WorldRemit Review

By 
Matt Di Vincere (Chief Editor)
Last Edited Sep 05, 2022

Should I use WorldRemit for money transfers?

Pros:

  • Customer-Friendly - Created by Immigrants for Immigrants
  • Transfer from £1
  • Send to 130 Countries
  • Cash Pickup / Airtime Top-Up
  • Transparent Quote
  • Excellent App by Customer Reviews
  • Highest Remittances Standard Today
  • Excellent Global Coverage with Focus on Africa

Cons:

  • Limitations on Transfer Amounts
  • Not a Good Solution for Large Transfers
  • Transfer Online Only - No Phone Support
  • No Business Functions like FX Hedging
  • Layoffs in 2022 and Paused IPO Plans - Could Indicate Issues with Business Model

Is WorldRemit Safe to Use?

Safe, 9/10

Official Website:

Services Offered by WorldRemit

  • Send Money Abroad to Bank Account
  • Receive Money from Abroad
  • Trading via Online or App
  • Cash Collection
  • Mobile Payments
Overall rating77%
  • star-100
  • star-100
  • star-100
  • star-50
  • star-0
Updated on Sep 05, 2022
Aggregated User Votes
thumbs-up52,260
thumbs-down8,510

Not Top 10 Ranked

🏆 7 Industry Awards (2012-2020)

Where is WorldRemit Available?

2022 Update: Last year, our WorldRemit review score was downgraded slightly from 81.0% to 77.0% due to client complaints and feedback that was left in our WorldRemit review comment section below. Since then, we have seen an overwhelming number of positive reviews for WorldRemit and we are currently re-evaluating its scoring.

Our Top Rated WorldRemit Alternatives

On Money Transfer Comparison, we have reviewed 80+ money transfer services.

We feel OFX provides the best WorldRemit alternative currently, with 20+ years in the business, very friendly support, smooth web and mobile application and ability to handle 100+ currencies:

Indicative Rates from OFX Below:

Interbank Rate:
1.16
Interbank X Amount:
1,162.40
EUR
Bank Wire Fees:
15
GBP
OFX Wire Fees:
0
GBP
Bank Rate:
1.137
OFX Rate:
1.141
You Get With Bank:
1,119.78
EUR
You Get with OFX:
1,140.90
EUR

 

In this WorldRemit review, we will talk about the pros and cons of using this money transfer company for international payments and remitting money home. We will focus on the important aspects of the service like fees, exchange rates, regulation and the ease of using WorldRemit’s trading platform.


Wise / TransferWise vs WorldRemit

Both Wise (formerly TransferWise) and WorldRemit were conceived in the same year – 2010 – and have each enjoyed rapid growth in their own right since. In some ways the services are very similar. They are both money transfer providers who provide low-cost, online payments. Get under the hood, however, and you’ll soon start to see the differences. Wise specialises in bank-to-bank transfers for both private and business customers with a transparent fixed fee structure.

WorldRemit, with its remittance focus, provides bank-to-bank transfers but also offers cash collection and mobile payments/air topup. This remittance focus makes WorldRemit one of the best options for converting and sending money in ‘exotic currencies’, i.e. payments to Asia, Africa and South America.\

Wise (TransferWise)WorldRemit
Safe?Yes, regulated by FCA and many more regulatory bodies. Transfers over £40 billion in foreign exchange each year, servicing millions of clients.Yes, regulated by FCA and many more regulatory bodies too. Allows users to send money from an impressive 50 countries, including Europe, USA, Africa, Asia, Australia and Middle East.
FeesRanging between 0.26% for CHF transfers to 2.01% for CLP (Chilean Peso). On average it is about 0.5%.Rates are not publicised and vary depending on whether you are making a bank-to-bank transfer, mobile payment or cash collection. Our calculations have FX spreads at around 1% – not bad when you consider the more exotic currency corridors WorldRemit serves.
Dedicated DealerNo. You will get all the support for system issues/help you require but currency guidance is not offered.No. Customer support available but again this is to help understand the online system and resolve technical issues.
WebsiteWise.comworldremit.com

Is WorldRemit Safe?


