30 November 2022

NOAH vs. Remittance Companies

In this blog post, we'll compare NOAH and traditional remittance companies to show why NOAH might be a better choice for your international money transfers.

NOAH vs. Remittance Companies


    Transaction Times
    The Winner is Clear

Competition ripples through all industries and is part of the societal fabric. Coke vs. Pepsi, Nike vs. Adidas, even Apple vs. Samsung — if you've ever seen a commercial for one of these companies, you're no doubt familiar with their battle for market share.

Whether it's a company revolutionising its industry with new technology or some other means of differentiation, the race can be fun to follow. But if you get right down to it, there's only one thing that matters — who does it better?

In some industries, it's open for debate. But in others, it is irrefutable — a slam dunk — beyond a shadow of a doubt. The remittance industry, or the "sending money to family, friends, and loved ones" industry, is a prime example. Over the long term, whichever company provides a better product will win. ‘Sending money’ is a business, but it shouldn't be. Remittance companies charge double-digit percentages, are slow, and are unnecessarily complicated. NOAH is different.

For sending money, when you put NOAH up against other remittance companies, it's glaringly apparent who has the better service, and that's NOAH. Those companies might be Goliath, but we're David (we love our biblical names).

When you send money, the two things that matter most are speed and cost.

So let's look at that. But, first, let's look at the matchup — NOAH vs. Remittance Companies.

Transaction Times

Traditional Companies

Companies like Western Union use traditional finance banking rails to transfer funds electronically. Traditional finance works, but it's slow and expensive. Here's the entire process taking Western Union as an example:

  1. Sender pays through Western Union online or through an agent at a physical location.
  1. Sender fills out a form online or gives the cash to the agent in person.
  1. Western Union's system records all information (including the amount of money being sent, the recipient's name and location, and the sender's contact information) and sends it to the recipient's bank.
  1. The recipient's bank takes a few days to process the request and then notifies Western Union that the funds have been received.
  1. Western Union notifies the sender that the recipient has received the funds.

This process can take up to 5 days (seriously), an eternity when you're trying to send money to someone in another country. The banking system uses SWIFT, the standard for international bank transfers. It's an old system created in the 1970s and hasn't been updated much since. And if anything goes wrong along the way, it can take even longer to fix the problem and get the funds to the recipient.


NOAH uses bitcoin to send user funds. Specifically, we use the Lightning Network, a second-layer payment infrastructure that sits on top of the main Bitcoin network. The Lightning Network is fast, like blazing fast. Guess how long it takes? A couple of hours? Minutes? Seconds?


With Lightning, payments take under a second — milliseconds even — to send. That's right, no matter what, Lightning payments take less time than telling your recipient that the funds are on the way.

And this goes for over 150 countries in the world. So whether you're sending money to your friend a few miles away or your family across the globe, it'll arrive in a flash.


And just to clarify — Lightning Network fees are the only fees you’ll pay. No “we take a cut” or “there’s a service charge” or anything like that. Just the Lightning transaction fee, that’s it.

Traditional Companies

The fees associated with traditional companies vary depending on how you send the money, how much you're sending, and where you're sending it. But in general, they tend to be pretty high. Just how high?

Well, you might have to pay up to 4 different types of fees:

  1. Transfer fees
  2. Exchange rate fees
  3. Intermediary bank fees
  4. "Additional" fees

As we said, there's a lot of plumbing in the traditional finance system, layers upon layers of intermediaries that all need to be paid. And those fees can add up, eating into the amount of money your recipient will receive — sometimes double-digit percentages.

For families who work hard to send remittances to their loved ones, it can be disconcerting to lose that money in the process.


NOAH uses the Lightning Network, which means you'll only pay the fees associated with a Lightning transaction, which are minuscule — just one sat. At today's prices, that's 0.02 of one cent. Not 2 cents, 0.02 of one cent.

And just to clarify — Lightning Network fees are the only fees you’ll pay. No “we take a cut” or “there’s a service charge” or anything like that. Just the Lightning transaction fee, that’s it.

And because we don't have all those layers of middlemen to pay, there are no intermediary bank fees or "additional" fees. It all happens on Lightning. Seriously, that's it.

You deserve to keep your money because it's your money. Why should anyone get to take a cut of your hard-earned money just to send it to someone else? That would be like if your car manufacturer charged you a fee every time you put the key in the ignition. Or if your phone company took a chunk of every call you made. While we can’t be certain what the future will bring, one thing we believe is that fast and less costly payment methods are desirable and effective.

The Winner is Clear

We could go on and detail the more nuanced differences between the two services (like user interface, which we also win), but we think you get the point. When it comes to sending money internationally, there's really no comparison — NOAH is in a different league. Using Bitcoin to send money is faster, cheaper, and more convenient than anything that's come before it. Bitcoin is just better, and when more people around the globe start using it, the entire world of finance will be better for it.

That's why we do what we do. It excites us, not just because we get to build awesome things, but because we get to be a part of this movement, this global shift away from an outdated system that's no longer serving people's best interests. Building a company is fun, but building a better world is even better.

Please be aware that: Cryptocurrencies are unregulated in the UK; Cryptocurrencies are not protected under Financial Ombudsman Service or Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS); Profits may be subject to capital gains tax; The value of investments can go down as well as up.

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