MoneyGram Money Transfers India: Your full guide

Wise
11.06.19
7 minute read

MoneyGram is the second largest money transfer provider in the world with over 350,000 agents in 200 countries¹. MoneyGram provides in-person and online transfers, and often promote their low transfer fees. But before you move your money with MoneyGram, make sure to compare rates with Wise to see if they really are saving you money.

This guide is to help you get familiar with MoneyGram, and to look at the benefits and limitations of transferring money with them. To be specific, you’ll read about:

When sending your money back home to family and friends, it is important to shop around to make sure you use a provider that gets you the most bang for your buck. Often providers can hide fees and charges where you can’t see them, so what your recipient gets is way less than you hoped. Wise makes sure you are informed about your options, even if that means you use other service providers.

Receive money internationally with MoneyGram

MoneyGram makes it easy to receive money in India. You can receive money in two ways:

  • Pick up cash at an agent location
  • Directly into your bank account

Let’s take a look at how it works if you are receiving money from abroad.

Sign-up and process to receive money with MoneyGram

If you are picking up cash, you can do so at any MoneyGram agent location. Before you go, check your local agent’s opening hours. To receive money, make sure you have the reference number from your sender and a valid photo ID. Make sure that the name on the transfer matches the name on your photo ID.²

You may be required to complete a simple receive form with the reference number once you are there. Submit the form and ID to the MoneyGram agent to receive the sent amount in rupees. MoneyGram also allows for money to be sent directly to your bank account. In that case, the money will be automatically deposited to your account.

Fees and charges for receiving money with MoneyGram

There are no charges or fees for receiving money through MoneyGram.

How much time does it take to receive money with MoneyGram

For a cash pickup, you can expect the transfer to be ready within 24 hours after the transfer was sent successfully.³

If you’re receiving the money in your bank account in India, the money can be there in as little as 3 hours, subject to banking hours and approval by MoneyGram’s verification system. This can also exclude weekends and holidays, but it will depend on your specific transfer.⁴

One of the money transfer options that work with your busy life is Wise. Using smart technology, Wise lets you move your money to loved ones completely online and straight from your phone. With the Wise app, you can send money anytime from anywhere. Over 4 million people around the world trust and use Wise.

Send money abroad with MoneyGram

You can send money using the MoneyGram website from your computer, or you can head down to the MoneyGram agent location near you. Currently, it is not possible to send money internationally from India with MoneyGram.

Sign-up and process to send money with MoneyGram

To send money using cash, head down to your nearest MoneyGram agent. Bring along your ID, your recipient’s full name, and the amount you want to send. Make sure you bring enough to cover the fees, which we will cover in a later section. If you are sending it to a bank account, bring the recipient’s bank account information.

You may need to fill out a send money form when you arrive at the agent. Once that is complete, give your form, details and applicable fees to the agent to process your transaction. You will receive a reference number which you will need to give to your recipient, especially if it is a cash pickup⁵.

To send money abroad with MoneyGram online, follow these steps-

  1. Visit moneygram.com and select India as the country you would like to send money to.
  2. Choose how you would like the recipient to get the money. For India, it will be either by picking up cash at a location or a direct deposit into a bank account.
  3. Enter the amount you would like to send and click to continue
  4. Next, you will see an overview of your money transfer, including the transfer fee, exchange rate, transfer speed, and payment methods. The payment method options are either by bank account or debit or credit card. Select the payment method you prefer (as mentioned earlier, if you do want to do it in cash, you will have to do it in person at an agent location)
  5. If this is your first time using MoneyGram, you will have to create an account; otherwise, log in with your email address and password.
  6. Complete the transaction information like the receiver’s full legal name, bank information and additional details that may be required.
  7. Review the transaction and submit.

Note that if you are in the UK and you are sending more than 800 GBP, you will need to upload a government ID to comply with anti-money laundering rules. Your transaction will be on hold until this is complete.⁶

If you are using a debit card, you may have daily limits by your bank on how much you can send. Credit cards may have the same, and the credit card company may also charge you a cash advance fee and interest charges. You may find it cheaper to use your debit card or bank account.

MoneyGram transfer limit

There are transfer limits for India, and they depend on what country the funds are coming from. If you are in the US, you are capped at sending $7,500 USD per transaction to a bank account⁷. If you are in the UK, that is £6,000 GBP⁸. You can check the transfer limit per your country on the MoneyGram fees estimator.

