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MoneyGram vs Ria

We compare two competing money transfer services on fees, rates and speed to get you the best deal.

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We’re committed to our readers and editorial independence. We don’t compare all products in the market and may receive compensation when we refer you to our partners, but this does not influence our opinions or reviews. Learn more about Finder .

MoneyGram is a household name when it comes to international money transfers, but newer companies like Ria are offering competitive exchange rates to save you money. So how do they stack up next to each other? We look at their exchange rates, fees and transfer speeds to see.

The fees and rates used in this comparison are accurate as of 2 January 2019.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
AUD 2 1 - 2 days AUD 15.00 0.688 USD
677
Show details
AUD 1 Within an hour AUD 2.99 0.688 USD
686
MoneyGram sends to bank accounts, mobile wallets and cash pick-up locations around the world. Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers

The "Rate" and "Amount Received" displayed are indicative rates that have been supplied by each brand or gathered by Finder.

Exchange rates are volatile and change often. As a result, the exchange rate listed on Finder may vary to the actual exchange rate quoted for the brand. Please confirm the actual exchange rate and mention "Finder" before you commit to a brand.

Which has lower fees?

MoneyGram

MoneyGram doesn't have a fixed fee – instead, the fee changes depending on how much you're sending, what currency you're sending and what you use to pay. As an example, these are the fees for two $400 transfers to a cash pick-up location:

  • To Sri Lanka: $12
  • To New Zealand: $18

Ria

Money transfer fees with Ria also vary by payment method, country and the amount you're sending. The cheapest way to send money is by bank transfer, with a typical fee that's lower than $8. However, fees for credit card payments can be as high as $45. If we're looking at the same example as MoneyGram, the fees for sending $400 are as follows:

  • To Sri Lanka: $6
  • To New Zealand: $15

Trophy icon
Winner: Ria

Ria just manages to edge out MoneyGram when it comes to fees, offering fees that are generally lower. With both companies, keep in mind that paying by card will mean higher fees.

Let's crunch the numbers: Sending $300 and $2,000 to Thailand

To illustrate this a bit better, let's compare what the same transfer looks like at MoneyGram and Ria. In our scenario, we'll be sending two different amounts to a cash pick-up location in Thailand and will be paying with a bank transfer. Keep in mind that other currencies will have different fees and transfer times.

Sending $300 to Thailand
MoneyGramRia
Transfer fee$15$5
Exchange rateAUD$1 = THB21.75AUD$1 = THB22.20
Transfer speedInstantInstant
Total baht receivedTHB6,526.06THB6,659.40
Receiver getsTHB133.34 lessTHB133.34 more
Sending $2,000 to Thailand
MoneyGramRia
Transfer fee$45$5.00
Exchange rateAUD$1 = THB21.75AUD$1 = THB22.20
Transfer speedInstantInstant
Total baht receivedTHB43,507.04THB44,396
Receiver getsTHB888.96 lessTHB888.96 more

For both of these transfers, you end up with more money at the end with Ria. The difference in price for the larger $2,000 transfer is roughly $35.

Which offers better exchange rates?

MoneyGram

Depending on where you're sending your money, MoneyGram's exchange rate could be 0.6% to 10% above the mid-market rate. This is also known as the margin. Let's look at an example of sending money to Canada.

  • Mid-market rate: AUD$1 = CAD$0.96
  • MoneyGram's exchange rate: AUD$1 = CAD$0.91

This is a margin of 5%.

Ria

Ria also adds a margin to the exchange rate, from anywhere between 0.3% and 4%. The same example of sending money to Canada looks like this:

  • Mid-market rate: AUD$1 = CAD$0.96 CAD
  • MoneyGram's exchange rate: AUD$1 = CAD$0.92

This ends up being a margin of 4%.

Trophy icon
Winner: Ria

On average, Ria adds a smaller margin to the exchange rate than MoneyGram. This means your receiver will get more in the end with a Ria exchange rate than the rate offered by MoneyGram.

Which is faster?

MoneyGram

Delivery speed varies with transfer options. At an agent location, your transfer could be delivered in minutes (though with higher costs). In general, your cheaper options will take two to four business days for receipt. A bank transfer may take several days.

Ria

Ria's transfer speeds also depend on the method that you choose to send your money. When you use your credit or debit card, the exchange typically takes 15 minutes or less. Cheaper transfers from your bank account can take up to four days.

Trophy icon
Winner: Tie

Both Ria and MoneyGram offer an instant transfer option and a slower, cheaper option.

General features

Payment methodsReceiving optionsMinimum and maximum transfersTransfer speedsCurrencies
MoneyGramBank transfer, credit card, debit card, cashBank account, cash pick-up location, mobile walletMinimum: $1

Maximum: $13,750

Within an hour95+ currencies
RiaBank transfer, credit card, debit card, cashBank account, cash pick-up, door deliveryMinimum: $2

Maximum: $5,000

1 - 2 days95+ currencies

MoneyGram

To make an online transfer with MoneyGram, you go to its site, enter how much you're transferring and to where, and see how much you'll pay for the exchange. You also have the option of visiting an agent location, calling or using a mobile app to initiate a transfer. And once complete, it converts and delivers your money to a bank account or for cash pickup at locations worldwide.

Ria

To transfer money online with Ria, go to its site, enter the amount you'd like to transfer and to which country, and choose your payment and payout methods. On the same page, you'll see the exchange rate and transfer fee for your particular exchange.

Bottom line

While MoneyGram and Ria offer quite similar services, you'll often end up saving more with Ria's lower fees and better exchange rates.

Ultimately, you'll want to compare your options to find the service that best fits your needs.

Looking for more options?

Check out what fees and exchange rates some other money transfer services are offering with our calculator below.

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
AUD 250 1 - 2 days AUD 15.00 0.702 USD
691
$0 transfer fees for Finder customers.
No-maximum limit transfers with competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies. No transfer fee over AUD$10,000.
Go to site Show details
AUD 1 1 day AUD 5.20 0.709 USD
705
Pay no fees on your first two transfers, up to $3,000.
SingX offers the real exchange rate every time you make a transfer and can help you send money across the world.
Go to site Show details
AUD 0 Same day AUD 2.99 0.701 USD
699
Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Affordable transfers around the world with both express and economy options. Express transfers delievered in as little as 10 minutes for an extra fee.
Go to site Show details
AUD 1 Same day AUD 0.00 0.705 USD
705
Get fast transfers with no fees and a range of foreign currency tools. Go to site Show details
AUD 200 1 - 2 days AUD 5.00 0.708 USD
705
Exclusive: Use code FINDER10 to receive US$10 off your first transaction.
Quick and simple international money transfers with a flat 0.5% transfer fee for most transfers. Zero-margin rates on some currencies.
Go to site Show details
AUD 5 1 - 2 days EUR 3.00 0.7 USD
699
Special offer: Zero fees on your first 10 transfers.
Get bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
Go to site Show details
AUD 1 Same day AUD 3.99 0.707 USD
704
Use promo code 3FREE to send your first 3 transfers with no fee. Conditions apply.
An online money transfer service with cash pick-up, bank account to bank account and airtime transfers available.
Go to site Show details

Compare up to 4 providers


The "Rate" and "Amount Received" displayed are indicative rates that have been supplied by each brand or gathered by Finder.

Exchange rates are volatile and change often. As a result, the exchange rate listed on Finder may vary to the actual exchange rate quoted for the brand. Please confirm the actual exchange rate and mention "Finder" before you commit to a brand.

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