Wise Business Account Review 
Wise is a global technology company focused on building the best way to move money around the world. Launched in 2011, today Wise is a publicly-traded company that serves over 13 million customers around the world. Customers range from consumers to freelancers and SMEs to enterprises like Google Pay and Xero.
With Wise Business, you can send and receive money internationally, make payments one by one or in bulk, and hold a balance.
With a Wise Business account, you can add and manage user-level permissions, connect with major accounting platforms for automatic reconciliation, and automate your payment processes with their batch or API tool.
In this Wise Business account review, we’ll share with you all you need to know to help you decide if it’s right for your business.
Wise: Key points
- Send money to 70+ countries
- Receive money in 9 major currencies
- Make multiple payments in one go with batch payments
- Hold and exchange 50+ currencies
- Get debit cards for your team
- Withdraw money from platforms like Shopify, Stripe, etc
- Add team members and manage account permissions
- Connect with your accounting software
- Automate your workflows with API
- Price: typically one of, if not the, most cost-effective provider
- Speed: 90% of payments are settled within 24 hours and 50% of the total are instant
- Convenience: easily make payments one by one or through mass pay solutions
- Transparency: full visibility on all fees, when you initiate a transaction you’ll receive a delivery estimate, plus granular payment tracking once you’ve made the transfer
- Business friendly features including API, batch payments and Xero integration
- Wise is not a bank – not all features you’d expect from a bank account are available
- No cash deposits or transactions
- No credit or business loan facilities on offer
- No branch network – service available online, in-app and by phone only
Overall: The Wise Business account offers a comprehensive range of features. Freelancers, entrepreneurs and business owners can receive, hold and send foreign currencies and see all balance and payment information at a glance. Pricing is transparent, and all currency exchange uses the mid-market rate which can mean payments are 19x cheaper than PayPal. Wise is a safe provider, used by 13+ million customers and regulated by a range of authorities around the world.
What is Wise Business?
Wise Business accounts are available online and via the Wise app. You can hold and exchange 50+ currencies, get a business debit card and add team members to your account. With a low, one off charge of 40 NZD, customers can also access account details for 9 currencies, and get paid from third party accounts.
Wise Business payments
Send payments through Wise to 70+ countries around the world. International payments use the mid-market exchange rate and a transparent fee which can be much cheaper than a regular bank.
Wise international transfers can be arranged by confirming the amount you want to send in dollars, or the sum you want the recipient to get in their home currency. You’ll always be sure what your recipient will get in the end, making it easy to pay overseas suppliers, contractors and staff accurately.
The recipient doesn’t need to set up a Wise account, or even know you’re paying them via Wise, as the funds are settled directly to their bank account. To make a payment to a recipient, you’ll need to know their bank information, or alternatively you can use Wise’s money-to-email feature.
Send up to 1,000 payments at a time, in as many currencies as you need. All you have to do is upload a file detailing the payments to be made. Batch payments make it convenient to run employee payroll or cover supplier invoices in just a few clicks.
Batch payment services are available off the shelf, ready to go in minutes, and come with no additional cost.
Use the powerful Wise API to automate your workflows, including collecting recipient details, making payouts, tracking and reconciliation. There’s no setup or integration fee, so you can start saving time and cutting admin with the Wise API right away.
Wise multi currency account and card
Wise Business account holders can choose to open a free account focused on sending international transfers, or pay 40 NZD to access the full account features with no ongoing charges.
Customers who choose not to pay the 40 NZD fee still get an impressive range of features. You can use the Wise multi-currency account to add, hold, convert and send payments in 50+ currencies. International transfers use the mid-market exchange rate and a low, transparent fee. Add team members, integrate with your cloud-based accounting tools, get the Wise API and make batch payments – all with no upfront fee.
You can upgrade to the full account to get all the above, plus your own local bank details for 9 currencies: GBP, EUR, USD, AUD, NZD, CAD, HUF, SGD, and TRY. This means you can receive third party payments from 30+ countries, and get paid through platforms like Shopify, Stripe, Adyen and Amazon.
Wise Business customers are also able to also get a linked business debit card. There’s a 10 NZD charge for each card, which lets you and your team spend and make withdrawals around the world.
