borderless™ vs. TransferWise (Now Wise): A Closer Look

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The only US based international and local direct debit solution.

borderless™ vs. TransferWise (Now Wise): A Closer Look

6 MINUTE READ

Learn more about borderless™ and TransferWise (now Wise), and how these two international payments solutions compare for you and your business.


borderless™ and TransferWise (Wise)

borderless™ is a US-based global bank payment solution & API designed for businesses and marketplaces, and Wise (formerly known as TransferWise) is a UK-based global money transfer service.

borderless™ is a payment processor, while Wise is better described as a neo-bank. A neo-bank is a direct bank that operates exclusively online without traditional physical branch networks.

Wondering how are we similar? How are we different? Which one is the right solution for your business?

We’ll go over these two services in a number of key categories, including pricing, security, transfer time, types of transfers allowed, and more.


Similarities Between borderless and Wise (ex TransferWise)


International Transfer of Money

Users of both borderless™ and Wise (ex TransferWise) can make international money transfers without having to create a foreign bank account.

Unlike some P2P services like Venmo or Zelle, which only allow transfers between US bank accounts, both of these services allow for easy global payments.


Secure & Trusted Payment Process

borderless™ uses bank-grade security protocols and highly sophisticated data encryption tools to keep your information and transactions secured

Wise similarly has a secure payment process, using “the latest Transport Layer Security to keep your data safely encrypted in transit and encrypt data at rest.”

Both borderless™ and Wise are trusted by financial institutions and banks worldwide, so you can rest assured that making transfers with both services is secure


Payment Tracking

Another shared, useful feature of both is real-time payment tracking. 

Traditional methods of international money transfer like wire transfer are infamous for their lack of transparency. You never know where your funds are, which is disruptive for your cash flow in addition to being inconvenient and frustrating.

Both services offer real-time payment tracking that give you an estimated time of arrival and allow you to always know where your funds are, giving you peace of mind and allowing you to take better control over your payment process.

Multi-currency

Both borderless™ and Wise offer the ability to hold, receive and exchange in 25+ foreign currencies. This avoids the need for your company to open foreign bank accounts or subsidiaries oversees allowing you to go global in seconds.

borderless™ however does not charge fees for adding funds nor incoming wire fees when collecting to your multi-currency balances.


6 Key Differences Between borderless and TransferWise (Wise)

Although borderless™ and Wise share many similarities, there are a number of differences between them. Here are 6 of these key differences.


1. borderless™ Is Designed For Marketplaces With an API Focus

Another distinction is that borderless™ is primarily a solution for business payments, while Wise is primarily a solution for individuals.

While you can create a business and personal account on both platforms, borderless™ specializes in business payments, whether business-to-business (B2B) or person-to-business (P2B) payments. We created tools for businesses of all sizes such as a simple web application or a plug and play API. We built borderless with online marketplaces in mind such as freelancer, influencer, goods & services and gig economy which is why we have developed a “@handle” system and a plug & play API. See “@handle” system section to learn more.

In addition, borderless™ offers a suite of business focused features for business payments. These features include but not limited to, white label, accounting integrations, automated international transfers, subscription payments, recurring invoicing, mass payouts via CSV or API, contractor payments, and more.

On the other hand, Wise focuses on person-to-person (P2P) payments, which borderless™ does not currently offer. You can still make payments as a business or to a business on Wise, however you will be missing out on a lot of features.

2. Global Coverage: borderless™ has wider coverage

Here is a list of all the 60 countries to which you can make payments using Wise. For online marketplaces, freelancer, influencer or travel marketplaces, 60 countries is limited.

borderless™ covers over 100+ countries and plans to expand to an additional 40+ countries in 2022. Here is a full list of the current countries.


3. Mass Payouts via Groups, API or CSV file Upload

Lastly, borderless™ allows users to make several payments at once with the Mass Payouts feature, while Wise lacks this feature unless you are using their API. 

Businesses that conduct international commerce often need to execute many payments to both individuals (contractors, payroll, commission, etc.) and businesses, and if you can only make one payment at a time, this impedes the efficiency of the payment process.

borderless™ has developed Groups Feature and CSV file upload (demo videos linked) for businesses who want to execute mass payments via our web application.

For marketplaces, borderless™ has built a plug and play API which can allow you to integrate our payouts solution in less than 1 week and start doing payouts to 100+ countries.

borderless™ is thus more convenient than Wise when it comes to making several global bank payments at once with $0 wire fees, saving you time and money.


4. Pricing & Fees 

borderless™ and Wise have very different pricing models, so it is important for you and your business to understand this difference when comparing the two products. 

First big difference: borderless™ does NOT charge fees when adding funds to your account or withdrawing. Wise charges fees to add funds to your account.


borderless™ Pricing

Under the Free Plan (Non-API): Percentage Fee Capped
For both business-to-business (B2B) and personal-to-business (P2B) international payments, borderless™ charges 2% + 30c and are capped at $30 USD or the equivalent in other currencies.

This maximum or cap is extremely helpful for payments larger than $1,500 where the fee is fixed no matter the amount. Check out the borderless™ pricing page for more information relating to our pricing model.

Under API Plans: Flat Fee
borderless™ has three API plans: Starter, Grow and Enterprise. Under the API plans, borderless charges a fixed fee per FX transaction versus a percentage that can be as low as $1 per payment no matter the amount.
Contact our sales team to see which API plan works best for your business.


Wise (Ex TransferWise) Pricing

In contrast, Wise charges a percentage and it changes depending on (1) the country to which the payment is being sent and (2) how the user elects to make the payment: direct debit (ACH), credit or debit card, or wire transfer.

