MoneyGram international money transfers in Canada


MoneyGram offers international payments all over the world. You can make a payment online from the comfort of your own home — or visit an agent location near to you, to arrange the transfer.

Your money can be sent directly to your recipient’s bank account or mobile wallet — or if they want to collect the payment in cash, they can visit an agent location in their area to do so.

If you’re considering using MoneyGram to send money to friends or family overseas, or make an international payment for any reason, you’ll want to know how the service works — and what it’ll cost you. Here’s all you need to know, to make sure you find the right international payment provider for you.

How do you send money with MoneyGram?

You can send money with MoneyGram either online, or by visiting an agent location. You’ll need to provide some information about the person you’re sending money to, and also about yourself, so your identity can be verified.

Step by step

To send money online, you’ll need to take the following steps:

  • Go to the MoneyGram website, and select the Send Money option
  • Here you’ll have to select the country your recipient is in, and give their full name. Their name must be spelled in the same way as it is on their government issued ID documents
  • Select how you want your recipient to collect the funds, from the options available. These vary by country, so you may be able to have the money deposited in the recipient’s bank account, sent to a mobile wallet, or collected in cash
  • Choose how you want to pay for the transfer, check you’re happy with the fees applied, and make the payment
  • You may need to answer some security questions to verify your identity
  • If you’re sending to a bank account, you’ll have to give the recipient’s bank details. If the money will be collected in person you will receive a reference number which you need to give to your recipient so they can get their cash. They’ll also need to bring their ID.

To send money in person:

  • Find a convenient MoneyGram agent location near you, and go along with your government issued ID and the cash you want to send
  • Give the agent the recipient’s location and full name - you can then check how the money can be received in the specific country, including collection in cash, or a payment to a mobile wallet or bank
  • Pay for the transfer and fees, after checking you think the costs are fair
  • If your money is to be collected in cash, you’ll be given a reference number, which your recipient will need to take to an agent location with ID, to collect their money. If the payment will go direct to a bank account or mobile wallet, you’ll need to give the account details to the agent to have the payment processed

Different ways to send and receive money with MoneyGram.

If you choose to arrange an international transfer with MoneyGram you have a few options.

You can send money:

  • Online with the MoneyGram website
  • In person at an agent location

You can receive money:

  • Paid direct to you bank account
  • By collecting cash in the local currency, in person, at an agent location
  • Paid to a mobile wallet if available in your home country

Where can you send money to with MoneyGram

You can use MoneyGram to send money to over 200 countries around the world. To check which services are available in the country you need to send money to, you can model the payment, and estimate the fees, on the MoneyGram website.

Of course, before you choose an international payment service, you’ll want to know about the costs of the service, to make sure it’s a good deal for you. Read on to learn about the charges and fees you need to understand.

International MoneyGram transfer - how much does it cost?

The first thing you’ll do when you start to arrange a payment with MoneyGram is model the payment and check over the fees. It’s good to know that the costs vary a lot depending on how you want to make the transfer, and how it will be received. Here are some of the fees you’ll need to consider.

MoneyGram international transfer Fee
Transfer fee The fee varies according to the amount you’re sending, the destination country, how you choose to pay, and the payment route you choose. Sending a CAD990 bank transfer to the UK will cost CAD5 - while sending the same amount at an agent location could cost CAD50
Exchange rate markup It’s common for banks and international transfer services to add a markup on the exchange rate they offer. Here’s how Moneygram explain this markup in their terms and conditions: “Any difference in the Exchange Rate disclosed to you and the exchange rate received by MoneyGram will be kept by MoneyGram (and/or its Agents in some cases) in addition to any Transfer Fee.”
Other fees Fees could also be added to your transfer by your bank or credit card company. Here’s what Moneygram Canada say about this in their terms and conditions: “The provider of your Payment Method may impose additional fees in connection with your use, or attempted use, of your Payment Method to make payment for a Transfer.” It is possible that there will be other fees added, such as those associated with the SWIFT network, or charges by the recipient’s bank. Here’s MoneyGram’s terms and conditions again: “Fees imposed by such provider or by any other person not directly a party to the Transfer, such as the Receiver's financial institution, may not be reflected in any pre-payment disclosure or on the Receipt”

MoneyGram exchange rates

As we mentioned above, MoneyGram say the following as part of their terms and conditions:

“Any difference in the Exchange Rate disclosed to you and the exchange rate received by MoneyGram will be kept by MoneyGram (and/or its Agents in some cases) in addition to any Transfer Fee.”

What that means is that MoneyGram - like many other banks and international payment services - add a markup to the exchange rate they offer their customers. Instead of using the mid-market rate, which is the one you’d find on Google or using an online currency converter, MoneyGram takes this rate and adds a margin. The exchange rate calculated with the margin is offered to their customers. That margin - or markup - is then kept by MoneyGram or their agents. That may not be the most transparent, as it’s essentially another fee and one, that is not easily recognisable as such. For many people it may mean that they pay more than they need to for their transfer - as they don’t realise they need to be looking at not only the fees, but how much currency they are receiving for what they pay.

It’s always smart to compare rates on offer from MoneyGram and other international payment providers to make sure you’re getting a good deal. Remember to compare the amount that you will be receiving for the same amount of dollars, that you pay in, to understand where you can get the best deal.

One great place to start your comparison is Wise. Transferwise offers the real mid-market rate to their customers, so all international payments are made using the best exchange rate out there, and with just a small upfront fee to pay. That makes it much easier to see the true cost of your transfer, and can save you a lot of money.

If you’re a regular traveller or make international payments frequently, a borderless multi-currency account from Wise might net you an even better deal. You can hold your money in over 40 different currencies all in the same account, make international payments using the real exchange rate, and switch between currencies for just a small fee whenever you need to. With no opening or maintenance fees, it’s definitely worth a try.

Tracking MoneyGram payments

You can track a payment you’ve made, or one you’re expecting to receive, online. You’ll need to either log into your account if you have one, or use the Track a Transfer tool if you are expecting to receive money. To see where your money is you need to enter the authorization or reference number for the transaction.

Are there any limits or restrictions?

To check out the limit for the country you want to send money to, you’ll need to go to the MoneyGram website and model the payment. We checked several countries and it looks like the usual maximum amount you can send is $990, to give you an idea of the range.

If you’re looking to send money abroad, you’ll have no problem finding a provider to move your money - but finding the best available deal will take a little research. It’s well worth checking out Wise for low cost international payments all over the world, and seeing if the multi-currency borderless account might save you time and money when making payments abroad. Good luck in finding the perfect transfer service for you!


All sources checked 17 December 2018


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This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.

We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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