We compare WorldRemit against Western Union for international money transfers.
- Overall WorldRemit is better than Western Union for money transfers.
- WorldRemit is cheaper due to lower fees and better exchange rates. They also offer more ways to receive money overseas and pay for transfers.
- Western Union is a faster option for cash pick up in over 500,000 outlets. Plus they send money to more countries and offer higher maximum limits.
WorldRemit: 15 / 20 Western Union: 13 / 20
WorldRemit transfer fees are generally between $0.99 - $5.99 per bank transfer. Transfer fees between the US and Europe, Canada and Australia start from $3.99 per transaction. They can be as cheap as 0.99 per transfer in Africa and parts of Asia. They can be as expensive as up to $19.99 in Sri Lanka and the UAE but this is not the norm.
WorldRemit cash pick up and mobile wallets transfer fees are generally between $0.99 - $4.99. Airtime top ups and bill pay is free. Alipay in China starts from $2.99 per transfer. Door to door delivery in Vietnam starts from $2.99 per transfer.
Western Union’s fee structure depends on the country, currency and the way you send money to your recipient. You can choose to send money in cash for your recipient to pick up at a Western Union branch or through a direct bank transfer. Fees start at $5 per transfer and are cheapest with a bank transfer. They can reach up to $50 per transfer when paying with a credit card.
WorldRemit offers an exchange rate that is higher than the mid market rate 0.50% - 4.0%. To put these into perspective, the bank's currency exchange rate starts from around 5% above the mid market rate.
Western Union uses a retail exchange rate, which is much less competitive than WorldRemits. Western Union offers an exchange rate that is higher than the mid market rate. It generally starts 6% above the rate you in Google or Bing.
Overall with the transfer fees and exchange rates WorldRemit is the better option for international money transfers. WorldRemit is the cheaper option for money transfers because their fees are lower as a total percentage as the money transfer amount increases, due to the flat fee for bank transfers.
Speed of Transfer
Western Union Wins
Western Union often makes the money available within minutes to the overseas Western Union outlet for cash pick up. For bank transfers they can take from 3 to 6 business days.
WorldRemit offers to send money instantly through cash pickup, mobile wallet and airtime top up. Cash pickups are available in over 70 countries, mobile wallets are available in over 20 countries and Airtime top ups are available in over 80 countries.
WorldRemit offers same day or within 1 working day deliveries for bank transfers for a range of countries including the UK, France, Italy, Ireland, Spain, Kenya, India, Chile and Columbia.
Deliveries between 1 to 3 days are offered by WorldRemit. WorldRemit offers deliveries between 1 to 3 days for bank transfers to some countries like Australia, Germany, Canada, Brazil and Argentina.
Ways to receive and pay
WorldRemit transfers to bank accounts, mobile wallets, cash pickups, airtime top ups, bill pay, Alipay and door to door delivery.
Western Union offers cash pick ups at over 500,000 outlets, e wallets and transfers money to overseas bank accounts in over 200 countries.
WorldRemit will accept bank transfers, debit cards, credit card, prepaid card, Poli, Interac, iDEAL, Klarna, Apple Pay and Trustly. Payment methods will vary by country.
Western Union will accept cash at an outlet, bank transfers, debit cards, credit cards, BPay, Apple Pay for international payments.
Where can I send money
Western Union Wins
Western Union can send money to most countries in the world, they have a very expansive network. They have more than 135 currencies available and let you transfer funds to more than 200 countries.
WorldRemit delivers money to over 130 countries with good coverage in Europe, the Americas, Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Middle East. To see the full list of countries WorldRemit send to, read our review.
Western Union and WorldRemit send to 100+ of the same countries and there are 80+ countries that only Western Union sends money to.
Maximum and minimum limits on money transfers
Western Union Wins
With Western Union, you can send or receive as little as $1. You can send up to $50,000 to the UK, India, Hong Kong and Singapore from the US, $5000 to Canada, Mexico and $7,000 to China, France through a bank transfer.
You can send up to £50,000 to the US, Germany, India, Australia, £8,000 to Canada and £5,000 to China from the UK with a bank transfer.
WorldRemit allows you to transfer with no minimum transfer amount from the US and a maximum amount of $5,000 to the UK, Australia, Canada, Italy, India, Indonesia, Vietnam and Singapore with a bank transfer.
WorldRemit allows you to transfer with no minimum transfer amount from the UK and a maximum amount of £50,000 to the US, Australia, Canada, Europe, India, Hong Kong, Thailand and Singapore with a bank transfer.
Safety and trust
WorldRemit and Western Union Win
They are both safe and trustworthy to send your money overseas.
Western Union is the biggest foreign exchange company in the world. They are a public company, listed on the New York Stock Exchange. As a result, the company has a huge corporate governance team.
WorldRemit is legitimate and safe. It is fully regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which means they have to meet strong rules and regulations. It has served over 2 million customers last year alone. In addition WorldRemit has one of the highest overall review scores on Trustpilot, earning 4.5 out of 5 after 40,000 +reviews. To find out more read our full WorldRemit review.
WorldRemit is a well backed, licensed remittance company operating from the UK, which operates online only. Western Union is one of the oldest money transfer companies in the world, which offer in store customer service.
Overall WorldRemit wins because it is cheaper for money transfers, due to their lower fees and better exchange rates. In addition it offers more ways to receive money overseas and pay for transfers.
However Western Union is a faster option to send money for a cash pick up in over 500,000 outlets. It also offers more countries to send your money to and higher maximum limits.
Finally both WorldRemit and Western Union are safe and trustworthy companies to send your money overseas.
Ready to go?
Your currency knowledge centre
The 5 Best Money Transfer Apps Internationally This Year
You’ve got a smartphone or table in your hand, and you’re searching for the best app to transfer money internationally. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Read our breakdown of the top currency exchange apps, so you can choose the perfect one for your money transfer needs.
A Practical Guide to Inheriting Money from Overseas
A number of questions are immediately raised when a US citizen receives inheritance money from an overseas friend or relative, who isn’t a US citizen. Is this money taxable? Find out in our guide.
WorldRemit vs PayPal and Xoom - Which is Best?
With our WorldRemit vs PayPal review you can choose which money transfer company is best for your needs. We award winners based on fees, exchange rates, speed of transfer, limits and transfer methods.