Western Union vs Ria

Take a look at well-known Western Union and growing international money transfer service Ria side by side.

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Western Union is a well-known, established money transfer service with an extensive network across the globe. Meanwhile, Ria is a relative newcomer to the market but offers competitive rates to save you money. We compare what the two look like next to each other in terms of delivery speed, fees and exchange rates.

Compare Western Union vs Ria

1 - 2 of 2
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer) Learn More
Western Union
Within minutes
From $0

View details
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries around the world.
Ria Money Transfers
Within minutes
$0 for new customers or $2.89 fee per transaction (online only)

View details
$0 fee for new customers with code ‘HelloRia’
Ria lets you send money to 165+ countries with cash pick-up at 507,000 locations.
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How they work

Western Union and Ria work in similar ways. They both offer diverse money transfer options including bank transfers and sending money for cash pickup. Western Union is the more established of the two, so can offer an extensive network and fast delivery speeds. But Ria is not far behind, with agent locations in over 165 countries.

The fees and rates used in this comparison are accurate as of 26 April 2022.

Which has lower fees?

Western Union

Western Union's fees vary depending on how much you're transferring, how you're sending it and where you're sending it to. Agent location fees aren't typically posted online, but Western Union's online fees are different for nearly every country it sends to. You can use its "Price Estimator" tool on its website to check the exchange rate and fee for your specific transaction.

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Ria

For new customers, transfers are fee-free. If you are already a customer, Ria charges a flat $2.89 fee for online transfers to any country, any amount. However, keep in mind that fees vary between online and agent locations.

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Winner: Ria

With its flat transfer fee for any country, Ria's fees are generally cheaper across the board.

Let's crunch the numbers: Sending $300 and $4,000 to New Zealand

Let's look at an example to put this into context better. We're going to go through what two different transfers look like with Ria and Western Union. In this scenario, we're going to pay with a credit card (which means higher fees than with a bank transfer), and we're going to send the money to a cash pick-up location.

Keep in mind that other currencies will have different fees and transfer times.

Sending $300 to New Zealand
Western UnionRia
Transfer fee$0$2.89
Exchange rateAUD$1 = NZD$1.0651AUD$1 = NZD$1.07
Transfer speedInstantInstant
Total dollars receivedNZD$319.53NZD$321.03
Receiver getsNZD$1.50 lessNZD$1.50 more
Sending $4,000 to New Zealand
Western UnionRia
Transfer fee$0$2.89
Exchange rateAUD$1 = NZD$1.0760AUD$1 = NZD$1.08
Transfer speedInstantInstant
Total dollars receivedNZD$4,303.83NZD$4,326.10
Receiver getsNZD$22.27 lessNZD$22.27 more

For both of these transfers, you end up with more money at the end with Ria. Ria's fee may be higher, but the better exchange rate makes up for this in the end.

Which offers better exchange rates?

Western Union

Depending on the country you're sending money to, a typical exchange rate at Western Union can be up to 6% above the mid-market rate. This means that if you're sending a large amount overseas, you're losing out on hundreds of dollars.

For example:

  • Mid-market rate: AUD$1 = PHP37.56
  • Western Union's exchange rate: AUD$1 = PHP37.4726

This is a margin of 0.23%.

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Ria

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

  • Mid-market rate: AUD$1 = PHP37.56
  • Ria's exchange rate: AUD$1 = PHP37.41

This is a margin of 0.39%.

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Winner: Tie

It depends on which currency you are sending as to what exchange rate markup you can expect. In our example above, both providers are pretty evenly matched.

Which is faster?

Western Union

Western Union's delivery speeds vary, depending on your transfer options. At an agent location or by phone, your transfer could be delivered in minutes (at higher costs). Your cheapest options could take five days or longer, depending on the country.

Ria

Ria's transfer speeds also depend on how you want to send the money. When you use your credit or debit card, or pay by PayID, your money should arrive in real-time. Cheaper transfers from your bank account can take up to four days.

