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A Comparison of the Major eWallets: Which is the best eWallet?

eWallets, otherwise known as digital wallets, are truly the forefront of the banking industry. They make it easy to transfer money, make online purchases, and even split bills. But what parameters does a service need for it to be defined as an eWallet, and what are the main differences between them when it comes to moving money to a different currency.ewallets

For your convenience, the following is an overview of what you need to know about eWallets, with a particular focus on international money transfers, which is where MoneyTransferComparison.com’s expertise lies.

1. The Basic: What is an eWallet?

To put it simply, an eWallet is a desktop or mobile app that allows you to manage money and make electronic commerce transactions. For a money management app to be considered an eWallet, we require it to have the following functions:

  1. peer-to-peer transfers: enables people to transfer money to other accounts.
  2. able to store money in the account for a period of time, like a normal wallet or bank account
  3. ability to withdraw funds out of it back to credit card or bank account (that part is not true for the newly added Cryptocurrency wallets we added here).

 

2. 20 eWallet Examples

  1. Paypal
  2. Skrill
  3. Apple Pay
  4. Google Wallet (Android Pay)
  5. AliPay
  6. Samsung Pay
  7. Walmart Pay
  8. Ecopayz
  9. Neteller
  10. Due App
  11. Circle App
  12. Venmo App
  13. Square App
  14. Adyen App
  15. Dwolla App
  16. BiyoWallet App (Biometic payments!)
  17. iDebit (local Canadian)
  18. iDeal (local Dutch)
  19. BlockChain.info (Wallet for Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, ETH)
  20. GateHub.net (Wallet for Ripple / XRP)

This is merely a sub-set of eWallets in existance, and not necessarily the best eWallets out there, just the ones that have been tested and confirmed to be actually eWallets by MoneyTransferComparison.com.

3. What makes an eWallet an eWallet?

What all these companies and apps have in common is that they specialise at transferring money between persons (p2p), or as a means of payment for a business by an individual (c2b), or as a means of payment to a business by a business (b2b). It is usually extremely easy to deposit and withdraw cash from the electronic wallet – some of them are connected directly to a credit card, and some are connected directly to a bank account.

 

4. What differentiates between different eWallets?

  1. Convenience: The main concept behind eWallets is the ability to send and receive money instantaneously 24/7, whereas banks are working only a few hours each day, and weekends and bank holidays are off
  2. Credibility: Since an eWallet is a form of a bank account, in which significant amounts of money will be stored in, you should consider credibility and security above all.
  3. Fees: Deposit fees, withdrawal fees, currency exchange fees, and a variety of other fees – eWallets are notoriously expensive!

Since all the eWallets listed on this page are credible (large companies with plenty of clients who have received major media coverage and have been funded by many millions), we are not going to go there.

Similarly, the convenience part is very much in the eyes of the beholder. The staff at MoneyTransferComparison which uses the Paypal desktop and web app very often, absolutely despises the user interface there. We believe it is absolutely terrible in terms of usability, although it is considered one of the best user interfaces.

Due to the above, we will focus particularly on fees.

 

5. eWallet Fee Comparison: Top 6 Popular eWallets

Below is a list of data we have gathered about various leading eWallets via several sources. We do not guarantee these are indeed the true fees, it is merely to give our readers and indication of how expensive it is to transfer money in this fashion.

eWalletDeposit FeesWithdrawal FeesTransfer FeesFX Fees
Paypal2.9%+$0.30Up to $52.9%+$0.302.8%-5.4%+ Fixed fee
Skrill1.9% (Credit Card)7.5 Euro1.9% up to $203.99%
Neteller1.75%-4.95% (Credit Card)7.5 Euro1.9% up to $203.99%
EcoPayzUp to 7%5-10 Euro0 to 1.5%2.99%
AliPay?0.1% after 20,000 Yuan0.1% after 20,000 YuanMin 3%
Venmo3% (Credit Card)?$0.25 and UpOnly Dollar to Dollar Transfers

5.a. Cryptocurrency Wallet Fees

If you wanted to inquire about the costs of Cryptocurrency eWallets like Gatehub (our most recommended wallet that we personally use – for Ripple), then you can view them below. They are obviously much more sensible than the costs of eWallet but come with their own risks.

GateHub.net Fee Structure: (Ripple)

SEPA DepositFree
SEPA Withdrawal (< 50,000.00 €)1.00 €
SEPA Withdrawal (> 50,000.00 €)8.00 €
International Wire Deposit0.1 %, min. fee $15.00, max. fee $130
International Wire Withdrawal0.1 %, min. fee $15.00, max. fee $130
Ripple Fee0.2 %
Account setupFree

Blockchain.info Fees: (BTC/ ETH)

  • 80 satoshi/byte per each bitcoin transferred or 0.001%!

