Money transfer companies are popping up daily. Despite how many options customers have, new entrants aren’t afraid to compete against existing players such as Western Union, MoneyGram, PayPal, and traditional banks. In 2015, PaySend entered the market, the same year as Revolut, and a few years after TransferWise and Remitly (2011).
PaySend is a global financial tech company on a mission to change how money moves around the world. PaySend users transact via card-to-card from 40 countries to over 60 countries. What does “card-to-card” mean? Instead of sending money to someone’s bank account, you would send funds to the recipient’s Visa or Mastercard card. You can also send transfers to UnionPay cards for China. Transfers to bank accounts are available for specific destinations.
How to Make a Transfer with PaySend
- Enter the amount and applicable countries on the homepage.
- Click on “Get Started.”
- Enter your mobile number and choose a password.
- Confirm the amount and destination country.
- Enter the recipient’s 16-digit card number.
- Add your card details.
- Click “Confirm.”
The mid-market, spot, or Google rate is the best rate you can get. PaySend states, “We use a mid-market exchange rate cutting out all intermediaries and providing the best possible value for our customers.” However, their rates don’t match those found on Google. Instead, PaySend marks up rates by up to 1.5 percent (or more). For example, a euro to Mexican peso was quoted at 22.83 on Google and 22.51 on PaySend for a difference of 1.4 percent.
PaySend charges a fixed fee per transaction, for example, from Australia to another country would cost 2 AUD regardless of the amount sent. Costs vary from country to country.
PaySend Versus TransferWise
TransferWise is a top-rated money transfer company and the service I use. They have financial services for everyone including people who travel, live, and work abroad. Sending money overseas with TransferWise is up to eight times cheaper than banks, and their borderless account allows users to hold, manage, and spend money in 28 different currencies. They provide “the fairest, easiest way to manage your money internationally.”
TransferWise exchanges currencies at mid-market rates without markups, which is better than PaySend. However, PaySend charges fixed fees compared to flat rates charged by TransferWise. Therefore, outcomes will differ depending on the amounts and destinations involved.
Millions of people send money online for various reasons including remittance. The top three remittance destinations are China, India, and the Philippines. Let’s compare the results of sending 100 and 1,000 USD to these destinations alongside converting U.S. dollars to euros.
|PaySend||674||7 047||5 126||84.95|
PaySend and TransferWise are split. PaySend is better for sending money to China and the Philippines whereas TransferWise is better for India and the European Union.
|PaySend||6 867||71 760||52 198||865|
PaySend is still better for China, but an increase in the amount sent yielded a three to one victory for TransferWise.
PaySend outperformed TransferWise for money sent to China, but Western Union was slightly better than PaySend at 675.88 CNY compared to 674.34 CNY.
PaySend is legit and offers an innovative method to transfer money, that is, card-to-card transfers. Users can send and receive money via Visa and Mastercard cards (UnionPay in China). Their process differs from most providers which require banks to get involved. On the other hand, PaySend isn’t unique. Azimo, Remitly, Xoom, and other providers charge low fixed fees too. Secondly, PaySend is slightly misleading about their exchange rates. On the help page, one line reads, “Our rates are as close as possible to the mid-market exchange rate – giving you more and saving your hard-earned money.” On the same page, another line reads, “We use a mid-market exchange rate cutting out all intermediaries and providing the best possible value for our customers.” Either you transact at mid-market rates, or you don’t (PaySend does not).
PaySend may have some advantageous currency routes, but I’m not compelled to sign up or use their services. They are working on a card to hold, move, and spend money and cryptocurrencies globally, but Revolut offers something similar, and TransferWise offers a debit Mastercard. I will continue to use TransferWise until a competitor allows me to transact at mid-market rates at no cost. Until then, TransferWise’s transparency, mid-market rates, and low fees are fantastic.