Find the best way to send money to Saudi Arabia
Learn how to send money to Saudi Arabia from the US in our step-by-step guide.
Looking for the best way to send money from the United States to family, friends or businesses in Saudi Arabia (or even to your own overseas bank account)?
Don't head straight to your American bank – compare specialist money transfer services instead. They nearly always offer better SAR exchange rates and lower fees, so for the same amount of US dollars you send, your recipient will receive more Saudi riyals.
Of the companies we've compared, OFX is among the cheapest, with competitive exchange rates and fees starting from $0. Need a really fast transfer? OFX can get money to your recipient in Saudi Arabia within hours.
Best ways to send money to Saudi Arabia from the USThe best way to send money to Saudi Arabia depends on your payment method, how you want your money to be received and how fast you need it to arrive.
- Online money transfer provider. When buying US dollars or Saudi riyals money transfer specialists typically offer better rates and cheaper fees than a local bank.
- Bank transfer. Bank transfers are an easy way to send money to Saudi Arabia but they charge extra for the convenience and are often slower than other methods. US banks generally add a 3% to 6% markup onto exchange rates.
Compare the best money transfer companies to send money to Saudi ArabiaUse our table to compare the best money transfer companies to send money to Saudi Arabia. You can compare deposit and receiving options, fees and transfer speeds, then click the "Go to site" button when you've found the best one to get your money to Saudi Arabia.
Cheapest way to send money to Saudi Arabia
Bank transfers are typically the cheapest way to get your money to Saudi Arabia. OFX and have some of the lowest bank transfer fees of the brands we've compared.
When you're hunting down the cheapest ways to send money to Saudi Arabia, it's more important to look at the overall cost of your transfer. This has a couple of elements:
- Transfer fees. While still cheaper than your American bank, some money transfer services charge either a fixed or percentage-based fee for making your transfer.
- Exchange rates. Another way money transfer providers make money is to add a margin to the mid-market USD/SAR exchange rate.
Some providers may charge the mid-market rate but add fees on top. Others may have very low fees but apply a markup on the exchange rate. This means it is important to compare exactly how many Saudi riyals your recipient will end up with.
Fastest way to send money to Saudi Arabia
Many online providers can offer transfers to Saudi Arabia within minutes, although you're likely to pay a premium for the convenience.Here are some of the fastest average transfer speeds to Saudi Arabia:
- OFX — within hours
Actual transfer times from the United States to Saudi Arabia can depend on several different factors including transfer amount, payment method and currency.
Safest way to send money to Saudi Arabia
The safest way to get your money to Saudi Arabia is to use a provider registered with the United States's industry regulator, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. All of the companies we've compared in our table are overseen by a local regulator and comply with the relevant laws and regulations in both the United States and Saudi Arabia.
A great way to dive deeper is by reading our extended reviews of each transfer service and researching first-hand customer feedback on Trustpilot and similar platforms.
Large money transfers to Saudi Arabia
If you need to make a sizable money transfer to Saudi Arabia, consider using a provider such as OFX to benefit from its expertise in handling larger transfer amounts.Using a large transfer specialist can have the following advantages:
- Tax guidance. Large transfers to Saudi Arabia may have tax implications for you or your recipient. A transfer specialist can help get you up to speed on IRS's latest advice.
- Foreign exchange (forex) tools. Advanced tools such as forward contracts, limit orders and stop-loss orders can help you lock in the SAR exchange rate you want.
- Account manager. Some money transfer providers assign a personal account manager who can help and advise you on your transfer needs.
- Phone service. If you want to talk your transfer through with someone, providers such as OFX International Money Transfers (Business) and OFX can give you support over the phone.
How to send money to Saudi Arabia from the US
To send money to Saudi Arabia, you'll need the necessary documentation, your recipient's details and a way to pay.
- Compare your options.
Use our table to find a money transfer provider that sends funds to Saudi Arabia. One may be better for cash pickups while another may suit a bank transfer. Once you've found the best one for your requirements, click "Go to site".
- Create an account.
You'll need to give your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and method of payment.
- Provide your recipient's details.
Enter your recipient's name and contact information. If you're sending straight to their Saudi bank account, you'll need the account number, SWIFT or IBAN plus their bank branch's address.
- Enter your transfer amount.
Check you're happy with the fees, exchange rates and transfer speed, then enter the amount you wish to send. Double-check the total Saudi riyals your recipient gets.
- Complete your transfer.
Send your money transfer to Saudi Arabia. Keep your transaction reference number safe so you can track your transfer. Your recipient may need it too.
Example: Fatimah sends money to Saudi Arabia
Fatimah is working in the United States as a software engineer and she stays in regular contact with her elderly parents back home in Saudi Arabia. Her parents need some funds to help pay off a mortgage, so Fatimah plans to send them $2,000 from the United States.
She decides to compare a bank and a money transfer specialist to see which one can save the most money on her transaction.
|Bank||Money transfer company|
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 3.68 SAR||1 USD = 3.73 SAR|
|Transfer method||Bank account deposit||Bank account deposit|
|Processing time||2 - 5 working days||Next day|
|Amount received||7,326.42 SAR||7,451.38 SAR|
The money transfer company enables Fatimah to send an extra ر.س124.97, which is transferred straight to her parents' Saudi National Bank account.
How to choose the best money transfer companies to send money to Saudi Arabia
When choosing a money transfer provider to send money from the United States to Saudi Arabia, it's important to consider the cost, how you want your recipient to receive the funds and the turnaround time. Here are other features to review:
- Exchange rates. Banks and transfer services use the mid-market rate to trade with one another. It is the best rate you can get. However, not all money transfer providers offer you this mid-market rate so compare the SAR 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 Saudi Arabia for a flat or low fee might work out better if you plan to send a large amount.
- Transfer type. Does your recipient have a Saudi bank account or is cash or cell phone top-up a better option? Each transfer type will have different fees. For example, instant cash pickups tend to be more expensive than bank transfers.
- Transfer speed. If you need your transfer to arrive quickly, you can pay for an express delivery. Some companies offer instant cash pickups but may charge more. If you're not in a rush, online money transfer services offer the best value and get your money to Saudi Arabia faster and cheaper than banks.
- Transfer limits. Find out how much you can send with each service. For example, OFX allows unlimited transfers.
- Discounts. Some providers may offer you a free transfer simply for signing up. Others may offer a discount if you transfer more than a specific amount of Saudi riyals.
Is this a good time to send money to Saudi Arabia?
Compared to a month ago, the US dollar is a little weaker against the Saudi riyal. Currently $5,000 is equivalent to ر.س18,745.50, whereas a month ago, $5,000 was equivalent to ر.س18,751.50. That's a decrease of 0.03% over the past month.
Similarly, compared to a year ago, the US dollar is again a little weaker against the Saudi riyal. A year ago, $5,000 was equivalent to ر.س18,807.50. That's a decrease of 0.33% over 12 months.
What's more important, however, is where the strength of the US dollar against the Saudi riyal goes from here – which is harder to call. Based on those two quick glances back, your US dollars might not go as far as they would have, so shopping around for the best deal on your transfer is key.
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