How to send money to Pakistan
Find the most cost-effective and convenient way to make an international money transfer to send money to Pakistan.
Compare services that send money to Pakistan from the UK
Banks versus money transfer companies
If you need to send money to Pakistan, you may approach your bank to initiate the transfer. However, if you use a major bank to complete the global money transfer, you most likely won’t receive a competitive exchange rate on your transaction, and you’ll have to pay sizeable fees.
For a more cost-effective option, you may want to check out the services provided by a specialist money transfer company. Some providers like Xoom offer online transfers from the UK to Pakistan with better exchange rates than banks, and many have lower transfer fees.
Case Study: Yousuf sends money to Pakistan
Yousuf works in the UK and wants to send £1,000 to his wife back in Pakistan. While his bank could transfer the money, the high fees and low exchange rate make it a less valuable offer. In an effort to save money on his end and send more to his wife at home, he compares the services of two online money transfer companies.
|Transfer company 1||Transfer company 2|
|Exchange rate||£1 GBP = 181.71 PKR||£1 GBP = 190.02 PKR|
|Transfer method||Bank account deposit||Bank account deposit|
|Processing time||Within minutes||2 to 4 business days|
|PKR Received for £1,000||181,710 PKR||190,020PKR|
As the table shows, not only can Yousuf save £15 in transfer fees by using the second money transfer provider, but he’ll also be able to send his family an extra 8,310 rupees.
How to compare transfer companies when sending money to Pakistan
- Transfer options. Can you lock in an ideal exchange rate now and transfer the money later, known as a forward contract? Does the institution offer limit orders, which allows you to take advantage of changing market conditions by executing the money transfer when a certain exchange rate is met? Can you schedule recurring payments?
- Turnaround time. If you need to send an urgent transfer, some providers allow you to send funds that become available for collection within minutes.
- Minimum amount. Some money transfer providers will impose a minimum limit on the amount you can send; for example, £500. This can be quite restrictive if you only want to transfer a relatively small amount of money.
- Exchange rates. The exchange rate impacts how much money arrives in your recipient’s account, so see how each provider’s rates stack up against the competition. However, don’t forget that providers with better exchange rates may also charge higher fees.
- Transfer fees. Transferring money overseas will usually incur a transaction fee, and these can range from £0.99 to £25 or more. Once again, remember to examine fees alongside the exchange rates offered by a provider.
- Transfer methods. While some providers only allow you to make transfers online, others will allow you to send funds over the phone or by visiting a branch.
Foreign exchange rates explained
Exchange rate is used by banks and money transfer providers to determine how much one country’s currency is worth in the currency of another country. The pound is generally strong, which means it will yield more when exchange for rupees. The exact amount depends on the global economy and your individual money transfer provider. This amount can change daily, so check back often to see if you can get a good deal, especially if you frequently send money to Pakistan.
Options for sending money to Pakistan from the UK
- Bank-to-bank transfers. Speak to your financial institution about how you can send money from your bank account to your recipient’s Pakistani bank account.
- Online money transfer companies. Services like Ria and Xoom all allow you to send money to Pakistan online.
- Money transfer companies with a cash pickup option. MoneyGram and Western Union are two companies that allow you to send funds online or from an agent location in the UK, and the cash can be collected from an agent in Pakistan.
How to send money to Pakistan
- Register for an account with a provider, supplying your name, address, contact details, proof of ID and information about your selected payment method.
- Provide your recipient’s information and contact details.
- Select the amount of your transfer and complete your transaction.
- Preserve your receipt or other proof of transaction in order to monitor the progress of your transfer.
Emergency cash transfers in Pakistan
Emergency transfers to Pakistan are possible, but it might cost you. These tend to have higher fees and less favourable exchange rates, meaning it will cost you more to potentially send less. However, if an emergency situation arises and you need to send money fast, an emergency transfer might be the solution to get your recipient rupees when they need them.
Tips for picking up cash in Pakistan
Because many cash pickup locations are in big cities, it’s important to stay aware of your surroundings. When picking up cash, be careful not to make yourself a target. Bring a friend along to help, and have a nondescript bag you can use to carry your rupees. You can also limit your risk by quickly depositing your cash into a safe or bank account.
Cash pickup locations in Pakistan
Ask an Expert