Company Information:  

WorldRemit, originally founded by Dr Ismail Ahmed, has a somewhat similar concept to companies like Azimo, Wise (Transferwise), CurrencyFair and Lebara Money Transfer (which we call remittance companies who specialise in low-value international transfers that often involve the repatriation of salary). It’s an online platform with a strong focus on remittances, where the idea is to offer ultra competitive pricing and service to a wide reach of developing countries.

WorldRemit have been successful in fulfilling their founder’s vision about a fairer, cheaper, more transparent, remittance company which has received tremendous feedback from both clients and media.

They are regularly covered in mainstream media. Over the course of the past 10 years they raised over $375m in total, with the aim of taking on Western Union and Moneygram (as mentioned by Techcrunch). Most recently, WorldRemit received investment from TCV and Accel who were early investors in Netflix, Facebook and Spotify. This was in addition to the earlier investment from Leapfrog Investments as part of their initiative to focus on Africa and Asia. The latest funding round valued WorldRemit at $5 billion and it was reported the company was aiming for a $6 million valuation in a 2022 IPO but plans for the public offering have been shelved as the firm focuses on its corporate restructure and making key c-suite hires.

WorldRemit reported revenues of $238m in the year of 2020, up from the $155m revenue in 2019 – indicating a growth in both customers and the value of currency the firm transferred worldwide. It should be noted however, even though revenues were increasing, WorldRemit did not turn a profit in 2020, 2019, or in any of its previous growth years. With such a focus on customer acquisition it’s a similar journey to what Transferwise had to work through.

In a strange turn of events, WorldRemit was questioned by the Australian regulator, ASIC, on suspicion of conducting fraudulent transfers. It turned out to be a funny incident in which the regulator was unaware of common African surnames like Goodwill and Goodnews, which were deemed as fake by the ASIC. The incident was quickly resolved to the satisfaction of both parties when they were proved to be genuine.

A quick look at the news section on the WorldRemit site and you can see the focus on growth and geographical expansion the firm has. For instance, recently, in April 2021, the firm announced a new partnership with eSewa in Nepal to allow mobile money transfers to the country. Just months before this the firm was enhancing its payout capabilities in Nigeria by launching USD cash pick-up with over 3500 Nigerian agents.

Question marks have been raised however as to whether WorldRemit’s ‘growth at all cost’ attitude is a bit too much for staff and c-suite members. 2020 through to 2022 have marked a period of change for the firm’s senior staff with many members of the c-suite staff leaving. Ex-employees claim the culture has got worse and this is certainly backed up by Glassdoor reviews, netting the firm a 3.3 / 5 rating. The change in staff is perhaps leading to a greater number of customer issues.

The company is seeing fierce competition in the sector, mostly by Wise and Remitly, both now are public companies.

Regulated By: 

Financial Conduct Authority (UK), ASIC (Australia), Local state regulation throughout US, FINTRAC (Canada)

Awards: 

  • Best Money Transfer – International Association of Money Transfer Networks (IAMTN), 2012
  • Global Forum on Remittances and Development (GFRD), 2015
  • The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)- Best Practice in Remittances for Development, 2015
  • Deloitte Technology Fast 50, 2015
  • Financial Times – Excellence in Transformational Business, 2017
  • European Contact Centre Awards – Bronze Award for Best Risk/Fraud Management Initiative, 2018
  • Sunday Times – Tech Fast Track 100, 2020

 


Conclusion: 

By remittance standards, WorldRemit is rather new, particularly when you consider the physical presence required for cash collection and the age of the industry veterans, Moneygram and Western Union. However, WorldRemit has expanded quickly and has been able to fast track the growth of its operationsby building a network of partner banks. Rather than having its own set of physical branches in developing nations, WorldRemit works with local banks in each of the countries that customers are able to send money to. Those receiving the payment can simply visit WorldRemit’s local partner bank and pick up the cash there.

