If you’re looking to send or receive money internationally, Ria is one of the options you can use.
First established back in 1987¹, Ria Money Transfer is now one of the largest money transfer services in the world. Using Ria, you can make and receive payments online, or arrange collections in person through a worldwide network of 447,000 agents in 160 countries¹.
In this guide, we’ll give you the complete lowdown on Ria - including fees, exchange rates and transfer time.
Let’s start with this - imagine you need to send £1,000 to a friend in France. How much will it cost to send GBP to EUR using Ria, compared to using other money transfer services? Let’s find out.
Here’s a quick look at the fees involved with sending 1,000 GBP to EUR using Ria, compared to another money transfer service like Wise. We’ve also included the exchange rate, which can make a big difference to the overall cost.
The transfer fee with Ria varies depending on how much money you’re sending and where you’re sending it to. The payment method can also affect the price⁴, with bank account transfers typically being cheaper while credit/debit card can be quicker. However, some credit card companies can charge a cash advance fee, so this is something to watch out for.
Ria Money Transfer claims that its exchange rates are ‘among the best in the countries we serve’.⁵ Rates can vary depending on the country you’re sending money to, and the currencies involved. You can check the rate before you send, using Ria’s price checker tool.
But while Ria’s exchange rates may be competitive, they’re not unbeatable. They’re also not the real, mid-market exchange rate that Wise uses. If you look at the table above, you’ll see that Wise offers a better rate than Ria for our hypothetical transfer of £1,000 to France. This is because Ria adds a mark-up on top. This is how some banks and transfer services make extra money from your transfer.
If you aren’t sure whether you’re getting the fairest rate, you can always do a quick web search or use our handy rate tracker to see the latest mid-market rate for your currency pairing.
It’s also worth noting with Ria that typically, rates for online transfers are more favourable. If you pop into one of Ria’s physical agent locations to arrange your transfer, you could find that rates aren’t as good.
If you want to get the best possible value for your international money transfer, Wise could be an ideal money-saving alternative.
If you’re ready to set up your first transfer with Ria, here’s how to go about it⁵:
- Sign up for a free account. This takes a few minutes and requires identity verification, but it means that you can login and go straight to setting up your money transfer next time.
- Check the price calculator to see the fees and current exchange rate for your transfer.
- Enter the amount you’d like to send, the country you’re sending to and select a payment method (bank account, debit or credit card)
- Select a collection method. This is how your recipient will receive the money, and you can choose from either bank account or cash pickup.
- Enter your recipient’s information. We’ll cover exactly what you need to provide in just a moment.
- Check the details and hit ‘submit’. Your transfer will be on its way to the recipient, and you’ll receive updates by email from Ria - including when your transfer has been reviewed and when your recipient gets their money.
Here’s what you’ll need to have ready in order to set up a payment with Ria Money Transfer⁵:
- The name, address and either an email address or phone number for your recipient, as it appears on their driving licence, passport or other government-issued ID.
- Your recipient’s bank details, including account number, sort code and IBAN (international bank account number). This is required if you’re sending to a bank account, but if you’ve chosen a cash pickup you’ll need details of your recipient’s preferred payout location.
If you’re a new customer, you may also need to have your own valid ID to hand in order to register for a Ria account.
If you’re sending a payment to your recipient’s bank account, they don’t need to do anything in order to receive it.
But if they’ll be collecting the cash in person from a Ria agent branch, your recipient will need to take a couple of things with them. These are a valid government-issued photo ID, such as a passport or driving licence, and the order number and PIN on their receipt. You’ll receive this when you confirm the transfer, and can pass it on to the recipient, or they’ll receive it by phone or email.
The name on their photo ID must exactly match the recipient name you provided when you set up the transfer.
The time it takes for your payment to arrive depends on the payment method. If you fund your transfer with credit or debit card, it can take as little as 15 minutes for the payment to be processed.
The method of receiving the money can also affect the transfer time when using Ria. Cash pickup is the quickest option, with the money usually being available the same day. Bank transfers can take longer, as banks tend to have different payment processing times.
In some cases, a transfer with Ria can take longer if the payment is flagged for a security review. This can take anywhere up to 12 hours, but most orders are reviewed within just a few hours of submission.
When you submit a transfer, you’ll receive a confirmation email from Ria along with other email updates. For example, you’ll get a notification once your recipient has received their money.
But if you’d like to keep an eye on the transfer, you can also use Ria’s Track a Transfer Tool⁵. All you’ll need is your order number, PIN or reference number from your confirmation email and you can immediately see where your transfer is up to.
To see previous transfers, you can login to your Ria account and look at recent orders.
If you need help or have a question, you can contact Ria’s customer service team. Here are your options⁵:
- Call the Customer Service team on 0207 467 2539 between 9am and 6pm, Monday to Saturday.
- Email email@example.com and you’ll receive a response the same day provided you get in touch within two hours of closing (6pm).
If you regularly send money overseas, you might find that transfer services such as Ria start to become a little too expensive. As we’ve seen in our example above, the fee and the mark-up on the exchange rate can make transfers with Ria at least €30 more costly than alternatives such as Wise.
If you don’t want to pay more than you need to, check out Wise. You can arrange one-off transfers for small, transparent fees and the mid-market exchange rate, or open a multi-currency account to manage your money across 50+ currencies.
Sending and receiving money with Wise is fast, reliable and secure, and you can even track your transfers on the move via the handy Wise app.
And that’s pretty much it - everything you need to know about making international payments with Ria Money Transfer. We’ve covered fees, exchange rates and how to make your first payment, plus alternatives such as Wise that could potentially save you money.
Just remember to compare both fees and exchange rates before hitting ‘send’ - to make sure you’re getting the best possible deal on your international transfers.
Sources used for this article:
- Ria Money Transfer - about Ria
- Ria Money Transfer - price calculator
- Wise - fees
- Ria Money Transfer - international money transfer
- Ria Money Transfer - faqs
Sources checked on 10-August-2021.
This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from TransferWise Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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