You could be looking to find out how to send money to the USA for a number of reasons. Perhaps you’re an expat living abroad and want to send money back home to support your family. Or maybe you’re a foreign business working with freelancers and contractors in the US. Whatever your reasons, being informed about your options before deciding how to send money to USA is the best way to make sure you’re getting a fair and secure deal every time you transfer your money. Here, we’ll be looking at the fastest, cheapest, and best way to send money to the USA from anywhere around the world.
When it comes to deciding on how to send money to the USA, it is more convenient than ever with the rise of specialist money transfer services capable of supporting international transfers from hundreds of countries. Follow these steps to send money to the USA:
Step 1: Compare providers to find the best service for you
Our comparison table for sending money to the USA looks at transfer fees, exchange rates, payment methods, transfer times and more for your specific needs. Use this to find a provider that not only supports transfers between the two currencies you need but also provides the best all-round deal for your transfer.
Step 2: Register with your chosen provider
Most providers will be completely free to sign up to, simply requiring your name, address and contact information. In most cases, you’ll also need to upload a picture of a valid photo ID to verify your identity.
Step 3: Start your transfer
Set up your transfer by providing your recipient’s information (name, contact details, and bank account information if you are selecting this payout method), the sum you are sending, and your payment details. You should be given an estimate of how long your transfer will take to reach your recipient.
You’ll also want to ensure the transfer is set up to correctly transfer money from your sending country to US dollars.
There are multiple ways to easily send and receive money in the USA but these will largely depend on the provider you decide to use. Below you will find everything you need to know about sending and receiving money.
There are several options when sending money to your family, relatives, and friends in the U.S.
The US dollar is one of the most frequently used currencies worldwide, so it’s a fairly safe bet to assume that most major banks and money transfer providers will support a transfer to this currency.
It’s worth noting that transfers using your bank can often involve expensive fees for both the sender and the recipient – with many banks charging anywhere between $30 to $50 per transaction. Check out our guide to transferring money between bank accounts for more information.
Money transfer companies are widely considered one of the most cost-effective methods of transferring money internationally. When sending money with a specialist transfer provider, you’ll typically be able to find lower transfer fees, more competitive exchange rates, a variety of payment options, and a choice of ways for your recipient to receive your funds, from cash pickups to direct bank deposits.
In terms of the US specifically, being such a popular country for global remittances, you should find that most transfer providers facilitate sending and receiving money from this country.
The exact details you’ll need to send money to the USA largely depends on the provider you use. However, in most cases you’ll need to supply:
Some banks in the U.S. may require specific information and declaration of the funds transferred. Ensure you find out from the recipient in advance to avoid giving incorrect information.
There are two main ways you can receive money sent to you via money transfers:
Your first option is to have funds sent directly to your bank account in the US. This gives you the safety and liberty to start transacting right away and keeps the transfer process completely electronic. This is a good option for convenient, secure money transfers and is the best option if you are receiving a large amount.
Several online money transfers have such established networks in the United States that you can’t miss an agent location near you. That being said, Western Union, Xoom, WorldRemit and others do have limits on how much you can receive through this method.
Another option for receiving an international transfer often offered by providers is a transfer of funds into a mobile wallet.
Most providers will notify the recipient that their money is on the way. When the money gets to the recipient, they may be required to provide some information for verification purposes. This can include:
The recipient may also be required to identify the sender and the amount to be received. All these checks are necessary especially, in the United States as part of due diligence.
The best way to send money to the USA will largely depend on the way you want to pay for your transfer, as well as the country you are sending money from. That’s why it’s important to check you are using a provider that supports both locations and both currencies before starting your transfer.
Some of the best ways to send money to the US include:
Bank transfers are a relatively cheap and convenient way to send money internationally when you are using a money transfer provider. It’s worth noting that while bank transfers may have lower fees, they can sometimes have longer transfer times.
Sending money via your debit card is a quick and easy way to transfer money, drawing your funds directly from your bank account. This is usually a cheaper alternative compared to paying by credit card.
Paying for a money transfer by credit card means you don’t need to have the funds for your transfer in your account on the day the transfer can be made – although there or both pros and cons to this method of sending money.
Both fairly outdated ways of sending money, the United States Postal Service currently accepts money orders from 27 countries. Meanwhile, most U.S. banks accept international cheques but this method does have its limits and usually has long transfer times.
As a short case study, let’s look at the best way to send money to the USA from the UK and Canada. If you were sending £500 from the UK to the US, you have a number of options. The overall best money transfer operator at the time of writing for this transfer would be Azimo, with an exchange rate of 1 GBP = 1.353 USD, no other fees, and a transfer time of minutes. Your recipient would receive $676.58 in total.
In comparison, sending with a bank such as Barclays or HSBC would leave your recipient with between $20 – $30 less than sending with Azimo.
The fastest way to send money to the USA from abroad really depends on the more specific details of your money transfer, factors including where you are sending funds from, what payment method you select, and how much you are sending will impact speed. Using the comparison form at the top of this page, you can view the estimated transfer time for every operator that supports transfers between your country and the US – this will typically take anywhere from minutes to a couple of working days.
Sending money to a US bank account should take a matter of minutes with Xoom. Most major currencies only take a few minutes, while others will still take less than an hour. This is because Xoom specializes in speed, as the name suggests while operating in more than 70 countries. Further, many other money transfer companies have mobile app options.
Xoom easily and simplistically allows you to send money online to a debit card in a matter of minutes. Just keep in mind that if Xoom has a drawback, it would be the price. It is far from the cheapest option available to you.
To find out more, check out our simple guide on the fastest ways to send money abroad.
Equally, the cheapest way to send money to the USA depends on the following factors:
As another case study, if you were sending money to the United States from Canada, the cheapest option (as of December 2020) would be with CurrencyFair. If you were sending $1000 CAD, your recipient would receive $778.50 USD with CurrencyFair, who would give you an exchange rate of 1 CAD = 0.782 USD and a transfer fee of just $4 CA.
In comparison, sending with a bank would give you an exchange rate of around 1 CAD = 0.758 USD which would leave your recipient with significantly less.
To find out more, we’ve written a guide to help you find the cheapest ways to send money abroad.
Sending funds internationally anywhere will incur two main charges: a transfer fee, which can be fixed or a percentage-based fee, and the margin added onto the mid-market exchange rate. In almost every case, you’ll find that the cheapest way to send money to the United States is by using a money transfer service such as WorldRemit, XE, or Azimo.
A money transfer to the United States could take anywhere between 1 – 4 working days, depending on the sending country. This can depend on the provider or bank you are using to send your transfer, time zone differences, the day you initiate your transfer (for example, sending at the weekend or on a bank holiday), or even the payment method you select. Check out our guide for the fastest way to send money abroad.
Sending money anywhere else in the world is as easy as sending money to the USA. If you’re looking to send money to another country, here is the list of the most popular destinations.
Jonathan is the founder and editor of MoneyTransfers.com. Jonathan is highly experienced in the currency transfer market, having previously worked in the FX trading industry, alongside being an avid traveller. Using his knowledge he identified a need for transparency and further education to help people save money on their money transfers, leading to the creation of MoneyTransfers.com