How to transfer money from Western Union to GCash - Full guide

Hannes Ausmees

Need to receive a payment through Western Union1 to GCash2 in the Philippines? This guide is for you.

We’ll walk through exactly how to transfer money from Western Union to GCash, plus we’ll introduce Wise as an alternative way to send payments to GCash in PHP, which uses the mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees.


How to send money from Western Union to GCash

You can have someone send you money from Western Union to GCash conveniently from most countries around the world. Western Union is a huge and established provider which offers easy ways to make payments online, in app and in person through a network of agents 500,000 strong globally. If the person sending you money is keen to use Western Union you can usually receive the transfer to GCash with a few simple steps.

Here’s how to claim Western Union in GCash, including what you need to do in advance, and the steps you need to take to get your money.

Western Union to GCash payments - eligibility

There are a few things to check to make sure you can get your Western Union to GCash payment smoothly. Here are a few tips:

  • Your sender will need to set up the Western Union to GCash payment using the same full name and phone number as you have with GCash - exact matches only3
  • Make sure you have the MTCU reference number for your payment - this can be given to you by the sender
  • Use your MTCU to claim your payment as soon as possible - it will expire within 90 days
  • If you enter the MTCU incorrectly 3 times you’ll have to wait 24 hours to try again - double check you’re entering everything exactly
  • Check your wallet limits to make sure you can receive the payment safely based on whether your account has been verified and which GCash products you hold4

How to transfer money from Western Union to GCash - step by step

Once you’ve got all you need to receive your Western Union payment to GCash you can follow these steps to have the money instantly credited to your GCash account:

Step 1: Log into GCash and tap Cash In

Before you start this step, make sure you have the reference number required from the person sending the money, and that the payment can be received based on your wallet balance and limit.

Step 2: Select Global Partners and Remittance

Follow the onscreen prompts to tap the remittance option.

Step 3: Navigate to Online Remittance Claim and select Western Union

You’ll see a list of remittance partners displayed and can pick Western Union as the one you want to receive funds from.

Step 4: Enter the amount you expect to receive and your reference number

Your reference number is also called your MTCN, and is given to the sender when they initiate the payment, as a security measure.

Step 5: Tap Next - your funds will be credited

As long as all the information entered is correct your money should be credited to your GCash instantly. If there’s any issue or if you’ve entered information incorrectly, you’ll be able to try again or submit a query ticket to GCash help.

Western Union to GCash transfer fees

There’s no specific Western Union to GCash transfer fee for the recipient5. However, your sender may pay upfront fees as well as a markup which is an extra charge rolled up in the exchange rate used to convert their home currency to PHP for deposit.

The costs for the sender when using Western Union vary greatly depending on the country they’re sending from, how they pay and the currency. If the Western Union fees are on the high side - or if the exchange rate used isn’t great - you could end up with less in your GCash wallet in the end.

Western Union exchange rate

We’ve touched on the fact that Western Union can include a markup on the exchange rate they use to convert the sender’s currency to pesos for deposit to GCash. What that means is that Western Union takes the mid-market rate and adds an extra variable fee to this, which can change depending on the currency involved and how the sender chooses to pay.

The mid-market rate is commonly used as a benchmark for comparing money transfer services, because it’s the rate that banks and currency exchange providers get themselves when trading on global markets. It’s also the rate you’ll see on Google. If the rate Western Union offers the sender includes a high markup, you’ll get fewer pesos in the end, compared to using the mid-market exchange rate.

Receive money from abroad to GCash with low fees and the mid-market exchange rate with Wise

Check out Wise as an alternative for receiving money abroad to see if you can save.

Wise lets customers send money around the world conveniently online and through the Wise app, including to GCash wallets. The person sending you money will pay only a low fee from 0.43%6, and the currency they use to pay will be converted over to PHP using the mid-market rate. That means no hidden or unexpected fees to worry about - and payments can be fast or even instant, too7.

The true cost of sending USD to PHP

Next time you need to receive a payment from overseas to GCash, have the sender take a look at Wise. You’ll get your money delivered to your GCash account conveniently - and the person sending may pay less overall. Everyone wins.

Send money to the Philippines with Wise


  1. Western Union
  2. GCash
  3. GCash Help - Cash in via remittance partners
  4. GCash Help - wallet limits
  5. GCash Help - Cash in options
  6. Pricing/fees: Please see Terms of Use for your region or visit Wise Fees & Pricing for the most up to date pricing and fee information
  7. Speed: The speed of transaction claim depends on funds availability, approval by Wise's proprietary verification system and systems availability of our partners' banking system, and may not be available for all transactions

*Please see terms of use and product availability for your region or visit Wise fees and pricing for the most up to date pricing and fee information.

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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