GoBear is now part of Finder

Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our content.

Send money to India

Find fast, low-fee ways to transfer cash to friends, family and businesses abroad.

Whether you are helping out family in Chennai or opening an office in Mumbai, when you need to send money from the Philippines to India, you want simple and cheap options.

By comparing the transfer fees and exchange rates of many providers at once, you can be confident that you’re finding the best deal with the least amount of hassle.

Compare international money transfers to India

Use our comparison calculator to assess transfer fees, exchange rates and other details for sending funds to India with an online money transfer specialist.

Name Product Minimum Transfer Transfer Time Transfer Fee
WorldRemit
WorldRemit
PHP 1
1 - 2 days
USD 3.99
Use promo code FREE to send your first transfer with no fee. T&Cs apply.
WorldRemit sends money to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposits, cash pick-ups or mobile top-ups.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

How to send money to India

  1. Register for an account. Supply the provider with your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and your selected payment method.
  2. Sending to who? Provide your recipient’s name and contact information.
  3. How much? Choose the amount of money you wish to transfer.
  4. Almost there… 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 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 money transfer to India.
  • Bank partners. Many providers list their Indian bank partners online. See if your recipient’s bank is affiliated with your 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 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.

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 WorldRemit make international money transfers to India easy.
  • Providers with cash pickup. Western Union, MoneyGram and Ria offer the option of cash pickups from thousands of agent locations across India.

Banks vs. money transfer companies

Many major US banks offer the option to send funds to India, but they typically charge high transfer fees and offer exchange rates that are significantly lower than the mid-market rate — or the rate banks and transfer providers use when trading among themselves.

A reputable money transfer specialist can often offer better exchange rates and also charge lower fees, saving you money and putting more rupees into your recipient’s pocket.

Blue icon representing money transfers Image: Infogram

Digital money transfer services

Companies like WorldRemit specialise in foreign currencies, making them some of the most cost-effective transfers. Most offer transfers directly to your recipient’s Indian bank account, often in as little as a day or two.

Picture not described: BlueCoinsCashIcon_Infogram_94x62.png Image: Infogram

Cash transfers

Services like MoneyGram allow you to transfer cash for pickup at a local branch in India — often in 15 minutes. While it’s a fast way to send money, you’ll pay for the convenience in weak exchange rates and high fees. If a cash pickup is necessary, look to digital services like WorldRemit or Remitly when possible.

Picture not described: BlueBankIcon_Infogram_62x56.png Image: Infogram

Banks

Indian rupees are a popular currency, so your local bank may be able to exchange them. If your bank supports Indian rupees, beware of high fees and wide margins on the exchange rate compared to digital and other options.

Let’s crunch the numbers: Sending ₱10,000 to India

Let’s say you need to send ₱10,000 to family in India. Here’s what you might face as far as fees and exchange rates as of 8 May 2020.

Digital money transfer serviceCash transferBank transfer
Fee₱0₱400The equivalent of US$30 + additional correspondent bank fees
Exchange rate1 PHP = 1.49486 INR1 PHP = 1.4313 INR1 PHP = 1.5003 INR
Transfer speed1-2 dayMinutes2-5 days
Amount receivedINR 14,949INR 14,313INR 12,726
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 2,223 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.

Tips for sending money to India

Sending more than the equivalent of US$10,000 to India

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) requires that any transaction totalling more than the equivalent of US$10,000 needs to be reported to the government. It’s better for you to report it first, because banks will push forward this information as a suspicious transaction.

When dealing with a transfer this large, you may be required to provide the money transfer service with additional documentation on why you’re are sending such a large amount. Also, it is nice to know that any amount over US$10,000 can be transferred without being subject to gift tax.

What do I need to know about taxes?

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 US$2,500 per transaction, with a 30 remittance receiving cap per calendar year.


Same-day cash transfers in India

You might need to send an emergency cash transfer to India — for example, if a friend traveling through the country loses their wallet. When a fund transfer is urgent, the fastest option will often be the most expensive one. Be sure to carefully review the exchange rate and transfer fee against your needs so that you understand exactly how much it will cost you.

Tips for picking up cash in India

You should “practice good personal security” when collecting funds in India. Just as you would at home, be careful when you pick up your money. Take a friend along for added security and don’t display your cash unnecessarily. Avoid high-crime areas and deposit your funds into your bank account as quickly as possible.

Back to top

Documents needed for sending to and receiving money in India

To send money to India from the Philippines, 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 Philippines

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

  • Identification. Most services require a driver’s license, passport or other government-issued ID.
  • 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.

Which countries send the most money to India?

India, the country that receives the most money transfers, saw an estimated US$69 billion in remittances in 2017, according to World Bank data. Let’s see the top countries when it comes to sending money to India.

RankCountryRemittances in 2017
1United Arab EmiratesUS$13,822,589,675
2United StatesUS$11,714,633,011
3Saudi ArabiaUS$11,238,826,124
4KuwaitUS$4,587,413,216
5QatarUS$4,143,368,052
6United KingdomUS$3,940,789,728
7OmanUS$3,250,046,834
8NepalUS$3,015,913,314
9CanadaUS$2,876,744,463
10AustraliaUS$1,943,847,714

Bottom line

Sending your hard-earned money to India shouldn’t cost a fortune. Compare money transfer companies that specialise 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.

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked
Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.
Go to site