Western Union international money transfers review February 2018

Review: Western Union international money transfers – February 2018

Enjoy easy, flexible international money transfers when you send funds overseas with Western Union.

Western Union’s brand name and services are well-known in many countries around the world. For over 160 years, Western Union has made it easy to transfer money over long distances, whether you’re sending funds inside the US or across international borders.

Today, Western Union operates one of the world’s largest money transfer networks by providing customers the ability to transfer money quickly and easily to 200 countries and territories across the globe. With a four-star rating on TrustPilot, it boasts more than 500,000 agent locations around the world, 70,000 of which are in North America.

Product NameWestern Union Money Transfers
Min. Transfer AmountUSD 1
Max. Transfer AmountUSD 5,000
Transfer Methods
OnlinePhoneAgentInternational Money Order...
Transfer Options
Regular paymentsOne off payments
Transfer Speed
Minimum transfer time
3 - 5 days
Banking PartnerWestern Union (US)
Customer Service
PhoneChatEmailBranch...
Available CurrenciesAED, AFN, ALL, AMD, ANG, AOA, ARS, AUD, AWG, AZN, BAM, BBD, BDT, BGN, BHD, BIF, BMD, BND, BOB, BRL, BSD, BTN, BWP, BYR, BZD, CAD, CDF, CHF, CLP, CNY, COP, CRC, CUC, CUP, CVE, CZK, DJF, DKK, DOP, DZD, EGP, ERN, ETB, EUR, FJD, FKP, GBP, GEL, GGP, GHS, GIP, GMD, GNF, GTQ, GYD, HKD, HNL, HRK, HTG, HUF, IDR, ILS, IMP, INR, IQD, IRR, ISK, JEP, JMD, JOD, JPY, KES, KGS, KHR, KMF, KPW, KRW, KWD, KYD, KZT, LAK, LBP, LKR, LRD, LSL, LTL, LVL, LYD, MAD, MDL, MGA, MKD, MMK, MNT, MOP, MRO, MUR, MVR, MWK, MXN, MYR, MZN, NAD, NGN, NIO, NOK, NPR, NZD, OMR, PAB, PEN, PGK, PHP, PKR, PLN, PYG, QAR, RON, RSD, RUB, RWF, SAR, SBD, SCR, SDG, SEK, SGD, SHP, SLL, SOS, SPL, SRD, STD, SVC, SYP, SZL, THB, TJS, TMT, TND, TOP, TRY, TTD, TVD, TWD, TZS, UAH, UGX, USD, UYU, UZS, VEF, VND, VUV, WST, XAF, XCD, XDR, XOF, XPF, YER, ZAR, ZMW, ZWD
Exchange Rate UpdatesReal time

Pros

  • Low minimum transfer amount of $1.00
  • Option to send money in minutes
  • Transfer to a wide range of countries

Cons

  • Not the cheapest option depending on transfer location

Western Union provides a variety of options

Western Union helps individuals and businesses transfer money around the globe and right here in our own country. You’ll find many options for transferring and collecting funds, like cash pickup, mobile wallet deposits and more. You can even transfer money to an inmate in a correctional facility. And you can make your transfer online, through WU’s mobile app, in person or over the phone. The variety of options Western Union offers is unusual in today’s mostly online-based money transfer providers.

How much does it cost to transfer money with Western Union?

International money transfer fees vary depending on the transfer method you use. The best way to learn how much you’ll pay is to input your transfer details into the price estimator on Western Union’s website.

To give you an idea of transfer fees, here’s what you’d pay to send $1,000 to Mexico:

LocationFee
Cash pickup at an agent location$4 from a bank account; $15 with a credit or debit card
Deposit into a bank account$14

Sending the same amount to the UK would attract different fees, such as a fee of $2.99 for a transfer between bank accounts or $81 for a Money in Minutes transaction paid for with your credit or debit card.

Western Union exchange rates

You’ll need to take the exchange rate into account when sending money overseas. Western Union’s rates are updated regularly based on the market, and you can find out the rate that applies to your specific transaction by clicking Estimate Price at the top of the Western Union website.

Our experience transferring money with Western Union

Here’s what we found when we sent live transfers to Mexico and France through Western Union.