Cash payout to Indian nationals or residents is capped at ₹50,000 INR. If you would like to send more than that, it is suggested to send a bank deposit (keeping in mind the limits).⁹

Charges and fees to send money with MoneyGram

MoneyGram has different transaction fees depending on how much you are sending and your payment method. That in turn also affects how quickly your transaction goes through. The fees are also added on to the amount you send, not deducted from it.

If you are sending $1000 USD to India:⁷

Payment Method Fee Time to Process
Bank Account $0 3-4 Business Days
Credit/Debit Card $3.99 Minutes
Cash at a Location $7.00 Minutes

MoneyGram also sets their own exchange rate. This is lower than the mid-market exchange rate, which is the true exchange rate that banks and money service providers use themselves. For example-

$1 $1000
MoneyGram Exchange Rate ₹69.11 ₹69,110
Mid-Market Exchange Rate ₹69.68 ₹69,680
Difference -₹ .57 -₹570

Data collected on May 22, 2019

Part of MoneyGram's business model is to take a cut from each transaction by giving a weaker exchange rate than you see on Google. While it may seem like a difference of just a few cents, that can start to really add up when sending a few hundred dollars.

On the other hand Wise always offers the real exchange rates , so you’ll never have to second guess the exchange rate you get- the rate you see on your transaction is the one that you see on Google.

How much time it takes to send money with MoneyGram

MoneyGram is quick compared to other service providers, and depending on how the recipient will pick it up, the money is ready anywhere from 3 hours to 3-4 days if sent by bank account.¹¹

Check the status of money transfer with MoneyGram

When your money transfer is complete, you will receive an email letting you know that the money is ready for pickup. The email will contain the transfer reference number which is needed for the recipient to pick up the money with a valid ID. You can also track the transfer on the MoneyGram website with the reference number and last name.

MoneyGram customer support

MoneyGram provides a basic FAQ page on its site as well as toll-free customer service numbers to reach by phone. You can also email them at customerservice@moneygram.com for issues with your transaction.

MoneyGram has received a low score by customers on Trustpilot.com with a number of unsatisfied transactions¹¹. Wise has over 54,000 excellent reviews on TrustPilot. And while MoneyGram and Wise both offer fast transactions so your recipient has their funds faster than most other services, Wise is a completely online process. It also allows for transactions to be fulfilled on holidays or weekends, whenever is convenient for you.

The true cost of international transfers with MoneyGram

While MoneyGram does appear like quite an attractive option upfront, the costs of transferring with them can add up. Let’s look at the charges and the exchange rate difference on the previous example of $1000 USD sent to India:

Payment by Credit/Debit Card Payment by Bank Account Payment by Cash
Amount to Send $1000 $1000 $1000
Fee $3.99 $0 $7.00
Recipient gets ₹69,110 ₹69,110 ₹69,110
Total cost $1003.99 $1000 $1007
The real charges and fees including the $8 lost in the exchange rate $12 $8 $15

In this way, hidden costs, lower exchange rates, and fees really eat into your money. The amount being lost in the transaction ends up being more than it actually appears with MoneyGram. And while MoneyGram can still be a cheaper option than others, it is best to be fully aware of the true costs associated with sending money.

A cheap, fast and transparent alternative: Wise

Wise believes in transparency, so whether it is the exchange rate you get or your fees, everything is communicated to you upfront. So you’ll never have to take out a calculator to know how much is really being taken out of our transaction. Before transferring money internationally, always check for the best rates by comparing vs Wise, which can save you a lot of money on every transaction.

Wise can also be the better option when you are moving more than $7,500 USD. The maximum you can send to India is $1 million USD with Wise, so Wise will save you time and money on large transactions. If you do have any questions, feel free to reach out to Wise's customer support rockstars who are always ready to help by phone, email or chat.

Sources used for this article-
1 https://corporate.moneygram.com/about-moneygram
2 http://moneygram.in/how-to-receive-money
3, 5 http://moneygram.in/faq
4,11 https://www.moneygram.com/mgo/us/en/help/faq/sending-money
6 https://id.moneygram.com/?locale=en_GB
7 https://www.moneygram.com/mgo/us/en/
8 https://www.moneygram.com/mgo/gb/en/
9 http://www.moneygram.co.uk/send-money-to-india
10 https://www.trustpilot.com/review/secure.moneygram.com


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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