Wise South Africa Review

Wise, formerly TransferWise, is one of the cheapest money transfer services in the world. Wise makes its services cheaper by maintaining local bank accounts worldwide. For instance, if you send money to South Africa with Wise, their South African bank account will make the local transfer to the receiver’s bank account.


Wise (TransferWise) Account in South Africa

Signing up for a Wise account in South Africa is simple and straightforward. You can download the Transferwise app, now Wise app, on your phone or sign up online. All you need is to provide your email address and password. Then, you will be asked to verify your identity. Here, you might need to provide your National ID card, passport, or a utility bill. After verification, your account is all set.

Go to Wise website

What is Wise Multicurrency Account?

The Transferwise borderless account is now called the Wise multi-currency account. The virtual account allows you to keep and exchange more than 50 currencies and switch between them at the real mid-market rate. You can link your multicurrency account to your Wise debit card free of charge. After linking the two, you can get personal account numbers in EUR, USD, GBP, SGD, HUF, RON, NZD, AUD, and SGD. Wise does not charge any fees to hold and receive payments in your borderless account with an exception of accounts in USD.

How to Get a Wise Multi-Currency Account

You get a Wise multicurrency account by upgrading your Wise account. To activate the multicurrency account, log into your account and click the “Balances” tab in the left-hand menu. Next, click “Add a balance” and select the desired currency and click “Open balance” in your selected currency. You will get a local account number and bank details in the currency of your choice. Upgrading your Wise account to a multicurrency account gives you access to a virtual debit card ideal for expats, digital nomads, frequent travelers, and freelancers.

The Wise South African Rand Card

The Wise debit card is a multi-currency card that lets you send and spend in South African rand and 50+ other currencies. With the card, you can send and spend money around the world at the real exchange rate and zero transaction fees. However, the card is not yet available for users based in South Africa. You can order the Wise debit card if you are a resident of Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Slovakia, Liechtenstein, Spain, Latvia, Portugal, Luxembourg, Bulgaria, Estonia and Ireland. Other countries include Greece, Finland, Cyprus, Poland, Denmark, Malta, Hungary, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Singapore, Japan, New Zealand, Iceland, Czech Republic, Italy, the US (except for residents in Hawaii and Nevada), Croatia, and Norway.

How to Get a Wise Debit Card

To get your South African rand card, first create your free Wise multi-currency account. Then order your card and it will arrive within 2 weeks. Next, activate South African rand or any of the other currencies offered and top up your account via bank transfer or debit card. After topping up, you can use the card to withdraw money from ATMs, pay for meals in restaurants, shop online, or pay for accommodations or flights online.

Can I Use Transferwise from South Africa to Send Money?

No. You cannot send money to overseas from South Africa with Wise. Currently, Wise can only deliver South African Rand (ZAR) to bank accounts based in South Africa.

How to Send Money to South Africa with Wise

The process of sending money with Wise to South Africa from the United Kingdom, Australia, India, and the US is simple. The process followed is slightly different with the different payment methods used. Also, the transfer delivery time is sometimes affected by the payment methods and routine checks.

To send money with Wise, log in to your account or create a free Wise account. Then, set up your transfer by choosing the amount you wish to send and where you want to send the funds. Indicate if you are sending the money as an individual or a business and verify your identity by providing details such as your full name, phone number, birthday, and address. Next, give the details of the recipient including their bank details, full name, and email address. Then, review the details of your transfer and choose how to pay (by bank transfer, debit or credit card). Wise will convert your money at the inter-bank rate and the recipient will receive the money in their currency in their local bank account.

Transferwise to South Africa from UK

Sending money to South Africa from the United Kingdom is fast. The available payment methods are bank transfer, credit, or debit card. Wise fees for bank transfers are as follows:

RangeWise Fees
Fixed fee4.92 GBP
Transfers up to 100, 000 GBP (% fee)0.63%
Transfers up to 300, 000 GBP (% fee)0.53%
Transfers up to 500, 000 GBP (% fee)0.48%
Transfers up to 1, 000, 000 GBP (% fee)0.47%
Transfers for amounts over 1, 000, 000 GBP0.46%

Transferwise from Australia to South Africa

The process is quite simple and you will pay in AUD with your debit card, credit card, or bank transfer. Wise fees from Australia to South Africa are as follows:

RangeWise Fees
Fixed fee9.14 AUD
Transfers up to 187, 010 AUD (% fee)0.73%
Transfers up to 561, 030 AUD (% fee)0.63%
Transfers up to 935, 050 AUD (% fee)0.58%
Transfers up to 1, 870, 100 AUD (% fee)0.57%
Transfers over 1, 870, 100 AUD (% fee)0.56%

Transferwise from USA to South Africa

You can send money to South Africa from the US with Wise via bank transfer, direct debit, d3ebit card, or credit card. The fees are as follows:

RangeWise Fees
Fixed fee10.82
Transfers upto 138, 180 USD (% fee)0.71%
Transfers upto 414, 540 USD (% fee)0.61%
Transfers upto 690, 900 USD (% fee)0.55%
Transfers over 1, 381, 800 USD0.54%


Transferwise from India to South Africa. Currently, Wise cannot send money internationally from INR to ZAR. If you are planning to use the service in future, it is best to sign up and join the Wise waiting-list so that you are notified when the service is available.

Wise South Africa Alternatives

It is unfortunate that if you reside in South Africa, you cannot make money transfers with Wise overseas. You might need to check out the following alternatives:

Final Thoughts on Wise South Africa Review

Wise is among the cheapest money transfer service providers serving millions of customers around the world. Wise’s cheap, fast, and secure services add to its growing popularity for those wishing to send money to South Africa.

Go to Wise website

Daisy Neema is a graduate of Chuka University. She is a prolific writer and researcher and has an interest in finance. She also loves writing about businesses and startups.