European and U.S. customers.

Let’s start with European customers.  European customers can withdraw 1000 GBP per withdrawal, 1500 GBP per day, and 4000 GBP per month. For online purchases, they can purchase for a maximum of  10’000 GBP per day or 30’000 GBP per month. U.S. customers have smaller limits. They can withdraw 1000 USD per day and 4000 USD per month. And they can pay online for 2000 USD per day and 10’000 USD per month.

Revolut has a more straightforward system for limits. Indeed, you can withdraw a maximum of 3000 GBP per day. And you can transfer a lot of money with Revolut. The daily limit on Revolut is 100’000 GBP. And the weekly limit is 250’000 GBP.

Revolut has much higher limits than TransferWise. Moreover, their system is much simpler. However, for most users, the limits of TransferWise should be more than sufficient.

Money transfer prices

What is most impressive with these two services is their prices. Standard credit cards make you pay a substantial fee for foreign currencies exchanges. It is typically between 1.5% and 2.5% on each amount. Both TransferWise and Revolut are significantly cheaper than that! It is their primary purpose. For me, this is the thing I am looking the most into to compare these two services.

On TransferWise, transfers are not free. You will need to pay between 0.3 and 0.7% fee on each transfer, depending on the currency pair you are converting money from. They are using a very complicated pricing system.

On the other hand, Revolut offers transfers for free! It is valid for each currency pair. However, there is a limit of 1000£ (GBP) per month. Once you reach this limit, you will have to pay a 0.5% fee on each transfer. Moreover, on the weekend, you will have to pay an extra 1.0% fee for each transfer. And some currencies like Russian Roubles (RUB) and Thai Baht are more expensive, with a 1% fee during the week and 2% during the weekend.

As a side note, you can use one of the premium accounts of Revolut to increase the monthly limit for free transfers. If you are planning to convert a large amount of money, this could be worth it.

TransferWise is better than Revolut for guaranteeing the amount the recipient will receive from a bank transfer. Transferwise has local accounts for all their currencies. And they will use that to guarantee the amount received by the recipient.

For instance, if you send Mexican Pesos from the U.K., you will know exactly how much they will receive. Your money will go from one TW account to another first. And then, it will make a local payment to the recipient bank account. Revolut does not have such a guarantee. It means you could lose some money because of the fees.

Now, there are some complicated examples of transfers that are not free. For instance, with Revolut, you are only allowed one SWIFT transfer outside of the SEPA region. After this, they will cost you 4 USD. Unfortunately, this is very poorly documented. In practice, you should be fine, but it useful to know that these situations can happen.

Example of fees

Let’s make a few examples of exchanges to compare directly TransferWise and Revolut. I am going to take TransferWise Borderless Card as an example. The prices are different if you send money from the app or using the card. If you want all the details, you can use Transferwise pricing system.

Amount From To TransferWise Revolut Revolut Weekend
1000 CHF EUR 4.84 CHF 0 CHF 10 CHF
5000 CHF EUR 21.97 CHF 25 CHF 75 CHF
10000 CHF EUR 43.37 CHF 50 CHF 150 CHF
1000 EUR USD 5.14 EUR 0 CHF 10 EUR
5000 EUR USD 21.47 EUR 25 CHF 75 EUR
1000 CHF RUB 11.26 CHF 10 CHF 20 CHF
5000 CHF RUB 46.15 CHF 75 CHF 125 CHF

Since Revolut increased their fees in June 2020, the results are more in favor of TransferWise rather than Revolut!

  • Revolut is still cheaper for small amounts (less than 1250 CHF per month).
  • TransferWise is always better during the weekend
  • TransferWise is much better for large amounts
  • TransferWise is much better for special currencies

So, with a small amount converted per month, Revolut is still interesting. Otherwise, TransferWise is much better!

If you want the best fees in every case, you will have to use both cards:

  • Revolut for small transfers in standard currencies
  • TransferWise for exotic currencies transfers
  • TransferWise for big transfers
  • TransferWise during the weekends

If you enter in several of these categories, you will need both a Revolut and a TransferWise. It will be the most optimal combination to reduce the fees.

So, both solutions have their advantages and disadvantages. You need to know the fees to minimize them.

Reputation – Revolut vs TransferWise

We can also compare the reputation of these two services.

There has been some recent controversy about Revolut. If you follow financial news, you probably have heard some of them.

Since its creation, Revolut has had many issues with their employees. Or rather, employees had many problems with Revolut! Indeed, they have a significant turnover. And several prior employees have reported a lot of unpaid work and extreme work conditions.

Of course, these are only rumors. Revolut never confirmed them. I do not know the truth behind these allegations. But this does not help Revolut’s reputation. Indeed, there is generally some truth behind such claims.

In early 2019, the news reported that thousands of suspicious transactions were allowed to go through the Revolut system. They showed that Revolut switched off their screening system. We do not know why the system was not activated. After the news, they reactivated the system. But this is worrisome.

Shortly after this event, the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Revolut stepped down, increasing the controversy and conjectures around Revolut. He said he stepped down because Revolut was become too big too fast and was not capable of handling all these changes.

There are also rumors of another kind about Revolut. Many people believe that they have strong ties to the Kremlin. But I have never read any facts about this. It is generally only based on the fact that the founder is Russian. I would not worry too much about that.

Also, I have heard about many people having issues with their accounts and losing some money, even in Switzerland. Now, I do not know if these people did everything right. But this is still worrying.