Without doubt, using either cryptocurrency instead of a standard eWallet can slash off your expenses tremendously! But of course remember about the difficulties of using bitcoin for remittances – it is currently volatile and not widely accepted enough with merchants to become really usable in the same fashion as fiat currencies.

6. Why are PayPal and Skrill ever so popular considering their high fees?

There are multiple reasons for the popularity of PayPal and Skrill:

  1. Diverse Functionality: People use these eWallet apps to receive and send local-currency payments all the time. When they need to exchange currency they just go back to the same platform they know. Similarly to people who still use banks for international transfers in spite of high cost and worsening reputation.
  2. Reputation: It is unwise to underestimate a good reputation. PayPal and Skrill are household names, because they have been at the top of the industry for a long time. People trust them more than a name they know little about, and many are prepared to lose on some of their money for that reason.
  3. Reach: PayPal and Skrill allow you to send money across the globe, from just about anywhere in the world. Other services do not accept clients from certain countries. Currencyfair does not accept clients from the USA. It must be stated, though, that both PayPal and Skrill have limited availability when it comes to currencies (less than 30 currencies).
  4. Quick: PayPal and Skrill are easy to use – transferring funds is quick and simple. For certain customers, the convenience and ease make up for the fees.
  5. Great Apps: Many transfer companies do not have their own mobile apps, and when they do they are often inferior. Currencyfair, however, has a great app. That being said, people are still more familiar with PayPal and Skrill apps that have been around for longer.
  6. Unaware of alternatives: Many customers are unaware that there are cheaper alternatives, and stay with what they know. It’s easy to think that other services are simply doing the same thing.

Understand more – Paypal and Skrill Reviews

 

PayPal Review

paypallogo

PayPal is one of the best-known and most popular money transfer services. Over the past decade and a half, it has made itself into one of the giants of the online money transfer industry.

  • Founding: PayPal was founded back in 1998, getting its IPO in 2002.
  • Backing: PayPal became a wholly owned subsidiary of eBay later that year, and remained so until it became an independent company in July 2015.
  • Amount PayPal moves annually: In 2014, PayPal moved US$228 billion. This was across more than 190 countries, in 26 different currencies.
  • Xoom takeover: PayPal is currently acquiring Xoom Corporation, which is another leading remittance provider. This will increase PayPal’s reach and boost revenue significantly.
  • Client perceptions: PayPal has a wide reputation, which necessarily comes with a lot of criticism. In the early 2000s, PayPal had a widespread problem of being used for fraud, which they largely managed to limit. However, the perception caused by the controversy remains fresh in the mind of many.
  • Client feedback is also often quite negative. On TrustPilot they have a score of 2 out of 10, with 1920 reviews. A lot of the complaints focus on bad customer service when things go wrong. There are also complaints about money being taken off with no indication of why.
  • DisadvantagesThe main disadvantage of using PayPal is the high fees, and the fact it is lacking client support highly negative. It is mostly convenient to use, but when things go wrong, customers face a lot of frustration and difficulty getting money returned.
Skrill Review

skrill-200x87_en

Another giant of the money transfer corporations, Skrill is up there with PayPal in terms of renown and usage.

  • Founding: Skrill is another company that has been around for a while. Skrill was founded in 2001 as Moneybookers, but was taken over and rebranded by Skrill Limited.
  • Backing: Skrill’s parent company is Paysafe Group.
  • Optimal Payments acquired Skrill in the 3rd quarter of 2015, which is the latest in a long line of acquisitions over its 14 year history.
  • Ukash takeover: Skrill have acquired Ukash, their biggest competitor in the UK. This is expected to increase the scale and reach of Skrill’s paysafecard, which will help them maintain their status as one of the leaders in the market.
  • Client perceptions: Just like PayPal, Skrill’s global reach has built up a large base of unhappy clients. On TrustPilot they have a rating of just 5 out of 10. The major complaints involve possible scams, accusations of fraud, and non-existent customer service.
  • Disadvantages: The major disadvantage with Skrill is the very high payment fees even compared to alternatives. Its fees are higher than PayPal’s. Skrill also has customer service problems, and a lack of client support.

 

7. International Money Transfers with eWallets: Expensive but Quick

What these companies don’t specialise at is international money transfers (FX). The overall costs of using either of the traditional eWallets is high and the FX fees are just nuts! What happens if you were to transfer $10,000 to someone abroad? You’ll end up paying high 3-figures just in commissions. That’s more expensive than the banks, in all likeliness.

7.a. How EXPENSIVE are Traditional eWallets for International Payments, exactly?

We have compared Paypal and Skrill’s fees and in comparison we tossed in a specialised foreign currency provider (which we will deal with later).

