Top 7 India Money Transfer Options

Domestic and International

including the UK, US, Canada, Australia, and Europe

There’s a lot of options when it comes to sending money in India or home to family from other countries.

Let’s make it simple!

>> Skip down to international transfers.

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For domestic transfers sending, if you are in India there are an incredible number of options. To determine the best option for you, start by answering the following questions.

  • Do I need to send a large or a small amount?
  • Does the money need to arrive in cash? (many people in the rural areas don’t have access to bank accounts)
  • How fast do I need the money to arrive?

For micro amounts, ₹5,000 INR/$70 USD and below, instant transfers via apps (GooglePay, WhatsApp Pay) and mobile wallets (PayTm, PhonePe) are fast and convenient. The apps are linked to your registered bank account and you need to set up a universal pin code for your transfers (UPI code). You can send money by simply selecting your recipient’s phone number and all transfers are instant with very low fees (free or below ₹5 INR). 

For smaller domestic transfers, ₹10,000 INR/$140 USD and above, most banks offer instant transfers with very low fees (usually free if you’re sending to an account with the same bank; ₹5-₹10 INR if it’s a different bank). 

Both apps and banks use the IMPS (Immediate Payment Service) method for these transfers. 

For larger domestic transfers, ₹200,000/$ 2,000 USD banks are again a better and safer option. (The apps and mobile wallets have a limit on transfer amounts, and larger transfers may be flagged, leading to unnecessary delays.) 

These transfers are done via the RTGS (Real Time Gross Settlement) system and take a couple of days to arrive. 

If your recipient needs a cash payout, opt for an Instant Money Order via India’s registered postal service. The money arrives instantly and your recipient can collect it from the local post office. 

Jump Links (International)

$300 USD = ₹20,000 INR, $7000 = ₹500,000 INR

Transfers to India from the UK, Europe, US, Canada, and Australia are typically hassle free because India is a popular currency transfer corridor.

But the challenge is choosing the right service from your location to get the best deal in terms of transfer fees, speed, and customer service.

Another important factor to consider is safety and security, which we also cover below.

Country Notes (to and from these countries)

Snapshot

Important Factors

  1. Costs
  2. Service
  3. Speed
  4. Safety and Security

Sending Cash Below $300 USD / ₹20,000 INR

If you’re sending smaller amounts to friends and family, you may need the money to arrive in cash.

Typically, Western Union (link to review) was the number one choice for decades because their agent locations are so easy to find (over 500,000 locations around the world). However, Western Union’s fees can be relatively high and transparency is not awesome. In addition to this service standards earn them 3.5/5 on trustpilot which is significantly lower than many of their competitors.

But good news! 🙂

Review of RemitlyNow new services like TransferGo (review) (from the UK and Europe) and Remitly (review) (from the US and Australia) make it easy to send cash to India in as little as 30 minutes – with low fees and little to no hidden fees.

If you’re sending cash from the US and don’t need urgent transfers, RIA works pretty well.

If sending cash isn’t a priority but you’d still like to send a micro amount, PayPal (international) is an easy, fast and reliable option (though rarely the cheapest).

Best Below $7000 USD / ₹20,000 INR

Review of TransferWiseIf you’re transferring amounts below $7000 USD and prefer bank-to-bank transfers, TransferWise (review) is an excellent option. Their affordable rates, transparent fee structure, and service coverage to send money to India they are hard to beat.

Another option to send money with affordable fees is CurrencyFair (review) – their P2P structure keeps transfer costs super low and often fee-free for popular corridors.

Other affordable and reputable options include InstaRem (review) and WorldRemit (review).

Also see TransferWise vs CurrencyFair and TransferWise vs WorldRemit

Best Above $7000 USD / ₹20,000 INR

Review of OFXFor those large transfers, OFX (review) is our top pick with XE (review) highly recommended if OFX does not work.

If you are in Australasia, Europe or the UK – TorFX (review) is a standout for exception customer service.

A couple of things to remember for those large transfers:

  • Choose a service whose fees go down as the amount increases
  • Excellent customer service, including phone support can be essential in the slight chance they are needed to help out
  • Registered and regulated in your sending country provides added layers of safety and service (even better if they have a physical presence)

Review of TorFXKeeping costs low and trusting there are no hidden fees is important but even more so as the amounts increase. The three mentioned are solid performers in all the important areas and they also get regulatory checks for larger amounts (like ID) out of the way from signup which usually means smooth, stress free transfers.

Country Notes (to and from these countries)

Need a quick overview and offers to save money?

To get the lowest fees do not miss the snapshot below.

UK

Review of TransferGo - Money Transfer ServiceIf you want to send cash “in minutes” from the UK to India, TransferGo is a great option. You’ll typically pay about £2 GBP in fees for a small transfer of £200 GBP (compared to £5 GBP for Western Union’s fees).

WorldRemit is great for same-day bank-to-bank transfers.

But if you want even lower fees and instant transfers or cash payouts aren’t necessary, TransferWise’s rates are hard to beat. CurrencyFair also comes a close second.

For those large transfers, XE and OFX are great options as they’re both regulated in the UK (although XE does provide better exchange rates).

Europe

Review of XETransferWise has a great footprint in Europe and offers affordable transfers to India. However, you can only send money to a bank account and the funds take a few days to arrive.

