TorFX Review – 7 Must Knows
Simply using your bank to transfer money overseas might seem like the easy way.
The problem is banks are usually expensive – often extremely expensive with hidden fees that can go unnoticed.
Fortunately, there is an excellent option available – TorFX. But it is not for everyone.
I personally started using TorFX over 10 years ago, and immediately noticed their customer service was completely different to other services. Although most people love it – some hate it.
In this TorFX review, I am going to spill the beans on TorFX and show you when other services may be better for you.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see our about here.
1. Customer support (excellent)
2. Low cost option for large amounts
1. Customer support (phone heavy)
2. Not available in the US and Canada (options below)
3. Small amounts or cash
On Trustpilot, TorFX money transfer is rated 4.9/5 on over 6000 reviews which is considered “Excellent”. The reviews indicate that TorFX offers great exchange rates, unmatched customer service, and easy transfer experience consistently.
1. Real Reviews? – Valuable Insights
Many review sites, such as Trustpilot, have overwhelmingly positive ratings like Trustpilot’s rating of 4.9/5.
For us this is a potential red flag.
You see this rating is significantly higher than some of the biggest and most reputable companies in the business, such as OFX and Wise, whose ratings hover around 4.5/5 and they are considered “excellent”.
For its part, Trustpilot (the review platform) is trustworthy and has effective measures in place to ensure that only genuine reviews are posted. Also it’s pretty clear when reading the reviews that they come from real people.
We think, TorFX scores highly partly because they have a dedicated account manager which can make a very big difference.
Also with TorFX you can get a quote online or by phone (before you fully sign up) which has the potential to ensure that they end up helping people most suited to them.
- AUS/NZ and Asia – Get a Quote
- UK and Europe – Get a Quote
In USA, Canada, India or South Africa? Currencies Direct – Money Transfers (review) is owned by the same people and have a very similar service which focuses on residents of US, Canada with offices in the USA, Europe, UK and South Africa. Get a quote from Currencies Direct.
So what about the negative reviews?
We’ve found that conducting research into these reviews can offer valuable insights.
Have you ever tried reading a large number of negative reviews? If you’re anything like us, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and discouraged by the process. Sifting through hundreds of reviews can be a waste of time, unless you have an efficient way to organize them.
So what we do is to categorise the issues mentioned in one and two-star reviews alongside the positives from the five-star reviews. By seeing both the good and the bad side-by-side you can get a much better picture.
And the results ring true with what we suspected:
- Exchange rates
- Personal Account Manager customer support
It seems customer service is their standout feature.
Many found that their “Personal Account Manager” was ready to answer any question that may come up — however obvious or simple it may seem. And this is the reason many users continue to transfer money with TorFX for years.
“We used TorFX when we bought a house and needed currency exchanging. Never used the company before but Gavin was brilliant and was in contact with us regularly to offer advice and answer any questions. I would definitely recommend TorFx and I would absolutely use them again.” — Andi from Trustpilot review.
“We have used TorFx for over ten years now. We have always found them very accessible and responsive to any questions we have. Transactions are smooth and efficient. Will continue to use them in the future.” — Pamela from Trustpilot review
- Frozen accounts
- Exchange rates
- Slow transfers
- Frozen accounts
Some users (even regular users) had their accounts frozen unexpectedly.
Like other services TorFX’s is required to make sure everything is compliant with the rules of regulators.
Generally this results in them asking for additional documentation and then the money is released or in isolated situations returned.
- Exchange rates
Some users reported that they felt the rates were better with other providers.
The sweet spot for using TorFX is larger transfers where great customer service matters a whole lot. For smaller transfers (less than about £4500 GBP / $9500 AUD CAD / €4500 EU) there are a few great services that are more more efficient and where you can get cheaper transfers. (See Next Section)
- Slow transfers
TorFX is focused on bank account to bank account transfers. And these are slow.
While this does help to keep costs down, some customers are likely to have unrealistic expectations and end up disappointed.
Overall, most users are more than satisfied with TorFX.
Frozen accounts and delays are issues with any money transfer service — even banks.
However given their extremely high Trustpilot score we assume they either help people through the process or have very few issues to begin with.
That said, a key insight that came out of the negative reviews is that you can likely get better rates (and lower fees) by using an alternative service (above) designed for smaller amounts.
While these issues are usually due to compliance we think TorFX has demonstrated you can use them with a lot of confidence.
However, there are steps you can take to avoid complications with your transfers.
And here are our 3 Top tips to avoid delays:
- Understand exotic currencies usually require longer transaction times.
- Initiate personal transfers from personal accounts and business transfers from business accounts.
