How to send money to Botswana

Whether for business or personal reasons, when sending money to Botswana, the options are limited. Botswana’s currency, called the pula, is considered an exotic currency, so it’s not one most forex providers deal in. Western Union and MoneyGram both have a presence in Botswana and can send cash payments quickly, but these transfers can be expensive. An online specialist like World First could save you money with lower fees and stronger exchange rates.

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  • Enjoy competitive exchange rates.
  • Get even better exchange rates with forward contracts and limit orders.
  • Receive weekly updates on market exchange rates.

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    Our interactive table lets you compare current fees, exchange rates, transfer speeds and other details about sending your money overseas. Enter the amount you’re transferring, and see how much will arrive at your destination.

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    Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Services Amount Received Description CTA Details
    USD 1,000 1 day USD 0.00 10.369 Online, Phone, Bank Account to Bank Account BWP 51,845 Exclusive offer: $0 transfer fee
    No-limit transfers with competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies.
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    USD 1 3 - 5 days - - Online, Phone, Bank Account to Bank Account, Cash Transfer No fees for bank account transfers and cash pickup at 240,000 locations in 130+ countries. Go to site Show details
    USD 0 1 - 2 days USD 0.00 10.301 Online, Phone BWP 51,507 $0 transfer fees with rates at never more than a 2% markup. Go to site Show details

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    Steps to send money to Botswana

      1. Register for an account with a provider, supplying your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and information about your selected payment method.
      2. Provide your recipient’s name and contact information.
      3. Choose the amount of money you want to transfer.
      4. Complete your transaction and save any reference number you receive so that you can review the progress of your transfer.
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    Banks vs. money transfer companies

    While you’ll be tempted to visit your bank for a wire transfer to Botswana, a reputable money transfer service can typically offer better exchange rates, lower fees and faster delivery — often without you having to leave your home.

    Banks don’t often publish exchange rates, but you can sometimes find the rate you’ll receive by logging in to your online bank account.

    How much will I pay to send money to Botswana?

    Quett Khama arrived in the US for work, and he managed to land a job with company in Silicon Valley. He found that he made enough money to send home to Botswana to help his aging parents. He figured he could afford to send around $2,000 every other month.

    He compared two money transfer companies, and this is what he learned:

    MoneyGramWestern Union
    Exchange rate1 USD = 10 BWP1 USD = 9.50 BWP
    Transfer fee$25$124.00
    Transfer speed1-3 daysIn minutes
    Transfer optionsBank transferCash pickup
    Total ALL received
    19,750 BWP17,822 BWP

    MoneyGram is the clear winner in this comparison, even though the transfer will take more time. Not only is the exchange rate better with MoneyGram, but the $124 fee is hard to swallow. Since Quett planned ahead, he has the time to save money on the slower transfer sending his parents $1,928 more pulas.

    How do I compare money transfer companies?

    You’ll want to consider costs, of course. But other factors can also affect your choice.

        • Exchange rates. Nearly all providers skew exchange rates for a profit. Compare the rate you’re offered to the mid-market rate — the rate banks and transfer services use when they trade among themselves — and look for the smallest margin between them.
        • Transfer fees. Find out whether the provider charges a flat fee or a percentage of your transfer. If you’re sending a large amount, ask whether you qualify for a fee-free transfer.
        • Payment and delivery options. Some transfer companies allow you to pay with a credit card online, by phone or through an app. Others offer agent locations for cash payments and pickups. Also ask how your recipient can receive your funds: bank account, cash pickup, mobile wallet and more.
        • Transfer speeds. If it needs to be there fast, companies like Western Union and MoneyGram allow for quick cash pickups, often in minutes. If you have more time, you’ll get better rates and fees with an independent provider.
        • Transfer limits. Your best option might depend on how much you want to send. For large transfers, weigh the best exchange rate —especially since providers encourage large transfers by offering low fees. For smaller amounts, consider the fees you’ll pay on top of the exchange rate.
        • Flexible transfer options. Ask whether you can schedule payments ahead of time or protect your transfer against market fluctuations with a limit order or forward contract.
        • Customer support. Most companies offer customer service by Internet chat, phone, in person or by email. Make sure help will be available if you need it.

    Foreign exchange rates explained

    The exchange rate determines how much one country’s currency is worth in another currency. When a country’s currency is strong, it yields more money when exchanging it in a country with a weak currency. As of September 2017, one US dollar was worth about 10 Botswana pula. The exchange rate for the pula is flexible, which means it can change from moment to moment. Factors that influence the exchange rate include interest rates, economic stability and inflation.
    Currency exchange rate for Botswana

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    What are the ways that I can send money to Botswana?

        • Bank transfers. Confirm whether your bank will allow you to send money to Botswana.
        • Money transfer providers. Providers like PayPal and World First can help you quickly and easily transfer your money online.
        • Providers with cash pickup. Western Union and MoneyGram allow you to send funds for cash pickup at agent locations.
        • Checks and money orders. Although not a quick option, you could send an international check overseas, obtained from your bank or US Postal Service.
        • PayPal.Electronic payment giant PayPal allows you to send money from the US to Botswana.

    How safe is a money transfer?

    When you use a reputable provider, your funds are safely tracked until in the hands of your recipient. There are federal protections in place that require banks, credit unions and money transfer companies to, for example, disclose all fees upfront and give you 30 minutes to cancel a transfer, assuming it hasn’t yet been picked up or deposited.

    Emergency cash transfers in Botswana

    You might need to send an emergency cash transfer to Botswana — for example, if a relative traveling through the country loses their wallet. When you need to transfer funds urgently, review the exchange rate and transfer fee that will apply to your transaction.

    The fastest possible transfer will often be your most expensive option, so compare the details of your transaction before you commit.

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    Tips for picking up cash in Botswana

    Whether picking up funds in Maun or anywhere else around the world, take a few simple safety precautions to prevent yourself becoming a target for thieves.

        • Call ahead. Learn the company’s business hours and choose a safe time to pick up your cash. Daylight hours are best.
        • Bring a friend. Carrying money when alone can be dangerous. Ask a friend to come along.
        • Deposit your money immediately. The likelihood of losing your money to theft or simple carelessness grows the longer you have it with you. Go straight to a bank and deposit your cash as soon as possible.
        • Keep your cash hidden. Place your money in your purse or wallet before leaving the office. Carrying cash out in the open could make you a target.
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