Exchange Rate & Fees
Fees: There’s a min. €3 fixed fee per transaction (which grows to €8 for priority /same-day transfers). That is if you send money from the UK. You can pay as much as 40 ILS ($10 or so) if you’re transferring Israeli Shekels, which is comparable to a normal bank fee.
Exchange Rates: The currency rates offered by Currencyfair are dynamic.
In fact, Currencyfair is a marketplace where buyers and seller meet to exchange currencies. Each person can set his preferred rate, or engage into trading with an existing offer.
There are two ways to go along:
1. If you need to exchange the currency quickly, you can use the Quicktrade option. This will automatically search for the best rates currently available on the marketplace and match your transfer. We don’t have particular data on the average margin achieved through this function but we can tell Currencyfair claims to step in and offer a 0.4%-0.5% margin if no marketplace match is made (and we assume margins will hover around these prices).
2. If you want to let the money sit for a while, and willing to wait for the best deals, then you can potentially even beat the mid-market rate. On the other hand, in terms of currency fluctuations, you could end up losing much more than the fees you saved.
The average spread that Currencyfair reports is 0.4% which is a great margin even for large transfers, but it’s difficult to know if it can be ever achieved through the more recommended Quicktrade option.
Limits: €8 is the minimum amount that can be transferred, one of the lowest seen anywhere. There is no upper limit.
The fees could be excessive with some currencies, or if you want a priority trade. If you are transferring small volumes in exotic currencies, or need a priority transfer, you better off not use them.
In terms of exchange rates, we think they are quite comparable to Transferwise, all in all, at around the 0.5% from mid-market rate (if you factor in the fees, and the fact many get great rates on the marketplace). That’s a pretty good average, but can be easily beaten by traditional companies when the amount transferred is significant, and could be slightly higher using the Exchange Now functionality.
Exchange Rates & Fees Rating