Send money overseas quickly and easily online or in person with Western Union.
Western Union is the world’s largest money transfer company. The service allows you to make quick and easy money transfers to more than 200 countries around the world, and it has been helping people to send money for over 135 years.
You can lodge a transfer with Western Union either online or in person, and transfers can be sent 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can send funds from your credit card, debit card, bank account or cash, to a bank account, a mobile phone or a prepaid card. And if your recipient needs cash fast, Western Union has more than 500,000 agent locations around the world where the cash can be picked up.
Western Union exchange rates
Western Union updates its exchange rates regularly in line with fluctuating market conditions. As you’ll see in the comparison table below, the company offers competitive rates when compared to banks and even online money transfer services. However, it’s important to remember that fees will also apply to any transaction.
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*Rates as at 9am on 4/11/2014
How much does it cost to transfer money with Western Union?
The fees for Western Union may vary depending on how much money you are sending and where you are sending it to. To help you work out how much your transfer will cost, the company has a handy price estimator on its website.
As an example, sending $1,000 cash to Argentina will incur a transfer fee of $70, however sending $1,000 to a bank account in the United Kingdom will only attract a fee of $10. Check the price estimator to see how much your transfer will cost.
Minimum transfer amount and available countries
Western Union international money transfers must be a minimum of at least $10, while you’ll need to visit a branch if you want to transfer an amount greater than $5,000. With more than 135 currencies available, Western Union lets you transfer funds to more than 200 countries. While no list of excluded countries can be found online, the company does not offer transfers to a few select countries such as Iran and North Korea.
What types of transfers can you carry out with Western Union?
Western Union offers a wide range of options when you want to send money overseas.
- Online transfers. You can lodge a transfer online via the Western Union website.
- In-branch transfers. You can schedule a transfer by visiting your local Western Union branch - the company has some 500,000 agent locations worldwide.
- Cash pick-up. Your recipient can pick up the funds by visiting a Western Union branch.
- To a bank account. Funds can be transferred straight into your recipient’s bank account.
- To a mobile phone. In select countries, Western Union allows you to deposit funds in a mobile wallet, which is an electronic account linked to the receiver’s mobile phone.
If you need help lodging a transfer, you can seek assistance by visiting a branch. Customer service is also available through an online FAQ section, via phone and through email.
The registration and transfer process
You’ll need to register with Western Union in order to use its money transfer services. To do this, you’ll need an Australian driver’s licence, passport or Medicare card for identification purposes.
Once your profile has been created, you can lodge transfers online or in person at a branch. You’ll simply need to supply your recipient’s full name and address, plus a credit, debit or prepaid Visa or MasterCard issued by an Australian bank. Of course, you’ll also need to be over 18 years of age.
Though funds availability can be affected by factors such as agent location hours, funds are typically available for your recipient to pick up within minutes.
Pros and cons of using Western Union
- Currencies available. Western Union lets you transfer funds to more than 200 countries around the world.
- Money in minutes. In many cases, your recipient is able to access the funds within minutes.
- Better exchange rates than banks. Western Union typically offers exchange rates that are slightly better than those offered by banks.
- Fees apply. Fees vary depending on the amount you are sending and where you are sending it to, but you’ll need to take them into consideration when deciding whether or not to use Western Union’s services.
- Rates could be better. You’ll typically be able to find better exchange rates from some online money transfer companies.
What other products and services does Western Union offer?
- TravelWise. This travel card allows you to send money to yourself before you depart on your holiday and then pick up your cash in the local currency when you arrive at your destination.
- Business transfers. Western Union Business Solutions offers a range of international payment solutions for small businesses and larger enterprises. It offers attractive exchange rates and the ability to do business with more than 200 countries.
- Gold Card. This speeds up the money transfer process when you visit a Western Union agent by storing the details and the information of those you regularly send money to.
Frequently asked questions about Western Union
How long do transfers take?
Subject to agent location hours, cash is available for pick up within minutes in many cases.
Is there an app available to conduct transfers?
Yes, Western Union has an app for iPhone and Android that allows you to transfer funds internationally.
Can I cancel my transfer?
This may be possible if the funds have not yet been picked up by the recipient.
How can I find out the status of my transfer?
You’ll be given a tracking number and can check on the progress of your transaction by clicking ‘Track Transfer’ on the company’s website.
Western Union provides a viable option if you’re looking to send money overseas quickly. However, compare the rates and fees this company offers with those of other money transfer services to find the right service for you.
The largest money transfer company in the world, Western Union offers a fast and easy way to send money overseas. The company allows you to send funds to more than 200 countries around the world.