World First Money Transfer Review
Quick FactsPros and ConsExchange Rate Guarantee
International Clients: ✓ Accepted
Minimum Transfer: £1,000 (UK) / €1,000 (EU) / $1,000 (USA)
Trading via: Online Platform, Email or Telephone.
Offices In: UK, USA, The Netherlands, Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Regulation: ✓ Financial Conduct Authority (UK), FinCen (USA), Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre (Canada), ASIC (Australia), Customs and Excise Department (Hong Kong).
Fees: No fees for UK, European or Australian Clients, regardless of transfer size. No fees above $10,000 from North America (and $10 per transfer below that market.
There is also also an Exchange Rate Guarantee for UK Clients – World First guarantees to beat any quote from any competing companies.
Client Reviews: 5,000+ reviews, mainly on Feefo’s platform.
Client Rating: 98%.
🏆 Feefo Gold Trusted Services – 2017, 2016, 2015
🏆 Times HSBC International Track 200 – 7th Place – 2016
🏆 Queen’s Award for Enterprise in 2016
🏆 Customer Experience Awards in 2013
🏆 UK National Business Award in 2011
🏆 Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 in 2011
Our Rating: 97.8%
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Large: 75,000+ Active Clients
Best Rate Guarantee (UK)
100+ Currencies (Largest Variety)
Consumer & Business Awards
98% Positive Client Feedback
Easy 2 Minute Signup
Great, Functional, App
Get Foreign Bank Accounts Abroad
View Live, Real, Rates Before Signing Up
Unavailable in some USA States
Minimum Transfer Amount is £1,000 or equivalent
Our Rating: 97.8%
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World First offers a Best Exchange Rate Guarantee for clients from the UK. When you register with them, simply show them a written quote you have received from your bank or other Foreign Exchange company, and they guarantee to beat it.
The full T&C is available on World First’s website. Just click on the button below, and then click the green button that says “Find out more”.
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Company Information and Credibility
World First Limited, registered and headquartered in the UK is a phenomenal Foreign Exchange company. It offers currency exchange and international payments to private clients and corporate clients. Since its establishment in 2004, the company has rapidly grown, and today it has offices across 4 continents while employing more than 300 people.
WorldFirst is ranked among top UK international money transfer companies in the UK in terms of revenues and boasts more than 75,000 “yearly active” customers.
Financial Conduct Authority (UK), FinCen (USA), Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre (Canada), ASIC (Australia), Customs and Excise Department (Hong Kong).
The rapid growth has won the company an inclusion in the Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100, in 2011, and gained it a position in the top 10 Sunday Times FastTrack companies in 2016, more than any other financial services provider in the UK.
In addition to that, it has won several prestigious awards such as the UK Customer Experience Awards in 2013, and UK National Business Award in 2011.
Recently, in April 2016, the company has been announced as the winner of the Queen’s Award for International Trade, one of the most lucrative and prestigious awards in the UK.
On June 21, 2017, WorldFirst has changed it’s previous logo to a new fresh and clean logo. This change reflects the new tone WorldFirst wishes to convey to its clients and prospective clients: serious, straightforward, no “fluff”, transactions.
Moreover to the new logo and website design that has been initiated, World First has also decided to increase its levels of transparency. If you choose an account type, you will be able to view live rates in the same fashion as on Transferwise‘s website. View our re-branding news item here.
Considering the evidence above, and the fact that the former deputy governor of the Bank of England, Sir David Clementi, serves as the chairman of the board, we conclude World First is highly safe, secure and credible. Moreover, it’s one of the fastest growing businesses in the UK, which definitely attests to the level of satisfaction by clients.
There are 5,100+ World First client reviews on Feefo, one of the largest, most credible user review companies on the planet. Major companies such as Expedia and Booking.com proudly present user experiences listed on Feefo.
There are approximately 200 WorldFirst reviews to be found on ReviewCentre, another of the largest client review engines. World First has 98% positive reviews on Feefo, and 95% on ReviewCentre.
Here’s a genuine, verified, comment by a client we have referred to them:
Very good, speedy service. Staff I spoke with regarding opening the account were very friendly & knowledgeable. Setting up the transaction, beneficiary etc., was simple and straightforward, and the money arrived in the beneficiary’s account very quickly. To top it all, total transaction was £60 cheaper than my bank!AS, West Sussex
Clients praise World First on every aspect of the service. There’s a multitude of client reviews describing:
- Easy sign up process.
- Happy with the rates they are given.
- Dedicated dealers are often mentioned by name, and described using the following adjectives: Professional, Knowledgeable, Polite, Customer Oriented, and Helpful .
- Satisfaction with prompt execution of transfer. Often overnight.
Among many positive reviews, we also witnessed several complaints. The majority of them focused on:
- Slower transactions to specific locations (for instance Brazil), where the process might be a tad more complicated, and requires a sign-off from the funds’ recipient.
- Will not provide original copies of certain documents.
- Money not received during bank holiday .
Clients are extremely satisfied with the services provided to them by World First online, and through telephone. The few complaints (dozens from thousands of reviews) focused on areas that are objectively difficult to handle. They are required to retain original documentation, in accordance with Anti Money Laundering laws, as are all Foreign Exchange firms. Transactions are slow to reach specific areas, no matter which company you choose. In most countries, banks do not handle incoming international transactions during holiday seasons.
