XE vs PayPal

We take a look at two well-known money transfer services to see which will get your money there cheaper and faster.

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PayPal is one of the most well-known payment methods globally, but how does PayPal's international money transfers fair when compared side-by-side to XE? Let's find out.

The fees and rates used in this comparison are accurate as of 13 March 2019.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
AUD 1 1 day AUD 0.00 0.675 USD
6,749
With global payments provider XE, enjoy fast and secure transfers and a range of foreign currency tools and calculators while benefiting from $0 transfer fees. Go to site Show details
AUD 1 1 day AUD 5.99 0.654 USD
6,535
Send money overseas to more than 20 countries. Rate last updated on 17/08/2018 at 1:30 pm. Find out how we calculate this exchange rate. Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

Which has lower fees?

XE

XE doesn't charge fees on international money transfers, however, it does warn you that some third parties might.

Check the fees of all the providers involved in your transaction.

PayPal

PayPal has a flat fee structure, that's dependant on the amount you're sending:

  • If you're sending $0-$49.99, the fee is $0.99.
  • If you're sending $50-99.99, the fee is $2.99.
  • On all transfers $100 or more, the fee is $5.99.

If you pay by credit or debit card, you'll be charged an additional 2.6%, plus a small fixed fee that changes based on the currency.

Trophy icon
Winner: XE

XE never charges a fee, while PayPal charges a fee on all transaction amounts. This makes XE the clear winner when it comes to fees.

Let's crunch the numbers: Sending $1,000 to the Philippines

Let's compare what a $1,000 transfer to the Philippines looks like with both XE and PayPal to see which provider puts more money in the receiver's pocket.

Sending $1,000 to the Philippines

XE PayPal
Transfer fee $0 AUD$5.99
Exchange rate 1 AUD = 36.3 PHP 1 AUD = 35.9 PHP
Transfer speed Same day 1 day
Total Philippine Peso received PHP36,320.34 PHP35,689
Receiver gets PHP631.34 more PHP631.34 less

XE is more cost effective in this insistence, saving you PHP631. It doesn't charge any fees and its Philippine peso exchange rate is better than PayPal's in this instance.

Which offers better exchange rates?

XE

XE adds a margin to the exchange rate. It varies across the currencies, but it's typically between 0.4% and 1%.

Keep in mind that the exchange rate you'll pay when using XE is not the same as the rate displayed on XE's currency converter tool. That tool is a live feed of the mid-market rates, not XE's exchange rates.

PayPal

PayPal also adds a margin, but it's a flat percentage markup. If you're transferring to US or Canadian dollars, it's 3.5%, while to all other currencies, it's 4%.

If you're transferring to another currency within your PayPal account and it isn't a purchase, the margin is lowered to 2.5%.

Trophy icon
Winner: XE

Both providers add a markup to the mid-market exchange rate, but generally speaking, XE's markup is lower. PayPal's markup is quite high and you're more likely to find a better rate elsewhere.

Which is faster?

XE

The majority of XE transfers are completed within the same day, but some transfers can take longer. When you set up your transfer, XE will give you an estimated transfer completion date.

PayPal

How long PayPal transactions take depend on whether you're just moving money between PayPal accounts, or between bank accounts. It can take over a week to get the money to the recipient's bank account, but is considerably faster to send it to their PayPal account.

Trophy icon
Winner: XE

XE is more consistent and faster in many situations.

General features

Payment methods Receiving Options Max and Min Transfer speeds Currencies
XE Bank transfer Bank account Minimum: $1

Maximum: $500,000

1 day 40+ currencies
PayPal Bank transfer, debit card, credit card, Paypal credit PayPal transfer, bank account Minimum: $1

Maximum: $60,000

1 day 90+ currencies

XE

Set up your XE account, then get a quote for your transfer. Once you've agreed on the details of the transaction, you send your payment to XE and your money will be sent on from there.

PayPal

You must have a PayPal account to transfer through PayPal. Once you've set it up or logged in, you go to the "send money" section and enter the transfer details. PayPal will then complete the transaction.

Bottom line

Overall, XE is a better choice when looking to do an international money transfer. XE has no fees, and their exchange rates are better than PayPal's. By using XE, you can save money and get more for your Aussie dollars.

However, if XE doesn't support the currency or country you want to send to, it's most likely PayPal will have it.

Looking for more options?

Use our comparison calculator below to weigh up the fees, exchange rates and other details of money transfer providers out there.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
AUD 2,000 1 day AUD 0.00 0.679 USD
6,790
TorFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. Conditions apply.
Send money overseas in 30+ currencies with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
Go to site Show details
AUD 3,000 1 day GBP 20.00 0.679 USD
6,780
Global Reach will match any competitor's exchange rates. Conditions apply.
No transfer fee when transferring more than £10,000 or equivalent. Send money in over 130 currencies. No maximum transfer amount.
Go to site Show details
AUD 2,000 1 day AUD 0.00 0.679 USD
6,790
Sign up for a new account and receive a $50 Myer gift card when you transfer $10,000 or more.
Send 60+ currencies at competitive rates and no fees. If you find a better eligible quote, WorldFirst will beat it.
Go to site Show details
AUD 2,000 1 day AUD 0.00 0.679 USD
6,790
SendFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. T&Cs apply.
Fee-free transfers in 30+ currencies to over 200 countries.
Go to site Show details
AUD 250 1 - 2 days AUD 0.00 0.679 USD
6,790
$0 transfer fees for Finder customers.
No-maximum limit transfers with competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies. No transfer fee over AUD$10,000.
Go to site Show details
AUD 2,000 1 day AUD 0.00 0.679 USD
6,790
BFX can help you send fee-free transfers to 30+ currencies. Go to site Show details
AUD 5 1 - 2 days EUR 3.00 0.675 USD
6,747
Special offer: Pay zero fees on your first 5 transfers.
Get bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
Go to site Show details
AUD 1 Within an hour AUD 3.99 0.673 USD
6,732
Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee.
An online money transfer service with cash pickup, bank account to bank account and airtime transfers available.
Go to site Show details
AUD 1 1 - 2 days AUD 45.00 0.682 USD
6,786
Make online transfers at the mid-market rate with transparent fees in 45+ currencies. Go to site Show details
AUD 200 1 day AUD 0.00 0.676 USD
6,762
Low minimum transfer amount of just AU$200, with no set-up fees or transfer fees. Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.
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Important Information*
Logo for TorFX International Money Transfers
TorFX International Money Transfers

TorFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. Conditions apply.
Send money overseas in 30+ currencies with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.

Logo for Global Reach (formerly FC Exchange) International Money Transfers
Global Reach (formerly FC Exchange) International Money Transfers

Global Reach will match any competitor's exchange rates. Conditions apply.
No transfer fee when transferring more than £10,000 or equivalent. Send money in over 130 currencies. No maximum transfer amount.

Logo for WorldFirst International Money Transfers
WorldFirst International Money Transfers

Sign up for a new account and receive a $50 Myer gift card when you transfer $10,000 or more.
Send 60+ currencies at competitive rates and no fees. If you find a better eligible quote, WorldFirst will beat it.

Logo for SendFX International Money Transfers
SendFX International Money Transfers

SendFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. T&Cs apply.
Fee-free transfers in 30+ currencies to over 200 countries.

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