Month: October 2019

TransferWise overview: international transfers and multi-currency debit card

Perhaps you, like me, have heard something about TransferWise and the multi-currency card and want to understand these issues. I hope my little note will help you with this.

At first glance, TransferWise seemed like a very interesting topic:

  • cheap international transfers
  • multicurrency debit card

local details in a number of countries (in another country, money can be credited to your account as if a person were making a transfer to local details)

TransferWise is a service for making international money transfers. Why another service if you have WesternUnion, PayPal and others?

The key features of TransferWise are:

  • good currency conversion rate
  • low commission for transfers

Indeed, bank international transfer, as well as transfers through WesternUnion (due to hidden fees in the currency conversion rate) and PayPal (for international transfers, the commission is very high) is very expensive.

Comparison of Western Union and PaySend commissions showed that PaySend is much better than Western Union, that is, when sending the same amount, more will be credited via PaySend transfer.

But if you compare PaySend with TransferWise, it turns out that the latter is even better! For example, sending thousands of euros to Thai Baht with PaySend:

Sending the same amount via TransferWise:

And sending the same amount through TransferWise with a free commission (when registering using this link, the first transfer will be free):

That is, the most profitable international transfers can be done with TransferWise!

That is, it turns out that PaySend also lays a hidden commission in the currency conversion rate. And Western Union lays an even larger commission on the conversion rate.

Let me say about some disadvantages of TransferWise: when paying with a card, an additional fee is charged, transfers take a long time and they can only be sent to bank details (cannot be sent to a card, as in PaySend).

I prepared the following comparison table between PaySend and TransferWise:

  PaySend TransferWise
To register, you need an ID No Yes
The beneficiary's bank details are required No, the transfer is credited to the beneficiary's card Yes
Instant transfer credits Yes No
Number of supported countries Money can be sent from 49 countries to 70 countries Money can be sent from 24 currencies to 58 countries
Can I transfer money from a bank card Yes Yes, but only with an additional commission
The amount of the commission Fixed, about 1 US dollar (depending on the currency of sending) Depends on the method of sending (bank transfer or from a card), as well as on the amount of transfer
Currency conversion rate Better than WesternUnion, but worse than TransferWise Better than WesternUnion and better than PaySend
First free translation Yes (by promo code (0d8425) Yes, when registering at this link.

Multicurrency app and TransferWise card

TransferWise allows you to have accounts in dozens of currencies and convert your money from one currency to another (with commissions). There is also a function of obtaining local bank details for the British pound, US dollar, euro and a pair of other currencies. This means, for example, if you work as a freelancer and receive an order from the United States, then the customer can pay your work for your details in dollars, and for him it will be a local (made within the country) payment! For you, this money will go to a multi-currency application, where you can convert it to another currency and send it to any of your accounts. Or spend them by shopping with a debit card.

To my great regret, the list of countries where they deliver the map is very small. You can find the current list on this page. There are only Europe and the USA.

Conclusion

If you are a freelancer and work with customers all over the world, then the multi-currency TransferWise card ‘must have’ for you!

ShabuShi Buffet in Thailand: Review and Discounts on Loyalty Program

The ShabuShi Buffet was formerly called the Oishi Buffet – by the name of the company I know from their cold bottled tea. Oishi tea is delicious, but for the price I would rather buy something else (as I actually do).

But the ShabuShi buffet really deserves attention. This is one of the few restaurants in Thailand that is never empty. And on weekends, an electronic queue is around it – in the photo above you can see the electronic scoreboard, which is currently disabled, because there are available seats and you do not need to wait.

Buffet means unlimited food, among other things there are:

  • 2-3 types of fish
  • shrimp
  • bacon and several types of pork and beef
  • several types of sushi, including red fish
  • a lot of different other food, part of which I just don’t know what is called
  • fruit, ice cream, drinks

Entrance for 1.5 hours costs 400 baht per person. In Pattaya, if I remember correctly, the price was raised to 450 baht (because there is a constant line and a lot of foreigners who eat more).

In the restaurant, food passes by you on small plates – this food is raw! You take the plates you need and put the food in boiling soup. Soup can be selected from four types (I always take tom-yum).

An important feature: you need to eat with chopsticks, forks with spoons are not provided here!!!

ShabuShi is not the only type of buffet in Thailand – you can find more expensive or cheaper buffet, you can find seafood buffets.

Discounts and coupons ShabuShi

ShabuShi used to have loyalty cards, as well as additional discount coupons in the form of disposable paper cards. Now these cards are gone – everything is in the mobile application. The application is called BevFood. After installing the application, you are given a coupon of 50 baht – which can be used for a discount on this amount.

When installing the application, you need to enter a lot of data, including the ID (passport number). And on the application itself, a six-digit PIN code is set – just like on a banking program.

After each meal in the ShabuShi restaurant (or another affiliate), you need to show the application to the cashier – he will read the barcode from there and after a while (10-20 minutes) you will be credited with points.

About 30 points are awarded when paying for two people (800 baht). You can calculate the size of the discount:

30 / 800 * 100% = 3.75%

You can buy coupons for these points, they have a very different face value, from 25 baht to 500.

As far as I understand, points are accumulated linearly, that is, it makes no sense to save a large number of points – you can spend it as soon as they are enough to buy a coupon (if I am mistaken, correct, please, in the comments).

These purchased coupons on the phone must be shown to the cashier when paying for food – he will read the bar code from them and you will be given a discount on the amount of the coupon. You may need to write down your phone number and name, as well as sign on paper, a common practice when using coupons.

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