Need to send money to friends or family in the military? Here’s how.
Military dad holds daughter outside home

How to send money to someone in the military

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When a loved one is stationed or deployed overseas, there are ways to get them funds quickly and affordably.

Having a loved one overseas is hard enough. It can be difficult to stay connected. Especially in a remote or rural area, it can be difficult to safely get money to your contact to help with everyday expenses.

Whether you’re sending money across the country or across the world, this guide will help you compare your options for sending money to friends and family in the military.

What are my options?

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by your options to send money internationally, even without the added complication of getting it to a military base. We’ll help you explore the options.

  • Bank transfers. Most major US banks will allow you to wire money domestically or internationally to another bank account. A downside is the frustratingly high fees and weak exchange rates you’ll typically receive.
  • Online money transfer services. It’s simple and convenient to send an online money transfer to loved ones in the military from the comfort of your home.
  • Providers with cash pickup. Companies like Western Union and MoneyGram offer the option of cash pickups from thousands of agent locations worldwide.
  • Peer-to-peer apps. Venmo, Circle and PayPal are just a few of the apps you can use to send money.
  • Sending checks, money orders or gift cards. Although it’s not a quick or secure option, you can send physical items to your service member’s address.

Compare online money transfer services

I want to send


Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
$0 3 - 5 days USD 0.00 0.866 EUR 4,330 Transfer up to $500,000 with no minimums and no fees. Go to site Show details
USD 1,000 1 day USD 0.00 0.87 EUR 4,352 Exclusive offer: $0 transfer fee
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USD 1 Within an hour USD 3.99 0.869 EUR 4,340 Use promo code FINDER to send your first transfer at no fee to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up. Go to site Show details
$8 1 - 2 days USD 5.00 0.868 EUR 4,334 Exchange money on your terms. Go to site Show details
USD 1 3 - 5 days USD 50.00 0.877 EUR
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Compare up to 4 providers

Can I send an instant bank transfer?

Yes. Most service members will have the option to conduct their banking on the post, base or camp just as they do at home. A few banking options that are built specifically around the needs of service members, like the Navy Federal Credit Union and USAA, offer account-to-account transfers. If both you and your contact have USAA accounts, you can transfer money from your account to theirs almost immediately.

In addition to free money transfers across checking accounts, USAA and others offer the added benefits of withdrawals as well as branches and ATMs overseas.
USAA credit card rewards reviewed and compared

Compare your options

Transfer optionTransfer methodsCashBank accountTransfer timeInternational options
Bank transferOnline, in person, mobile11 to 4 business days1
Money transfer specialistOnline, in person, mobile1Minutes to 4 business days1
Peer-to-peer appOnline, mobile2Minutes to 1 business day
US MailIn personSeveral days to several weeks

1 Varies by transfer option and method.

2 Depending on the app, you may need to pay with a credit or debit card.

How to spot a military transfer scam

While there are many ways that a scammer will attempt to part you and your money, one is so prevalent that it’s under investigation by the US Army Criminal Investigation Command.

This scam involves a bond with somebody posing as a member of the military that you’ve met online through a dating site. That person may even offer their name, rank and where they are stationed. After cultivating a strong connection with you, they claim to be ready to meet in person. But first, they need your cash.

It may sound like an obvious red flag, but once you’re emotionally attached it’s easy to lose perspective. If a service member you’ve met online asks for money — especially for money to go on leave or to get to their next station — it may be time to walk away. These scams can cost thousands of dollars, not to mention heartbreak.

Bottom line

When somebody you care about is serving overseas in the military, you have many options to send some love and financial support. Ultimately, you’ll need to compare your options to find the service that’s right for you.