On the other hand, there has not been much controversy about TransferWise. Overall, Transferwise has a much better reputation than Revolut.

I am not worried enough with all this information to stop using Revolut. Many companies are going through something like this when they grow up. Moreover, some of the news have debatable sources. However, this is still something I would worry about if I were to transfer a lot of money through Revolut.

User Reviews – TransferWise vs Revolut

Finally, we can also take a look at actual user reviews for both companies. For this, I am going to use Trustpilot as a reference (in January 2020). Trustpilot is generally the place that has the most high-quality reviews for such services.

TransferWise gets a score of 4.6 out of 5 on Trustpilot. It is an excellent score! 86% of people are reviewing TransferWise as Excellent and 8% as Great. On the other hand, 2% think it is average, 1% think it is poor, and 3% think it is bad!

If we look at the bad reviews for TransferWise, we can see recurring themes:

  • Bad experience with customer support
  • Transfers took longer than expected
  • Accounts were disabled for apparently no reason

Then, Revolut also gets a score of 4.6 out of 5 on Trustpilot. Once again, this is an excellent score. 79% of people say it is excellent, and 12% say it is great. In contrary, 2% says it is average, 1% says it is poor while 6% say it is bad.

Looking at the negative reviews for Revolut, we can also see some recurring themes:

  • Bad experience with customer service
  • Accounts have been disabled for apparently no reason
  • Extra fee on some transfers

Given that they have the same score, Revolut and TransferWise have the same good ratings by users! We can see the same recurring themes on negative reviews for both companies. But they have many great views, and their scores are excellent. Reviews are much better than I thought. It is because negative feedback is often louder than the positive ones.

TransferWise vs Revolut Summary

To finish this comparison, here is a summary of the primary comparison points between the two services:

Point Revolut Transferwise
Availability Good Best
Weekday fees Best Good
Weekend Fees Bad Good
Free Withdrawals 200 EUR/mo 200 EUR/mo
Transfer Speed Good Best
Currency Support Good Best
Limits Best Good
Customer service Bad Good
Features Many features Many features
Mobile application Good OK
Web application None Good
Stability OK Good
Reputation Bad Good
User Reviews Good Good

Overall, we can see that both services have very good things to offer.

TransferWise has more advantages than Revolut. From a pure money point of view, Revolut is superior. However, they do have a bad reputation, and their customer service is very poorly rated. Moreover, Revolut is not yet profitable. Also, since their increase in fees, they are only advantageous when transferring low amounts of money.

Here are the main differences between Revolut and TransferWise:

  • Revolut is free during the week while Transferwise always have fees
  • Revolut is only free for the first 1000 GBP per month
  • TransferWise support more currencies
  • TransferWise is available in more countries than Revolut
  • TransferWise offers a web application and mobile application, Revolut only has a mobile application
  • TransferWise is profitable, Revolut is not
  • Revolut has more features on mobile
  • TransferWise has a much better reputation

FAQ

Is Revolut cheaper than TransferWise?

Sometimes, yes! TransferWise is never free since you pay 0.3% of your transaction as a fee. On the other hand, Revolut is generally free for most currency pairs. Now, Revolut is more expensive than TransferWise during the weekend and for some currency pairs. So you need to compare for each currency pair.

Is Revolut better than TransferWise?

It depends on the situation. For small amounts of money, Revolut is better than TransferWise. But overall, TransferWise has a much better reputation and lower fees for larger transfers.

Conclusion

TransferWise

TransferWise offers a credit card with very low fees for currency exchange.

When comparing TransferWise vs Revolut, I prefer TransferWise over Revolut. First, I would not trust Revolut with much of my money. Also, TransferWise has many advantages over Revolut.

Finally, and probably, more importantly, TransferWise is a well-established company with an excellent reputation. It is already profitable. It could say that they will last longer than Revolut.

Nevertheless, Revolut still has one advantage over TransferWise: For small amounts of money, Revolut is free! So, you can still use them if you will not convert more than 1250 CHF per month. But be careful not to hold too much money on your account.

As such, I would be more cautious if I were to deposit a lot of money on my accounts. I never have more than 500 CHF on my Revolut account. Revolut is still a young company that has to transition from a Fintech startup into a big finance company.

Whether you use TransferWise or Revolut, such a travel card will be an essential part of your credit card strategy. Indeed, saving on currency exchange fees is the single thing that will save you the most money on your credit card fees!

However, since they increased their fees in June 2020, you can only convert small amounts each month (maximum of 1000 GBP) per month. And transactions during the weekend have become expensive.

If you are in Switzerland: a great alternative is to use the Swiss bank Neon. They have fewer features, but they also offer free purchase abroad with their Mastercard. And most people would prefer to have a local bank for the extra security of regulations.

However, nothing prevents you from using two different cards. As I pointed out earlier, if you want to minimize the fees to a maximum, you will need both cards. For instance, you could use Revolut for most currencies and TransferWise for exotic currencies.

In both cases, I would advise being careful before depositing too much money in any of these two services. I believe you should primarily use them for currency exchanges.

And do not forget: do not use either TransferWise or Revolut for your default currency! Indeed, you need to use your local credit card for that. That way, you will accumulate some cashback. These two services are only good for money transfers involving two different currencies.

What about you? Do you prefer TransferWise or Revolut?

