Ecreate employs some of the best programmers, graphic designers and copywriters on the planet. Unfortunately, they don’t all live in a 10km radius of our office. In fact, they often don’t even live in Australia. Some of our best programmers live in some of the farthest countries - New Zealand, England and the USA. Our solid development procedures and quality control techniques mean we deliver some of the highest quality work, but we are yet to find a single, cost-effective, reliable method to transfer wages to our staff.

We’ve tried all of the following:

  • Bank wire transfer
  • Cheques
  • Western Union
  • Paypal
  • Xoom
  • Moneybookers

Lets quickly break them down:

Bank wire transfer

Possibly the most secure, but definitely the most expensive. It costs us $35 with Westpac to make the transfer, then I believe it cost the receiver roughly $20 USD to access the funds. I’d say fees vary depending on the country you’re sending to but $35 is ridiculous. We made one wire transfer, and that was enough to set the Ecreate accountants on a research mission to find an alternative method.

Rating: 4/10

Cheques

Slightly less expensive than a wire transfer at $20 to send and $20 to receive (in the currency of the receiver’s country) but obviously slower and far less secure. Again this was with Westpac and we weren’t impressed that it cost the receiver another $20 to bank the cheque.

Rating: 2/10

Western Union

Ecreate has used Western Union for a number of years now. They’re reliable, fast and depending on the country you’re sending to, they can be good value. Western Union can be found in almost every country on the planet - their Website says “… 300,000 Agent locations around the world in over 200 countries“. They’re also extremely convenient in that you can make a Western Union transfer at any Post Office in Australia.

In terms of Fees though, they are the most expensive when compared to other transfer agencies, but their credibility and history gives you a lot more piece of mind if it’s your first time sending money.

Security is reasonable, but has been recently rolled back to make transfers easier on the receiver by not requiring so much ID. In some countries, they don’t even check your ID if you have the Money Transfer Control Number - which is a 10 digit number you give to the receiver after “sending” the money. They use this number and walk in to their local Western Union branch and ask for the money.

We still use Western Union on a regular basis just out of habbit.

Website: www.westernunion.com.au
Rating: 7/10

PayPal

I’m not a fan of PayPal. Unlike nearly all other methods of transferring funds, they take a %. So for larger transfers it can get very expensive very quickly. I have to admire PayPal’s business model, but I really don’t want to support it! Occasionally our contractors request we make the transfer via PayPal but we tend to avoid them where possible. They are one of the more secure methods, but again the most expensive.

Website: www.paypal.com.au
Rating: 5/10

Xoom

We have used Xoom a couple of times. They’re pretty good when sending to the US because the funds are deposited directly into the receivers bank account, which is great for security and it’s a little more professional than asking the receiver to collect the funds at a pick-up branch (like Western Union.)

Their fees are great but you never actually know exactly how much it is going to cost you in AUD until it shows up on your bank statement. Unlike other money transfer agencies they rely on your Bank to determine the exchange rate and take of the currency conversion, which I’m not too keen on but I have still found this to be considerably cheaper.

When transferring to the US, and if you aren’t too concerned about knowing the exact amount down to the nearest cent until after you made the transfer, then I would recommend Xoom - good value.

Website: www.xoom.com
Rating: 7/10

Moneybookers

In all honesty, I can’t actually remember ever using Moneybookers, but I am looking forward to giving them a try. They appear to be competing directly with PayPal and by the looks, could be very reasonable in the way of fees. Moneybookers appear to cap the fees at under $1.00 AUD when sending money and charge around $6.00 AUD to receive, which would make them one of the cheapest options. I can’t comment on security but they’re a London based company and have a reasonable reputation on the Web. If anyone would like to comment on their experiences with Moneybookers, feel free.

Website: www.moneybookers.com
Rating: NA

If anyone would like to share their experiences when transferring money or know of any other methods, drop me an email at brent@ecreate.com.au.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 26th, 2008 at 9:11 am and is filed under Business, Ecreate, Internet. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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