Airwallex alternative for spend management
March 28, 2023
By Caity Wynn
In today's business environment, where companies are constantly looking for ways to optimise their spending and control costs, spend management tools have become a critical component of financial operations.
In this article, we’re going to be taking a close look at two popular spend management solutions — Weel and Airwallex — to determine which one is best suited to your business.
What is Airwallex?
Airwallex is an Australasian fintech company that provides cross-border payment solutions to businesses. The company was founded in 2015, and is now headquartered in Hong Kong, with offices in Australia, the US, the UK and China.
While Airwallex does have some expense management capability, their main offering is their ability to make and receive international payments in multiple currencies, and the foreign exchange services they provide.
Although Airwallex serves a variety of industries, their specialisation to date has been in e-commerce.
What is Weel?
Weel is an Australian founded fintech, that was one of the first virtual company card solutions in the market in 2017. They have since become a household name in the Australian finance community, having evolved their platform to be the most comprehensive spend management solution, with leading features across their expense management, automated accounts payable, and subscription management suite of tools.
Why is Weel a great alternative to Airwallex?
While Airwallex is a popular solution for many businesses, it’s worth investigating whether an alternative product like Weel, may be better suited to your specific business needs.
One of the main advantages Weel offers over Airwallex, is a much faster payment processing time for bills and reimbursements. Weel’s payment technology enables real-time payments to be made, which means funds are transferred almost instantly which is a big bonus for businesses that rely on timely payments.
Another advantage of Weel is that it offers more flexibility around payment options. While Airwallex only offers bank transfers and card payments, Weel supports a wider range of payment methods, including virtual wallets and mobile payments. This makes it easier for businesses to pay their vendors in a way that works for them.
Additionally, Weel’s comprehensive expense management and budget setting capability has been designed to help businesses who want to go really deep on cost control, and ensure that they are able to easily keep everyone spending within their expense policy.
Overall, Weel can be a great alternative for businesses that prioritise speed, payment flexibility and cost control.
Airwallex vs Weel comparison:
When considering both platforms, it can be helpful to look at what their customers are saying about them.
Starting with Google Reviews, we can see that Weel has a slightly higher rating with 4.6 stars out of 5, against Airwallex’s 4 out of 5 stars. On software review platforms such as Capterra, Airwallex have averaged a 4.3 out of 5 stars from 4 customer reviews, where Weel sits at a 4.6 out of 5 stars from 33 reviews. Similarly, in the Xero App store Airwallex only has 2 reviews, against Weel’s 25 reviews — although both do average a 5 star score on this platform.
As a general theme, it seems that most of the positive feedback for Airwallex is around their international payment offers, where a lot of their negative feedback comes from frustrations around support and their KYC process.
By comparison, Weel’s reviews seemed to centre around their ease of use and the amount of time their product saves finance teams and business owners.
Weel is considered an ‘all-in-one’ spend management platform. They have a number of different payment tools, including virtual company cards, mobile reimbursements, subscription payments and accounts payable automation.
Sitting behind these payment tools, Weel have built an intuitive platform to make the tracking and management of all these types of payments, streamlined. This includes things like spending controls, automated expense management reporting, multi-level approval workflows, real-time transaction data feeds, and accounting integrations.
One of the best selling features of Weel, is how easy it is to use and how quickly businesses can be onboarded on to their product.
Airwallex on the other hand, specialises in global payment solutions, including cross-border payments, allowing businesses to make and receive payments in over 130 countries, low FX markup rates, multi-currency accounts, and business payments
Airwallex also has a card product that is both physical and virtual, however their spend control and expense management features are quite basic in that they lack functionality such as approval workflows, expense reporting and more.
Lastly, when it comes to accounting software integrations, while both have an integration with Xero and Quickbooks, Airwallex does not integrate with MYOB accounting software.
Airwallex vs Weel pricing
While both platforms offer competitive pricing, Airwallex is particularly attractive for businesses with international operations, thanks to its low fees for foreign exchange transactions.
Overall, Weel’s fees are more transparent and straightforward when compared to Airwallex. Where Weel has a fixed account cost per month, Airwallex fees are more complex in that they depend on factors such as the size of the transaction, the currency used and the payment method.
For businesses looking to consolidate the tools they’re using to manage expenses, with transparent ‘fee free’ pricing, Weel is the better option.
The bottom line
So which businesses should be using Weel, and which should be using Airwallex? Let’s summarise.
Airwallex is a great option for businesses that:
- Are only looking for a global payment platform, not spend management
- Have very few (<3) employees making company expenses each year
- Are not concerned about controlling costs
- Don’t need an immediate solution and are happy to be waitlisted for approval
Weel is a great option for businesses that:
- Want better visibility and control over company spending
- Are looking to consolidate and save money on their finance tools
- Want free up finance time from manual expense management
- Would like to get up and running as soon as possible.
And there you have it. By choosing the right spend management tool, you can save time, reduce costs, and improve your organisation's financial health.