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12 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    CherieJuly 24, 2018

    Ive been talking to this army guy who says he needs money sent to citi bank New York so he can get home from Iraqi? Is this true or scam

    • finder Customer Care
      joelmarceloJuly 24, 2018Staff

      Hi Cherie,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      Only you would determine if you are about to be scammed or not. If something sounds too good to be true and it’s coming from somebody you don’t know, it’s almost certainly a scam. You can research the person or business in question until you’re 100% certain that you’re not getting ripped off. Always remember that scammers can be very convincing and patient. They’ll talk with you for hours (over many weeks or months) to make you feel comfortable.

      Ask for help from others who might not be as emotionally involved as you are. Talk about the situation with a friend or relative, and look for similar stories online – you might be surprised at what you find. Keep in mind that many internet money scams are tried-and-true hustles, sometimes conducted from far away (so you’re likely to find good information with a general internet search).


  2. Default Gravatar
    Sher18June 11, 2018

    I have a friend who is in the US Army currently stationed in the Ukraine and he says he is unable to access his funds from where he lived in Sacramento CA? Why can he not do this?

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaJune 12, 2018Staff

      Hi Sher18,

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

      Generally, your friend should be able to access his fund in Ukraine. If your friend is unable to do it, there could be a problem either with his bank or the facility he is using in Ukraine. In this case, it would be a good idea to directly get in touch with his bank.

      In relation to this, you might want to read our article entitled, “Help! My bank account is locked overseas.”

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

      Have a wonderful day!


  3. Default Gravatar
    RussellMay 13, 2018

    I met a women who claims to be in the military. She claims that it will cost $798.00 to get eligible to send and recieve money to and from her. Is this true? I have never heard of having to be eligible.

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaMay 13, 2018Staff

      Hi Russell,

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

      The woman might be talking about a specific money transfer service company. It would be helpful to ask what that company is and from there, you can have a better way of determining the veracity of her statement.

      However, if you are going to send money to someone in the military, there are a lot of options available to you and it should not cost you $798. These options include bank transfers, online money transfer services, providers with cash pickup, peer-to-peer apps, sending checks, and money orders or gift cards.

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

      Have a wonderful day!


  4. Default Gravatar
    beverleeMay 5, 2018

    I have a friend who wants to come home he has asked to send money but he is in Iraq, it has to go to another place to get to him. I am just wondering how all of that work. and how long it would take for him to get it?

    • finder Customer Care
      joelmarceloMay 5, 2018Staff

      Hi Beverlee,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      We have outlined everything you need to know on how to transfer funds to someone in the military in the guide above. Given the ongoing political instability in Iraq and US relations with the country, it shouldn’t surprise you that sending an international money transfer to Iraq isn’t easy. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible — in fact, you have more options when sending money to friends and family in Iraq than you might expect. You can go HERE to weigh your options.


  5. Default Gravatar
    JenApril 24, 2018

    I have a guy saying he needs me to send money to a marine agent through money gram to pay for his fine for being in trouble. Is there a marine agent that will get it? The guy is in Afghanistan

    • finder Customer Care
      AshApril 25, 2018Staff

      Hi Jen,

      Thank you for visiting finder.

      There are no Marine Agents in Afghanistan though there are Agent Locations from different Money Transfer Agencies wherein your recipient can claim the funds that you will send.

      Kindly check this page for the list of the Money Transfer Agencies which offers their services in Afghanistan. You may compare the fees and ways on how you can send/ receive the money in choosing the provider that you will use.

      I hope this helps.

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


  6. Default Gravatar
    SaraApril 5, 2018

    I’m not sending money. He works in a Rig. Can he get access to his bank account? If a man is working in a Rig, can he have access to his bank account?

    • finder Customer Care
      JeniApril 5, 2018Staff

      Hi Sarah,

      Thank you for getting in touch with finder.

      Currently online banking is very popular. Anyone can have an access to their bank account as long as they are connected to the internet. It would depends on that man’s rig if it has mobile or internet connection for that man to access his bank account. In addition, rigs also have satellite phones that can be used to communicate to the employees’ family, friends or institution they need to contact to.

      I hope this helps.

      Have a great day!


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