WorldRemit is even new in comparison to the online money transfer giants like Currencies Direct, World First, and Moneycorp, though it’s not really in the same sector as them.

As an online-only remittance company that allows cash collection and mobile uptime payments, WorldRemit is one of the biggest players to offer all of these services. With very strong backing from VC’s like Accel Partners, over 50,000 client reviews online, and revenues of $200m+, we definitely recognise this is a legitimate money transfer service.



WorldRemit Customer reviews


Research:

We have located over 62,000+ Worldremit reviews on TrustPilot, the leading client review platform in the UK. Out of them, 11% are complaints, and the average score is 4.2 / 5 (up from 4.0 / 5 in 2021). Even though there’s an overwhelming amount of highly positive reviews, it’s important to bear in mind that it also means there are around 6500 bad reviews too.

On the Australian ProductReview.com.au reviews are mixed. There are more than 170 positive reviews but it has to be said there are a lot of unhappy customers with over 400 complaints. The overall score there is 2.2 / 5.

Though we usually don’t take Glassdoor reviews into consideration, in this case we thought it’s worth mentioning. Based on 366 reviews, the firm scores just 2.2 / 5 (even down on the already poor 3.3 / 5 score in 2021)).

We have also received complaints on our comment section at a higher than average rate for MoneyTransferComparison.com which we have factored into the score. So in this sense, WorldRemit stands out in a bad way.


Positive:

All in all when we crunch the numbers, about 90 percent of the reviews we have managed to collect are positive. These are the strong points of World Remit according to them:

  • Easy to use
  • Cheap prices
  • Good reach
  • Good service
  • Revolutionary for work immigrants
Negative:

The complaints we discovered were around:

  • Service – incompetence and long waiting times to get a reply
  • Slow – takes a long time to process a payment
  • Bad employee training and disconnected management

Conclusion:

Most people had a terrific experience with WorldRemit. One user has even reported of a USD to PHP (Philippine Peso) transaction that took under five minutes to complete which is very impressive indeed. On the flip side, we can’t ignore the complaints either. The complaints are quite repetitive across the board, and the Glassdoor reviews give us insight into a fast paced company which is often chasing its tail given the level of growth it’s experiencing. This has resulted in delays to transfers and an incompetent service from support staff.

The bottom line is that it’s probably a very good service but with new territories constantly being launched and a high turnover of staff it will take some time to get efficient processes and an experienced team to optimise new payment routes. To this point, WorldRemit does operate in many tricky currency routes, which are bound to experience longer delays than payments within Europe for example.



WorldRemit Exchange Rates & Fees


Research:

WorldRemit Fees: WorldRemit transfer fees vary depending on the currencies being sent and the method of transfer. We highlight the bank-to-bank WorldRemit transfer fees to the top 5 remittance receiving countries in 2021 here:

Sending From
Sending ToUK (GBP)USA (USD)Australia (AUD)
China (To AliPay Account)1.992.993.53
Egypt2.993.995.99
India1.491.992.99
Mexico2.992.995.99
Philippines1.991.992.99

 

Cash pick-up is not available in China, Egypt or India but cash pick-up fees to Mexico and Philippines are as follows:

Sending From
Sending ToUK (GBP)USA (USD)Australia (AUD)
Mexico2.992.997.99
Philippines2.493.993.99

Meaning cash pick-up fees for payments from the UK and US to Mexico are the same as bank-to-bank transfers, though cash pick-up fees for payments from these two countries to the Philippines are a little more expensive. Cash pick-up fees from Australia are more expensive to both Mexico and the Philippines compared to bank-to-bank fees. Overall, leading us to believe cash pick-up fees are slightly more expensive than bank-to-bank transfers with WorldRemit but not by significant amounts.