To learn more about TransferWise vs Revolut, you can watch this comparison video:

Mr. The Poor Swiss

Mr. The Poor Swiss is the author behind thepoorswiss.com. In 2017, he realized that he was falling into the trap of lifestyle inflation. He decided to cut on his expenses and increase his income. This blog is relating his story and findings. In 2019, he is saving more than 50% of his income. He made it a goal to reach Financial Independence. You can send Mr. The Poor Swiss a message here.

93 thoughts on “Transferwise vs Revolut: Which Is Best in 2020?”

  1. Just like you I use Revolut for currency, and money transfer. I never have any fee.

    TransferWise is not free and I practicly do not need it.

    I am not concern about Revolut reputation, because those might been rumours.
    There are many rumors about Amazon, Apple factory in China,but Amazon and Apple have good reputation.
    Revolut is threat to bank monopoly and that is reason for this rumors.

    1. Hi Luka,

      As you said, it’s also possible that some of these “attacks” are coming from banks that are being threatened. Although for now, they are still far smaller than most big banks. But it may come and it’s not a bad thing.

      Thanks for sharing!

    2. Hi Luka, & Mr The Poor Swiss,
      Have you compared both exchange currency?
      I’ve heard that Revolut charge no fee but takes more profit from the exchange rate. Someone tested and bought the exact same item twice, with both cards. He ended up paying more on Revolut even when TW charges a fee simply because TW’s exchange rates are very good.

        1. Hi Waya,

          I have seen some discussions. But I have never seen this particular one. This is quite scary! I know they had a bad reputation, but not that bad.

          Thanks for the information about Asia. I will add a note to the article regarding this!

          Thanks for stopping by!

      1. Hi Waya,

        No, I did not directly compare exchange currencies.
        I did not know the difference was so important. Since it is already much better than my bank and my other credit cards, I was thinking it was good enough.
        That’s very interesting! I will have to research this more. I will update the article accordingly.

        Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Hi,
    A question regarding the subject of transferring to abroad using revolut. Transferring to a different currency. Do I need to exchange the currency before transferring and sending it in the currency I want the receiver will get? So is the transferring is a currency change and money transfer at the same time or are those two different transactions and need to make those in split steps? Thanks

    1. Hi Baseldon,

      You can do both.
      a) You do the transfer directly in another currency. If you do not have enough of this currency, Revolut will automatically convert it to cover the transfer
      b) You do the conversion yourself first. Once you do the transfer, Revolut will use the money that you converted to cover the transfer.

      I generally do the a). I don’t bother doing the conversion myself since there are no differences. If you plan to do a transfer or a purchase during the week-end, it may be worth to do the conversion during the week and then use the converted money in the week-end.

      I hope that helps!

      1. Hi,
        If I get it right(from your hint for the weekend process), the transfer is free on the weekend too but not the exchange.
        In case of a) when do they execute the exchange if I initiate the transfer today and the estimated arrival is Monday(the weekend is in between).

        1. Hi,

          Yes, that is the way I understand it works.

          However, for your second question, I honestly have no idea. I would think that the conversion is done directly. But I cannot be sure. I did not find the information in the documentation.
          I will try to look into it.

          Thanks for stopping by!

        2. actually Revolut doesn’t allow anymore local CHF transfers…. I used the service to receive my salary in CHF but that’s not possible anymore… you should transfer CHF through SWIFT to Revolut
          Regarding TransferWise there I don’t see any possibility an employer to send you CHF to your account as is my case…

          1. Hi Kloudy,

            I do not think this is correct. Revolut still allows local CHF transfers. I can still do transfers to CHF account and my account still has a CHF IBAN (although not a personal one). Do you mean that we do not have a personal CHF IBAN? That was always the case.

            Thanks for stopping by!

      2. Hi there.
        I live in Switzerland, and have both a Personal and Business card. You know when it makes sense to use one versus the other? sometimes it is not clear whether my expense is more related to business or private – the trip / meal/… that ended up becoming a piece of work I could generate that I didn’t know at the outset.
        Also, does it make sense to pay as much as possible via something like a Migros Credit card and earn their points – (I know it doesn’t make sense to use Revolut for CHF payments) so, for example, having my mobile phone payments etc being paid by Migros Credit card versus [UBS] bank debits?
        Thanks

        1. Hi Simone,

          For the first part, I do not have a strategy no, since I do not have this situation. I would try to estimate for each expense what makes the most sense. I guess your question also guesses into the part about deducing your expenses. If something is related to business, then, use your business and declare the expenses in your taxes. But be careful about not abusing the system.

          For this second part, yes, it does make sense. I am trying to pay as much as possible with either my Amex or my Mastercard to get cashback. So, if you can, you should, but some things cannot be paid with a credit card.

          Thanks for stopping by!

  3. How did you measure the costs of currency conversions? After all, this is hidden inside the spread they are using (It’s mid-market, I know).

    BTW, jusy yesterday I compared Revolut and Covercy rates. I was amazed to see how Revolut has a much better rate than Covercy, which was was initially marketed as a competitor to Transferwise.

    Also, I just made a transcation of ILS to my revolut account after checking with them. You wrote it’s only USD,EUR and GBP.

    1. Hi Shlomo,

      These are the official costs on top of mid-market. These are the costs you are guaranteed to pay, regardless of the rate.
      It’s much more difficult to compare the rates they are offering. From what I have read, both have comparable rates. However, Revolut week-end rates seem worse than TransferWise.