Overall we couldn’t find any consistent, reasonable, complaints that would make us believe the service at World First is nothing short of perfect.
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Exchange Rate & Fees
Fees: None incurred in the UK. None incurred in Europe. $10 in fixed fees for transfers under $10,000 in the USA.
Exchange Rates: As with all international money transfer companies that are geared towards larger transfers, rates are flexible. The more you transfer, depending on the currency pairs, the better the exchange you can get.
The online platform’s exchange rates will usually show a saving of 50% when compared to banks, with margins around the 1% mark, which is comparable to other leading companies, and better than many others. It’s not recommended to use this platform for large transfers of £20,000 and up without speaking to your dedicated dealer over the phone beforehand, and get better rates than these.
Guarantee: The thing that makes World First undoubtedly cheaper than others is the best price guarantee they have in place.
Limits: The minimum transfer amount is £1,000 (or €1000 if you are transferring from Europe), and with World First’s size and liquidity, there is no upper cap on how much you can send. They are handling many business clients and online merchants, and help them transfer millions, to their utmost satisfaction.
The best way for us to learn about the exchange rates that were offered to clients is via real client reviews. With 95-98% satisfaction on the two popular review platforms, with many clients explicitly mentioning how happy they were with the rates offered to them, we can conclude that exchange rates are quite optimal.
As far as fees go, they are waived for UK clients and European clients, but the $10 in fixed fees for USA and Canadian Clients could make smaller transfers from there a tad expensive.
Exchange Rates & Fees Rating
Global Reach & Service
- Dedicated Dealer: Yes.
- Offices: UK, USA, The Netherlands, Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore. More over, as a World First corporate client you are able to open collection bank accounts overseas in these regions.
- Ways to approach: Email, Toll-free telephone number, Call-back form, and meetings in worldwide offices.
- Translations: World First is available in several languages. English, French, Chinese, Japanese.
- Accepts clients: Generally speaking, globally.
- Currencies Handled: Over 100.
- Client reviews: Often praise the quality of support and dedicated dealer functionality.
With a dedicated dealer team consisting of hundreds of dealers worldwide, and offices in 5 continents (including a new office in the Netherlands which is due to be opened by the end of June), service and global reach can’t get much better than this.
World First Foreign Exchange deals with more currencies than any other company we have compared it to. It has more local translations than 99% of its competitors. It has dedicated support centers in each continent, which make service much more localised than with most companies. It’s also worth to mention the sign up process take less than 60 seconds, while most competitors stick to perplexed and complex sign-up forms.
When it comes to global reach and service, World First FX are among the top 10 money transfer companies in the world, and with such an extensive setup of bank settlements across the world, they can make sure the transfer always remains domestic, and avoid recipient bank account fees, which is another invaluable assets. Here is how this works:
Global Reach Score
- Market Orders.
- Limit Orders.
- Rate Watch.
- Forward Contract.
Many types of forward contracts, as well as many types of rate watch functionalities, make World First one of the best companies for large, hedged transactions.
In Feb 2017, World First has decided to drop World First Markets UK which was a subsidiary company owned by World First UK offering Participating Forwards and Call/ Put options. The reasoning behind that is focusing on the core business of payments, and the fact its corporate businesses was not using World First Markets heavily enough to justify the costs.
In May 2017, World First launched World Account – the top corporate FX feature we have seen. It enables small businesses to open bank accounts across the globe to receive payments into, and also to keep it there and use it for future payments.
Read more about World First’s re-focus on international business on our news item.
For Online Sellers:
World First is one of few FX companies that help merchants receive payments by setting up bank accounts for them abroad (since May 2017 it is available to all corporate clients). This is an area which is highly complex and most companies would rather avoid, but World First makes it happen, and reduces costs and overheads by doing so.
eCommerce is a growing segment for World First and we have covered the ins and outs of it on our Online Seller Account page.
WorldFirst has one of the top ranked money transfer apps. Unlike most companies – who either don’t have an app at all, or have apps that can only watch rates – with World First you can actually make transactions on your mobile phone. This is a great function for expats who constantly need to move money back and forth between different currencies.
The app can be found on iTunes, Google store and is even apt for Smart Watches (perhaps the only app in the industry which is suitable for these devices).
This is yet another area at which World First really excels in. It is one of less than 10 international currency transfer companies in the world with a live, functional app. It is one of around 5 companies that help you open offshore accounts to accept payments. Its hedging options are more sophisticated than the usual (convertible forwards are hard to find).
Even large financial service providers as Virgin Money (owned by Richard Branson, a multi-billionaire and one of the investors in rival company Transferwise) use World First to transfer money for their clients.
Special Features Score
- Credibility Score - 98%
- Client Feedback - 95%
- Fees, Exchange Rates - 92%
- Global Reach, Availability, Service - 96%
- Added Values - 98%
In our opinion, World First provides one of the best money transfer services in the world. Clients tend to agree with us, with over 95% reporting a positive experience with World First.
Every aspect we have tested, from service, availability, global reach and, of course, price (no fees, and a Best Rate Guarantee) is superb. On top of that, the unique hedging and merchant services, and the fully-functional money transfer app, make it especially ground-breaking.
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