WorldRemit applies no extra fees for using a credit card to settle a transfer, though it’s worth checking with your credit card provider if they will apply a fee themselves (funding an international transfer is generally considered a cash advance – just like withdrawing money at an ATM with your credit card).

WorldRemit Exchange Rates: Exchange rates offered by WorldRemit are not advertised on their site. When we crunched the numbers we got to about a 1% margin from Pound to Euro, and similar markups on other currencies. Some currencies are a lot more expensive.

Payments to Philippine Peso and a handful of other currency routes appear to offer slightly better exchange rates for bank-to-bank transfers than they do for cash pick-up. For other currencies, such as payments to Mexican Peso, WorldRemit honours the same exchange rate for both bank-to-bank transfers and cash pick-up. In any case, when there is a difference between the bank-to-bank and cash pick-up rate, it appears to be quite menial and we don’t think it’s enough to prevent users from using the cash pick-up service.

On some occasions, such as INR transfers to India, WordRemit will offer preferential rates for larger transfers. These rates are clearly displayed on the WorldRemit pricing calculator and users will know exactly how much the recipient is due to get ahead of making the transfer.

All in all, these are definitely good markups, especially in comparison to other companies offering cash pickups. It’s just around the same mark-up as Azimo, while being a tad more expensive than Transferwise and Currencyfair which maintain lower, steady margins (with exceptions like additional 1% incurred on transfers to India by Transferwise).

Limits: There are both daily and per transaction limits that apply which vary depending on the country you’re sending money from and the settlement method for your transfer. Bank transfers have a higher per transaction limit than debit cards. Below we’ve listed limits for users from the UK, US and Australia but more information on each sending country is available on www.worldremit.com

UK

  • Debit, credit or pre-paid cards
    • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is GBP 50,000
    • The maximum send amount per transaction is GBP 8,000
  • Apple Pay
    • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is GBP 50,000
    • The maximum send amount per transaction is GBP 8,000
  • Bank Account Transfer
    • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is GBP 50,000
    • The maximum send amount per transaction is GBP 50,000

USA

  • Debit, credit or pre-paid cards
    • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is USD 9,000
    • The maximum send amount per transaction is USD 5,000
  • Apple Pay
    • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is USD 9,000
    • The maximum send amount per transaction is USD 300

Australia

  • Debit, credit or pre-paid cards
      • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is AUD 50,000
  • The maximum send amount per transaction is AUD 5,000
  • POLI
      • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is AUD 50,000
  • The maximum send amount per transaction is AUD 50,000
  • Apple Pay
    • The maximum send amount per 24 hours is AUD 50,000
    • The maximum send amount per transaction is AUD 5,000

Conclusion:

WorldRemit’s own pricing comparison, which currently uses World Bank data from Q1 2020 (now outdated with latest World Bank data available for 2021) details how WorldRemit is on average 46% cheaper than most banks. These certainly sound like reasonable claims and we’re sure they’re even cheaper than that on certain currency routes.

The fees are pretty reasonable and by changing the fee depending on the currencies involved and the country you are sending money from, we can see WorldRemit is attempting to pass on cost savings to customers where possible. The rates are especially good for developing countries where you can have mobile payments or cash pickup (where the alternative is Western Union which can easily charge 10% of the transfer to some countries).



WorldRemit Global Reach & Service


Research:

  • Dedicated Dealer: No.
  • Offices: UK, Poland, Philippines, USA, Canada, Australia
  • Ways to approach: Email, Telephone.
  • Translations: French, Spanish, German, Dutch, Danish
  • Accepts clients: UK, Africa, Europe, Australia, USA, and most of Asia.
  • Currencies Handled: 70
  • Client reviews: 90% Positive, some service complaints
WorldRemit Global Footprint

With WorldRemit you can send money from over 50 countries around the world – this is the most of any new fintech to have launched in the remittance space and behind only the remittance giants Moneygram and Western Union who are notoriously expensive and slow.

