There are many reasons why you might need to send money online instantly. Thankfully, many services let you do this quickly and easily. Although the money transfer may not land in their bank within seconds, it will securely get to its recipient as soon as possible.
So, what are the best ways to send money online instantly? In this article, we will go in-depth and review our top five methods.
5 Best Ways to Send Money Instantly
Countless companies offer instant money transfer services — but there are a few that are more popular than others, namely due to their terms and fees.
Below, you’ll find a comparison of our favorite five money transfer methods. We will compare fees, speed, and other features to explain why these five are the best options. Let’s go!
Founded in 1996, Currencies Direct has grown from a small operation to an industry leader with clients in 5 continents, transferring over $9 billion per year. It offers excellent exchange rates and no transfer fees, and the minimum transfer amount is low with no upper limit. Transfers take one day, making Currencies Direct one of the best companies through which to send money online instantly.
Rates and Fees
Creating an account on Currencies Direct is free, and you will not pay any account maintenance or transfer fees when you keep your account. However, since you do not pay any transfer fees, Currencies Direct takes a margin on the exchange. You will not get the mid-market range, but you are still getting a competitive rate compared to other transfer companies.
Currencies Direct provides live exchange rates at the push of a button. When you exchange funds, the rate will differ from the mid-market rate because of their margin. You are required to confirm the exchange rate before the transfer goes through. You may also need to pay a fee by banks directly, but you may avoid this by calling the bank ahead of time to discuss options.
If you are not in a hurry to send money, you can set up a rate alert to let you know when the interbank or mid-market rate hits what you want to pay. You will set your rate through Currencies Direct, then wait until it alerts you (via text or email) when the market price reaches your target rate. Then, you can log into your account and initiate your transfer.
Currencies Direct boasts a 1-day minimum transfer speed when you choose to send money online instantly through its website. However, this is a minimum. Sometimes, banks may delay the process if they request fees or need to hold your money for a time. Typically, your money will get where it needs to be within 2-3 working days.
Safety and Security
Currencies Direct must meet strict rules and regulations, so you know your finances are in a safe place. Since its inception, the company has served over 300,000 customers and transferred over $9 billion per year. It has a high credit rating with Dun & Bradstreet, along with one of the highest review scores on Trustpilot. Overall, it is a great company to use if you need to send money online instantly.
XE Money Transfer is another popular option for those who want to send large sums of money overseas. XE operates in over 220 countries worldwide and supports over 130 currencies. It lets you send money instantly with a max delay of two hours. It has no fees for international transfers but does add a small markup on the exchange rate.
Rates and Fees
Money transfer companies earn profits in two ways: either with transfer fees or by charging a margin on the exchange rate. XE Money Transfer has no transfer fees, but charges a small margin on the interbank rate. Unfortunately, you will not know this margin until you sign up and initiate a transaction. However, it reduces the margin on exchange rates as the amount you transfer increases.
XE has live exchange rates and a currency converter widget on its website, but it only shows mid-market rates, and the market is volatile. XE claims to base its exchange rates on the live foreign exchange markets. Therefore, the exchange rate may fluctuate up until you initiate the transaction. Once you begin the money transfer, the exchange rate is fixed and cannot change.
The company’s percent costs, including fixed fees, are very competitive compared to other similar services. Although there are no transfer fees, banks at either end of the transaction may charge fees.
Most transfers via XE Money Transfer process on the same day. They will give you a delivery date, which is typically the same day. The speed at which your money transfers depends on a few factors, including the currency, amount, and the banks at either end. Most transfers process on the same day, but some may take between 2-4 days.
Safety and Security
XE Money Transfer has a stellar track record when it comes to security. It is registered and regulated in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. XE is registered with several financial crime enforcement networks. The law mandates that XE must keep your money safe, so you can feel secure knowing your money is going where you need it.
OFX is another online money transfer provider that delivers to over 80 countries from the United States. It is one of the cheapest options for money transfers and there is no maximum transfer amount, which undoubtedly contributes to its popularity. However, you will need at least $1,000 to make a transfer, and you might not get your money the same day.
Rates and Fees
OFX is proud to offer little to no transfer fees for sending money online.
