Sendwave is a money transfer app that makes sending money to 7 Africa countries as fast and easy as sending a text and without any fees.
It all began in 2014 when Drew, one of our founders, got fed up going to a store and paying over 10% to send money for an NGO he was running in Tanzania. So, he teamed up with Lincoln to build Sendwave, an app that let users send money instantly from their smartphone to their recipient’s mobile money account in Kenya.
How Sendwave Works
Money transfers using Sendwave are only done on your smartphone. You cannot send through Sendwave website like many other money transfer services that we have reviewed here. Therefore, you need to download Sendwave app for Android or iOS. You need to submit your name, email and phone number.
After submiting your personal details, you should get an email from Sendwave with a link to click for verification. If it happens that you don’t receive the email, check in the ‘Personal Info’ section of the app to make sure your email address is correct and update it. You can also look into your Spam folder or search for ‘Sendwave’ in your inbox. Once your account is approved, you can go ahead and make your transfer in easy steps, which including entering your recipient’s name and phone number.
Following the new remittance policy in Nigeria that only allows USD payout, all senders to Nigeria need to download the latest Sendwave app. When sending, make sure you select ‘Cash Pickup’. The Central Bank of Nigeria does not allow money transfer to mobile wallets in Nigeria anymore.
Sendwave Payment Methods
Sendwave allows you to fund your transfer with Visa or MasterCard debit cards as well as PostePay cards in Italy and Correos cards in Spain. Note that your debit card needs to be linked to a bank account in the US, the UK, Canada or other countries approved by Sendwave (see supported send countries below). To save clients’ money, Sendwave does not accept credit card, PayPal or direct bank transfer because debit cards charge Sendwave lower fees.
How to Receive Money With Sendwave
Sendwave sends money to mobile wallets in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ghana, Senegal, and Liberia, and to bank accounts in Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, and to cash pick-up locations in Nigeria and Senegal.
Sendwave Fees and Exchange Rate
One of the benefits of using Sendwave is that it charges no fees. However, the service adds a markup on the exchange rate. The markup is between 0.88% to 4.51% depending on the country you are sending to.
Fees do apply for transfers from Europe to Senegal at 1% of the amount sent, capped at 2€.
Sendwave Transfer Limits
Sendwave imposes transfer limits because of financial regulations. You can send $999/£999/€999 per day and $2,999/£2,500/€2,500 per month. The limit can be raised to $2,999/£2,500/€2,500 per day and $12,000/£10,000/€10,000 per month if you provide additional documentation such as government ID.
How Long Does It Take to Send Money With Sendwave
Most mobile money and cash transfers through Sendwave take no more than one hour. Bank transfers can take between 1-3 working days.
Is Sendwave Secure?
Sendwave is regulated by government agencies in the United States, UK, EU and Canada. Sendwave is a project of Chime Inc., which is a regulated US mobile bank. Your data on the app is sent over an encrypted 128-bit connection. Since your money is sent instantly, clients’ funds are not kept in Sendwave bank accounts.
There is a two-factor authentication for extra layer of security. If you turn on SMS login from the Settings/Me page, you will be texted an SMS verification code to your mobile anytime you log into Sendwave.
Which Countries in Africa Can I Send Money With Sendwave?
Sendwave allows you to make instant, affordable money transfers from countries in North America and Europe (UK, France, Italy, Spain, and Ireland) to these countries in Africa: Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania, and Uganda.
If you want your beneficiary to receive money instantly especially if there’s an emergency, Sendwave is a good choice. Although there are no fees for sending money, you should compare Sendwave’s markups with other money transfer services.