- Fund your transfer from a bank account in your name (instead of a third-party account holder).
|🏦 Established||2004 in the UK|
|💁 Clients||Personal and Business (Worldwide)|
|💱 Currencies||40 currencies|
|🏛️ Physical Offices||United Kingdom, Australia, Singapore, Europe|
|💻 Availability||Online, phone and mobile app|
|⚖️ Regulation||Regulated in countries they have offices in – the United Kingdom, Australia, Singapore, Europe|
|🔒 Security||TLS encryption, High credit rating by Dun and Bradstreet, Customer funds held separately|
|⭐ Reviews||“Excellent” – 4.9/5 on Trustpilot with almost 6000 reviews (January 2023)|
|💰 Fees||No fixed fees. Fees reduce as amounts increase.|
|🌐 Official Website||Visit TorFX AUS/NZ and Asia|
Visit TorFX UK and Europe
2. When TorFX Works (and When it Doesn’t)
2.1 How TorFX Works
Amounts Above £4500 GBP / $9500 AUD CAD / €4500 EU
We think TorFX is an excellent choice when it comes to larger transfers from the UK, Europe, Australia/NZ and Asia.
This is because when you make international money transfers comparisons their customer service is uniquely excellent.
TorFX does this by assigning you a dedicated account manager whose job is to understand your needs and offer a solution to match.
But apart from just good customer service this can be very important if there is a problem at any stage like dealing with banks at either end, who all have different transfer limits and other rules.
This means TorFX suits international people like expats buying foreign property or other large transfers. They also do business transfers and can do more complex transfers like forward contracts and market orders.
This is not just our experience either – TorFX maintains an excellent track record on review sites like Trustpilot (4.9/5) which is truly exceptional.
The next best (also excellent) services score about 4.5/5 and banks in comparison usually score below 2/5.
Why this matters:
I have just alluded that this is not about smiley, happy, friendly people (they can be useless). 🙃
The reality of larger transfers is that many potential problems can arise due to regulations. Most commonly the banks at either end can stop transfers or the money transfer company itself needs more information to meet regulations.
With TorFX transfers tend to occur smoothly and stress free because of your account manager. An account manager can also be really helpful by structuring transfers with some flexible transfer options.
Flexible Transfer Options:
- Spot Contracts: Immediately transfers (in a couple of days)
- Forward Contracts: Secure a rate for up to 2 years.
- Market Orders: Lock-in a rate on a specific currency pair. TorFX can execute your transfer at your desired exchange rate.
- Cash in Other Currencies: TorFX currency exchange is available. By comparison Airports or third-party agents can be very expensive. TorFX partners with travel money expert ICE (International Currency Exchange) to home deliver your chosen currency affordably in the UK and Australia (you can exchange 40+ currencies).
2.2 When it Doesn’t Work
Amounts Below £4500 GBP / $9500 AUD CAD / €4500 EU
While TorFX is a clear winner for large amounts with telephone supported transfers, many people want to send cash or are happier doing as much as possible online.
For small amounts, online focused services (with less telephone support) tend to be cheaper, quicker and with more flexibility (like funding transfers with a card).
For cash, TorFX only supports bank-to-bank transfers and for many people cash is needed at the destination.
To be clear, TorFX can do relatively small transfers above £100 GBP/ $200 AUD, but because the needs of regulators are far less we think there are better alternatives for transfers below £4500 GBP / $9500 AUD CAD / €4500 EU.
|Best TorFX Alternatives|
|#1 Wise||As we have shown in numerous Wise (was TransferWise) reviews when it comes to smaller bank transfers (below £4500 GBP / $9500 AUD CAD / €4500 EU) if you are comfortable doing things online we think Wise is your best bet. However, if you would rather speak to someone, stick with TorFX or consider our #3 pick which is a combination of both.|
For more see Wise VS TorFX
with fixed fee free transfers
|Best for making smaller cash transfers and mobile money from a bank account (to many countries). |
See how the work and why we think they are great in our WorldRemit (money transfer) review
(remove potential $15 fee with this link)
|Best all-rounder for large transfers (over $7000 USD/£4500 GBP/€4500 EU/$9500 CAD/AUD) As discussed in our OFX money transfer review, OFX can do everything TorFX but mixes online efficiency with 24/7 phone support. Deciding between the two comes down to deciding between if you prefer having a dedicated account manager or would rather set up transfers online. |
For more see OFX Vs TorFX
4. Real Fees
If you’re curious to find out if TorFX is actually “fee-free”, there’s good news!
Unlike most of their competitors, TorFX doesn’t charge a fixed fee.
But there are two costs you need to be aware of when you’re ready to transfer with TorFX.