CompanyPersonal Transfer FeesCurrency Exchange Fees Withdrawal / Receiving FeesTotal
PayPal (Traditional eWallat)1%3.5%£0.204.5% and £0.20
Skrill (Traditional eWallat) 0% – 1.9% (5.5% – paysafe card)2.99%-4.99%£2.072.99% (or more) and £2.07
Currencyfair (FX specialized company which is also an eWallet by our definitions)€3 (if from UK)0.35%-0.5%0.35% + €3

As you can see in the table above, Skrill has the most hefty fees, which are far more expensive than PayPal and Currencyfair. PayPal itself is significantly more expensive than Currencyfair, with 4.5% fees as opposed to 0.35%.

Additionally, each of the services has its own sending limits:

  • PayPal: requires a minimum transfer of just US$0.02, or £0.01 The maximum you may send through PayPal is US$10,000 in one transfer. Since Paypal is funded by your debit or credit card, standard credit limits will apply.
  • Skrill: Visa funded transfers are limited to €5000 per single transaction.You can use your Skrill Card to pay for goods and services up to the value of €1,000.
  • CurrencyFair: No limits!

The cost of using Paypal or Skrill for currency exchange purposes outweigh the many positive these companies have in comparison to other means of payment (like the easy on-boarding, professional software, ease of use, accessibility).

7.b. International money transfer services are the way to go with online money transfers

These are companies which aren’t traditionally considered as eWallets, but in fact they do enable clients to use the same function as an eWallet. The only differences is that none of these companies enables P2P transfers to another client on the platform but rather force you to send funds to a bank account (either yours or someone else’s). The exception to that is Payoneer which is truly revolutionary, but the reviews about it are too bad to even consider as option (view our Payoneer review).

Note: Most traditional transfer services  do not enable users to keep sums of money in the account, but some of the larger money transfer companies have an E-MONEY license by the FCA which means they can withhold client funds for limited periods. These are the companies we will be focusing on.  Check out a finite list of the best online money transfer services here.

CompanyMin TransferTransfer FeesExchange Rate MarkupsWithdrawal / Receiving FeesExtra InfoTotal
World First €1,000None ($10 if from USA)Usually less than 1%NoneBusinesses get collection accounts abroadSpotless reputation, collection accounts, low fees
Currencies Direct €100NoneUsually less than 1%NoneOnline sellers get collection accounts abroadSpotless reputation, collection accounts, low fees
Moneycorp €100NoneUsually less than 1%NoneNo collection accounts, but you can receive checks from abroadBanking License in Gibraltar, Operating since 79

As you can see from the table above, the top rated money transfer companies can help an individual or a business make payments through an online system (similarly to eWallets) for a fraction of the cost. Funding the transaction is usually done via a bank transfer, but for smaller payments you can use a credit card, similarly to eWallets.

Receiving money from abroad through these companies is definitely do-able. With some companies like World First, businesses can have their own collection accounts abroad, and with other companies you will request an electronic check to be cleared by the firm. In either way, each one of the 3 companies above will supply you with a dedicated currency dealer to assist you with all your inquiries.

 

8. Bottom line

Who should use PayPal or Skrill?

PayPal and Skrill have their disadvantages, but they also have aspects that subsequently make them a necessary player for many people around the world. They are useful to people who need to transfer money very quickly or need to send domestic transfers. They are also necessary for people living in or sending to countries with limited reach. It has also become popular to use these services to evade the tax authorities.

PayPal vs. Skrill

There is no simple answer as to which one of these companies is better. PayPal’s fees are significantly lower than Skrill’s, for some things, and vice versa for others. These two companies are industry leaders (with Paypal having a much larger market share). They are effective, quick, nice to use overall, but expensive. It’s a tie!

Currencyfair  has the advantage

Currencyfair, and other money transfer services, is far cheaper than either PayPal or Skrill for transfers involving currency exchanges. They also have far better customer service, based on client reviews, and far more comprehensive client support system, which makes clients feel safer. If anything goes wrong, they will work with you to resolve the issue.

PayPal and Skrill have their advantages, but Currencyfair is the eWallet provider with the lowest fees by far. Currencyfair major disadvantage is their limited reach, but they are the best choice in locations where they are accessible.

 

 

18 comments

  1. Eugene Yaung

    By browsing through the article, I got valuable knowledge of money transfer by wire. Thanks.

    Posted on January 2, 2016
    • compare

      You’re very welcomed Eugene. Be sure to browse our entire website!

      Posted on January 4, 2016
  2. Robert

    Hello admin i see your website is very informative.I want to request your suggestion on which am searching from past a month but not able to find a gateway for technical support of computers.Can you suggest me any good merchant acccount which i can use to preocess payment of our business we are registered company of india.receiving funds froms USA.Will be waiting for your great support thank you..

    Posted on January 26, 2016
    • compare

      Hi Robert,
      Thank you for your question.