For “instant transfers” to your family in India, Remitly and TransferGo and recommended due to their low costs, speed and coverage of India and Europe.

Looking to send a larger amount ($ 7000 USD/ € 6000 EUR)? XE has great coverage in Europe and offers excellent rates.

US

If you’re looking for an affordable option that can be transferred “within minutes” to India from the US Remitly (review) is a solid choice.

If cash payouts and instant transfers aren’t a priority, InstaRem (review) is another good option, with very low fees and transfers completed in a day or two.

For those large transfers, you can’t beat OFX’s exchange rate and fee structure.

Canada

TransferWise is our service of choice for amounts below $7000 USD/$9500 CAD, with transfer fees ranging between 0.6% – 2% of the transfer amount (expect to pay about $70 CAD – $100 CAD for transferring $9000 CAD, depending on your finding method), compared to 3-5% charged by other services and banks).

For amounts over $7000 USD/$9500 CAD, OFX and XE are great options, with little difference in exchange rates and fees (they’re also both regulated in Canada) with our top pick in OFX.

Australia

For instant micro-transfers from Australia to India, Remitly offers excellent rates.

For same day transfers to your recipient’s bank account, WorldRemit is our service of choice. TransferWise and CurrencyFair are close seconds with affordable fees and transfers completed within a couple of days.

For those large transfers ($ 7000 USD/$ 9500 AUD and above), XE and OFX offer affordable rates, but XE’s rates are slightly better.

TorFX is also an excellent option if you’re looking for exceptional phone support for setting up your transfer.

Heads up: XE, OFX, and TorFX are all regulated in Australia, but only OFX and TorFX have offices in Australia. For large amounts, this can be a huge difference in customer service.

Snapshot

Service Name

Countries

Online /Phone

Regulated (see Safety below)

Size of amount ideal for

Fees

Offers

TransferWise (review)USA,
Canada,
Australia,
Europe
OnlineUSA,
Canada,
Australia,
UK
Small
amount
0.6% – 2% of
the transfer
amount, no
mark up on
exchange rate.
See exactly what you pay here and compare
WorldRemit (review)UK, USA,
Canada,
Australia
OnlineUKSmall
amount
Flat fee ranging
between $3.99
and $24.99 USD
3 free transactions, use code ‘3FREE”
CurrencyFair (review)UK and
Australia
OnlineIreland,
Australia
Small
amount
Fixed fee + % of
transfer amount
Get your first 10 transfers fee free
Remitly (review)USA,
Australia,
Europe
OnlineUKSmall
amount
Flat fee +
margin on the
exchange rate
You can see what you will pay (desktop) or get the App for mobile – iOS or Android.
TransferGo (review)UK and
Europe
OnlineUK,
Lithuania
Small
amount
Fixed fee +
margin on the
exchange rate
(up to 3%)
TransferGo (opens a new tab use promo code “transumo” and all delivery options will cost zero on first transfer)
XE (review)UK, Europe,
Canada,
Australia
OnlineUK, US,
Canada,
Australia
Large
amount
No flat fee; only
charges a
margin on the
exchange rate
(0.3-1.2%)
Fee free transactions
OFX (review)UK, US,
Canada,
Australia
Online/phoneUS, Canada,
UK, Australia
Large
amount
Flat ($15 USD)
fee + margin on
the exchange
rate for all
amounts below
$10,000 USD
No Fees if you Register through Transumo

 

Important Factors

1. Cost

Cost is an important part of choosing a transfer service that’s right for you and the number one reason we recommend looking beyond your bank.

Typically, transfer fees vary based on the currency corridor, pay out method, how you fund your transfer, as well as transfer speed.

Making a choice based on what’s important for you makes the transfer process smooth and effortless.

2. Service

Apart from cost, a money transfer company’s features and scope of service, including track record of customer service, is another important consideration.

Typically, online only services are great for people who are comfortable handling all aspects of money transfer online or only want to send small or micro-amounts.

But if you need more assistance, especially when you’re sending large amounts, phone support plays an important part.

Service track record is also an important measure of how much support you can expect if you ever hit a snag with your transfer (for example, transfer delays, unexpected account suspensions, producing additional documents).

In our experience, TransferWise is known for exceptional customer service if you ever hit a bottleneck and OFX is great for phone support for larger transfers.

3. Speed

How fast you want the money to reach is also an important filter for choosing the right service.

And heads up: speed also determines your transfer fees.

In most cases, you’ll be required to fund your transfer with a credit or debit card for same day or instant transfers.

Services like TransferWise build these card fees into their transfer fees, but your card provider may charge you extra if you go with WorldRemit and Remitly. But if you want to send money home urgently, it’s well worth paying a premium rate (that’s still lower than your bank).

4. Safety and Security

All money transfer companies are licensed and regulated financial institutions and are required to adhere with many rules similar to banks.

Part of this means they often conduct regular audits to rule out fraud and money laundering, employ industry-leading encryption protocols to protect your data and money online, as well as conduct detailed verifications to stay within the scope of service and serve their customers better.

For sending small amounts, we recommend checking whether the money transfer company is registered in your sending country. For larger amounts, our suggestion is to opt for a service that also has a physical office in your sending country (this often also translates to excellent phone or in-person support with your transfers).

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