Your full guide to using Western Union with SBI

Aman Saxena
14.09.21
3 minute read

Western Union has been a popular provider to send money globally, including to India.

If you have a State Bank of India (SBI) account or if your family does, read on to learn how Western Union can help you send money to and from India.

📝 Table of contents

How to transfer money from Western Union to SBI account

If you are outside India, you can send money to an SBI local Indian account using Western Union. There are 3 ways you can go about it:¹

  1. Online through the Western Union website
  2. Using the Western Union app
  3. In person at a Western Union branch

Let’s break down each method.

💻 Sending money online

You can create a profile online for free on the Western Union website to send money directly to a SBI bank account in India. Here is how to get started:²

  1. Register online on the Western Union website
  2. Head to the Send Money Online page
  3. Choose India from the country list
  4. Input the sending amount and check the recipient amount in Indian Rupees
  5. Choose either a cash pickup option or UPI for delivery in India. Make sure you have your recipient’s details ready
  6. Select how you would like to pay for the transaction
  7. Complete your transfer and you’ll get a receipt of your transaction tracking number or MTCN

Remember to check the exchange rate for the transaction and the charges for each different payment option.

Western Union sets their own exchange rates which is different from the real mid-market exchange rate that you see on Wise or Google.

The true cost of sending INR to USD

📱 Western Union App

If you prefer to get things done through your mobile, the Western Union app can be a good option for you.

With additional payment options and security, here is how to send money to your recipient with the Western Union app:³

  1. Download the Western Union app from either iOS or Android
  2. Register through the app to create your log in, which includes Touch ID
  3. Begin your transfer by choosing India as the destination country
  4. Select for bank account (you can also choose cash pick up if that is preferred)
  5. Provide your recipient’s SBI bank account information
  6. Choose from the payment options of credit, debit or from your bank account
  7. Receive your MTCN to confirm your transaction

If you do want to pay for your transaction in cash, you can start the process through the app and then make payment at a Western Union branch.

🏦 In-person at a Western Union branch

You can go straight to a Western Union branch to transfer money to India in person. You can find the one nearest to you using the Western Union branch locator. A Western Union agent should be able to help and walk you through the paperwork to complete the transaction.

Before you go, make sure you have the following with you:⁴

  • Government issued ID
  • A payment method, whether by cash or card
  • Your recipient’s bank details including IFSC code
  • Your My WU® number or your phone number
ℹ️ In addition to SBI, you can use Western Union to send money to almost 200 banks in India including HDFC, PNB, ICICI, and BOB

How to receive Western Union money in SBI account

There are 4 different ways you can receive money sent through Western Union if you are in India:⁵

  • Cash pickup at a Western Union location
  • Directly in your SBI bank account
  • Through Online banking if you have a Federal Bank of India account
  • In your Airtel payments mobile wallet

If you want the funds transferred directly into your SBI bank account, make sure to provider your sender:

  • Your bank account number
  • Your bank branch’s IFSC code
  • The purpose of the transfer
  • Your address and mobile number

Online SBI Western Union money transfer

Western Union lets Indian residents send money from India to a bank account abroad completely online.
By creating an online account, you can start transferring money from your SBI bank account. However there are some restrictions.

  • Transactions can only be paid from your individual savings bank account
  • You can only send the currency equivalent of $5,000 USD
  • Transactions for education have a limit of the currency equivalent $10,000 USD

If you are looking for an easy online option to send money from India, check out Wise. You can send up to ₹6,50,000 in a single transaction, which is more than Western Union allows for non-education transactions. ⁶

Save up to 3.9x vs SBI with Wise

Wise

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Wise is FCA regulated, and uses smart technology to make quick and cheap transfers to local bank accounts abroad. Wise can save you money and time on every transaction- and is free to sign up.

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Independent research found Wise to be 3.9x cheaper than Indian banks like SBIwhen sending money on popular routes from India.

Sign up today and see why over 10+ million people around the world use Wise to send their global money transfers.

How much money can I receive in Western Union?

The Reserve Bank of India limits the amount of money you can receive from Western Union at $2,500 USD at the prevailing Indian rupee equivalent.

But cash pickups in India are capped at ₹50,000. Any above that amount will be paid by local cross cheque. You can also only receive a maximum of** 30 transactions** through Western Union per year. ⁷

SBI Western Union money transfer branches

Western Union has 60,000 agents across India, with multiple locations in the major cities:

  • New Delhi
  • Mumbai
  • Bangalore
  • Chandigarh
  • Chennai
  • Kolkata
  • Cochin

Even if there are no standalone Western Union branches, you can find a Western Union agent at third party money transfer services. You can find the Western Union agent close to you with the branch location finder.


Sources used for this article:

  1. Western Union to send money
  2. Sending money online
  3. Sending money through the app
  4. In Person WU
  5. Receiving money from WU
  6. Online WU transfer from SBI
  7. Receiving amount

All sources checked as of 8 September, 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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