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Send money to India

Find fast, low-fee ways to remit to India from the USA.

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Digital money transfer specialists are the best way to send money to India, offering stronger rates and lower fees than your local bank. Compare providers like Remitly and InstaReM for bank transfers, or WorldRemit and MoneyGram when sending cash. Xoom and Western Union are often more expensive options, while TransferWise offers the strongest rates.

Send money to India with TransferWise

Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks.

  • Fair service fees and mid-market rates – a major market differentiator
  • Next-day delivery for most currencies
  • Easy-to-use app
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Compare ways to send money to India

Enter the amount you want to send and click Calculate to compare fees, exchange rates and total sending amount for your money transfer to India.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
$1 Same day USD 0.00 73.243 INR 73,243 XE offers fast transfers with no fees and a range of foreign currency tools. Go to site Show details
$0 1 - 2 days USD 1.99 72.357 INR 72,213 Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Quick, affordable transfers around the world with both express and economy options.
Go to site Show details
$1 1 - 2 days USD 9.00 73.834 INR
73,170
Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks. Go to site Show details
$1 Within an hour USD 3.99 73.465 INR 73,172 Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Send to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up. Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

The best services to remit to India

To help you narrow down the “best,” we sent live transfers through 13 of the most notable providers to see who rose to the top in cost, trust, speed, convenience and user experience.

Compare these providers to find which fits your needs best when you remit to India:

Best forWinnerWhy we picked itGood forGo to site
Cash & speedWorldRemitAt speeds that often beat its own estimates, you can get cash to India quickly for pickup or deposit.Limits vary by country, but good for $500 or more
Most locationsWestern UnionIt’s not the cheapest, but fast and effective for same-day pickup.Cash & convenience – More than 50,000 agents in IndiaLearn more

ConvenienceXoomIntuitive site, allows for signup and sending in minutes with clear rates and fees. Cash pickups in 15 minutes at more than 100,000 agent locations and deposits to all major banksLearn more

Exchange ratesTransferWiseOffers the mid-market rate on transfers to 74 countries worldwide.Supports 40 currencies

How to send money to India

  1. Register for an account. Supply the money transfer provider with your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and your selected payment method.
  2. Enter recipient information. Provide your recipient’s name and contact information.
  3. Choose an amount. After comparing fees and exchange rates, enter the amount you wish to transfer.
  4. Send. Complete your transaction and save any reference number you receive so that you can monitor your transfer.

You’ll need to give your recipient the transaction reference number to allow them to pick up your funds – they’ll also need to bring along a photo ID. For larger transfer amounts, phone ahead to an agent location to make sure it has sufficient cash available for your recipient to collect.

What to know when transferring money to India

  • Exchange rates. Nearly all money transfer 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 money transfer provider charges a flat fee or a percentage of your transfer.
  • Bank partners. Many money transfer providers list their Indian bank partners online. See if your recipient’s bank is affiliated with your money transfer provider before initiating a transfer.
  • Transfer speed. If it needs to be there fast, companies like Western Union and MoneyGram allow for quick cash pickups, often in minutes.
  • Transfer limits. For large transfers, compare and find the best exchange rate — especially since money transfer providers encourage large transfers by offering low fees. For smaller amounts, consider the fees you’ll pay on top of the exchange rate.
  • Payment scheduling. Ask whether you can schedule payments ahead of time or protect your transfer against market fluctuations with a limit order or forward contract.
  • Customer service. 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

An exchange rate determines how much one country’s currency is worth in another currency. When a currency is strong, it yields more money when exchanging it for a weaker currency. India’s exchange rate is flexible which means it can change from moment to moment due to factors such as interest rates, economic stability and inflation.

Today’s exchange rate USD to INR

What are all the ways I can send money to India?

Western Union and MoneyGram provide the largest money transfer networks in the world, with thousands of agent locations around the globe, but it’s always smart to compare your options and see what works best for you.

