International money transfers with cash pickups

Need to send cash to a friend or relative overseas as quickly as possible? Here’s how to do it without breaking the bank.

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If you need to send money overseas to loved ones who don't have a bank account, look for a money transfer specialist that offers cash pickups. These types of transfers are secure and fast, with pickups available worldwide in minutes. But watch for higher fees and weaker exchange rates than deposit transfers.

Send money overseas with MoneyGram

MoneyGram sends to bank accounts, mobile wallets and cash pick-up locations around the world.

  • More than 350,000 agent locations worldwide
  • Fast transfer
  • Cash pick-up specialists
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Compare services that offer cash pickup

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
AUD 1 Same day AUD 3.99 0.766 USD
763
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
AUD 2 1 - 2 days AUD 15.00 0.745 USD
734
Ria lets you send money to 130+ countries with cash pick-up at 240,000 locations. Show details
AUD 1 Within an hour AUD 2.99 0.745 USD
743
MoneyGram has fast cash pick-up transfers to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide. Go to site Show details
AUD 1 Same day AUD 20.00 0.742 USD
727
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries around the world. Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

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

How does a cash pickup work?

A cash pickup allows your recipient to pick up their money in cash from a physical location, instead of through a digital deposit into a bank account. The process varies by company but typically requires four steps:

  1. Place your order. You submit your recipient's contact information, the amount you're looking to send and other details at a money transfer company's storefront or through its site. Some specialists require you to choose a specific location for pickup. Take care entering your recipient's name as shown on their ID to avoid issues with pickup.
  2. Wait for processing. Turnaround varies by company, but most expedite cash pickups. You receive a transfer reference number once processed that your recipient can use for pickup — and that you can use to track the progress of your transfer.
  3. Pickup cash. Armed with your transfer reference number and an ID, your recipient picks up their cash at the location you've specified or at a convenient location in the company's network.
  4. Get confirmation. After your recipient picks up the money transfer, you may receive a text or email confirming the time and location of the pickup. Or track the transfer with the transfer reference number your company provided with your order.

Cash pickup providers

The best-known providers of cash pickups are Western Union and MoneyGram. Western Union allows you to send money online or in person at more than 500,000 locations in over 200 countries. MoneyGram also offers online and in-person transfers to more than 200 countries, with some 350,000 agent locations around the globe.

Some providers allow you to process a money transfer without a bank account. This is especially useful for the unbanked and underbanked, because you can take cash into a physical location for sending around the world.

Other digital providers like WorldRemit offers cash pickups at select bank branches in countries worldwide.

If you're the intended recipient of a transfer, look for a money transfer near you.

How to compare services that let you pick up cash

Weighing the pros and cons of a cash pickup against your recipient's needs:

  • Exchange rates. Nearly all providers skew exchange rates for a profit. Compare the rate you’re offered to the mid-market rate — the rate banks and transfer services use when they trade among themselves — and look for the smallest margin between them.
  • Fees. Does the provider charge a flat fee or a percentage of your transfer? Do the fees vary by method of payment? If you’re sending a large amount, will you qualify for a fee-free transfer?
  • Pickup locations. How many agent locations are in the area you're planning to send money to? Make sure the location and operating hours are convenient for your recipient.
  • Transfer speed. How long will it take for the money you send to be available for your recipient to collect? If you need to send an emergency transfer, can the cash be ready for pickup within minutes?
  • Payment methods. Can you pay with cash, credit or debit card or a bank account transfer?
  • Transfer methods. Can you initiate the transfer online, by phone or with an agent? Does the provider offer an online app?
  • Customer support. Most companies offer help through live chat, by phone, in person or through email. Make sure help is available if you need it.

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What are the pros and cons of picking up cash?

Pros

  • Fast turnaround. Cash pickups offer an incredibly quick way to send money overseas — some for pick up within minutes.
  • Plenty of choice. Several trusted companies operate in the money transfer industry, giving you the freedom to shop around for a better deal.
  • Safe and secure. Providers like Western Union and MoneyGram offer safe, reliable international transfers.
  • Convenient. Picking up cash from a transfer agent makes it simple and convenient for your recipient to access the funds you send.