      I didn’t know Covercry. Thanks for mentioning it!

      It seems I was wrong indeed about that. I will have to check it again! Thanks!

      Thanks for stopping by :)

      1. To clarify: Transferwise gives you the ‘actual’ exchange rate. I don’t know what the technical term is, but basically they don’t add any hidden fee (spread?) in the exchange rate. The big appeal for Transferwise is therefore its transparency.

        Is this the same for Revolut? Your price comparison is not very insightful as is, without showing how much money actually arrives after the conversion.

        1. Hi Markus,

          Both Revolut and TransferWise give you the current (actual) exchange rate.

          But it’s not true that Transfwerwise adds no fees! TransferWise has fees on all transactions! You can check this out online on their website: https://transferwise.com/price-change
          There is a fee between 0.3% and 0.4%.

          On the contrary, during the week, Revolut has no fee, hence it’s superior. During the weekend, Revolut fees add fees and it’s more expensive than Transferwise. Therefore, it should be avoided.

          All of this is explained in the article.

          1. Markus is right here. Transferwise uses the Interbank exchange rate and adds a fee to it. Revolut uses the Mastercard exchange rate, and already has a FX spread added in it. Some vague currencies have a ridiculous spread, and weekends have the Friday spread with a fee added.
            I’m not saying revolut is bad, I’m just pointing the difference.

        2. Revolut exchange rate is ‘interbank’ exchange rate(exclude the weekends) … no other company offer it…

  4. I really love Revolut. I use it 5-10 times a month for transfers and currency exchange. I had no idea that Transferwise had a card as well. Can you share your affiliate link? I would like to order a TW card.
    Thank you for a detailed post!

  5. Hi, Sorry I’m a little bit slow… :)
    I’ve both Revolut and Transferwise, I use Revolut when I travel abroad (specially UK) to pay common expenses and Transferwise to change my CHF salary to EUR (since I live in France and most of expenses are indeed in EUR)
    I was considering to drop my actual VISA credit card and use both Rev and TW cards for payments and (although it’s not much)pick up cash from the machines.
    In your post , you advise to keep using our credit cards when using our default currency and even mention something about cashback.
    In what way you see more is more advantage to keep the local bank credit card?
    cheers

    1. Hi Vitor :)

      You seem well equipped! I guess you have too much salary per month to use Revolut to make the conversion?

      Both TransferWise and Revolut cards can be used to make payments in shops or online. However, you do not get any cashback. If you get a France (or any other European countries with EUR) credit cards with some cashback and no fees, you will get a little money back.

      For instance, I have a MasterCard with 0.3% money back and an American Express with 1% money back. This small percentage is the only difference. If you use them only a little, it’s probably not worth it. But if you try to use it as much as possible, it can be worth it to have some cashback.

      Thanks for stopping by!

    2. You are aware that if you wanna get more than 200 EUR cash per month you either have to pay higher fees or upgrade to their premium levels which are ridiculously expensive for like 5 benefits. Only 1-2 of which apply to you personally and also only like 1-2/year. Its a bit of a joke.

  6. This seems pretty biased and clearly aimed to promote Revolut. A comparisson by moneyland.ch showed that Revolut has much more fees and higher exchange fees and transaction fees than transferwise, and a recent article by 20Min also showed how Revolut charges 12% for a small transaction from the UK Revolut account to a Swiss bank account. Even though they claim to have no fees and they did not declare that fee in advance. Also important to consider – Between the UK and Switzerland you have SEPA transactions which mean no fees whatsoever. But still they charged 12 CHF for a 100 CHF transaction. So it is strange to me that your website seems to make entirely contraditory claims here. Moneyland has quite a good reputation, while I have never heard of your website before. So who to believe?

    1. All my information is based on the official information from TransferWise and Revolut. I do not think it’s biased at all. If you do a transaction during the week with Revolut, it’s free while it’s not free with TransferWise, it’s as simple as that. Why are you biased towards TransferWise?

      I have never been charged a single cent for using Revolut and I have been using for more than a year. You just need to know the conditions and use it within the free limits.

      If you do not want to believe me, you are absolutely free to not visit my website :)

    2. Actually no, If you transfer from UK to Switzerland you don’t do that through SEPA and with SWIFT … Switzerland is not in EU and SEPA is used as internal messaging into a SWIFT but definitely is not free …. transfers between Switzerland and EU are cross border transfers and not a local ones as is the case inside EZ countries…. about 12 chf fee mentioned in the article,actually they have to ask the local swiss banks and not Revolut…. Before… to send money to Switzerland with Revolut the transfer was free because Revolut was covering the fees but that’s not the case anymore…

  7. If I may weigh in here, I can say I have lost a lot of trust in services like Revolut which make you save a lot of money on fees but there is a big downside.
    I used my Revolut card during my vacation in the US and just before flying back from JFK, I got a payment declined because of lack of funds…This was a big surprise to me since I knew I had more than 500$ and more than 500 € on my Revolut accounts. When I checked my accounts on the App, I could unfortunately see money exchanges from USD to GBP and from € to GBP, with basically all my money being exchanged to GBP. I had initiated none of these of course and then all the GBP money was transferred to someone I had never heard of, all transactions happening in a 5-minute time frame.
    I was obviously hacked by someone who went step by step, exchanging all my money to GBP before doing a transfer to his account. The only way to raise a complaint is via an in-app chat (with about 30 minutes between each response from an operator on the chat). I reacted withing 15 minutes of the hack and more than 48 hours later, I am still waiting to know what’s happened, with my account locked, not having any clue whether there is any chance I’ll see my money again…And the only contacts you can have are via a chat…
    I am starting to think that even though I used to be sickened by the huge fees banks apply, I at least get a bit more security with them and actual contacts in case of issues…

    1. Hi NIC,

      Really sorry about your misadventures with Revolut! And thanks for sharing!

