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7 in 10 Hongkongers will avoid cross-border payment providers lacking transparency

Hidden costs are amongst the main challenges for locals when making money transfers.

About 69% of Hongkongers will stop using cross-border payment providers and services which do not practise fee transparency, an independent study by Coleman Parkes has found.

According to locals, hidden costs (44%) are one of the main challenges for them when making international money transfers alongside high transaction fees (46%), slow payments (40%), and unfavourable currency conversion rates (40%).

Locals also deem it confusing to understand the actual costs of making international money transfers, with 86% saying they could not identify the true cost involved. One in four Hongkongers even thinks that money transfers are free of charge.

“This highlights a lack of transparency in cross-border payments, where many are unaware that providers tend to add an undisclosed markup to the exchange rate, leading to customers paying more than they should,” the study said.

Currently, 49% of Hongkongers still rely on old-school methods like traditional banks to send money abroad.

Hongkongers (60%), however, will make a switch to digital services if it’s faster, cheaper and more convenient than their traditional provider. 

“This survey reveals high consumer demand for low-cost, efficient and notably, more transparent cross-border money transfer services. Whether it’s sending money abroad to loved ones, paying overseas bills, or preparing for a holiday, today’s payment services need to fit the evolving needs of people who are leading increasingly international lives,” Surendra Chaplot, global head of Product - Cards, Wise Business and Wise Platform, said.

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