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Send money to South Africa

Find the best way to transfer money from the United States to South Africa.

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XE

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  • Send money to 130+ countries
  • Competitive exchange rates that are often better than banks'
  • XE doesn’t charge any transaction fees, commissions or ongoing fees
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Looking for the best way to send money from the United States to family, friends or businesses in South Africa (or even to your own bank account)? Don't head straight to your American bank - turn to online money transfer services instead. They nearly always offer better exchange rates and lower fees - which means for the same amount of dollars you send, the recipient will receive more rands.

Compare ways of sending money to South Africa

Use our table below to compare services that send money from America to South Africa. Compare the money transfer providers' fees and speeds, then click "Go to site" when you've found the best one to send your US Dollars to South Africa.

1 - 11 of 11
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer) Learn More
Dunbridge Financial
24 hours
$0

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Dunbridge Financial offers competitive exchange rates and zero fees on transfers to more than 120 countries.
OFX
24 hours
$0

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OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
CurrencyTransfer
24 hours
$0
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Minimum transfer of $1,000 for Finder readers (normally £5,000)

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Exclusive: Minimum transfer of $1,000 for Finder readers (normally $5,000).
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace.
CurrencyFair
24 hours
€3

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CurrencyFair has bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
Revolut
Revolut
Within minutes
$0

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Revolut offers 10 zero-fee international transfers a month, amazing exchange rates, and transfers within 30 minutes.
XE
Within minutes
$3

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XE has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
Wise (TransferWise)
Within an hour
From $2.26

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Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
Remitly
Within minutes
From $0
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers

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Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
WorldRemit
Within an hour
From $1.99
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Use the code ‘4FREEFINDER’ to get 4 free transfers if you are a first time user. Eligible countries only.

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WorldRemit sends money to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposits, cash pick-ups or mobile top-ups.
OFX International Money Transfers (Business)
24 hours
$0

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Business customers: Send safe, no-limit transfers with no fees and competitive exchange rates.
CurrencyTransfer for Business
24 hours
$0

View details
Increase business efficiency with zero transaction fees and same-day transfers.
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Compare up to 4 providers


How to send money to South Africa from the United States

Here's our simple process for sending a money transfer to South Africa as a cash pickup or bank transfer - the two options are similar:

  1. Compare your options. Use our table above to find a money transfer provider that sends USD to South Africa. One may be better for cash pickups while another might be better suited to a bank transfer. Once you've found the best one for your requirements, click Go to site.
  2. Register for an account. You'll need to give your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and method of payment.
  3. Provide recipient details. Enter your recipient's name and contact information. If you're sending straight to their South African bank account, you'll need the account number, SWIFT or IBAN plus their bank branch's address.
  4. Enter the transfer amount. Check you're happy with the fees, exchange rates and transfer speed, then enter the amount you wish to send. Many services give the amount of Rand your recipient should receive, so double check this.
  5. Complete your transfer. Send your money transfer to South Africa. Keep any reference number safe so you can track your transfer - your recipient may need it too.

If you send to a South African bank account, your recipient will need to wait for the funds to arrive. For a cash pick up, your South African recipient will need to show some form of photo ID in order to pick up the funds. It's also important that you give them the transaction reference number to streamline the process.

For larger transfer amounts, you may need to phone the agent location to ensure it has enough cash available.

Ways to send and receive money

How to decide which option is best for you to send money to South Africa.

  • Bank deposit. Most major banks in America let you wire money to banks in South Africa. However, you might get weaker exchange rates and pay higher fees all for the privilege of a slower transfer.
  • Online money transfer services. Online companies like Dunbridge Financial and OFX make international money transfers to South Africa easy with bank transfers or cell phone top ups often offered as easy delivery options.
  • Transfer agents across America. Many transfer providers have locations dotted all across America, making it easy for you to send money that can be easily picked up in similar agent locations in South Africa.
  • Checks and money orders. If speed is not an issue, you can always pick up an international check from your bank or the US Postal Service to send to South Africa.
  • Cash pick-up. XE and Remitly allow you to collect cash, even if you don't have a bank account in South Africa.
  • Bank deposit. If you have a South African bank account, you can have money transferred directly into this without having to make any trips to a money transfer agent location.
  • PayPal. The Xoom app allows you to receive money from the United States onto your cell phone, into your South African bank account, or as a cash pick-up.
  • Checks and money orders. Both personal checks and money orders can be sent directly to you where you live but these tend to be the slower options.

What documents do I need to transfer money to South Africa?

To send money from the United States to South Africa, you'll need the following:

1. Photo identification

Most providers require a driver's license, passport or other American government-issued ID. You can send transfers without the above but may need to give alternate ID instead.

2. Payment method

Your options depend on the provider's services. Popular methods include cash, debit or credit card payments, bank account transfers and personal checks.

3. Recipient information

You'll need their name (matching their ID) plus contact details. If sending to a South African bank account, you'll need the a/c number, SWIFT and branch details.

What documents do I need to receive money in South Africa?

To collect money in person in South Africa, the recipient will need:

1. Transfer number

The reference number - sometimes called a PIN, MTCN or tracking number.

2. Government-issued ID

A official ID, such as a South African passport or driving license.