      I have never heard of security issues so far. But I have heard that the customer service is pretty terrible.
      Even though I trust Revolut with some of my money, I would not use them to replace my current bank.

      Were you able to get to the bottom of this?

      Thanks for stopping by and good luck!

      1. Hello,
        here’s the bottomline following the hack I was a victim of.
        This morning, 9 days after the hack, all fraudulent operations were reverted and I got my money back, showing on my Revolut account. So I guess I can say I have regained confidence there !
        But, the customer service via only in-app chat and the terrible response time was definitely not a nice experience. .. Also, it was 6 days before anyone from Revolut told me I should be reimbursed. The first answers I was getting from them sounded like they wanted to make me responsible for getting hacked and I feared at some point it was a way for them to make sure the loss would not be on them if they weren’t able to stop fraudulent transactions. But all ends well ! I wish the claim process was more straightforward, with other ways than just a chat (I believe I chatted with 6 different persons in total) but that’s how it is.
        I’ll surely keeping using Revolut but won’t let money ‘sleep’ there over periods I know I won’t be needing it for spendings in Eurozone or US.
        Cheers !

        1. Hi NIC,

          I am really glad your money was given back to you!

          As you say, even though the end is good, the way they handled it is pretty bad!
          I never let any money except when I travel. And since the recent incidents, I now delete my credit card after I top up my account. It is a bit painful to do but I think it is worth it!

          Thanks for sharing the details!

  8. Revolut is not 100%. Intermediate Banks can take fees. E.g. I have transferred 400 CHF from my Revolut Business Account to my UBS Account and received only 388 CHF.

    Since Transferwise doesn’t use intermediate banks and does the transfer internally it’s cheaper than Revolut. Better double check this, but it is what I have understood.

    1. Hi Mike,

      That’s a good point.
      I would still argue that’s it’s 100% free since you pay to the bank and not too Revolut. However, I completely agree with you that’s their system can inferior than the system ofTransferWise for that. You always have to be careful to which account you do the transfer. For now, I never had to pay a cent in fees, but I am sure this will happen when I have no choice but to do a sub-par transaction with Revolut.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  9. I switched this week from Revolut Metal to transferwise because Revolut limited 2 x my account and needed further prove of funds. Thats annoying and costs me always a lot of time. I dont want to send them my tax declaration, salary statement and a passport beside my head and explain them for what I took money on an ATM. Its not their business. So I hope Transferwise will not alltime ask for documents. Otherwise I will move to the Swissquote multi currency card.

    1. Hi Martin,

      If I may ask, why did you get the Metal version over the basic version?

      I never heard of that situation, this really sucks. I completely understand that they do not need all this information.

      Hopefully, Transferwise will work better for you!

      Thanks a lot for sharing!

      1. I travel a lot outside europe. So the metal card was financed twice with the 1 % cashback. Additionally i have higher ATM limits. The insurance i dont need.

  10. Good Morning
    We live mostly in the TRNC but our money gets paid into our UK Accounts. Until last week we could take out GBP without any cost – however, the TRNC banks now charge between 2 and 5% i.e. I took out £500 and got charged an additional £10.80 on the transaction! Is Turkish Lire classed as an Exotic Currency if so which would be the better one to use? Transferwise or Revolut?

    1. Hi Jenny,

      I am going to assume TRNC is the same as Turkey.

      2% to 5% is a lot indeed.
      It seems TransferWise charges about 0.7% for GDB <-> TRY.
      Revolut charges 1% for TRY (yes, it’s considered exotic for them.

      So I think you should try Transferwise for GBP <-> TRY exchanges.

      Hope that helps

  11. Hi There,

    thank you for this comparison article.

    Perhaps it would be good to mention, that TransferWise, in comparison to Revolut, guarantees the amount beneficiary will receive on any transfer. The reason is that TransferWise has local bank accounts in all countries for which currency they offer their services.

    For some users, this is very important. And I am one of them. I have family in Mexico (using MXN) while I live in the Czech Republic (earning CZK). With TransferWise, I know exactly how much Mexican pesos my family will receive because TransferWise will remit the MXN transfer as local payment from a Mexican bank account.

    While on the contrary, Revolut does not guarantee the amount your beneficiary will receive. If you want to send MXN through Revolut, they will remit the payment from their MXN account in the UK. So the beneficiary will receive the amount lowered by any crossborder fees.

    Cheers.
    Skinny C

    1. Hi Skinny C,

      Actually, I didn’t know about this guarantee. It’s really a good thing!

      I knew that Revolut did not guarantee it, but I was thinking it would the same for TW!

      I will try to make a not of that in the article.

      Thanks a lot for sharing this!

  12. Thanks for this great review. It’s the most useful I’ve found in a while.

    I can vouch that as of 2019 the Revolut customer service I experienced was extremely bad and when they finally fixed an issue they caused and refused to admit, there was no explanation and no apology. I also needed to contact Transferwise re my borderless account and their customer service was prompt and efficient.

