Halo Financial Review: Is it safe? How does it work? What are the rates?
How can you use Halo Financial to send money abroad? Is their service reliable? Can you trust Halo Financial with your money? How good are their fees and exchange rates?
Our independent review of Halo Financial
Halo Financial is a foreign exchange company based in the UK whose goal is to provide a better service to private individuals and businesses around the world making international payments. The company was founded in 2004, and currently exchanges over half a billion pounds a year between 35 different currencies.
With a minimum transaction amount of £2,000, Halo Financial is best for high-value transactions where their bank-beating exchange rates can make a huge difference to your bottom line. In addition, there are no fees for transactions above £5000. With their high minimum and fee waivers for high-value transactions, they are a particularly good choice for sending large amounts of money overseas (for example, if you are buying property and need to send money abroad for a mortgage payment, or is your child is studying abroad and you need to send a large lump sum overseas to pay a tuition bill). Their site also offers helpful guides for buying property abroad.
Come for the great value for money, stay for the outstanding service: Halo Financial prides itself on offering a level of customer service which far exceeds what you’re likely to get from your bank. The company’s vision is to offer an industry-leading customer experience, and in fact, Halo Financial has won multiple awards recognizing its relentless focus on customer satisfaction.
What Monito Likes About Halo Financial
- Outstanding customer service
- Huge savings for high-value transactions
- Long track record and multiple awards
What Monito Dislikes About Halo Financial
- All accounts are held in the UK
- Only available in English
Halo Financial fees & exchange rate
Halo Financial fees
Halo Financial doesn’t charge any fees for transfers above £5000. Below that amount, they charge a flat fee of £15 to cover the cost of the transfer. There are no other fees or commission of any kind charged by Halo Financial.
Note that since Halo Financial holds all its accounts in the UK, you might incur additional banking charges if you or your recipient do not have UK-based bank accounts. These could be charged by the sending bank and intermediary banks for making an international transfer to Halo Financial’s UK accounts, or by the receiving bank and intermediary banks during the international transfer of funds from the UK accounts of Halo Financial to your recipient’s account.
Halo Financial exchange rate
Halo Financial’s exchange rates are significantly better than the retail rates offered by the banks. In fact, the company estimates it can save its customers up to 4% on exchange rates compared to the banks.
The exchange rates of Halo Financial are based on the mid-market rate, from which a small margin is deducted. Halo’s margin is between 0.3% - 1% (compared to up to 5% or more in certain cases with banks) and is how the company makes its money and is able to survive. The margin is calculated based on the amount you are sending and the currencies you are exchanging.
Halo Financial Ltd is authorized by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for the provision of payment services, and is registered as a Money Service Business with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). Halo Financial is required by current regulations to keep its clients’ money in ring fenced bank accounts. These accounts are completely separate from Halo’s own accounts, and cannot be used by Halo Financial for anything else than processing transactions (e.g. to pay for their own business expenses).
While Halo Financial is not among the largest companies in the foreign exchange industry, it has been around since 2004 and therefore has a solid track record. Halo Financial employees describe the staff as full of “great” and “lovely” people. The company exchanges over £500 million of foreign currencies every year, and has been awarded multiple times for its outstanding level of customer service.
So, can you trust Halo Financial? Given the company’s authorized payment institution license, the strict regulations it must comply with, its long track record and multiple awards, and the large number of customer reviews, it’s safe to say that Halo Financial is completely trustworthy.
Service & Coverage
If you need to make regular payments, for example to pay your rent or mortgage, make monthly payments to your family abroad, or receive a pension or salary, you can set up a Regular Currency Transfer (RCT). After an initial set-up, this will then work completely automatically, and you won’t have to worry about forgetting anything. You can also remove any risk of unfavorable variations in exchange rates by fixing the send amount, the receive amount, or both.
Halo Financial automated orders include limit orders and stop loss orders. These contracts allow you to buy or sell currency only if the exchange rate reaches a predetermined level. A limit order will allow you to condition your transfer on the exchange rate reaching a particularly high value, whereas a stop loss order will allow you to cut your losses by transferring immediately if the exchange rate tumbles. Combining the two types of orders can allow you to better control the range within which you tolerate exchange rate variations.
A forward contract with Halo Financial allows you to lock in the current exchange rate while transferring your money at a later date up to 24 months in the future. This can be useful if you do not currently need or want to exchange money or are unable to do so, while wanting to be sure of the amount of currency you will be selling / buying in the future for budgeting reasons, or because you believe the prevailing exchange rate is particularly favorable.
Halo Financial’s outstanding customer service and great exchange rates are also available to business customers. In addition to protecting businesses’ margins with attractive spot contracts, Halo Financial can also help its business customers manage FX risk with forward contracts and automated orders.
Daily Currency Analysis
Halo Financial provides a daily currency analysis in the form of short videos and emails sent directly to your inbox for free. This will help you keep track of the markets to make sure you never miss an opportunity.
Halo Financial is very highly rated by over 800 customers on review site Feefo. In fact, Halo Financial have an average rating of 4.8 out of 5, with 99% of reviews having a 4 or 5 star rating. This highlights the quality of Halo Financial’s service. Here’s what Halo Financial customers have to say:
- Transactions are super quick and simple, from their set-up to their settlement into the recipient account
- Halo Financial exchange rates are great
- Dealers are very friendly and professional
- A very low number of customers were dissatisfied with Halo Financial’s service, due to isolated issues such being unable to make certain transfers from bank accounts and slow customer service.
How Halo Financial works
1. Open a free Halo Financial account. You can do this online or over the phone.
2. Your dedicated Halo Financial account manager will call you to discuss your foreign exchange needs, answer any questions you may have, and provide you with an exchange rate quote.
3. After accepting the quote over the phone, you’ll receive an email with all the information you need to transfer your funds to Halo Financial.
4. Transfer your funds to Halo Financial using the information provided in the email. Halo Financial will send you another email upon reception of your funds.
5. Finally, Halo Financial will exchange your currency and then send it to your beneficiary’s account.
The story behind Halo Financial
Halo Financial was founded in 2004 by Gavin Herridge and David Johnson. The two met while working at Moneycorp, where they set up the company’s corporate division after years of dealing in foreign exchange for both private and business customers at other firms. Disappointed by the lackluster customer service in the industry, they decided to create the absolute best foreign exchange brokerage, one which they would like to deal with themselves. And thus Halo Financial was born. Today, the company has 50 employees, and trades over £500 million every year.