  • money transfer awards logo-mobileWestern Union would not accept our recipient’s Mexican bank account, resulting in an incomplete transfer.
  • Our funds were deposited into our recipient’s French bank account in a speedy 24 hours.
  • Western Union’s easy-to-use website allowed us to sign up and initiate a transfer in an impressive 3 minutes.
  • Through its Business Solutions, Western Union offers the flexibility of rate locks, forward contracts and recurring transfers.

We recognize Western Union as a winner of three categories in the finder.com Money Transfer Awards 2017: Best User Experience, Most Convenient and Fastest Transfer.

What types of transfers can I carry out with Western Union?

There are multiple ways you can send money overseas with Western Union, starting with the ease and convenience of online transfers. The next option is to initiate a transfer by phone, although you can also visit one of Western Union’s 70,000 North American locations for a face-to-face transaction using cash or a debit card.

With Western Union, your recipient can collect the cash you send by:

  • Cash pickup. Cash transfers sent online, by phone or in person are available for pickup within minutes at any number of agent locations worldwide. Transfers from your bank account can take one to three days to arrive.
  • Mobile wallet deposit. Funds sent online or from an agent location are deposited in minutes.
  • Bank account deposit. Expect to wait one to three days for funds to arrive if you pay with a credit or debit card online, while transactions from your own bank account online or by cash at an agent location take two to five days.
  • Prepaid card. In select markets you can have the money transfer loaded onto a Western Union branded prepaid card.

Learn more about Western Union and safety.

Pros and cons of using Western Union

Pros

  • Trusted provider. Western Union has managed domestic and international money transfers since 1871.
  • Huge network. More than 500,000 agent locations around the world.
  • Flexible transfer options. Whether you pay with your credit or debit card or a bank account for cash pickup or a bank deposit, Western Union can take care of your transaction.

Cons

  • Weak exchange rates. With weak exchange rates that can be nearly 5% more than the mid-market rate, you have cheaper online options.
  • High fees. Where some companies offer free transfers or low-fee transfers, expect to pay more in fees to transfer with Western Union.

Shopping for an alternative? See a list of other sites like Western Union for sending money.

How do I use Western Union?

Western Union offers several ways for you to send your money. You’ll need:

  • A Western Union account. It’s easy to set up a free account as part of your transfer.
  • Valid payment method. You can pay by debit card for Western Union’s fastest and cheapest transfer or use a credit card or bank account.
  • Your recipient’s name and contact information. If sending to a bank account, you’ll need the bank name and account number. If you’re sending a prepaid card for home delivery, you’ll need the address and phone number.
  • Your contact and payment information. The card number or account number and security information for the account you’re transferring from.

If your recipient is picking up cash in person, let them know to bring along a required ID.

The registration and transfer process

You’ll need to create a Western Union online profile before you can send funds online. It’s free to register with your personal contact information and details about your linked bank account or credit or debit card.

You can also initiate a transfer by phone through Western Union’s toll free number, providing the details of your transaction and your payment information.

If you prefer the security of a face-to-face transaction, visit one of Western Union’s 70,000 North American locations to transfer funds using cash or a debit card.

Steps to transfer your money online

Money transfer locations near me

Bottom line

Western Union offers plenty of useful transfer and cash pickup options when you need to send money overseas. Before you commit to sending your hard-earned dough, of course, you should always make sure to compare all the available options and find the best deal.

Frequently asked questions

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40 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    lynetteJanuary 25, 2018

    Hi, my sister in Pakistan try to send me money thru Western Union and according to her, WU Pakistan said that they cant allow the transfer of money from pakistan to Philippines because they are not yet registered to send money to the Philippines, is this possible?

    • Staff
      joelmarceloJanuary 26, 2018Staff

      Hi Lynette,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder. If Western Union already clarified that they can not send money to the Philippines from Pakistan, you can consider going to this link so you can weigh your options. If you need anything else, please send us a message anytime. :)

      Cheers,
      Joel

  2. Default Gravatar
    RachelJanuary 9, 2018

    I need to send cash to my dad from UK to USA. How much cash am I allowed to send?

    • Staff
      RenchJanuary 11, 2018Staff

      Hi Rachel,

      Thanks for your inquiry. Please note that we are not affiliated with Western Union or any company we feature on our site and so we can only offer you general advice.