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Winner: Tie

Both Ria and Western Union offer an instant transfer option as well as a slower, cheaper option.

Who offers better features?

Payment methodsReceiving optionsMinimum and maximum transfersTransfer speedsCurrencies
Western UnionBank transfer, credit card, debit card, cashBank transfer, cash pickup location, mobile walletMinimum: $1

Maximum: $50,000

Same day95+ currencies
RiaBank transfer, credit card, debit card, cash, PayIDBank transfer, cash pickup, door delivery, mobile walletMinimum: $2

Maximum: $5,000

1 - 2 days95+ currencies

Western Union

To transfer money online with Western Union, visit its site, enter the amount you're transferring and to where, and then confirm how much you need to pay for the exchange. Once complete, Western Union converts and delivers your money to a bank account, mobile wallet 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.

Is Ria better than Western Union?

Western Union and Ria are pretty evenly matched, but you typically end up saving money with Ria's flat transfer fee and lower exchange rates.

Looking for more options?

Our table below lets you compare services you can use to send money abroad. Compare fees, exchange rates and discounts from different money transfer services, and when you have made your choice, click Go to site.
1 - 20 of 22
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer) Learn More
TorFX
24 hours
$0

View details
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.
Send Payments
24 hours
$0

View details
Send guarantees to match any competitor’s exchange rate. T&Cs apply.
Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
OFX
24 hours
From $15

View details
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
Ria Money Transfers
Within minutes
$0 for new customers or $2.89 fee per transaction (online only)

View details
$0 fee for new customers with code ‘HelloRia’
Ria lets you send money to 165+ countries with cash pick-up at 507,000 locations.
Western Union
Within minutes
From $0

View details
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries around the world.
XE Money Transfers
Within minutes
$0

View details
XE has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
TorFX
24 hours
$0

View details
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.
Send Payments
24 hours
$0

View details
Send guarantees to match any competitor’s exchange rate. T&Cs apply.
Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
SingX
Within minutes
0.45%

View details
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.
Wise (TransferWise)
24 hours
From 0.35%

View details
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 50+ currencies.
Instarem
Within minutes
From 0%

View details
Instarem offers simple transfers with a flat 0.5% transfer fee for most transfers.
Remitly
Within an hour
From $2.99

View details
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.
CurrencyFair
Within minutes
From $0

View details
Special offer: New customers get unlimited fee-free transfers for their first 3 months. T&Cs apply.
CurrencyFair has bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
WorldRemit
Within minutes
$1.99
SPECIAL OFFER ✓ Use the code ‘4FREEFINDER’ to get 4 free transfers if you are a first time user. Eligible countries only.

View details
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.
MasterRemit
Within minutes
From $1

View details
New customers get their first transaction for free with code FIRSTFREE. T&Cs apply.
Send money in minutes at competitive exchange rates with this Australian money transfer service.
SingX For Large Transfers
Within minutes
0.45%

View details
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.
WorldFirst Business Transfers
WorldFirst Business Transfers
24 hours
From $0

View details
Open bank accounts in Australia, the UK, US, Canada, Japan and Europe. Send and receive funds with zero fees for large sums, including same-currency supplier payments.
Airwallex
Within minutes
$0

View details
Airwallex can help you make business payments to 23+ currencies using competitive interbank rates and no fees for most transfers.
TorFX Business Transfers
24 hours
$0

View details
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.
Send business
Within minutes
$0

View details
Send guarantees to match any competitor’s exchange rate. T&Cs apply.
Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
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Compare up to 4 providers

More guides on Finder

International Money Transfer Offers

Important Information*
Logo for Azimo International Money Transfers
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.

Logo for TorFX International Money Transfers
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 MasterRemit International Money Transfers
MasterRemit International Money Transfers

New customers get their first transaction for free with code FIRSTFREE. T&Cs apply.
Send money in minutes at competitive exchange rates with this Australian money transfer service.

Logo for OFX (Ozforex) International Money Transfers
OFX (Ozforex) International Money Transfers

$0 transfer fees for Finder customers.
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.

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