How to Change CHF to EUR at the Best Rate in Switzerland?

It’s a frequently asked question: which bank or neobank offers the best exchange rate for CHF/EUR?

We have compared the services offered by Swiss neobanks and currency exchange platforms, and we found the best way to save when converting CHF to EUR.

Before going into the comparison, let’s start with some important notions of currency exchange

What is the interbank exchange rate?

The interbank exchange rate is the rate banks and big financial institutions use when exchanging currencies. Currency exchange happen from 5pm EST on Sunday until 4pm EST on Friday.

Is the Interbank rate the best exchange rate?

You can consider the interbank rate as the best you can get. That’s why it’s impotrant to consider neobanks using the interbank exchange rate for currency conversions and bank transfers.

Visa exchange rate and Mastercard exchange rate will come very close to the interbank rate.

Neobanks offering CHF to EUR currency exchange

Neon Bank

Neon Bank offers an “International Payment” feature using the services of Wise (TransferWise).

That allows you to convert CHF in EUR and make either a SEPA or SWIFT payment.

But does not allow you to create a sub-account and hold a balance in EUR yet.

Revolut Switzerland

Revolut Switzerland is the most famous neobank when it comes to currency exchange and international payments.

Revolut Switzerland allow you to create sub-accounts and hold up to 18 foreign currencies : AUD, BGN, CAD, CHF, CZK, DKK, EUR, GBP, HKD, HRK, HUF, JPY, NOK, PLN, RON, SEK, USD, ZAR.

 

With Revolut you can convert – whenever you want – CHF to EUR with an exchange rate that is based on the live interbank rate.

Each sub-account can be used to make SEPA or international bank transfer and also to make payments using your Revolut Mastercard.

Wise (TransferWise)

Wise (TransferWise) is primarily a peer-to-peer currency exchange platform. Exchange rates are also based on the interbank rates.

With their Borderless multi-currency account, Wise compete directly with neobanks like Revolut. Their Borderless account comes with a free Debit Mastercard that can automatically use currency on your account.

Wise to top-up your account in 19 currencies : AUD, BGN, CAD, CHF, CZK, DKK, EUR, GBP, HRK, HUF, JPY, NOK, NZD, PLN, RON, SEK, SGD, TRY et USD.

You can also hold up to 50 currencies on your multi-devises account, and you can convert them at any time. 

Yapeal

Yapeal – like Neon Bank – offers an “International Payment” feature using the services of Wise (TransferWise).

But it’s only available with their PRIVATE plan starting at 4.90 CHF/month.

Yapeal will not be included in our comparison

Yuh Bank

Yuh bank allows you to create sub-accounts and hold up to 13 curencies: CHF, USD, EUR, GBP, JPY, AUD, CAD, SEK, HKD, NOK, DKK, AED, SGD.

You can convert –  only during opening hours – CHF to EUR with an exchange rate that is based on SwissQuote exchange rate.

Yuh Bank being a Swiss bank, it’s an ideal solution for non-residents and cross-border commuters.

Each sub-account can be used to make SEPA or international transfers and the balance can also be used with the multi-currency Debit MasterCard.

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Currency exchange online platforms

CurrencyFair

CurrencyFair is a peer-to-peer currency exchange platform. Exchange rates are also on the interbank rates.

Unlike Wise and other neobanks, CurrencyFair does not offer any Debit card yet and only allow you to hold multiple currencies and make SEPA or international transfers.

b-sharpe

b-sharpe is the online currency exchange platform that belongs to Migros.

b-sharpe is based in Geneva and mainly target Swiss customers. So we could expect that they offer a very competitive exchange rate.

Like CurrencyFair, b-sharpe assign you a IBAN (CH) that you can use to receive money.

b-sharpe also offers a mobile app and allows you to convert up to 20 currencies:  EUR, AED, AUD, CAD, CHF, CNH, DKK, GBP, HKD, HUF, ILS, JPY, MUR, MXN, NOK, NZD, PLN, SEK, SGD, USD, ZAR.

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Where to get the Best CHF / EUR exchange rate

Comparison #1: Exchanging 100 CHF to EUR

We started our comparison using a small amount: 100 CHF. The aim being to understand the fees of each neobank and how they influence the net EUR amount:

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As you can see, when exchanging 100 CHF to EUR, Revolut offers the best CHF/EUR exchange rate: for 100 CHF, you get 92.39 EUR with Revolut.

The last in the comparison is b-sharpe with only 87.30 EUR for 100 CHF. But their net exchange rate is highly impacted by the 5 CHF fixed-fee that b-sharpe apply to transactions below 5,000 CHF. Above 5,000 CHF and up to EUR 50,000 the commission drops to 0.50%.

Comparison #2: Exchanging 1,000 CHF to EUR

We tend compared with 1,000 CHF, which lowers the impact of fixed fees and gives a better idea of the exchange rate offered by each neobank.

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For an amount of 1,000 CHF, it’s still Revolut that is offering the best CHF/EUR exchange rate: for 1,000 CHF, you get EUR 924.12 with Revolut.

Note that Revolut applies a 1% surcharge on week-ends. It means that the same comparison on a Saturday or Sunday  would rank them last in this comparison.

Revolut also has a limit of free currency change on the Standard plan: 1,250 CHF per month. Then a 0.50% extra fee is applied.

If you want to remove this 1,250 CHF limit with Revolut you will habe to upgrade to Revolut Premium that allows unlimited currency exchange, with no fee.

Wise (TransferWise) and CurrencyFair are 0.50% more expensive, making them very good alternative to Revolut once you reach the monthly limit on the Revolut Standard plan.

Wise is very transparent on fees they apply and display them directly on the page:

Neon, b-sharpe and Yuh are about 1% more expensive, because of the extra fees they apply:

  • Neon apply a “convenience fee” on top of Wise fees: 0.40%
  • b-sharpe apply 5 CHF, with a lower conversion rate
  • Yuh apply 0.95% fee, with a lower conversion rate
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Conclusion : How to get the Best CHF/EUR Exchange rate

The strategy to get the best CHF/EUR exchange rate can be summarised with this ranking:

  1. Revolut
  2. Wise (TransferWise)
  3. CurrencyFair

Give priority to Revolut, especially for small amounts AND until you reach their CHD 1,250 limit per month on the Standrd plan.

If you have to change on week-ends, avoid Revolut and use Wise.

Beyond 1,250 CHF, it’s better to compare Wise and CurrencyFair to find the best exchange rate.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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