This makes their pricing less transparent and less simple to calculate.

Fees for sending wire transfers are bigger than the other options, and variable fees for sending a payment via credit card are similarly bigger.

For example, for a credit card payment of $3,000 from the United States to Europe, Wise charges a fixed fee of $0.89 and a variable fee of 4.32%, which amounts to $124.69, for a total fee of $125.58 (not including currency conversion). 

But for a wire transfer payment of the same amount, Wise charges a fixed fee of $6.23 and a variable fee of 0.43%, which amounts to $12.82, for a total fee of $19.05 (not including currency conversion).

Check out the Wise pricing page for more information relating to their pricing model.

Direct Comparison

To directly compare the two companies’ pricing, consider a business payment of $10,000 from the United States to Canada. 

With Wise, using a credit card to pay, the total fee is $420.41. If you use a wire transfer to pay, the total fee is $53.05. Using ACH, the total fee would be $78.49. 
With borderless™, the total fee is just $30 under the free plan and can be as low as $1 with the Enterprise API plan 

No matter which payment method you choose on Wise, borderless™ is the more affordable option, with nearly double the savings if you pay via wire transfer and more than 14x the savings if you pay with a card!


4. “@handle” System For Data Liability & Scalability

borderless™ users do not need to collect or share bank information when making payments. 

However, when making payments with Wise, since it is a neo-bank, you must collect banking information such as SWIFT codes or IBANs when making payments.

This impedes the user experience and payment process as you have to manually collect and input that information, which is prone to human error.

borderless™ securely and automatically detects a recipient’s currency and retrieves banking information stored in an encrypted database. All you need to do is enter an email or “@Handle,” which is a unique identifier. 

Users do NOT need to create a borderless™ account in order to get paid via borderless. Your company can store their banking information in our system in exchange of a “@handle” avoiding data liability

This amounts to significant data security/liability risks that businesses are exposed to which might cost a hefty amount as a result of this exposure when using Wise.

In addition, if the users have a borderless™ account, the users can change their preferred bank using our platform without any changes on your end. The next time a payout is outgoing, it will go to the user’s new preferred bank account using the same “@handle”. This creates a scalable solution with low touch maintenance or support.


5. Credit / Debit Cards

borderless™ is a direct bank-to-bank payment processor, which allows users to add with their bank via our direct debit (ACH) solution or wire. borderless™ does not process credit/debit card payments as those add additional fees.

borderless™ also allows you to wire in funds in any of the foreign currencies at any time avoiding incoming wire fees.

This is in contrast to Wise, which is a neo-bank; signing up for TransferWise essentially entails creating another bank account that you or your business needs to manage.

As a neo-bank, Wise offers several options to make payments:  wire transfer, direct bank debit (ACH), and credit or debit cards. Wise also offers users the option to sign up for a Wise credit card that they can use to make payments both domestically and internationally.

While more options might seem intrinsically better, credit cards and wire transfers actually drive up the cost of making payments, increase transfer time, and exacerbate security risks for international payments. See the Pricing & Fees section below for specific information.

PS: borderless is working on a solution to provide you bank accounts in case you don’t have one in 6 different currencies.


6. Additional Features:
Subscriptions With Rates As Low As 0.1%: Automated Payments, On-Demand Direct Debit and E-commerce.

Another key difference between the two solutions is that borderless™ allows for automatic local and international payments to automate subscriptions or recurring invoices while Wise does not. Here is a video of how it works.

borderless™ is built and designed for businesses, and we know that the ability to set up recurring payments is essential for many businesses.

Wise’s lack of this functionality is an important differentiating factor to consider. With this lack of automation, using TransferWise for international payments is a manual process that takes up unnecessary time for your businesses, which has a direct negative impact on your bottom line.


E-Commerce

As a payment processor and not a neo-bank, borderless™ offers users the ability to automate your account receivables and get paid in seconds.

Whether it is selling to consumers or businesses via e-commerce, borderless™ provides an e-commerce plugin that can increase businesses’ conversion rates and simplify the payment process for your clients. The funds are directly deposited in your bank account making B2B e-commerce easy, affordable and accessible for payments up to $500,000 USD. You can get paid immediately online or attach a payment link to a quote streamlining your sales operations.

Wise, as a neo-bank, does not have this functionality and cannot assist your business with conducting simple and affordable e-commerce.

On-demand direct debit

With borderless™’ On-Demand Direct Debit feature, we allow our users to set up a payment plan with their customers that allows for on-demand debiting of funds.

The process is intuitive and simple, with just four easy steps: Opt-in or Get Invited, Create a Free Account, Subscribe, and Track & Cancel Anytime.

Essentially, users subscribe to a plan with a maximum amount, allowing the recipient company to debit their account at any time without exceeding a maximum agreed-upon amount.

In contrast, Wise does not have an on-demand direct debit feature.

The ability to streamline your business’ payment process is very important. With less hassle and unneeded reconciliation time, this feature makes borderless™ the clear winner in this category.


Final Thoughts

borderless™ and TransferWise are two possible solutions for making and accepting international business payments. In summary, borderless™ has been designed with businesses and marketplaces in mind developing the right tool set for them to grow and expand while saving time and money.

borderless™ is created by dreamers, for dreamers. That’s why we care about what matters most to your company: your bottom line, ease of use, and innovative features to boost your efficiency. 

Have specific questions about your business? Want to migrate from Wise? Talk to one of our payments experts today or email sales@getborderless.com.

It’s time for peace of mind with simple, cost-effective, and secure local and international payments. 

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