Remitly vs Xoom

Which one is cheaper option to send money?

Background

Deciding which remittance company to use when it comes to sending money online or internationally can be difficult. In this article, we’ll be comparing two well-used companies in the industry - Remitly and Xoom.

A Remitly Overview


Remitly is an American online money transfer service. The company allows users in Australia, the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the Eurozone to send money to more than 40 countries internationally. Due to their online and mobile platform, their service is more efficient, faster, and less expensive than many competitors. Remitly allows users to send money using their smartphone, tablet, or online through the Remitly website.

A Xoom Overview

Owned by Paypal, Xoom is a leading money transfer service. Providing a vast network of delivery options, customers can send money to over 130 countries across the globe. Recipients have many options for getting their funds, and Xoom even offers services to help people pay utility bills in 10 countries. Although the company may provide a wide array of services, Xoom is not always transparent about its markup on exchange rates. Their fees and additional charges may result in higher prices in comparison to other competitors.

Payment Methods Available with Remitly

When you send money online with Remitly, you can fund the transfer using:

  • Bank transfer
  • Credit Card
  • Debit Card
  • The limit that users can send per day is $999 CAD. The limit can be waived if the customer provides additional information to Remitly, such as the reason for the transfer or proof of how the transfer is being funded. Remitly does not have a service that allows recurring transactions.

    The recipient can get the money through a deposit into a digital wallet, a deposit into a bank account, or by picking up cash at a nearby partner money transfer facility. If a transfer is urgent, customers can choose the “Express” option for an instant transfer of funds.

    Xoom’s Payment Methods

    Transactions can be funded using a bank account, credit card, or debit card. Users cannot pay for the transfers using their PayPal account balance but will be able to pay using bank accounts, credit cards, and debit cards linked to their PayPal accounts.

    With a basic Xoom profile, the daily limit for transfers is $2,999 per day. Verified accounts (requiring extra identifying information) will increase the daily transfer limit. Full verification allows customers to send up to $50,000 from the United States. Some of the verifying documents that Xoom requests include Social Security numbers, driver’s licenses, and proof of addresses.Xoom offers a wide variety of receiving methods, including:

  • Deposit into a bank account
  • Cash pickup at a variety of partner banks and locations
  • Delivery of cash to the recipient’s door
  • Another unique feature that Xoom offers is that customers can send money by reloading someone’s prepaid cell phone and transferring money to another country to pay bills.

    Fees

    Remitly Fees

    The fees Remitly charges to transfer money depend on several different factors. First of all, the fees will depend on:

  • How much money is being sent
  • The currency the money will be converted to
  • Where the money is being sent.
  • Other fees are depending on the way the method of transfer, and how the customer is funding the transaction. Remitly users can send money their money either through an Economy or Express option. The economy option often has lower fees (including no fees for your first transfer) and better rates. The catch is that it takes 3 - 5 business days for your transfer to send. With the economy option, some countries may not have a fee at all, but others may still have a fee of (usually) $2.99 CAD.

    Express transfers have lower exchange rates and fees, but they happen almost immediately. This option is best for those who need their money to reach its destination in short periods of time. This fee starts from $3.99 CAD and only goes up depending on the country you are sending money to.

    In the case that the transfer is paid for with a credit card, customers in Australia, Canada, and the United States will also be charged a processing fee. Additional fees may also be charged directly by the user’s credit card company, but this is not Remitly’s fault. Using a bank account to transfer money may also result in an additional charge. These fees are dependent on your bank’s policy.

    Other situations in which Remitly will charge you additional fees may include sending money to an international recipient, but they receive the money in a different currency.

    Xoom’s fees

    Fees with Xoom may vary depending on a few factors: (1) the destination of the transfer, (2) the method of payment, and (3) the receiving method.

    Fees start at $4.99 with sending money using a bank account. This is considered the most affordable method, so Xoom is often less affordable in comparison to competitors.

