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Updated on Thursday, March 28, 2019
Xoom, a PayPal company, is a money transfer service that allows you to make international digital payments that are quick, easy and secure. If your loved ones are scattered across the globe, Xoom lets you send money, pay bills and reload minutes on mobile phones from afar. Xoom services are available in 132 countries, meaning there’s a pretty solid chance that the location you’ll need falls under its umbrella.
In this review, we’ll walk you through the basics of sending money through the platform and help you decide if it meets your needs.
A brief history of Xoom
Xoom was founded in 2001, and PayPal acquired the company in 2015 for roughly $1.1 billion. In 2016, Xoom upgraded its features to allow recipients to request funds and by 2017, the company expanded its presence from 40 receive markets to 67 markets.
Xoom’s international money transfer services have also been integrated into PayPal, making it easier for you to send money outside the U.S. on the PayPal platform as well.
According to its website, Xoom and PayPal have a “shared vision” of making the international payment platform accessible to millions more people throughout the world, so expect it to grow in the future.
Xoom key features
- High transfer limits: Xoom allows U.S. residents to send up to $100,000 USD within a 180-day period — do note that sending limits are set at three different levels, with different amounts requiring different sets of identification documents. Providing additional information and documents allows for your account to be upgraded.
- Several ways to pay: Any Xoom service — i.e., sending money, reloading phones and paying bills — can be funded with a bank account, debit card or credit card, as well as a PayPal account.
- Fees vary: The transaction fee you’re charged for using Xoom’s services fluctuates according to payment method, amount of money sent, where the money is sent and currency selected for disbursement.
- Fast money transfers: In most cases, money is available to recipients in a matter of minutes, but transfers can take up to a few days. However, if you send more than $10,000 USD within 24 hours, the funds won’t be received for two to three business days, plus the standard processing time.
- Instant bill pay: Enjoy the ability to pay a variety of utility bills on a loved one’s behalf in Mexico, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Costa Rica and Vietnam. Bills are paid instantly, with the exception of Telmex bills in Mexico, which take two business days.
- Xoom app: You can send money, reload phones and pay bills from the app. Available for iPhones and Android devices, the app lets users check the status of all transactions.
Sending a money transfer with Xoom
|How long does a transfer take?||Most transfers are completed in minutes, but the process can take up to a few days.|
|Where can you send money?||Xoom allows you to send money to recipients in 132 countries.|
|How much can you send?||Sending limits are set at three different levels (for more detail, see the chart below). Top tier senders in the U.S. — Level 3 — can send up to $100,000 USD within a 180-day period.|
To send money via Xoom, you’ll need to create a free account or log in with your PayPal account. If you create an account, you’ll be asked to create a password and provide basic information, including your name, email address, phone number and country of residence. Afterwards, you’ll receive a verification email to activate your account. To connect a payment source to your account, add a bank account, credit card or debit card, and use it in a transaction. Payment sources can be updated or deleted from your “My Account” page.
Senders are categorized into three different levels. Each level has a limit on the amount of money you’re allowed to send during a certain time period. Different information and documents are required to reach each level. During your transaction, Xoom may ask questions, and if you need to provide more information, the company will email you with instructions.
Here’s a look at the sending limits and requirements for U.S. residents, as per the provider’s website.
|Level||24-hour limit||30-day limit||180-day limit||Required information and documents|
|1||$2,999 USD||$6,000 USD||$9,999 USD||Sender profile information|
|2||$10,000 USD||$20,000 USD||$30,000 USD||Social Security Number or passport|
|3||$50,000 USD||$60,000 USD||$100,000 USD|
In most cases, the recipient will receive the funds minutes after they’re sent, but it can take a few days. Several factors can affect transfer times, including the country where your money is headed, the method in which funds are received — either bank deposit, cash pick up or home delivery — and the payment type — from a bank account, debit card or credit card.
In addition to sending limits, this provider also caps the amount of money recipients can receive, based on the sending level of the person(s) transferring the funds — do note that the receiving limits apply across senders. Any transaction that exceeds a recipient’s designated maximum will be canceled.
Here’s a look at the receiving limits from U.S. senders, as per the provider’s website.
|Level 1 senders||$15,000 USD||$25,000 USD||$55,000USD|
|Level 2 senders||$15,000 USD||$25,000 USD||$55,000 USD|
|Level 3 senders||$75,000 USD||$90,000 USD||$120,000 USD|
Additionally, Xoom’s partners — these include banks, cash pick up locations and home delivery services — have restrictions that vary by country. These could include the amount of money that can be paid in a single transaction or to a recipient in a certain time period.
Fees and fine print
|Fees and Penalties|
|Transfer fees||Xoom charges a transaction fee to send money internationally. Fees can vary according to several factors:|
For certain destination countries, you can avoid fees by paying with a bank account, but not every country.
Xoom’s variable fee schedule is on par with other money transfer companies. It’s very common for fees to be calculated based on the criteria used by Xoom. For example, to send $1,000 to the United Kingdom, there are no fees to send from a bank account, but a $30.49 fee to send funds from a debit or a credit card.
Is Xoom a good money transfer service to use?
Alternative money transfer options
WorldRemit and MoneyGram are international money transfer companies providing similar services to Xoom.
- Where can you send money? Send money to recipients in more than 145 countries, a broader reach than Xoom’s 132 countries.
- How long does a transfer take? In most cases, funds are immediately transferred to the recipient; however, some transfers may take longer, depending on the mode of receipt. WorldRemit displays the expected delivery time before you make a payment.
- How much can you send? The maximum amount you may send is determined by the country where you live, and can also vary according to your method of payment.
- Fee to send money: The cost to send money is based on each individual transaction. All fees and exchange rates are displayed outright.
WorldRemit is based in London, with regional offices in the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Since it serves more countries than Xoom, it could be a good alternative if your destination country isn’t on Xoom’s list.
- Where can you send money? MoneyGram’s global network of nearly 350,000 locations, along with retailers and businesses, in more than 200 countries and territories. In addition, you can transfer money within the U.S.
- How long does a transfer take? In many cases, funds are available within a few hours. However, factors including destination country and banking hours can affect the amount of time a transfer takes.
- How much can you send? When sending money to most countries, there is a maximum of $10,000 per online transfer and up to $10,000 every 30 calendar days. You can send additional funds from a MoneyGram agent location.
- Fee to send money: The cost to transfer funds varies according to where the money is going, the total amount sent and the method of payment. Fees are generally lower when paid with a bank account than a credit or debit card.
MoneyGram could be a good alternative to Xoom if you need to make both domestic and international transfers. Since its services are available in more than 200 countries and territories, it could also be an option if your destination country isn’t part of the Xoom network.