How to send money to Yemen
The safest and most cost-effective ways of sending money to friends and family in Yemen from the UK.
Compare services that send money to Yemen from the UK
Case Study: Alida sends money to her family in Yemen
Alida’s family emigrated to Yemen from Africa, while Alida decided to travel to the UK to study at a prestigious university here. After graduating, Alida found work in the UK and wants to send money to her family in Yemen.
Surprised at her UK bank’s high fee and poor exchange rate, she decides to compare a couple of money transfer companies. Below is a summary of her findings when using £1,000 GBP as the transfer amount.
|Money transfer company A||Money transfer company B|
|Exchange rate||1 GBP = 308.594 YER||1 GBP = 311.081 YER|
|Transfer fee||£20 GBP||£50 GBP|
|Yemeni Rial received for 1,000 GBP||308,594 YER||311,081 YER|
|Transfer time||Minutes||1 day|
|Transfer options||Online or branch transfer with a cash pickup at an agent.||Online or branch transfer with a cash pickup at an agent.|
|Difference in YER||2,487 YER|
How do I compare money transfer companies when sending money to Yemen?
Keep in mind these factors when comparing transfer providers:
- Exchange Rates. It is advisable to view the different exchange rates offered by money transfer companies like Moneygram, Western Union and Xpress Money as it varies according to each one’s exchange rate calculator.
- Pickup Methods. Cash pickup locations are plentiful in Yemen. When transferring money to a bank account in Yemen, first make sure the bank and service you are considering support a money transfer to that bank account.
- Fees. The fees when sending money to Yemen are higher than usual fees, but don’t vary too much between the available services. Consider the exchange rate along with the fee to get the best deal.
- Turnaround Time. Will the funds be available for your beneficiary in minutes, or will they take several working days to arrive?
- Transfer Methods. Can transfers be placed online, over the phone, by visiting a branch and/or by using a mobile app?
- 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, or does the company only provide one-time orders?
- Minimum/Maximum Transfer Amounts. What is the minimum transfer limit imposed by each company, and will this affect the size of your transfer?
- Customer Service. What sort of customer support is offered and during what hours can you receive assistance?
Foreign exchange rates explained
The exchange rate determines how much one country’s currency is worth in another currency. When a country’s currency is strong, it will yield more money when exchanging it in a country with a weak currency. For example, in December 2016, the pound was worth approximately 26 Mexican pesos. However, most countries’ exchange rates are flexible, which means it can change from moment to moment. Factors that influence the exchange rate include interest rates, economic stability and inflation.
Ways to send money to Yemen from the UK
- Bank transfers. Some major banks offer wire transfers to Yemen.
- Money transfer providers. Online providers like TransferWise and WorldRemit can help you transfer money quickly and easily.
- Transfer companies with cash pickup. Providers like Western Union and MoneyGram offer this service — your recipient can sometimes pick up the cast within minutes.
Banks vs. money transfer companies or services
We use our banks to take care of all our other financial needs, so surely we should use them when we need to send an international money transfer, right? Not necessarily. While major UK banks offer money transfer services, they usually offer less competitive exchange rates coupled with high transfer fees.
You can often save money by using the services of a dedicated money transfer company. These providers specialize in handling overseas money transfers, offering attractive exchange rates and affordable transfer fees. This translates to big savings for you.
Helpful tips for picking up cash in Yemen
Whether you’re picking up cash in Yemen or any other country, take a safety-first approach. Use common sense, such as keeping your cash hidden and depositing it with your bank as soon as possible. Taking a friend along with you to collect the funds is also a good idea.
Ask an Expert