AfricaAmericasAsiaEurope
Burkina FasoBrazilHong KongAustria
Ivory CoastCanadaJapanBelgium
RwandaUSAMalaysiaBulgaria
SenegalPhilippinesCyprus
SomalilandSingaporeCzech Republic
South AfricaSouth KoreaDenmark
TaiwanEstonia
Finland
France
Germany
Gibraltar
Greece
Hungary
Iceland
Ireland
Italy
Latvia
Lithuania
Luxembourg

WorldRemit’s coverage in Africa, including South Africa, as well as Brazil, East Asia and the Middle East, definitely sets WorldRemit apart. Forgetting Moneygram and Western Union, it’s  one of only a few companies, alongside Ria and Remitly, that can onboard clients in the US. WorldRemit’s coverage is much more significant than say Azimo for example, who are only able to onboard clients in the UK, Europe, Canada and Australia. Singapore and Hong Kong can be quite common onboarding countries in Asia but by being able to offer their capabilities in South Korea, Malaysia and Taiwan, WorldRemit is certainly ahead of the game. And whilst many money transfer companies can assist with payments to the Middle East, WorldRemit is definitely unique in accepting clients from the UAE, Oman and many other middle eastern countries.


Conclusions:

WorldRemit has excellent global reach and this is arguably the firm’s strongest point. Not only does it already have an extensive network but it is constantly adding new countries to both where you can send money from and where you can send money to. It is accessible by most remittance-sending countries in the world, and the payout options are rather diverse. Between western countries there are only bank-to-bank transfers, but with developing countries you can withdraw funds in cash or as mobile payment.

There are no dedicated currency dealers assisting you, but it all makes perfect sense considering the focus of the company. They don’t deal with high value clients which need to hedge large transactions; Instead, they focus on working migrants who are sending money home.



Additional Functionalities


App:

Excellent app with full functionality of the website. As soon as you have registered to the online platform, you can also sign up to the app, and be able to make payments with one click. The whole process is very slick.

It has been rated very well by clients who have used it, with a 4.7 / 5 rating on the App store and 4.4 / 5 on Google Play. Cumulatively, with over 190,000 reviews across both platforms, it shows WorldRemit has one of the widest used apps of any remittance company in the world. Their 72,000 App store reviews is even more than Transferwise in this regard who have amassed 41,000. One user commented:

I’m in love with this app. Have been with western union for decades. But these guys have a better sending rate. Hope they continue this way. 5 stars from me

WorldRemit Money Transfer Review Summary
77%
77 of 100 1 review
  • Credibility Score - 85%
    85%
  • Client Feedback - 80%
    80%
  • Fees, Exchange Rates - 70%
    70%
  • Global Reach, Availability, Service - 80%
    80%
  • Added Values - 70%
    70%

Bottom Line

WorldRemit accepts clients from more than 50 countries, and sends to 130. Whilst many remittance companies can accommodate a large number of payment destinations, you’ll struggle to find many which have expanded in the way WorldRemit has in order to allow the sending of money from countries throughout Africa, Asia and the Middle East. In this regard, WorldRemit is definitely unique.

Similar to Western Union’s business model, the target audience are immigrants and expats, who are regularly sending small amounts of money home. WorldRemit definitely does it better than the industry giants by incurring less fees and making the entire process hassle free.

We are left a little concerned by the recent restructure of the firm and reports in the media of a heavy turnover of staff. Any remittance company with bold plans to rival the likes of Western Union is sure to encounter growing difficulties along the way, but for now, it does seem to be impacting WorldRemit’s quest for profitability. For larger transfers it’s fair to say WorldRemit’s rates aren’t as competitive as specialist currency brokers and in any case, they have limits preventing customers from making payments of this size.

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