Business account users and permissions
You can add users to your Wise Business account, and manage their permissions so they can access the features they need. Wise Business account user profiles fall into several different categories:
- Viewer – can see the account and download statements
- Employee – can get a Wise Business card, spend up to pre-set limits, and view their own activity
- Preparer – can set up single payments for approval and download statements
- Payer – can make and manage payments, convert currencies and download statements
- Admin – has overview of all activity, can use a Wise Business card and can add and remove team members
You can integrate your Wise account with Xero and QuickBooks for easy reconciliation across multiple currencies. What this means is that any activity you make on Wise appears within your accounting software for you to then reconcile. This cuts down on admin time and makes it easier to keep track of income and outgoings.
How does Wise (TransferWise) work?
Wise is not a bank – and when it comes to international payments it doesn’t work like one either.
Traditional banks usually send cross-border transfers using the SWIFT network. Under the SWIFT system there can be several banks – known as correspondent banks – involved in a single payment. That’s slow, and because correspondent banks may charge a fee for their service, it’s also expensive. The final cost you’ll pay may not be known until after the transfer completes, which can leave the recipient with less than you expect.
Instead of relying on the out-dated SWIFT network to process cross-border transactions, Wise built its own network of local accounts. You fund your transfer using a local payment to a NZD account. Wise then pays out the currency you need from their local account in the destination country. No money actually crosses borders, which cuts out intermediary costs and means international transactions are cheaper and faster. It also means you’ll know in advance exactly what you need to pay, and exactly what the recipient will get in the end.
Is Wise safe for businesses?
Wise is a safe and trusted provider, regulated by authorities around the world. In New Zealand, Wise operates as a foreign entity, under the supervision of the DIA.
To comply with regulatory requirements around the world, Wise follows strict rules on how it protects customer’s money. These include regular stress testing to check plans and processes are robust, and maintaining a set amount of capital on hand at all times. Customer funds are safeguarded at top tier financial institutions. That means your money is kept separately from Wise’s own funds, and can be easily accessed whenever you need it.
Wise is also at the cutting edge of online and mobile account safety with dedicated anti fraud teams and technology, instant transaction alerts and 2 factor authentication to keep customers’ money secure.
Wise Business account fees
To access the full Wise Business account features you’ll pay a 40 NZD one off charge. If you want a Wise international debit card, there’s also a 10 NZD fee for each card. After that the account has no ongoing fees, you simply pay for the services you use.
Wise international transfers use the mid-market exchange rate with no markup and no hidden costs. Instead, there are a couple of transparent fees:
- Fixed fee: a small charge covering the fixed costs associated with the transaction, for major currencies this can be in the region of 0.26 NZD to 0.40 NZD
- Variable fee: covering the cost of the currency exchange, from 0.41% of the transfer value
You’ll always see the full fee before you confirm the transaction. Here are the Wise transfer fees for a few major currencies as an example:
|Sending 1,000 NZD to||Variable fee (NZD)||Fixed fee (NZD)||Total fee (NZD)|
|EUR||4.48 NZD (0.45%)||0.26 NZD||4.74 NZD|
|USD||4.78 NZD (0.48%)||0.38 NZD||5.16 NZD|
|AUD||4.48 NZD (0.45%)||0.39 NZD||4.87 NZD|
|GBP||4.48 NZD (0.45%)||0.41 NZD||4.89 NZD|
|SGD||4.58 NZD (0.46%)||0.45 NZD||5.03 NZD|
*Fees correct at time of research 13th October 2022
Wise exchange rate
Wise always gives you the mid-market exchange rate whenever you convert currencies – whether that’s to send a transfer, convert between currencies you hold or spend in a foreign currency.
The mid-market exchange rate is the one you’ll find on Google, and the one you get using an online currency converter. However, most banks and currency exchange services add a markup – an extra fee – to the mid-market exchange rate to calculate the rate they pass on to customers. That means that even if a provider says they don’t charge a fee, you’re still paying for your exchange or transfer through the rate you get.
Large business payments with Wise
Wise supports high value business payments. Typically you can send up to the currency equivalent of 1 million GBP per transfer, but it’s possible to arrange higher limits if you need them for your business. At the time of writing, 1 million GBP is close to 2 million NZD.
If you’re sending over the equivalent of 100,000 GBP (around 200,000 NZD) a month you can also benefit from a lower variable fee which drives down the overall cost of your transfer even more. This is because Wise automatically applies discounts to the variable fee on the aggregate FX volume throughout the month. This means you can benefit if you make one or two large payments and if you make hundreds of smaller payments too.