3. The transfer amount

To know how much has been sent, usually to within 10% of the total.

4. Sender information

The sender's name and address and the country from where the money was sent.

How much does it cost to send money to South Africa from America?

The cost of sending money to South Africa from the United States depends on the exchange rate between USD to ZAR, the fees, how you want your recipient to receive your transfer and the turnaround time:

  • Exchange rates. The mid-market rate is the rate banks and transfer services use to trade between one another. It is the best rate that you can get. But not all money transfer providers offer you this mid-market rate so compare the exchange rate you're offered to the mid-market rate and look for the smallest difference.
  • Transfer fees. Are you being charged a flat fee or a percentage of your transfer amount? For example, a provider offering to transfer your money to South Africa for a flat or low fee might work out better if you plan to send a large amount.
  • Transfer speed. If you need your transfer to arrive quickly, you can pay for a quick delivery. Companies such as XE and Remitly offer instant cash pickups but may charge more. If you're not in a rush, online money transfer services can offer the best value, usually getting your money to South Africa faster and cheaper than banks.
  • Transfer limits. Find out how much you can send with each service. For example, one provider may have a send limit of $10,000 while another may allow you to transfer up to $1 million. For smaller transfers, check the fees. For large transfers, look harder at the exchange rate. Some providers encourage large transfers with low fees.
  • Transfer type. Does your recipient have a South African bank account or is cash or cell phone top up the better option? Each transfer type will have different fees. For example, instant cash pickups tend to be more expensive than bank transfers.
  • Discounts. Some providers may offer you a free transfer simply for signing up while others may offer you a discount if you transfer more than a certain amount.
Looking for the best exchange rate? Discover the USD/ZAR exchange rate rates and historical changes.

Frequently asked questions

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10 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    PamelaDecember 10, 2018

    I would like to send money to family in South Africa. When I’ve previously sent money, the recipient bank charged a good few R100’s in bank charges, meaning that some 13% of what I sent went towards bank charges. This was on top of the UK transfer fee I paid to send the money. Is there a way to minimise or negate the recipient bank charges?

    • Default Gravatar
      nikkiangcoDecember 13, 2018

      Hi Pamela,

      Thanks for getting in touch. When transferring money, you’d always need to check fees and charges, such as taxes, and you’ll need to add that on top of the money your sending. It’s helpful to know that the recipient doesn’t get charge of any fees unless the amount your sending is over the country’s international transfer limits, then the recipient would be charged taxes as well.

      Hope this was helpful. Don’t hesitate to message us back if you have more questions.

      Best,
      Nikki

  2. Default Gravatar
    StormSeptember 29, 2018

    Hello i live in South africa and my friend from America wants to send me money but cant use the bank bec they where hacked and dont do transfers . I need a site thay makes it easy to put the money in my FNB account and PayPal is not a option

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaOctober 2, 2018Staff

      Hi Storm,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      I’m sorry to hear about your situation. Thankfully, you can use the table above to compare international money transfer services to South Africa. You can specify the amount of money you want to send and the table will show you how much money you will receive. Once you found the right one for you, click on the “Go to site” green button to learn more or initiate your transfer. The companies listed on our table should also allow you to send money to your bank account.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  3. Default Gravatar
    KaylaJuly 25, 2018

    Hi. I started an online job with a company that pays into PayPal in USD. I have an FNB account with a debit card.
    Do I have to get a credit card?
    How long does it take to go from PayPal account to FNB account?
    And what should I register it as?

    • Default Gravatar
      AshJuly 27, 2018

      Hi Kayla,

      Thank you for contacting finder.

      No, you do not need to have a credit card for your Pay Pal account to receive the salary from your employer. Since you already have an existing bank account, you need to register/ link it to your Paypal account. Here is the instructions on how you can link your bank account:

      1. Go to Wallet.
      2. Click “Add bank account” then select your account type (enter the sort code and account numbers)
      3. Check if all your information are correct then click “Add Bank Account”.

      I hope this helps.

      Let us know if there is anything else that I may assist you with.

      Cheers,
      Ash

  4. Default Gravatar
    SandyJune 25, 2018

    I want to send money to someone who is only in South Africa temporarily.. In order to receive it is he going to have to provide an address? Or is just his passport/ID and the ref # sufficient?
    Thanks

    • Default Gravatar
      AshJune 26, 2018

      Hi Sandy,

      Thank you for contacting finder.

      If the recipient will be picking up the money to one of the provider’s agent locations, he/ she should only show a valid ID and provide the reference number for the transaction.

      I hope this helps.

      Let us know if there is anything else that we may assist you with.

      Cheers,
      Ash

  5. Default Gravatar
    LindyJune 24, 2018

    I wish to receive funds from Doha to Cape Town South Africa who offers what rates and what are the different time periods plse?

    • Default Gravatar
      nikkiangcoJune 24, 2018

      Hi Lindy,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      On the page above, you’ll see a table of money transfer services that can be used by your sender to transfer money to Cape Town, South Africa.
      To check the price and transfer periods, simply enter the amount to be transferred and assign the currencies to be used. When you press enter, it will automatically generate the rates and transfer periods.

      Hope this helps.

      Best regards,
      Nikki

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