Wise and Xoom may seem pretty similar on the surface.
But here’s the deal:
There are some important differences that will affect which is better for you.
- Xoom only does personal transfers (Wise does business as well)
- Xoom can be useful for smaller transfers ($1000 USD and below) especially where cash is needed.
- How recipients receive money is very different between the two (this may be the decider)
More Big Differences in a moment.
Also, in some cases we think there are others you should consider and we will let you know about them.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which can save you money! For more information, see my disclosures here.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which may save you and do not cost any more. For more information, see my disclaimers here.
1. Wise vs Xoom: Quick Comparison
Wise has low, transparent fees and online customer service best for smaller transfers (below $7000 USD). Meanwhile Xoom covers more countries and has allows flexible transfers like bill payment & cash but fees can be higher. On Trustpilot, Wise earns a score of 4.4/5 and Xoom scores 2.8/5.
|Trust||Very high. Not only do they have an “excellent” score on Trustpilot they are regulated in the UK, the US and EU. They also have a dedicated fraud team.||High. Because they are PayPal owned service this somewhat balances their “average” score on Trustpilot. Regulated in the US.|
|Exchange Rate||Mid-market rate, no mark up||Mark up on the exchange rate|
|Fees||Low percentage fee which depends on factors like currency and amount.|
Average for total fees is about 0.61%.
Check your fees with the Wise Calculator. No need to calculate the fee built into the exchange rate as they offer the interbank rate.
|Transfer fee + currency exchange fee, and other fees (bank fees, credit or debit card fees)|
Check your fees with the Xoom Calculator but don’t forget to include the fee built into the exchange rate.
|Speed||0-5 business days||Instant (cash), 2-5 business days|
|Currency Conversion||Instant||Instant for cash, 1 day for bank transfers|
|Trustpilot Rating||Excellent – 4.4/5 with over 180,000 reviews (as of April 2023)||Average – 2.8/5 with over 22,000 reviews (April 2023)|
|Full Review||Wise review||Xoom review|
2. Wise vs Xoom: Top Features at a Glance
|Countries and Currencies|
(ensure yours are covered)
|Transfers to over 160 currencies||Send money to 130 countries|
|Multi-Currency Account||Yes – Hold over 40 currencies||No|
|Personal or Business||Both||Personal|
|Debit Card||Yes – use in 200 countries||No|
|Instant Transfer||No||Yes – cash|
|Mobile Top Up||No||Yes|
3. Wise vs Xoom: Pros and Cons
- Extreme trust and transparency
- Low fees. Check out the Wise calculator where you can see exactly how much arrives and the fees.
- Available for business and personal
- Multi-currency account
- Master-card debit card
- Not ideal for large transfers
- No cash transfers
- Flexible cash, bank, mobile wallet transfers
- Cash arrives in minutes
- Bill payment
- Home delivery of cash
- Many receiving countries (163 countries)
- Complex and high fees
- Only available in UK, US, Canada, and Europe
- No business account
4. What Others Say (Third Party Reviews and Analysis)
Excellent – 4.4/5 with over 180,000 reviews (as of April 2023)
Positives (84% of reviews)
According to the user reviews, many people have been using Wise for years and love their consistent and reliable service.
Other factors include clear fee structure and low fees, ease of use for exchanging currencies, and their user-friendly app + website.
Negatives (7% of reviews)
While Wise’s customer service is generally pretty good, a few users have noted a decline in the quality of support in recent times – interestingly we have noticed this with almost all services possible due to challenges in banking system worldwide.
Some users were also frustrated by the complex verification process, while others were dissatisfied with Wise for suddenly shutting down their accounts.
As a regulated financial service, Wise needs to audit transfers, which can lead to transfer delays. And sometimes, if users violate their terms of service, the account can also be shut down.
What They Said
Communication is key. Wise have always been so quick to answer my questions which is a rare thing to have on an internet based service these days. The transactions are seamless and the website is really user friendly. The cost is something that drew me to Wise at the beginning and they are still very competitive with fees etc when transferring money from one country to another. The transfers are also instant. I am beyond impressed. If your not sure just give them a go and try it out, you will be pleasantly surprised.– Margaret Thompson
Average – 2.8/5 with over 22,000 reviews (April 2023)
Positives (85% of reviews)
Most positive reviews highlight Xoom’s transfer speed – cash is ready for pick up in as little as 15 mins.
