OFX vs WorldFirst: A Full Comparison

Considering OFX or WorldFirst for your next international payment? Or maybe you need currency services and risk management products for your business? 

This OFX Vs WorldFirst review introduces the services available to help you decide between these providers. We’ll cover all you need to know, including:

  • A full OFX Vs WorldFirst feature comparison
  • Fees and exchange rates - which provider is cheaper?
  • Which is faster?
  • Are OFX and WorldFirst safe?
  • Which gets better customer reviews?

Summary:

OFX and WorldFirst are both specialist currency broker services. OFX offers both personal and business services, while WorldFirst is a specialist in business services for online sellers, import/export companies and customers looking for risk management solutions.

Both OFX and WorldFirst offer a personalised service with brokers you can talk to over the phone - and they’re both very popular with their customer base. Choosing the right one for you may well come down to whether you’re a personal or business customer and exactly what service you require.

OFX Vs WorldFirst: side by side

OFX

Send payments to: 50+ currencies, 190 countries

Currency risk management solutions: Yes

Fully licensed and regulated: Yes

Business services: Yes

Multi-currency accounts for business customers: Yes

Broker service over the phone: Yes

WorldFirst

Send payments to: 68 currencies

Currency risk management solutions: Yes

Fully licensed and regulated: Yes

Business services: Yes

Multi-currency accounts for business customers: Yes

Broker service over the phone: Yes

So, to summarise: 

  • WorldFirst supports payouts to more currencies compared to OFX. 
  • WorldFirst  and OFX both offer currency risk management products like forward contracts and limit orders, as well as standard one off and recurring international transfers.
  • WorldFirst  and OFX both offer business solutions and accounts. WorldFirst is a specialist in business services, while OFX has both personal and business payments and currency management products.
  • OFX and WorldFirst both have a multi-currency account for business customers.
  • Both offer a personal service over the phone if you want to talk through your options with a broker.
  • Both providers are fully regulated by the relevant authorities wherever they trade.

WorldFirst offers a broader range of currencies compared to OFX. However, WorldFirst has a focus on business customers, which may make OFX a better bet for individuals looking to send payments or access currency risk management solutions. There’s a significant overlap in the services offered by each provider, so picking the right one may come down to the details of your needs, and your personal preference.

The important bits

 

Wise MoneyGram 
Rates Mid-market exchange rate with no markup Exchange rates may include a markup on the mid-market rate
Fees Low fees, varies by destination Varied fees based on destination, value and payout method
Speed 40% of payments are instant, 80% arrive in 24 hours Cash collection payments are usually available in minutes, bank transfers may take a day
Service Online, in app and by phone Online, in app and by phone
Safety Fully regulated and licensed Fully regulated and licensed
Reviews (TrustPilot) Trustpilot score: 4.6/5, Excellent rating, from 140,000+ reviews Trustpilot score: 4.3/5 , Excellent rating, from 1,000+ reviews

 

Rates: Wise uses the mid-market rate, whereas MoneyGram adds a markup to the exchange rates used.

Fees: Both providers have variable fees which are based on the destination country. MoneyGram fees may also change based on funding and payout method.

Speed: MoneyGram cash collection payments may be ready in minutes - bank transfers depend on destination and may take from a few hours to a day or so. Wise payments can be instant, with 80% arriving in 24 hours.

Service: Both providers offer multilingual service in a range of languages, online, in-app and by phone. 

Safety: Both providers are fully licensed and regulated. 

Reviews: Both Wise and MoneyGram Australia score an Excellent review rating on Trustpilot, although MoneyGram has far fewer posted reviews.

Pros and cons

 

OFX

WorldFirst

Rates Exchange rate will include a markup Exchange rate will include a markup - usually 0.6% or less
Fees 15 AUD for transfers under 10,000 AUD in value - no fee for higher value transactions 20 AUD for transfers under 2,000 AUD; 10 AUD for transfers of 2,000 - 9,999 AUD - no fee for higher value transactions
Speed 1 - 2 days for major currencies and 3 - 5 days for exotic currencies. Next day for major currencies, up to 4 days for unusual currencies
Service Online, in app and by phone Online and by phone
Safety Fully regulated and licensed Fully regulated and licensed
Reviews (TrustPilot) Trustpilot score: 4.3/5, Excellent rating, from 4,000+ reviews Trustpilot score: 4.9/5, Excellent rating, from just over 300 reviews

OFX vs WorldFirst: The verdict

Both WorldFirst and OFX offer international transfers and currency risk management solutions. 

The key difference is probably that WorldFirst puts an emphasis on services for businesses, online sellers and ecommerce providers, while OFX has a range of both individual and business services on offer. Which is best for you may depend on exactly what you’re looking for.

WorldFirst allows business customers to open international payment and collection accounts to pay and get paid from around the world. These are aimed at traders and business owners primarily. There are also a great range of currency management solutions including forward contacts and firm orders, which can help limit exposure to fluctuations in the exchange rate. 

OFX provides one off and recurring international payments in 50 currencies, for both businesses and individuals. There are also account services for online sellers, and currency risk management solutions like forward contracts and target rate orders for individuals and businesses.

If you need currency risk management products or business services either provider could help. If you want simple, secure and cheap international transfer it’s worth shopping around to see if other providers may be able to offer a better deal.

About OFX and WorldFirst

OFX was founded in Sydney in 1998. Now with a team of over 200, OFX has handled over 1 million transfers, totalling in excess of 150 billion AUD. There’s a 24/7 service through dedicated brokers, so you’ll always be able to get hold of someone when you need them[8].