      If you meant that you’re looking for a payment processing solution, then I’m afraid we’re not covering that aspect on the site as of now.
      If you meant that you can process payments into your USA and need transferred to your Indian bank account with minimal fees, I suggest you check Currencies Direct that have an office in Mumbai as well (so after you sign up, if what they offer can serve you, you can also go and meet them in their offices).

      Hope this helped.

      Posted on January 26, 2016
  3. Syed

    Hello Admin,

    I opened Skrill Account and for testing it is legit or scam…. I deposit some amount and try to send to another skrill account (I come to know that v need to send money by simply email address). However I’m unable to send and after many times getting only one reply “Unable to perform your transaction,,,,”.

    Secondly, when I try to withdraw the amount to my own account failed to do too.

    My main question is with you that can I try Skrill (based on my exp.) in terms of receiving and withdrawing amount?
    Is Skrill still legit or Scam in terms of trust for receiving and withdrawal amount?

    Regards,

    Posted on October 2, 2016
    • compare

      Hello. Thank you for your inquiry Syed. From our personal experience Skrill is valid. We have managed to receive money through this method, send it, and move the funds into our bank account. It was an excruciatingly expensive process, as it was a foreign currency payment, but it worked with no hassle. I would suggest you contact their support to understand why you cannot perform your transaction. It could be that they have flagged your account for suspicious activity. Depositing small amount and sending it to a different email account immediately who logged in from the same IP, or something along these lines, would immediately trigger their attention.

      Posted on October 3, 2016
  4. EldenDeavy

    Very informative article about PayPal. I just read that PayPal will shortly stop serving Turkey due to regulatory restrictions.

    Posted on January 24, 2017
    • Compare - MTC Admin

      Thank you for your valuable feedback. This is indeed a very important aspect of using Paypal – they do shut down accounts in certain regions from time.

      Posted on January 25, 2017
  5. Alexander birst

    I don’t like any E-Wallet service which begs and harasses personal documents for whatsoever reason I will never share personal info.

    The head and all the employees must provide their documents to people who register with them because if these wallet providers are concerned about possible fraud and money laundering by the people then People are investing their money so they also have right to demand all the E-Wallet service providers employees documents including documents of their CEO.

    People also have right to reject CEO’s documents if he doesn’t provide clear copies.

    Posted on September 7, 2017
    • Compare - MTC Admin

      Compliance with money transfers is crystal clear. You have to know your client well enough to know there is nothing illegal about the transfer.

      Posted on September 10, 2017
  6. idalmis

    Hello, I live in Cuba and I need to charge electronically, can you advise me?

    Posted on November 17, 2017
    • Compare - MTC Admin

      Charge what?

      Posted on November 18, 2017
  7. Affilroi

    Hello,

    I must withdraw money from Skrill and Netellers accounts.
    Their permit withdrawal only to bank account with same beneficiary name of the skrill account.
    I don’t want to use my personal bank account because of high wire and currency fees.
    I am looking for a money transfer service which will provide me with a iban or whatever account with my name as beneficiary, and possibly which would convert my currency for cheap.
    Services like currencytransfer.com are good, but cannot withdraw from skrill to it because the beneficiary name is not mine.

    Thank you

    Posted on December 25, 2017
    • Compare - MTC Admin

      I’m not sure I understand what you need because you mixed two very distinct services here but if you need to receive funds from abroad have a look at our recommendations here.

      Posted on December 27, 2017
      • Affilroi

        When you transfer money from your bank to (for example) currencytransfer.com, you have to make a transfer to:
        iban: blablabla
        bank: blablabla
        benificiary name: currencytransfer

        I need to transfer money to a bank account with my name as beneficiary.
        I don’t want to use my personal bank account, so I am looking for a service who would provide me with a iban or a virtual account with my name as beneficiary for the transfer.
        For example payoneer: when transfering money from my bank to my payoneer account I can put my name as beneficiary.
        I would use them but they have high fx rates.
        Do you know any other services like this?

        Posted on December 27, 2017
        • Compare - MTC Admin

          Still not very clear. There are 30+ companies reviewed on this website which are similar to CurrencyTransfer, most of which are better, sign up with them and explain your requirements to them. Payoneer is not recommended for a variety of reasons.

          Posted on December 27, 2017
          • Affilroi

            Can you send the link to the 30+ companies review?

            thank you

            Posted on December 27, 2017
          • Compare - MTC Admin

            Sure thing, just scroll up and your right hand side, you will find a long list under “Reviews and Ratings”. Or just click on one of the link in the upper navigation. Or click here for a page specific to receiving funds from abroad. Remember these companies are NOT wallet in the sense you cannot store funds there or deal with same-currency transfers (similar setup to CurrencyTransfer).

            Posted on December 27, 2017

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