To keep customers and their money safe, and comply with law, Wise may need to ask for more documents when you send high value payments. If you’re asked to show the source of the funds you might need to send documentation such as a bank statement showing your business received the money you want to transfer, or written proof of where the funds came from.
How long does Wise take
50% of Wise’s international transfers are instant (delivered in less than 20 seconds), while 90% are delivered within 24 hours.
Exactly how long your payment will take depends on the way you pay for your transfer, the currency and country you’re sending to and the value. However, before you confirm your transfer you’ll be shown an estimated delivery time and you can easily track your payment once it’s on the move.
How to use Wise Business
Using Wise Business is straightforward, with an intuitive user experience online and in the Wise app. Here’s how to make a Wise Business transfer:
- Choose where you’re sending from – your linked bank account or Wise balance
- Enter the payment value or how much you want the recipient to get
- Add the recipient’s details and check everything over
- Choose your payment method and confirm the transfer
- Your money is on the move
You’ll see the available funding methods when you set up your transfer. The cheapest – and often most popular – way to pay is using a bank transfer from your linked business bank account. You can also usually use a debit or credit card, POLi or your existing Wise balance.
Most Wise Business transfers are sent directly to the recipient’s bank account for convenience. However Wise does support other payout methods depending on the destination country.
How to create a Wise Business account
Opening a Wise Business account is easy and can be done entirely online.
- Open the Wise homepage or app
- Click Register
- Follow the prompts to enter information about yourself and your business
- Get verified
- You’re ready to go
Wise Business Account>
What documents you’ll need
To comply with law and make sure all accounts are safe and secure, you’ll need to get verified before you can use your Wise Business account. Exactly what information and documents you need will depend on your business type and structure. However, the information often required includes the names, date of birth, and country of residence for any directors and shareholders who own 25% or more of the business.
You don’t need to enter all of your verification information at once – simply save and exit the process and pick it up again later.
How long does verification take
For many customers the account verification process happens on the same day or even instantly. The Wise service team aims to have all accounts verified within 2 days and will be in touch if any more information or documentation is needed.
Wise (TransferWise) limits
Wise Business accounts allow customers to make high value payments. Although limits are in place, they’re generally fairly high and set based on the equivalent of sending 1 million GBP. If you need to send more you can also contact Wise customer support to increase your limits.
Here are the Wise transfer limits for a few major currencies as an example:
|NZD||2.2 million NZD|
|USD||1.6 million USD|
|AUD||1.8 million AUD|
|EUR||1.2 million EUR|
|SGD||2 million SGD|
Wise supports 50+ different currencies and lets you send to over 70 different countries. The countries and currencies available are being updated all the time – for latest info check the Wise desktop site or app.
The Wise Business account allows customers to send and receive payments, and handle multiple currencies all in the same place.
There’s a one off fee to activate all account features, with no ongoing charges or minimum balance requirements. Account holders also get time saving features like batch payments and access to the Wise API. Wise is fully regulated and trusted by millions of customers and businesses around the world.
The Wise Business account is especially suited to entrepreneurs and businesses who have customers, contractors and suppliers overseas. Receive payments like a local with bank details for 9 currencies, manage international payroll and supplier charges using the mid-market exchange rate, and withdraw money from ecommerce platforms around the world.
Fees are low and transparent, and you could save 19x compared to PayPal.
Set up your Wise Business Account>
How much does Wise cost?
Open a Wise Business account for free, and pay a one off fee of 40 NZD to access all account features. There are no monthly or ongoing charges and you only pay a low, transparent fee for the services you need.
How long does Wise take to transfer funds?
The majority of Wise international transfers arrive instantly or within 24 hours.
Is Wise safe?
Wise Business is safe and fully regulated around the world. In New Zealand, Wise operates as a foreign entity, and is supervised by the DIA.
How does Wise apply exchange rates?
Wise uses the mid-market exchange rate with no markup, no margin and no hidden fees.
Does Wise have a mobile app?
Wise has a mobile app for both Apple and Android phones.
How does Wise work?
Open a Wise Business account online or in the Wise app, to send and receive payments, and hold and exchange 50+ currencies.
How many currencies does Wise support?
Wise offers payments to 70+ countries in 50+ currencies.