How to Open a Wise Account? A Complete Step-By-Step Guide

Last Updated on May, 2024

Are you having trouble signing up on Wise?

Dealing with unclear account setups, identity verifications, and complex regulations can be OVERWHELMING.

This in-depth guide is designed specifically for Wise users or those getting started on how to open a Wise account, from setting up an account to verification, benefits, and everything you need to know.

Ready? Let’s dive in.

How to Open a Wise Account Online in 3 Easy Steps?

Register: Go to the Wise website or app and click “Register.” Use an email or social media account to sign up.

Choose Account Type: Select personal or business account, enter your country, and verify your phone number.

Complete Setup: Create a password, agree to terms, and verify identity with documents like ID and proof of address.

How to Open a Wise Account Online in Minutes?

Getting started with a Wise account online is an easy and straightforward task. Follow the below steps to begin your international money transfer journey.

wise online money transfer

Step #01: Visit the Wise desktop site or mobile app and click the “Register” button. Enter your valid email address. To make things even easier, use your existing Google, Facebook, or Apple ID to register.

Step #02: Choose between a personal or business account. It is recommended that you start with a personal account. I will talk about business account setup in a bit.

Step #03: Enter your Country or primary residence and click continue. Then, verify your phone number with an account verification code.

Step #04: Finally, create a strong password and agree to the terms of use and privacy policy. That’s pretty much it. Your Wise account is ready! 

Verifying Your Identity With Wise 

Wise accounts initial sign-up and multi-currency account require no anti-money laundering (AML) details or identity verification. 

However, during your first transfer or funding of your currency account, you’ll have to share more details about yourself.

The verification process may vary depending on the country. Usually, you will be asked to provide the following documents:

Valid ID Documents: 

  • Passport (photo page only)
  • National ID card
  • Driver’s license

Proof of Address: 

  • Utility bills (gas, electric, or landline phone)
  • Bank account details or credit card statements
  • Official documents issued by government or financial institutions
  • Vehicle registration or tax records
  • Photo driving license showing your address and expiry date

Pro Tip: Wise may sometimes ask for on-the-spot verification for some transactions. Keep your ID or passport in hand, and groom up for a good-looking photo verification!

After you finish the steps, Wise typically takes 2-3 business days to review your information. Once approved, you can immediately use Wise to hold, receive, and send money in multiple currencies.

If you want to learn all about Wise Platform, go to this page.

Wise Business Account: Everything You Need to Know

a screenshot of the wise business account option

Wise offers business accounts with added features to manage business finances seamlessly. 

With Wise Business account access, you can send and receive overseas business payments in multiple currencies.

How to Open a Wise Business Account Step-by-Step?

Guess what? If you already have a personal Wise account, opening a business account is a piece of cake. Log in to your personal account. Click the top right corner, which displays your 

personal account name, and click “Add Business Account.”

For New Users: Click “Register” on the Wise homepage for the first time to start the process.

Then, fill in business-related information: registered address details, business name, company type, and company size.

The verification process is the same as with a personal account. However, share website or social media links if requested to verify your business. If not, describe your company in detail.

The Wise business offers all the features of a Wise personal account, plus extra business-friendly features. To access the full feature of the Wise business profile, a one-time fee of 31 USD (no monthly subscription) needs to be paid.

These additional banking features include:

  • There are no monthly fee or minimum balance requirements.
  • Integrate with accounting platforms such as Xero or Quickbooks and more.
  • Capability to pay up to 1000 employees at once with low fees.
  • Receive international payments from e-commerce platforms such as Amazon or Stripe.

What is a Wise International Debit Card?

a man putting a wise debit card inside his shirt pocket

A common question most newbie Wise users have is, what exactly is the Wise debit card? Am I eligible to get one? If so, how? We’ll break this down for you. 

The Wise card is a multi-currency card that provides access to all the currencies in your Wise account. The Wise card is ideal for those who travel overseas, shop online, or want to save on ATM withdrawals. 

Wise team is continuously expanding its services. To confirm whether your country is eligible for the Wise Card and to get an estimate of delivery times, please be sure to check out our Wise Card Review.

Wise Debit Card Features

  • Hold, exchange 40+ currencies, and spend in 150+ countries
  • The card allows you to spend abroad with the real exchange rate, without any markups.
  • You can take out two free ATM withdrawals, up to $100 in cash per month for free.
  • Freeze and unfreeze your card quickly from the Wise mobile app or website.

Ordering Your Wise Debit Card

Step #1:Log in or sign up for a Wise account

Step #2: Click on the “Card” tab in the Wise accounts dashboard

Step #3: Provide essential details like delivery address, desired name on the card, and PIN code, and make a one-time payment for the card (around $9 in the US)

Step #4: Wait for your card. Delivery times can vary based on your country and region 

Step #5: Activate the card. To do this, go to your Wise account, click on “Debit card,” and enter the 6-digit code provided on the card.

It’s important to note that the above process may vary slightly depending on your location.

Did You Know: Wise also has digital cards for selected countries, which can be added to Google Pay or Apply Pay for online purchases.

Wise Multi-Currency Balance Account Setup

Wise allows you to open accounts in up to 50+ currencies. Additionally, it enables users to receive and transfer money internationally across the globe. This is particularly useful for frequent travelers, freelancers, or personal and business customers dealing with international transactions.

Now, onto the setup. Once you have created a Wise account, you can find the “+” icon in the Wise dashboard. Then, choose to open a balance. Select the currency (e.g., US Dollars) and click to create the balance.

Repeat the process to add as many balances in multiple currencies as Wise supports.

