Consumers have many different options for sending money overseas. That’s one of the reasons it’s difficult to point to a single best way to send money to India. The following list is not exhaustive by any means, but it will get you headed in the right direction.
Make an Informed Decision
Read on for a cross-section of the options you have for making money transfers to India. Each of these five options has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. The information below will help you weigh the pros and cons of each method and help you decide which is best for your particular circumstances.
1. Money Orders
For relatively small amounts of money, no method is safer or more affordable than using a money order. There usually won’t be any fees for the money order if you use a bank where you have an account.
One disadvantage of using money orders is that you have to go to the physical bank to purchase them. Fortunately, this inconvenience is small in comparison to the guarantee you receive that the full amount will be returned to you if the money order is lost. Most people use money orders when security is more important than convenience.
2. Wire Transfer
Typically considered the most traditional way to send money over long distances, wire transfers have now been used for more than half a century. Similar to money orders, you’ll have to visit a bank or some other financial institution to initiate a money transfer to India. However, once you begin the process of making a wire transfer, the money usually arrives in less than 24 hours.
There are two significant drawbacks to wire transfers as well:
- The sender has to pay a fee of between $10-$40 USD to initiate the wire transfer, though you should check with the agency you decide to use for exact information.
- There is very little security for people who send money via wire transfers. Unlike money orders, these funds are not refundable after being sent.
Paypal is the biggest online payment system in operation right now. One of the reasons PayPal has become so popular– and for some, the best way to send money to India– is that neither your credit card nor your bank account is directly involved in the transfer. This gives the sender a great deal more security than online money transfers offered in the past.
The biggest downside to using PayPal to transfer money is that the recipient sometimes has to pay a small fee. On the plus side, however, many business owners save time and money with PayPal’s many payroll software integrations. These integrations help business owners automate the payroll process from timesheet reports to direct deposit.
Transfast is similar to PayPal in one important regard– it aims for simplicity of use and easy accessibility. The process required for making a money transfer to India is fast and very intuitive. To get started, all you have to do is enter the location where you’re sending the money and the currency you’d like to use.
Transfast is also very convenient for the recipient. They’ve partnered with banks and other cash collection locations all over the world. This wide accessibility makes it very simple for the recipient to pick up the money you’ve sent.
The service is free for people who send money via their banking institution, but there is a fee for those who use their credit or debit card. The biggest downside to Transfast’s services is that it usually takes between 3-5 days for the money to arrive.
4. Personal Checks
Sometimes, the simplest solution is the best one. Here are the pros and cons of using a personal check to execute a money transfer to India:
- Personal checks are very safe because you write them to a single individual, and proper identification is required to cash them.
- Checks can easily be canceled if something goes wrong.
- Nearly everyone is familiar with the check-cashing process.
- Indian banks may or may not accept checks from foreign countries.
- The recipient is responsible for any fees that arise from varying exchange rates.
- Checks sent through the mail can take over a week in some cases.
Final Thoughts on the Best Way to Send Money to India
As you can see, there is no single answer to the question ‘What’s the best way to send money to India?’ As we said at the start, the best method depends on you and the recipient’s circumstances. While the notion of sending money to India (or any other country) can seem like a daunting prospect, the options we’ve discussed here will help to narrow your choices and put your mind at ease.