OFX offers payments and currency services in 50+ currencies.

WorldFirst opened their first international Sydney office in 2009. Since then the company has transferred over 160 billion AUD for more than 250,000 customers and now sends over one million payments a year.

Send payments in 68 currencies with a Worldfirst account.

How do they work?

Both OFX and WorldFirst offer international payments which are delivered right into a recipient’s account for convenience. To get started with either provider you’ll need to first register and complete a verification step. This may vary a little depending on the type of account you want to open and the sort of payments you’ll make. However, a member of the team will guide you through the process to make sure you have all the documents and information required.

Once your account is up and running you can set up a payment online or by phone. 

OFX also offers services through its own app. To make a payment you’ll need to confirm the recipient’s details including bank account number and SWIFT/BIC code, the value of the transfer and the currency it should be received in. You can then get a quote for the fee and exchange rate which will apply. Simply fund the payment using a bank transfer and as soon as your money clears it’ll be on its way.

OFX vs WorldFirst Fees

When you send an international payment with a provider like OFX or WorldFirst there may be one or more fees to pay. These include:

  • Transfer fee
  • Exchange rate markup
  • Third party charges

With both OFX and WorldFirst, the transfer fee is low, or even free. There’s no fee with either provider for payments over the value of 10,000. OFX has a fee of 15 AUD for transfers under 10,000 AUD in value while WorldFirst charges 20 AUD for transfers under 2,000 AUD; 10 AUD for transfers of 2,000 - 9,999 AUD.

The exchange rate markup is often a bit trickier to spot. This is an extra fee added into the exchange rate. Both OFX and WorldFirst are likely to use a smaller margin than a traditional bank - but it’s worth knowing that there is still a fee here, which you may want to check out before you choose which provider is best for you. 

WorldFirst states that the exchange rate markup it uses is usually under 0.6%, which represents reasonably good value for the customer. OFX does not publish its margin, so you’ll need to compare the OFX exchange rate with the mid-market rate yourself to spot this. Both WorldFirst and OFX rates may also vary depending on the value of the transfer, and how often you send money.

Finally third party charges may creep in if your transfer is processed using the SWIFT network. These are typically correspondent bank fees deducted by intermediaries in the payment process - and the costs can’t always be predicted in advance.

OFX vs WorldFirst: which is cheaper?

As we’ve mentioned, using OFX or WorldFirst is likely to be cheaper than sending your international payment with a regular bank. That’s because the transfer fees are low or free, and the chances are that the exchange rate markup used is also lower than anything you’d get from a bank, too.

Without an account you won’t be able to see which provider will be cheaper for you.  You’ll need to register and verify your provider account online or by phone to get an exchange rate quote for your payment from either service. Check out these and a few more options to make sure you’re getting the very best deal.

OFX vs WorldFirst: which is faster?

OFX transfers usually take 1 - 2 days for major currencies and 3 - 5 days for more unusual currencies.

WorldFirst payments made in major currencies will usually be settled on the day they’re processed and credited to the recipient the next working day. It can take up to 4 days for exotic currency payments.

 

Safety

OFX is listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) and monitored by over 50 regulators globally. In Australia, OFX is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and is a member of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA).

World First is a designated remittance provider with the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), and is regulated by ASIC. World First is also an AFCA member.

Ease of use

Creating an account: 

  • OFX accounts are opened and operated by phone, online or using the OFX app.  
  • WorldFirst accounts can be set up by phone or online.

Making a transfer:  

  • OFX international payments can be made by phone, online or in the OFX app.
  • WorldFirst payments can be made by phone or online.

Ways to send money: 

  • OFX transfers can be funded by BPay or electronic bank transfer.  
  • WorldFirst payments must be funded by bank transfer - corporate clients can also arrange direct debit payments.

Languages:  

  • OFX and WorldFirst both provide online, using the app, and by phone. Service is provided in English.

Minimum & maximum amounts: 

  • OFX has no fixed limits - in fact, transfers from 2,000 AUD to 2 billion AUD are accepted[16].
  • WorldFirst has no maximum amount. There’s no minimum payment either, but lower value transfers will attract a fee.

Supported currencies

OFX customers can send and deal in 50+ currencies; WorldFirst offers 68 currencies to customers.

Conclusion

While both OFX and WorldFirst provide international payment services, their standout products are probably more related to currency risk management. These specialist services, like forward contracts and limit orders, can help individuals and businesses minimise the risk of losing money when the exchange rate changes. 

Both services have the option of phone based brokerage services so you can also get more personal support whenever you need it - useful when considering more complex currency management products.

If what you’re looking for is a simple, fast and cheap international payment there may be other providers out there which can serve you better. It’s worth shopping around and comparing the overall costs - including exchange rate markups - of a few before you get started with your transfer.

Frequently asked questions - Wise vs MoneyGram

Is OFX or WorldFirst cheaper?

Which provider is cheaper for you will depend on the payment type, value and destination. You’ll need to create accounts with each provider to be able to see the available exchange rates and compare the overall costs.

Is OFX or WorldFirst faster?

OFX transfers usually take 1 - 2 days for major currencies and 3 - 5 days for more unusual currencies.

 

WorldFirst payments in major currencies will usually arrive the next working day. It can take up to 4 days for exotic currency payments.

How many currencies do OFX and WorldFirst support?

OFX customers can send and deal in 50+ currencies; WorldFirst offers 68 currencies to customers.

Compare international money transfer providers

By Ileana Ionescu Updated January 28th, 2022