    I also found Revolut not to be transparent in the account set-up stage as they force you to pay a deposit to open the account before telling you what proof of ID documents you need. I didn’t have the documents and it took them weeks to return the money. Transferwise were much more flexible in their proof of ID documentation requirements, allowing an international passport for example.

    1. Hi Ana,

      Thanks a lot for sharing your experience!

      This confirms a lot of stories I have heard about Revolut. When it goes well, it’s really great, but when something goes wrong and you need their help, it’s pretty bad. That’s why I never hold a lot of money on the account, only enough for currency exchanges and holidays.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  13. Hi – Am new to this both Revolut & TW. But the complete review is quite useful for a beginner. However, if I have a CHF balance and want to use the Revolut card on EUR purchase, does this also attract the Revolut weekend charges. Couldn’t find any reference to this as this is a currency conversion

    1. Hi NR,

      I am glad you find this useful :)

      Yes, this counts as currency conversion and will incur the Revolut weekend charges if you do it during the week-end.
      What you can do when you know you are going to spend EUR in the week-end is to convert some currencies during the week. That way, you will have a local balance in EUR that you can spend without fees even during the weekend.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  14. My experience of Revolut is my son said I should try it (we were face timing at the weekend, he lives in Australia) I downloaded the app (which is extremely good, very impressed) there was one question (5 choices)… What is your primary reason for opening a resolut account. I picked to transfer money, I tried to put £1000 in (and do a transfer later for £750) thats where I wasn’t able to progress. I was in a hurry so used transferwise

  15. I did 5 tests with Revolut, transferring money (EUR) to a bank account in Colombia (COP). There were no fixed costs, but the money I lost for conversion was substantial: between 3% to 7% (for a 25 euro test-transfer). Worldremit proved cheapest with 1,5% in currency exchange losses and a fixed fee of 4 euro. There were slow though (17 days).

    1. Hi Richard,

      Wow, 3% to 7% is really bad :(
      Are you sure there are not some fixed fees that would destroy the percentages on such a small amount?
      I didn’t even know about Worldremit. It’s interesting.
      Good for you to try first with small amounts instead of going nuts with a big amount!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  16. I’m new to this valuable source of info. Thanks!
    One question you said about Revolut doesn’t allow USD deposits, on the other hand, you also said RV allows you to keep 24 currencies etc. I’m confused.
    Can it be that I wire in CHF then split the sum into EUR CHF, and USD in my account, can I wire out USD ? I plan to have premium because of larger sums transfer. JIM

    1. Hi Jim,

      I was not really clear, sorry.
      Revolut allows USD transfer. You will transfer USD on their account, with your reference number. However, they do not have a US account. Therefore, you will pay fees for transferring your money.
      You can transfer money to Revolut with each of their handled currencies. Or as you said, you can also wire CHF and then convert it in the application and hold it in another currency.

      If you plan to do many transfers of USD, you many have large fees. If you are doing a few large transfers, then you are probably fine. I would recommend you test the fees with a first transfer before you start using them.

      I hope that makes it more clear

      Thanks for stopping by!

  17. I have 50 k Swiss dollars and want to transfer them to sterling. Would I be better transferring them from my UBS CHF account to my UBS sterling account and then transferring to the Uk account or putting 50k on my Revolut CHF card and transferring from there?

    Or using a different method altogether?
    Starting to be wary of Revolut!

    1. Hi Keen to learn,

      I am guessing that Swiss dollars mean CHF.
      50K is over the limit of Revolut for free transfers. So you will pay a 0.5% fee on the transfer. On 50K, this is not negligible.
      As for USB, I have no idea what kind of fees you are going to pay for transferring between the two accounts. But that is probably going to be more than 0.5% when taking into account the spread in the exchange rate.
      Now, I would not be very comfortable with 50K on Revolut.
      You should ask UBS what would be the fees for a transfer between your two accounts (also ask them what will be the exchange rate). If it’s not too bad, I would use this. If it’s really too high, I would consider Revolut maybe.

      I hope that helps a bit.

      1. That does help -thank you:)
        UBS doesn’t charge for up to 100k a month. However, their rate of exchange always seems higher.

        1. You are welcome.

          If their rate of exchange is not too bad (and it probably is not for CHF/USD), you should go with.
          But then, Transferwise is also a good idea. But they are not free either.

      2. hi there,

        Thanks for the interesting article. I got a question – if you choose premium (or metal) package of Revolut account, it says there are no monthly limit for exchange. Does that mean you could, technically, transfer any amount you want, with interbank exchange? I would never put 50 k in their account in one go, but thats another story. I am however looking for cheap way to transfer bigger amounts from Switzerland to my home country (northern Europe, UE), without paying sick fees.

        1. Hi Herb,

          I think this is what it means, yes. You could, in theory, convert 50K per month for free using their services. If you want to convert a lot of money, this would be a great way to do that (provided you trust them).
          You could try to transfer the money little by little using Revolut. But you could be flagged for some dumb reasons.
          I think it remains a good service, especially around here.

          Thanks for stopping by!

          1. Thanks mate, appreciate your input. I promise myself to read more of your blog, esp. about investing :) I moved to Switzerland 3 years ago and find this place great, but I sit mostly on cash, if I save anything. Will read for sure, you are doing great job.

  18. I’m thinking of opening up a transfer wise account may be a wise option.
    And forgot to say yes, it should have read CHF, not Swiss dollars.

