So you’re looking for an affordable and convenient way to send money to the US? Look no further – we’ve got you covered. Whether you need to send some spare change to family and friends down south or you’re looking for an integrated solution to manage a portfolio of business expenses, we can help you find an international money transfer service that fits your unique needs.
Compare your options to transfer funds to the US
Speak to an FX expert about sending money
Banks vs money transfer services
As far as banks go, they have a lot of specialties, but international money transfers aren’t necessarily one of them. How come? Banks are often unable to offer more competitive exchange rates and fees than dedicated money transfer services simply because they can’t compete.
- Banks. If you break it down to the nitty-gritty, banks don’t carry out nearly as many money transfers as dedicated services (because they are too busy selling insurance and brokering home loans and all that other jazz), which means that at the end of the day, they need to charge more for each transfer to keep the service profitable.
- Money transfer services. International money transfer providers, on the other hand, have to compete with each other for customers, which means they’re going to go out of their way to offer the lowest fees and the most competitive exchange rates. It’s a simple formula: lower prices = more customers = more transfers = more money = everyone is happy!
Case study: Michael transfers money to the US
Michael works for a food manufacturing company that is based out of the US, but has factories in Canada. He’s been asked to oversee operations in Ontario on a one-year contract but is hesitant to leave his wife and son behind in Colorado so that his son can finish school. Michael wants to make sure he finds the best way to send money home to his family while he’s overseas, so he starts by comparing the costs to send $1,000 back home with his bank versus a reputable money transfer service.
|Canadian bank||Money transfer service|
|Exchange rate||CAD$1 = USD$0.76|| CAD$1= USD$0.78|
|USD amount for every $1,000||US$760||US$780|
|Transfer time||2-5 business days.||Less than 24 hours.|
|Transfer options||Funds are transferred from your Canadian bank account to an American bank account.||This is a bank to bank transfer. Money can be sent as a cash pick up for an additional fee.|
What’s the difference?
So, the question of the day is, which service should Michael pick? If you haven’t already done the math, we’ll give you a hint. It’s not the bank. Michael will gain access to higher exchange rate and lower fees by siding with the money transfer service. And, on top of that, his wife will be able to access funds in less than 24 hours. So not only does Michael save $25 a month (woo hoo!), but he also gets the peace of mind that his wife will have access to money almost as soon as he sends it.
How do I compare transfer companies when transferring money to the US?
Since Canada and the US are neighbours, many banks and money transfer services specialize in providing fast and affordable money transfers between the two countries. For this reason, banks can sometimes provide the lowest cost option for sending money to the US from Canada, which isn’t typically the norm. To get the best deal, make sure to compare your bank to a dedicated money transfer service, keeping the following features and rates in mind:
- Competitive exchange rates. More competitive exchange rates can save you money, especially if you’re transferring large amounts.
- Minimal fees. Low or no fees can make or break your transaction depending on whether or not your exchange rate is competitive. The best combination is low fees and top-notch exchange rates to boot.
- Various transfer methods. Money transfer services offer plenty of options, including mobile wallet top-ups and cash pick-ups, in addition to bank-to-bank transfers.
- Fast transfer times. Money transfer services are often able to get your money to your recipient in a matter of minutes, while banks typically take between 1 – 3 days.
- Reliable customer service. Some services have a better reputation than others when it comes to problem-solving. It’s best to do your homework and opt for a company with 24/7 customer service just in case you run into a snag with pick-up.
Compare Money Transfer Services
|Money Transfer Service||Transfer Fee (CAD)||Exchange Rate Markup||Total in US minus fees (from $1,000)|
|XE Money Transfer||$0||0.7823||782.36|
Rates updated as of 16 May 2018 (subject to change) – you can visit many of these websites directly by clicking ‘Go to Site’ on the interactive transfer comparison table at the top of the page.Back to top
Need an emergency cash transfer in the US?
So you need to send money to the United States as soon as possible? You’re not alone. Thousands of Canadians travel to the US every month, and need a cash top-up to make it through their visit. If you’ve lost or misplaced your wallet, you may be able to collect cash fast through your travel insurance policy (which can be purchased prior to your trip or may be offered through your credit card).
If you’re left high and dry for some other reason, the best thing to do is search for a cash pick-up service like Western Union or MoneyGram. These services often have higher transaction fees and exchange rates, but they can be a real lifesaver in case of an emergency.
Cash pickup locations in the United States
Both Canada and the US are swarming with Western Union and Moneygram locations, which offer rabbit-fast cash transfers between countries.
- Find a pick-up location with the Western Union Agent Location tool.
- Cash is available to collect instantly from any Moneygram agent.
Tips for picking up cash in the US
If you’re aiming to head down south in the near future, the Government of Canada recommends that you exercise a normal degree of caution (as of 16 May 2018). Crimes of opportunity such as petty theft and pickpocketing do occur, particularly in urban centres and tourist locations, so make sure that you keep an eye on your valuables, use common sense when carrying large amounts of cash through busy streets and take a friend with you if you need to pick up cash after dark.
There’s a huge demand for affordable and fast money transfer services when it comes to sending money from Canada to the US. Do your research to find the service offering the most competitive exchange rates, the lowest fees and the quickest transfers to make sure you get the most bang for your buck.
You may also be interested in
Finder’s inaugural Bank of Canada overnight rate survey. Read the forecasts of some of Canada's brightest minds in economics and property, as well as their thoughts on how any potential change to the overnight rate could affect Canada’s property market. Read more…
Learn more about Monero’s history and technology and its potential for growth. Read more…
Learn more about Vertcoin’s history and technology and its potential for growth. Read more…