Other reviews talk about how easy it is to use Xoom.
Negatives (9% of reviews)
For the negatives, reviewers mentioned that Xoom’s rates are higher than their competitors.
Other causes of dissatisfaction include:
- Delayed transactions and lack of explanation
- Overly sensitive security measures leading to canceled transactions
- Complicated and time-consuming verification process
- Incorrect information provided regarding payout locations
- Requests for refunds and reimbursements.
What They Said
I have never sent cash abroad before, but wanted to send cash gift to my daughter in the USA. I found Xoom easy to use, all the information I needed was there on the screen and she was able to travel to her nearest Wall art store and Pick up the money within minutes. Amazing service. I am sure I will use this service again, instead of sending vouchers. Thank you.– Kathleen Ivison
5. Wise vs. Xoom: Fees and Other Costs
- Transfers at the mid-market rate
- Low percentage service fee (0.61% of the amount on average)
- Card fees (3%) if setting up transfers by credit card
No fees charged by sending and receiving banks because Wise has local bank accounts in all the countries they operate
Fees applicable for opening a business multi-currency account and ATM withdrawals above the monthly limit.
- Transfer fee (depends on currency and amount)
- Mark up on the exchange rate
- Agents may charge an additional fee for cash payout
- Sending and receiving bank fees
- Card fees (if funding by debit or credit card)
- Fees applicable for bill payment (location specific)
6. Wise vs. Xoom: Transfer Speeds
- Transfers funded by a debit or credit card: from a few hours to a day
- Bank-to-bank transfers: 0-5 days (a lot depends on the countries)
- Cash transfers: Within minutes
- Bill payments and mobile wallet transfers: Within minutes
- Bank-to-bank transfers: 2-5 days
7. Wise vs. Xoom: How they Work
- Verify your identity with the required government ID (passport, driving license, etc.) or business registration documents
- Link your bank accounts and cards to set up your account
- Start the transfer process and track your transfer. Additional verification may be needed for large transfers
- If the Wise multi-currency account is available in your country, you will be automatically signed up for it
- Choose your primary currency to hold and spend
- You can also add 10 local receiving accounts to spend and receive money like a local
- Order your card and activate upon receiving it. You can control everything from the mobile app – usage limits, blocking and unblocking, spend tracking, etc.
- Sign up for a Xoom account here and get verified.
- If you already have a verified PayPal account, you can access Xoom from PayPal and skip the sign up and verification process.
- Link your bank account and cards
- Select the destinations country and the service (money transfer, bill payment, or mobile wallet transfer)
- Select the payout method (cash or bank transfer) and amount
- Track your transfer from the Xoom app or online dashboard
You can pay phone, gas, electricity, internet, etc. bills as well as loan payments via Xoom in Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and Nicaragua.
- Log in to your app or mobile dashboard
- Select the destination country and type of service – choose bill payment
- Select bill type and provider
- Pay with a low fee
8. Verdict – Which is Better?
The differences between Wise and Xoom are significant.
For example, Xoom only does personal transfers which can be useful for smaller transfers, especially where cash is needed.
However, Wise supports both personal and business transfers and is incredibly transparent, like the Wise calculator where you can see exactly how much arrives and the fees.
While both Wise and Xoom support a wide range of countries and currencies for money transfers Xoom has a slight edge over Wise with more countries.
Wise comes with the pros of extreme trust and transparency, low fees, multi-currency account, and a Mastercard debit card. However, it’s not ideal for large transfers (over $7000) or cash transfers.
On the other hand, Xoom supports flexible cash, bank, and mobile wallet transfers, bill payment, and home delivery of cash. However, in some cases the fees are high, and it’s only available in a few countries.
Finally the user reviews on Trustpilot show Wise with a well earned 4.4/5 and it is for this reason we think if you can use Wise over Xoom – do so.
Is Wise cheaper than Xoom?
Wise total fees is about 0.61% which is considered low and can be as low as about 0.35% depending on the currencies. Xoom on the other had can be far more expensive but this is due to their flexibility which allows transfers like bill payment & cash.
Is Wise faster than Xoom?
Xoom and Wise can both be practically instantaneous or up to 5 days. For Wise, a lot depends on the countries and currencies involved as well as the methods you choose to fund the transfer. With Xoom, cash transfers, bill payments and mobile wallet transfers can be practically instantaneous.