How to Receive Money Internationally With Wise?

a screenshot of the wise procedures on receiving money

You need to obtain account details to receive payments in a specific foreign currency. Wise offers account details for around ten currencies (USD, GBP, EUR, CAD, AUD, and more), depending on your region.

(How to get your Wise account details will be discussed in detail next.)

Did You Know: Without a Wise account, you can receive Wise transfers directly to your normal bank account in 80+ countries. Just provide your currency-specific local bank details for the sender for secure deposits.

How to Get Your Wise Account Details?

To access your account details, follow this simple process:

  • Navigate to the “Home” screen.
  • On the far right side of the screen, locate and click on the “Open” button.
  • From the available options, click on “Balance.”
  • Select a currency for which you want to view the account details.
  • After opening the balance, proceed by clicking on “Receive” if you’re using the website, or “More” if you’re using the app.
  • Click on the “Get account details” option.
  • If this is your first time accessing account details, you may be required to fulfill some additional requirements before proceeding.

By following these steps, you’ll be able to view and manage your account details with ease.

How to Send Money Internationally With Wise?

Wise’s transparent fees and mid-market exchange rate make it a popular choice for international money transfers. By following these steps, you can send money abroad with Wise in a secure, cost-effective, and efficient manner.

Log in to your Wise account and click the “Send Money” option at the top left. 

Choose the foreign currency you want to send payments and the amount you wish to transfer. Now, select a transfer option (low cost, fast and easy, or advanced) with different Wise transaction fees and processing times. At this stage, you’ll know the real Wise currency exchange rate and what fee you will pay.

Provide recipient details, including email or local bank details. Choose the reason for the transfer (e.g., send money home or family). Review the details and click on “Confirm and Continue.”

How would you like to pay? Wise offers various payment methods (bank or wire transfer, credit card, debit card). Select an option comparing foreign transaction fees and urgency.

Note: Different countries, transfer amounts, and currencies can have varied payment options.

That’s it. You’ve successfully sent money internationally. Don’t forget to track the status of your transfer from the Wise dashboard for real-time updates.

If you want to learn about how to receive money through Wise, read this article.

BEST FOR INTERNATIONAL MONEY TRANSFER

Advantages and Disadvantages of Wise Account

Why is Wise a popular choice for international money transfers and multi-currency accounts anyway?

Pros

Borderless Accounts: Wise offers cost-efficient global transactions, 50+ multi-currency account flexibility, and real savings. With quick access and security, Wise users effortlessly convert, receive, and transfer money worldwide.
Low Fees and Fixed Exchange Rates: Wise charges minimum fees for international transactions, and all fees are transparent. The account uses the actual mid-market exchange rate, ensuring users get the best possible rate when converting currencies.
Wise Debit Cards: The Wise International debit card allows users to hold, spend, and withdraw in multiple currencies. The card uses the mid-market exchange rate and transparent fees for currency conversions, and it’s always free to spend currencies held in the account.
Personal and Business Accounts: Wise offers personal and business accounts designed for specific financial needs. A personal account is suitable for individual use to manage finances across borders. The business user account is tailored for international business operations such as global payments, handling employee payrolls, and transactions with vendors across borders.

Cons

Higher transfer fees for smaller payments
No cash delivery or pickup option
Customer support limitations 

Frequently Asked Questions

No, a bank account is not necessary for Wise services. You can use Wise account details to receive money. For international money transfers, you can fund your transaction through traditional banks, wire transfer, or using an E-Wallet option such as a debit or credit card. However, having a bank account is optional.

No, Wise follows a pay-per-use pricing model where customers are only charged for services they use without any hidden or monthly fees.

The amount of money you can hold in your Wise account varies depending on several factors such as if you are a personal customer or a business, your registered address, and the routing number associated with your account. Generally, there are no limits for most customers, but there may be exceptions for certain countries. Please refer to our website for specific limits for your situation.

There is no minimum balance or deposit required for a Wise account. However, certain features may require you to top up your account initially. These features include holding money in multiple currencies, receiving payments, and accessing debit and digital cards. You can add funds to your account and use them for sending, spending, or withdrawing as needed.

The cost of opening a Wise account varies based on the type of account and the user’s location. Personal account users can open an account for free, with no monthly or yearly fees. Business profile users will be charged a one-time fee of USD 31 to access the full range of business financial features.

Wise works in most countries worldwide, but there are a few locations where users are unable to open or access an account. Wise offers support for both personal and business accounts in various countries and currencies. International transfers can be made in over 50 currencies to more than 70 countries. Borderless account holders in over 150 countries can also obtain a Wise international debit card.

You can fund your currency account through direct deposits, bank transfers, Apple Pay, or debit/credit card. Please note that cash cannot be added to your Wise account. And be sure to check the associated fees for each option to ensure cost-effective transactions.

Conclusion

Opening a Wise account is a straightforward process. How to open a Wise account begins with simple registration and identity verification. With Wise, you can handle multi-currency balances, making sending and receiving money globally simple.

The addition of a business account and the Wise debit card enhances flexibility. While Wise offers advantages like low fees, real exchange rates, and borderless accounts, users should be aware of potential minor drawbacks. 

Overall, Wise is a convenient solution for seamless global financial transactions, catering to personal and business needs.

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Author
Allen Morning
I'm Allen Morning, with a background spanning over 15 years in international finance and education from Harvard and Stanford. I founded Currenciap with a vision to demystify and streamline global financial transactions. My journey in finance has fueled my commitment to creating a platform that is both user-friendly and efficient, making international finance accessible to everyone. You can find more about me here.

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