- Margin on TorFX’s exchange rate
- Other/hidden fees
4.1 Margin on TorFX’s Exchange Rate
While TorFX doesn’t charge a fixed fee, they do charge a margin on the exchange rate they offer.
Like others that excel when it comes to large transfers, they reduce the fees you pay in percentage terms as the amounts increase.
Moreover as part of their on-boarding process they take into account the frequency and volume of your transfers which can lead to even lower fees.
To figure out their margin, you have to start with the base rate they offer you and compare it with the interbank or mid-market rate between two currencies at a particular point in time.
Here’s how TorFX stacks up against other services in terms of fixed fees + exchange rates:
- Wire transfers through a Bank – 3% to 7% (typical)
- PayPal for overseas transfers – 6% to 8% (typical)
- Global Money Transfer Services like TorFX – 0.5% – 2% (variable on the amount and currencies involved)
No question, TorFX is competitive compared to its peers and will run rings around high street banks.
Compared to the alternatives listed (above) TorFX it may not always be the absolute cheapest (but pretty close and if you value customer service highly, then you could say they are best value).
However, this isn’t the end of the story.
Because TorFX has flexible transfer options like Forward Contracts, Limit Orders, and Stop Orders, you can potentially get the rates you want rather than worry about fluctuations.
4.2 Hidden Fees
TorFX does not hide any costs intentionally, however it is important to note that banks at both ends can charge fees.
However these fees tend to be minimal in terms of total fees if you are transferring large amounts.
TorFX has local bank accounts in Australia and the UK, so if you are working outside of these countries it may be worth checking with your bank what they will charge, especially for smaller amounts (but we recommend other services for these anyway)
Hidden costs can also crop up if you’re funding your transfer with a debit card (Sterling debit cards are supported for funding your transfer on TorFX).
5. TorFX Transfer Speeds
Typically, it takes about 1-3 days for your money to go through once you set up the transfer. However for exotic currencies and to some countries it can take up to 4 or 5 days.
While there are a lot of factors a lot of the time to make transfers is often caused by the banks at either end.
Your transfer speed on TorFX depends on the following:
- Your location and the destination country
- The currency pair selected
- When you initiate the transfer (TorFX can only handle your money during normal banking hours)
- Verifications and security checks
- How you fund the transfer (Card payments are processed faster than bank payments, but can be more expensive)
Note: If the sending bank you are using is is not in the UK, Europe or Australia/NZ, it might take an extra day given that you need to send money to a TorFX account in those countries.
6. How to Use TorFX
Simply follow these steps:
Step 1. Initial sign up for TorFX has two options.
- AUS/NZ and Asia – Get a quote online or by phone (fill out the same form)
- UK and Europe – Get a quote online or by phone (fill out the same form)
Step 2. Get a rate through your online account or over the phone with a personal account manager.
Step 3. Fund and initiate transfer
This video is a few years old now, but the video still does a good job showing what they are about.
If you’re looking for a reliable money transfer service with best-in-class customer service for large transfers above £4500 GBP / $9500 AUD CAD / €4500 EU, TorFX is our top pick.
Even after considering the negative reviews, it becomes clear the Trustpilot rating of 4.9/5 confirms TorFX goes the extra mile to ensure their clients are happy.
However, the TorFX’s approach to customer service may not be for everyone.
If you’re someone who prefers to do things online, TorFX’s insistence on using the phone at almost every step can be overwhelming. While it is true that this extra support can ensure smooth and stress-free transfers, smaller amounts are generally straight forward, faster and cheaper through an online provider.
Overall, if you’re looking for a money transfers that offers exceptional customer service and a personal touch, TorFX is a great choice.
It also helps that with TorFX you can get a quote online or by phone – before you fully sign up:
- AUS/NZ and Asia – Get a Quote
- UK and Europe – Get a Quote
Is TorFX better than OFX?
Both are top of the pile when it comes to large transfers. If you prefer doing things online but still want the ability to speak to a real person easily then OFX might be a better choice for you. On the other hand, if you want a tailored solution with low stress TorFX could be better.
Is TorFX better than Wise?
Wise was originally designed for smaller transfers which means it is extremely efficient online for amounts below £4000 GBP/$9500 AUD. For larger amounts an account manager dedicated to your needs can make a very positive difference.
Can you transfer 24/7 with TorFX?
You can use their online services to lock-in rates. If more information is required or confirmation you will get a call from your account manager during business hours.
Are TorFX safe?
Yes, TorFX is a safe and reputable. They are authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and are registered as a Money Service Business with HM Revenue & Customs. Additionally, they have been in business for over 10 years.
TorFX Review [Uncovered] - 7 Must Knows in 2023
TorFX Reviews can be helpful to uncover the pros and cons of a business. In this review we found extremely high customer service rankings come with a price.
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