      For Western Union UK, transfer limits vary depending on the transfer method you select. If you’re sending funds online, you can send up to £800 within a 12-month period without being required to prove your identity. But if you complete the process to verify your identity you can send up to £4,000 per online transfer. If sending funds from an agent location you can send as much money as you would like, as long as you don’t break any laws or regulations.

      You can get more info about Western Union UK from our finder UK site or click here.

      Best regards,
      Rench

  3. Default Gravatar
    StephenJuly 20, 2017

    I keep getting a warning exceed transaction limit. Is there an annual limit of money that I can send to the Philippines each year (annual limit). WU told me over the phone that it is a government regulation

    • Staff
      HaroldJuly 24, 2017Staff

      Hi Stephen,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      The amount of money you can send in each Western Union international money transfer varies depending on the method you use. But keep in mind, that some countries will set limits on the amount of funds your recipient can access. Should you need to know the limit for a specific country, please contact Western Union Customer Care.

      I hope this information has helped.

      Cheers,
      Harold

  4. Default Gravatar
    EdnaJuly 5, 2017

    How much does Western Union in South Africa charge if I receive £20O from Uk?

    • Staff
      HaroldJuly 5, 2017Staff

      Hi Edna,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      1. Click the “go to site” button on this page.
      2. At the upper tab selection click to “send money”.
      3. In “send to” section select the country
      4. Enter the amount you would like to send
      5. At the summary section you will be able to see the transaction fee they typically charged based on amount and country.

      I hope this information has helped.

      Cheers,
      Harold

  5. Default Gravatar
    FaizJuly 4, 2017

    hi
    how many transactions i can receive from Western union in 24 hours

    • Staff
      DanielleJuly 4, 2017Staff

      Hi Faiz,

      Thank you for contacting finder. We are a comparison website and general information service, we’re more than happy to offer general advice.

      It would depend on where you are going to send the money, as some countries set limits on the amount of funds your recipient can access. If you wish to know the limit for a specific country, please contact Western Union Customer Care.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Danielle

  6. Default Gravatar
    MaryJune 24, 2017

    What is the upper limit for funds sent to Cambodia?

    • Staff
      AnndyJune 24, 2017Staff

      Hi Mary,

      Thanks for your question.

      The maximum limit that you can send to Cambodia depends on the method you use when sending.

      Online – $1 to $5,000
      Mobile – up to $500.
      By Phone – from $300 to $7,499
      Agent Location – generally, no limits

      Kindly note though that is some countries, there are limits as to how much the recipient can access. Your recipient should directly contact the local Western Union office to inquire about the limit.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

  7. Default Gravatar
    TimothyJune 18, 2017

    how much does it cost sending $70 from Uganda to the Gambia?

    • Staff
      LiezlJune 18, 2017Staff

      Hi Timothy,

      Thanks for your question.

      It costs UGX20 to send USD70 to Gambia. If you want to compare your money transfer options to Gambia, you can do so on this page.

      Kind regards,
      Liezl

  8. Default Gravatar
    AngJune 17, 2017

    What is the least amount that I can send someone western union

    • Staff
      AnndyJune 17, 2017Staff

      Hi Ang,

      Thanks for your question.

      The minimum amount that you can send through Western Union online is $1.

      Cheers,
      Anndy

  9. Default Gravatar
    ZabiJune 11, 2017

    How often in a month i can send money for same reciepent or different receipent ?

    How often in a month i can send 5000 $ to same reciepnet or different reciepent ?

    • Staff
      ArnoldJune 16, 2017Staff

      Hi Zabi,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Usually, the daily limit is $5000 but some countries set limits on how much can be received. If you have questions about a specific amount you’re sending or a specific country, please call Western Union Customer Care at 1-800-325-6000.

      Hope this information helped.

      Cheers,
      Arnold

  10. Default Gravatar
    MaqgdyJune 1, 2017

    I received a letter saying that I have a large sum at the West Union Money Transfer Company. Is it true that I would like to clarify my name?

    • Staff
      AnndyJune 18, 2017Staff

      Hi Maqgdy,

      Thanks for your question.

      Kindly note that a valid Western Union transfer should have Tracking number MTCN. If the email you received has that information, you may directly get in touch with Western Union to confirm the details of the said transfer.

      Cheers,
      Anndy