Cons

  • Transfer fees. You'll often pay more for a cash pickup over a transfer deposited into your recipient's bank account. Confirm the fees you face before handing over your cash.
  • Weak exchange rates. Exchange rates on cash transfers can be weaker than those you'd receive from an online money transfer specialist — and even a small difference in rates can mean a lot less money received by friends and family. Compare the exchange rate you're offered against the mid-market rate before making your decision.
  • Untrustworthy providers. Compare reputable providers to avoid issues with order and delivery.
  • Risk of theft. In some parts of the world, carrying cash requires precautions to minimise risk of theft.

Tips for picking up money in person

No matter where you are in the world, picking up cash from a transfer agent can be dangerous. Stay on your toes with five easy tips:

  • Avoid unsafe areas. Find a location that's safe and convenient.
  • Call ahead. Confirm an agent’s location and business hours before visiting.
  • Bring a friend. Carrying money alone can be dangerous. Ask a friend to come along.
  • Deposit your money immediately. The likelihood of losing your money grows the longer you have it with you, so head straight to the bank after pickup.
  • Keep your cash hidden. Openly carrying cash could make you a target. Put your money in a purse or wallet before leaving the office.

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Frequently asked questions

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Important Information*
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Azimo International Money Transfers

Azimo sends money directly to a bank account or over 280,000 cash pick-up points. It also has fast transfers to 50+ countries.

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TorFX International Money Transfers

TorFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. Conditions apply.
TorFX sends money overseas in 30+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.

Logo for Send International Money Transfers
Send International Money Transfers

Send guarantees to match any competitor’s exchange rate. T&Cs apply.
Fee-free transfers in 30+ currencies to over 200 countries.

Logo for WorldFirst International Money Transfers
WorldFirst International Money Transfers

Better exchange rates for Finder customers.
WorldFirst sends 60+ currencies at competitive rates with no fees. If you find a better eligible quote, WorldFirst will beat it.

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10 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    CaseySeptember 3, 2016

    Is there any age policies?
    What age do you have to be, to be able to transfer money overseas?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleySeptember 6, 2016Staff

      Hi Casey,

      Thanks for your question.

      You will need to be over 18. If under the age of 18, you’ll need to be accompanied by a parent or guardian if you’re sending it in person. If doing it online, you will need a parent or guardian to do it for you.

      Hope this helps.

    Default Gravatar
    GabrielleJanuary 21, 2016

    How can i use this service cox i need to send money to a friend, what are the details that will be given to pick the money, i need fast respond on this

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyJanuary 22, 2016Staff

      Hi Gabrielle,

      Thanks for your question.

      Please click on ‘Go to site’ and follow the prompts to initiate the transfer. You’ll need the details of your recipient bank to complete the process, such as their IBAN or SWIFT number, BSB and account number.

      Cheers,
      Shirley

    Default Gravatar
    rubieSeptember 5, 2015

    how can i check the worldremit tracking if its right

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MarcSeptember 7, 2015Staff

      Hi Rubie,
      thanks for the question.

      To find out the status of your transfer with WorldRemit, please contact them directly. We’ve published their contact details on our review page.

      I hope this helps,
      Marc.

    Default Gravatar
    lovelyJune 17, 2015

    hello how can i know if money is to be ready to pick up because i don’t get message from worldremit?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MarcJune 18, 2015Staff

      Hi Lovely,
      thanks for the question.

      If WorldRemit hasn’t sent you an SMS message it’s advised you contact them using the details on their contact us page.

      I hope this helps,
      Marc.

    Default Gravatar
    jacquelineMay 23, 2015

    someone send me in worldremit .. but im not sure if its already available to pick up now
    thanks

      Default Gravatar
      BelindaMay 29, 2015

      Hi Jacqueline,

      Thanks for your enquiry.

      WorldRemit will send you a notification with a transaction number and instructions of how you can collect the funds.

      If you have any issues collecting the money, please contact WorldRemit directly.

      Thanks,
      Belinda

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