  19. i get paid in USD over 5k per month. It goes into my UK bank dollar account which i set up. I lose a lot of money in exchange rate fees going from that to my GBP account. Which is the best one to use. I have read a fair bit but not sure.

    1. Hi Mark,

      To transfer the USD from your USD account to your GBP, you could use Revolut. It would be for free, as long as you do not do it during the week-ends.
      Now, you should still be careful about transferring large amounts of money in Revolut. There have been cases when accounts have been suspended. But in general, this should be fine. You can try it with lower amounts.

      I hope that helps.

  20. Hi I have been a transferwise user for some time with no issues. Then in the last few months I started to have delays with money in and out and questions plus additional security such as my drivers license etc. The customer service is actually quite good,response time excellent but closed over the weekend!!
    I now also use Revolut and so far the transactions in and out are lightning fast. I will see how it goes. Am a bit concerned about rumours etc but I don’t keep mich in there and only when away

    Thanks for your article

    1. Hi David,

      Thanks a lot for sharing your experience.

      Did the support give you any explanations as to why the delays are getting longer and longer?
      I understand the security part though.

      I am also a bit concerned about the rumours about Revolut. But as you do, I try not to keep much cash on it.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  21. Even for big transfers Revolut is still better. You could buy Premium for 7 euros to avoid the £5,000 monthly limit, transfer what you want then cancel the membership. Even with the 10,000CHF example it’d be 33CHF for TW vs 7 euros for Revolut

    1. Hi Mike,

      That’s a very good idea! I never thought of that. With that, you are right that Revolut is almost always cheaper than Transferwise!
      Thanks for sharing!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  22. How do you top up Revolut? I’ve been looking to make an account with either Revolut or Transferwise for traveling (would need a card). I read on another blog that you could use your swiss credit card to top up Revolut, get the money on revolut and also profit from cashback. On the other hand I read that some people have had to pay a substantial amount of fees for that. What has been your experience?

    For the record, all my cards are part of Cembra Money bank (Cumulus and TCS gold)

    1. Hi outby40

      I am topping it my Migros Cumulus Mastercard. You can top it for free with this technique and it is instant :)
      It seems that the rule is a bit weird. I do not know exactly which credit cards can do that. But normally, you should see it in the app. If you register your credit card to the app, you should be able to see if there will be fees or not.
      So, you should be fine as well with your credit card. But it does not hurt to do a small test with a low amount.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  23. I’ve been reading the comments above. I’ve done three stints working freelance in Zurich and my currency trades are usually CHF->GBP and for what it’s worth here are my experiences:

    1) In the mid noughties I first used UBS to convert my CHF and send it to my UK account as GBP and the exchange rate they gave was appalling but I’m sure it made UBS very happy. Then I discovered xe.com where you do a currency trade and then wire the money to xe.com.

    2) About 7 years ago I discovered currency fair and the rate that they offer for CHF/GBP trades was a lot more attractive than xe.com.

    Money laundering regulations require all the companies mentioned above to confirm your identity/address via passport & utility bills. One of the comments above was complaining about this requirement but I think it is a good thing.

    Anyway, I’ve done a quick test and Transferwise seem to be better than CurrencyFair but I will have to try again during the week when the markets are open.

    I will have a need for this service as there will come a time when I will sell my CHF and buy GBP but that time is not now thanks to BREXIT. The US markets are far too frothy for my liking as well and I don’t want to take on any more market exposure so for the time being my CHF funds are with UBS. May be I should investigate Swiss “safe” funds?

    1. In an ideal world for currency transfer I want the interbank rate plus a fixed fee but xe.com and currencyfair both take a percentage based fee.

      When travelling I use a Santander Zero credit card (GBP) to withdraw cash as the exchange rate that they give is very close to the interbank rate. I top the card up with cash to avoid interest payments on cash withdrawals.

    2. Hi Lakshman,

      Thanks for sharing your experience.
      I knew about currency fair but I did not know about xe.com.

      I also think it’s fair to get information and utility bills information. Even some brokers are starting to do that.

      Swiss funds are not really safer. But it’s true that they are less volatile than the U.S. stocks market for instance. The SPI is a good index to follow for Swiss performance.
      But it will not be entirely safe (nothing is).

      Thanks!

  24. Theres another card that you should consider using when spending in Euros – the Amex international currency card.

    https://www.americanexpress.com/icc/cards/the-green-international-currency-card.html?intlink=icc-en-cards-personal-green-16072019

    There is an annual fee of €100. However, you get 1 Amex point per Euro spent. Amex points have a value of roughly 1 cent. If you spend €10,000 plus year in Euros it is likely to be better than Revolut.

    Of course, you would probably want to keep the Revolut for any Euro spend that doesn’t accept Amex…
    … and of course to pay off your credit card bill (which will be in Euros).

    I also think its worth mentioning curve, for those who have access to EU or GB credit cards. You can link your EU card to curve for spending with no FX fees in CHF, and your GB card for no FX spending in EU or CHF.

    https://www.curve.app/en-gb/.

    1. Hi Joe,

      The Amex international card looks interesting. I did not know it. But you have to spend a lot in Euros to make it worthwhile. And as you said, you still need Revolut to pay it off. I am not sure it is worth the complication.

      I have heard several times about Curve but I never looked into it. It looks more interesting than I thought. There are many features that I did not know. I will have to do more research.

      Thanks for sharing!

