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How to send money from a cruise ship
PayPal, WorldRemit and MoneyGram can help you send and receive funds at sea.
Just because you’re at sea doesn’t mean your funds are inaccessible. Whether you’re embarking on a Mediterranean vacation or want to send money home to your family as a crew member, there are plenty of ways to both send and receive funds from a cruise ship.
How can I send money from a cruise ship?
Set sail with ease knowing there are several options for sending money aboard a cruise ship:
- PayPal. Many cruise ships offer Wi-Fi for their crew and passengers, and as long as your recipient has a PayPal account, you can transfer funds from almost anywhere.
- Money transfer app. There are multiple international money transfer apps that can help you move funds while traveling at sea. Set up an account with a service like Wise, WorldRemit or OFX to send money quickly and conveniently.
- Wire transfer. The Crew Purser’s office is the accounting hub of the ship. Some cruise ships — like the Princess line — allow crew members and passengers to send wire transfers from the Crew Purser’s office.
- Remitly for Seafarers. This digital remittance service is custom-tailored for crew members across major cruise lines looking to send money to the Philippines. It offers competitive exchange rates, low fees and the ability to send funds from your computer or mobile device.
How can I send money to a cruise ship?
If you need to transfer funds to someone on board, there are a number of options available:
- PayPal. Log in to your PayPal account to send an online transfer to a crew member or passenger.
- Money transfer app. Create an account with an international money transfer service to move funds at competitive rates.
- Wire transfer. You may be able to set up a wire transfer to someone on board but some cruise lines restrict the allocation of these funds to specific services and amenities, such as the casino.
- MoneyGram Express Payment. If you prefer to conduct your business in person, cruise lines like Carnival offer MoneyGram transfer options. Visit a MoneyGram location and provide the cruise guest’s reservation and booking number to send funds.
- Western Union Quick Collect Service. If the cruise line is set up to receive Western Union transfers, you can send money in person or online by specifying the cruise passenger’s name, booking number, ship and sail date.
- Get a cash advance. Get a cash advance on a credit or debit card by visiting the Crew Purser’s office, Casino Cashier’s window or reception desk.
- Cash a traveler’s check. Depending on your cruise line, you may be able to cash a traveler’s check or withdraw funds from an onboard ATM.
Compare online money transfer services
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
How can I keep my money secure?
There are a myriad of money transfer services out there, but not all are created equal. To protect your funds while traveling abroad, suss out a service with a strong history and reputable safety measures, including 256-bit encryption, identity verification, fraud prevention and transfer tracking.
Is my money safe if I use public Wi-Fi?
Public Wi-Fi is convenient in a pinch, but think twice before you log in to your online bank account. Why? Because when you connect to a public wireless network, you may be unintentionally exposing your sensitive, unencrypted data.
When you use Wi-Fi, your device broadcasts your activity to any other device within range. Ideally, your information is encrypted, but some apps may be outdated and broadcasting sensitive information that isn’t encrypted.
Keep your money and data safe by using two-factor authentication, installing security software, opting for a cellular network and keeping your operating system and apps updated. Monitor your accounts for any fraudulent activity and report anything suspicious to your financial provider.
How to compare money transfer options
Before you select a money transfer service, consider the following:
- Speed. Some money transfer services, like WorldRemit, move funds within the hour, while PayPal transactions can take several business days, depending on the payment method.
- Exchange rate. Wire transfers can offer weaker exchange rates when compared to competitive online money transfer services like OFX and Wise.
- Fees. Fees for sending or receiving money will hinge on a variety of factors, including your service provider. Western Union, MoneyGram and PayPal all charge fees that are contingent on the amount, payment method and where you’re sending the money.
- Security. You may feel tempted to opt for the cheapest transfer service with the most competitive rate, but be wary of outdated security protocols — especially when using an online service or app. Ask about 256-bit encryption, two-factor authentication and how to track your transfer.
- Convenience. While online services and apps offer convenience with the tap of a button, you may prefer to conduct your business in person with a transfer service like Western Union or MoneyGram.
Take to the high seas with peace of mind and money in your pocket using any number of convenient transfer services. Compare your international transfer options with other providers to find the best rate and service to fit your budget and destination.
Frequently asked questions
How do I pay for things on board a cashless cruise?
When you embark on a cashless cruise, you’re assigned a personalized cruise card registered to your credit card or personal account. On the morning of disembarkation, you’ll receive an itemized bill. To stay up to date on your expenses during your trip, inquire at the ship’s Crew Purser’s office.
How much money can I send overseas?
Depending on the transfer service you select, there may be limits on how much or how little you can transfer. For example, OFX has a $1,000 minimum, while services like Ria and MoneyGram have transfer maximums of $2,999.99 and $10,000 respectively.
How do I track my money transfer?
Most services will provide you with a transaction reference number. You can use this number to track the progress of your transfer through the service you select, often from its website or app.
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