    Exchange Rates

    Remitly’s rates

    Remitly’s exchange rates often match up with other online money transfer services. However, their rates may be dependant on the type of transfer the customer wishes to proceed with (economy or express). Remitly’s rates typically come in between 0.5% and 2% worse than general market rates. The slightly lower rates and fees are how the company makes a profit with their services.

    Xoom’s rates

    Xoom’s exchange rates can be relatively low. They are usually below the mid-market exchange rate with marks ups between 1 and 3 percent - making Xoom a costly option. Many competing online transfer services charge less than a 1% markup.

    Security

    Remitly’s security

    Remitly is well-known for its security and trustworthy online money transfer services. The company is a licensed money transmitter and is a registered Money Services Business with the United States Department of the Treasury. Remitly also permitted to operate throughout Canada except for the province of Quebec (although this is coming soon), as well as the United Kingdom and Ireland.

    Remitly takes great precautions and has excellent security measures to protect customer information and money. These actions include but are not limited to: verifying accounts, requiring customers to prove their identity with proper documents, using manual and automated fraud detection techniques, and ensuring that all transactions are protected by strong online security measures, including 256-bit SSL encryption with a 2048-bit signature.

    The company is well-known and used by millions of customers each year. Their popularity and financial strength have allowed Remitly to attract well-known investors throughout the globe - including TomorrowVentures, Jeff Bezos, Trilogy Equity Partnership, QED, and DJF.

    Xoom’s security

    Xoom itself may not be a company that is extremely well known, but it is owned by PayPal - one of the most recognized and trusted names in the industry. This entails that Xoom is also safe and secure. Xoom has successfully and safely processed over billions of dollars in customer transfers. All transactions and customer data are secured with the strongest encryption and security measures. Furthermore, their practice and services are monitored and regulated by multiple financial agencies on an international level.

    Ease of use

    Remitly Ease of Use

    Remitly is entirely online. This allows for customers to send money from anywhere in the world and anytime during the day - as long as they have a connection to the internet. Transfers can be done in around 5 steps from the customer’s smartphone!

    Xoom Ease of Use

    Xoom has both digital access and physical locations. Their website and mobile app make their services extremely accessible. They also offer transfers to top-up prepaid cellphones and pill payments in select countries, on top of their main service of transferring funds between individuals.

    Conclusion

    Overall, Remitly is a better choice due to its better rates, lower fees, and transparency. Xoom may be more expensive, but they are also extremely secure and owned by one of the most trusted financial services in the world. Regardless of the decision that a customer decides to make, there are other options to consider when it comes to sending money internationally:

    Other Comparison

    Banks

    Banks are efficient and reliable. They have been the main source of money transfers for billions of people for many years. This option may not always be the most efficient method for travellers because customers have to use a specific bank branch to transfer and receive money. Banks also often charge higher fees than other online money transfers companies. This may significantly increase the cost of a transaction.

    Traditional Money Transfer Services

    Specialized agencies such as Western Union and Ria Money Transfer are often able to help customers transfer money with better offers than banks. These methods are usually more convenient and affordable for customers.

    These services allow customers to walk into a location with cash and send money to a recipient in another country. The recipient will then need to commute to their nearest agent store to pick up the money.

    This option is used often because many of these companies put restrictions on users regarding how they can send and receive money and the amount that can be transferred. They may impose additional fees for transfers, thus driving up the price.

    Other Online Money Transfer Services

    Using the internet as a tool to send money has opened the industry to a wider group of consumers and businesses. Online money transfer services are more efficient and convenient since customers can send money without leaving their homes. They also usually offer a wider range of payment and delivery methods with more flexibility.

    These online services often do not offer traditional storefronts. This means that they do not have high overhead costs. They do not have to pay rent or maintenance costs for buildings, nor do they have to employ thousands of people. This is relevant since lower operating cost allows these companies to have the ability to charge lower fees and offer better rates for customers - making this option the most affordable for customers around the world. While the big and well-known companies like PayPal and Western Union may not be the least expensive option, there are many start-ups and remittance services that are secure, safe, and cost less.

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