  25. Hi,
    I used to use currency fair. The exchange rate was pretty good, about 0.2 to 0.4% loss compared to Interbank rate, but now I prefer to use Revolut because it provides interbank exchange rate. Another option would be Interactive Brokers, they also provide Interbank exchange rate, but sending money there is a bit more complicated since you do not have your own IBAN (similar to currency fair). Revolut provides you a unique IBAN.
    When I opened my Revolut account and I sent the first transfer, in AED, they asked me for salary slips and bank statement maybe because I transferred a big amount. I found this practice ok for anti laundering reasons, which also my regular bank did the first time I sent a big amount home.
    P.S.: you can send money to Revolut account in other currencies rather than EUR, GBP and CHF. As mentioned, I have used AED.

    1. Hi Pablo,

      As you said, Interactive Brokers is a bit more complicated, but not that much if you have CHF. Revolut does not provide you a CHF unique IBAN either. So, for CHF, both IB and Revolut are the same levels of simplicity. I just trust IB a bit more for a large amount.
      But for small amounts, Revolut is perfectly fine.

      Yes, I agree that asking some questions is perfectly fine. They have to protect themselves and not help money laundering. And hopefully, they are serious about this.
      If they are reasonable in the documents they are asking, this is good protection.

      Thanks for stopping by!

    1. Hi Diego,

      Yes, I am aware of that :)
      I will update the Revolut articles in the coming days with the fees. It really makes it less interesting. And when we add all the bad press these days, I am a bit disappointed in Revolut.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  26. I’m about to move off of revolut and try transfer wise especially as the fees have gone up.
    I’ve had a couple of really bad experiences with revolut. I got paid a large amount into revolut, but the money never arrived apparently. Took over 1 week to arrive and I had to get the company prove today sent it through their bank. Revolut insisted thay could not see it but once I finally got the transfer proof it magically appeared minutes later. I don’t trust them.

    Took a friend over two weeks to get money, granted the money was sent to an acct with a typo, but revolut are terrible to help with these issues, and will not budge and help you.

    They keep asking me to prove my to source of funds as well. My other banks do not require this?

    I’ve also wondered how you will get support if you have your phone and card stolen. Because support is only through be the app

    1. Hi David,

      I am sorry for your experience with Revolut. I have heard many such stories about them. And I do not trust them either. I think they are fine for a small amount of money. But I would not receive a large amount of money with them.

      The problem with your phone is the same as many mobile services. This is indeed a big issue with mobile services.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  27. I’m a U.S. based customer of both companies, with monthly transfers to a couple European countries. Both companies offer what I need. The saying “You get what you pay for” is true in my experience. I use Revolut quite often for small amounts and it works good and fast. I also like their app better. However, their customer service is a joke compared to TW. TW might have higher fees for my usual usage, but I trust them more, so when I do large transfers I definitely opt for TW.

    1. Hi Daniel,

      Thanks a lot for sharing your experience, this is very helpful!
      I completely agree with you that for large transactions I would not trust Revolut. TW is much better there.
      Revolut shines for small amounts with zero fees. But for the rest and for a business, I would not transfer amounts with them.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  28. Good morning,

    Thanks for this very helpful overview. I was wondering whether you have compared SEPA payments to TW/Revolut? SEPA payments are free of charge within EU (with no limit), but since they can only be done in EUR I assume the bank will charge a conversion fee. For example, if I make a SEPA payment, I suppose my Swiss bank will charge a fee on top of the interbank rate to convert CHF to EUR prior to wiring off the amount. Additionally, if the default currency of the receiving bank is not EUR (e.g. UK, Sweden, Denmark etc), I guess they also would impose a fee to convert the receiving EUR into the local currency.

    It would be interesting to know whether the free SEPA payments come at a higher price tag than TW/Revolut because of higher conversion rates/fees.

    Also, do I understand correctly that the 1250 CHF limit with Revolut is not valid if you have the premium plan?

    Thanks!

    /William

    1. Hi William,

      You are right, a EUR transfer from your Swiss bank to another bank in the EU is not free. You will likely pay one fee from your bank and maybe a second from the receiving bank depending on the currency.
      These payments will very likely be cheaper with TW and Revolut. You could send CHF to your TW or Revolut account, convert it and then send EUR to any other bank (or GBP directly to UK for instance).
      These two banks are not only good for travel, but they are also good for transferring and receiving money.

      Yes, you understand correctly, the 1250 CHF is only for the free account, it is waived with premium.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  29. Hi,

    It seems TW increased their fees for some currencies end of July. Particularly the CHF to EUR and CHF to USD conversions both went up from 0.35% to 0.43% (8 bps or 22%!!) so I guess we need to check again if it still makes sense.

    1. Hi Yiannis,

      Thanks for letting me know, I did not know about the new prices. I will have to update the article again with the new fees. This is indeed a large increase. That kind of sucks…
      It seems that it’s still cheaper than Revolut in most cases (except for very low amounts, as before). But I will see if this holds true for everything.

      Thanks for stopping by!

    1. Hi Hugo,

      I actually did not know b-sharpe. If I look through Monito, it seems that TransferWise is always slightly cheaper than b-sharpe. Revolut will be cheaper than both for less than 1250 CHF per month, but more expensive after that. And Revolut has seen an increasing number of issues these last few months. So, TransferWise would be my choice. But b-sharpe looks good, on paper. Keep in mind, that I never tried it and never did full research on it.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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