Alternatives to Western Union

Need a cheaper alternative for sending cash transfers?


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Western Union has tons of locations and a convenient cash pick-up option, but it’s not the cheapest option out there and you may be better off using a different money transfer company. Here are some other options to consider.

Why is Western Union so popular?

Around for more than 160 years, Western Union is one of the oldest and most recognisable names in money transfers. Available in 200 countries and territories across the globe and with more than 500,000 agent locations worldwide, money pickups are easy and accessible.


  • Low minimum transfer of £1
  • Send money in minutes
  • Transfer to a wide range of countries
  • Cash pick-up


  • Can be more expensive than other transfer companies
  • High fees and unfavourable exchange rates can take a bite out of your money transfer
Alternatives to Western Union

1. TorFX

TorFX is a money exchange and transfer company that focuses on getting your funds where they need to go quickly. Unlike other services, it requires funds to be cleared by individuals who hold TorFX accounts. The money must be sent in advance before the transaction can be performed.


  • Competitive exchange rates
  • Free market news
  • Price match guarantee


  • Less competitive rates for transfers under £2,000
  • Can only send from bank accounts, to bank accounts

2. WorldRemit

WorldRemit provides a variety of transfer options, letting you send money from over 50 countries, and to more than 120 countries. It offers online, bank-to-bank and cash transfers. Similar to Western Union, the fees vary by country and situation.


  • Flexible payment options
  • Quick transfer process
  • Transfers to mobile wallet accounts
  • Cash pickup available
  • Mobile airtime account transfers


  • Fees vary widely and can sometimes be high

3. OFX

Like Western Union, OFX offers money transfers to many countries in a variety of currencies. But with higher maximum transfer amounts and no fees, OFX could be better if you’re looking to do business or pay for exports overseas.


  • Offer services to over 200 countries
  • Wide range of transfer options available
  • Android and iOS apps available for mobile transfer and tracking


  • Significant amount of transfer fee applies for some countries
  • Not the best exchange rate
  • No cash payment or pickup, only bank deposits
  • Transfer minimum of £2,500
  • Limited currency options
  • Not compatible with all online marketplaces yet

4. WorldFirst

WorldFirst charges no fees on private client international payments or business currency transactions. It also allows for large transfers with rates closer to the mid-market rate than Western Union. There’s an option for WorldFirst to help your business with its overseas payments, as well.


  • Competitive exchange rates
  • Spot contracts, forward contracts and hedging options available
  • Weekly updates on market exchange rates
  • Low fees


  • Small number of currencies available

XE Money Transfer logo

5. XE Money Transfer

XE Money Transfer is a service designed to help you transfer your funds to a bank in a foreign currency, send cash to your family, make investments overseas or facilitate international business transfers. It has no fees, and instead profits from currency spreads.


  • A trusted and established name in money transfers
  • No fees and competitive exchange rates
  • Offers limit orders, forward contracts and other features


  • Not available in as many countries or currencies as Western Union

6. TransferWise

TransferWise is a money transfer site focused on value for money. Uniquely, it offers mid-market exchange rates. However, it also charges fees of a fraction of a percent of the total transfer plus a flat amount.


  • Offers mid-market exchange rates
  • Apps for both iOS and Android
  • Straightforward fees


  • Transfers to bank accounts only. No cash pick-up option
  • High fees can offset the benefits of mid-market exchange rates

Travelex logo

7. Travelex

Around since 1976, Travelex is an international money transfer service in around 200 countries worldwide. In addition to money transfer services, it offers a range of travel solutions such as foreign currency sales and travel cards.


  • Forward contracts and other options can get more favourable rates
  • Will be competitor prices with a valid quote
  • No fee for transfers of £10,000 or more
  • Exchange to more than 45 different currencies


  • Exchange rates not always the most competitive

RIA Logo

8. Ria

Ria is the world’s third-largest money transfer service, with more than 240,000 agent locations in 130 countries. It’s known for its simple transfers, and aims to offer competitive fees and exchange rates.


  • Wide variety of transfer options
  • Good rates and minimal fees
  • Online price calculator simplifies money conversion


  • Cost-effectiveness varies depending on where you send money
  • Maximum transfer limits may be too small for your needs

9. MoneyGram

As the second-largest international money transfer service in the world, MoneyGram is one of Western Union’s biggest contenders. Its transfers and exchanges currencies in over 200 countries and territories around the world to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide.


  • Extensive global network of 350,000 agent locations
  • Secure and reliable
  • Fast transfers, with same-day service in many locations


  • Maximum online transfer amounts may be too low for your needs
  • Fees can be high depending on payment type and transfer destination
  • Exchange rates vary and may not always be the most competitive

PayPal Logo

10. PayPal

In addition to payment support for online purchases, PayPal also offers overseas transfers to more than 200 countries and territories. While PayPal is like a digital banking service, its rates are competitive compared with most banks and financial institutions.


  • Available worldwide
  • Offers recurring payments
  • Exchange rates fixed at 2.5% above mid-market rates
  • Clear transfer fees


  • Fees increase with amount transferred
  • Credit card payments incur fees of a percentage of the total transfer
  • Recipient also needs a PayPal account

Still looking for the right money transfer provider? Compare more options below

If the above options aren’t hitting the right notes with you, use the table below to find more options by entering the amount and destination of your transfer. Alternatively, learn more about Western Union in our review.

Table: sorted by a combination of service offering and the amount your recipient will receive

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
GBP 1 2 days GBP 20.00 1.129 EUR
TransferWise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.118 EUR
TorFX sends money overseas in 30+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000. Go to site Show details
GBP 1,000 Same day GBP 0.00 1.118 EUR
SpartanFX has fee-free transfers, a best exchange rate guarantee and personalised one-to-one support for every customer. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.118 EUR
CurrenciesDirect makes transferring money abroad simple with bank-beating exchange rates. Go to site Show details
GBP 5,000 1 day GBP 0.00 1.123 EUR
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace. Go to site Show details
GBP 2,500 Same day GBP 0.00 1.118 EUR
CentralFX's dedicated team will guide you or your business from first call to final payment. Go to site Show details
GBP 1 Same day GBP 0.00 1.123 EUR
XE has fast transfers with no fees and a range of foreign currency tools. Go to site Show details
GBP 10 Within an hour GBP 1.99 1.115 EUR
Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
Go to site Show details
GBP 5 2 days EUR 3.00 1.124 EUR
Special offer: Zero fees on your first 10 transfers.
CurrencyFair has bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
Go to site Show details
GBP 10 Within an hour GBP 2.00 1.123 EUR
First two transfers free for new customers.
Azimo sends money directly to a bank account or over 280,000 cash pick-up points. It also has fast transfers to 50+ countries.
Go to site Show details
GBP 50 Same day GBP 2.99 1.118 EUR
Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Conditions apply.
WorldRemit sends money to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposits, cash pick-ups or mobile top-ups.
Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

Disclaimer: Exchange rates change often. Confirm the total cost with the provider before transferring money.

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