  • Bank transfers. Many major US banks allow you to wire money to banks in India. However, this option generally doesn’t offer the best exchange rates or lowest fees.
  • Money transfer providers. Companies like TransferWise and WorldRemit make international money transfers to India easy.
  • Providers with cash pickup. Western Union, Money2India, Remit2India, MoneyGram and Ria offer the option of cash pickups from thousands of agent locations across India.
  • M-Pesa. M-Pesa is a safe, secure way to send, receive and store money through your mobile phone or an app. Top up your account at one of more than 287,000 agent locations and then send money to loved ones, who can visit an agent to withdraw their funds.
  • Checks and money orders. Although not a quick option, you can always send an international check overseas picked up from your bank or US Postal Service.

Let’s crunch the numbers: Sending $1,000 to India

Let’s say you need to send $1,000 to family in India. Here’s what you might face as far as fees and exchange rates as of March 9, 2020.

Digital money transfer serviceCash transferBank transfer
Fee$0$5$25 + additional correspondent bank fees
Exchange rate1 USD = 74.086 INR1 USD = 72.969 INR1 USD = 73.286 INR
Transfer speed1-2 dayMinutes2-5 days
Amount receivedINR 74,086INR 72,604INR 71,454
Verdict
  • Best value
  • Fastest
  • Slowest and most expensive

The bank option ends up being both the slowest and gets the smallest amount of money to your recipient. If you go with the digital money transfer service, your recipient ends up with INR 2,632 more than the bank offers. If speed is crucial, a cash transfer can typically have your transfer to India in as little as 15 minutes.

Taxes when you remit to India

Nonresident Indians — or NRIs in remittance lingo — sending money to India are required to pay a 12.36% government service tax on any commission or fee paid to an agent to facilitate the exchange. Some banks and providers conveniently factor this service tax into your totals, but ask if you don’t see it listed. Sending cash to India may be limited by the Money Transfer Service Scheme (MTSS), which is created by the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) of India and enforced by the Reserve Bank of India. Transactions sent to banks typically fall under the Rupee Drawing Arrangement, but cash transfers are classified under the MTSS. According to the Reserve Bank of India’s website, MTSS transactions are capped at $2,500 USD per transaction, with a 30 remittance receiving cap per calendar year.

Laws and legal documents when transferring large sums of money into India

Documents needed to transfer money to India

To send money to India from the US, you’ll need government-issued ID and other documents, while documents needed to pick up money in India may be different by company.

Documents to send money from the US

To send money from the US to India, you’ll need documentation and details that include:

  • Identification. Most services require a driver’s license, passport or other government-issued ID. Some services allow you to send transfers without ID, but they may require your SSN.
  • Payment method. Your service may accept credit or debit cards, cash, bank accounts or personal checks.
  • Recipient information. Submit your recipient’s name as it appears on their ID, along with their phone number, Indian bank account and routing number.

Documents to receive money in India

To pick up money in person, documentation can include:

  • Transfer number. The person sending you money can forward the transfer’s confirmation details — called a PIN, a MTCN, a reference number or a tracking number, depending on the company.
  • Government-issued ID. An Indian Passport, Indian Driving License, Indian Aadhaar card or a similar government-issued ID is typically required to pick up cash.
  • Amount sent. You may need to know how much was sent, usually within 10% of the total.
  • Sender’s information. Take along your sender’s full name, the sending country and their address, if known.

Bottom line

Sending your hard-earned money to India shouldn’t cost a fortune. Compare money transfer companies that specialize in foreign transactions for the strongest rates, lowest fees and flexible delivery. For transfers to other countries, rely on our country specific guides the next time you need to make a transfer.

Frequently asked questions

What is the cheapest way to transfer money to India?

In our experience, the cheapest way to send money to India is typically either through InstaReM, WorldRemit or TransferWise.

  • InstaReM offers fee-free transfers and strong exchange rates.
  • WorldRemit offers cash pickup, typically within an hour.
  • TransferWise offers strong exchange rates and competitive deals on large transfers.

Can I use Google Pay to send money to India?

No, unfortunately not. Google Pay can be used domestically within the United States or domestically within India, but it cannot send money between these two countries. Compare a variety of services to send money to India.

How can I send money to India using a SWIFT code?

To send a SWIFT transfer to India from your bank you’ll need your recipient’s name, address and bank account number. You won’t need their IFSC (Indian Financial System Code) as these codes are typically only used for domestic transfers within India.

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