Like XE Money Transfer, OFX has an exchange rate that changes based on how much money you plan to transfer. The more money you send in the exchange, the less the cost to transfer your money will be. You would rarely incur any extra fees from banks on either end of the transaction. OFX claims a global network of over 100 bank accounts, so it is unlikely you will get any surprise fees during your transaction.
OFX is such an affordable way to send money online. However, the finances may not appear in the recipient’s bank account instantly. In practice, the process is about 3-6 days from end to end. It takes almost no time to receive the funds from you, but OFX must process funds before they can go to the recipient. You may want to choose a company that can operate faster if you must send money online instantly. If you can afford to wait a few days, OFX is the way to go.
Safety and Security
OFX has been in business for well over a decade and has transacted over $80 billion. The company is legally obligated to maintain licenses to operate in the numerous countries it does. It is also required to comply with international ait-money laundering laws. OFX is a very safe and reputable way to send money online instantly because of its track record.
TorFX is a leading money transfer company with offices in the United Kingdom and Australia. It is customer-focused and offers both phone-based and online money transfer services. One of the benefits of TorFX is that customers are assigned a personal account manager when they sign up. This account manager assists you through the setup and transaction process. If you are transferring large sums of money, TorFX is a superb option.
Rates and Fees
TorFX makes its profits through margins on exchange rates, much like many other online money transfer companies. It does not charge any transfer fees in addition to the exchange rate. On average, the total cost of transfer for TorFX is between 0.5% to 2%. If you transfer large sums of money, you can expect better rates. TorFX has no hidden costs, but you may incur bank fees if they hold your money for any reason.
You will be pleased to know that TorFX offers competitive transfer speeds of 3-6 days. Your finances will reach TorFX’s bank within a day. However, it may take more time to get the money to the recipient. The transfer speed depends on the currency, bank, and other factors. However, the quickness of TorFX’s is comparable to other competitors.
Safety and Security
TorFX is regulated in Australia and the UK by the ASIC and the FCA, respectively, and therefore adheres to strict guidelines and standards of security. It is one of the safest ways to send money online instantly.
TransferWise is known to offer dependable, low-cost money transfers. The company is well-regarded for its transparency and openness about the money transfer process. It offers customers the ability to make instant transfers for some currencies, but not all. Your transfer time will depend on various factors, but TransferWise offers competitive speeds and rates compared to other companies.
Rates and Fees
TransferWise is transparent about its fees and costs. However, different currencies and countries lead to different prices. The company conveniently offers a TransferWise widget that lets you see what you will pay for your money transfer.
TransferWise offers the mid-market exchange rate and lets you lock it in for 2 to 72 hours. The time it lets you lock in your rate depends on where you are sending money and where it is going. Most services do not let you lock in your rate, making TransferWise’s method unique.
TransferWise also has no hidden fees. It has several local bank accounts to avoid bank fees, but always check with your bank to verify you will not get any surprise charges.
TransferWise can be vague about its speed, but the transfer will usually take between 1-5 business days. Each country and currency is different. Generally, the currency conversion will take between 1-2 days, the transfer itself will take 2-3 days. However, you can improve transfer speeds if they receive your funds through a credit or debit card.
Safety and Security
TransferWise serves over 6 million customers in over 70 countries, moving billions of dollars per month. It is a massive company, heavily regulated by federal authorities such as the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the UK Financial Conduct Authority, and more. We recommend TransferWise if you want to send money online instantly.
How to Send an Instant Money Transfer
Sending an instant money transfer is the same through any of the institutions we listed above. It is a matter of signing up, verifying your identity, and initiating the transfer.
- Sign up for an account. You will need to sign up for an online account for any institution you decide to use. You can typically do this online on their desktop site, but many companies have mobile apps you can use to sign up for an account. You may also be able to call the company directly to sign up over the phone.
- Verify your identity. For every company, you will need to verify your identity. The process will require you to upload a scanned copy of your state ID or passport. If you cannot do this step, you may not be able to send money online instantly.
- Finish registration. For most institutions, once you have verified your identity, you can initiate transfers. Some companies will require a phone call to double-check your identity.
- Start the transfer process. Log in to the transfer provider’s online portal, use their mobile application, call them, or visit an agent near you if they provide in-person services.
- Give the company the recipient’s information. You’ll need to fill out a form that provides all the transaction details, such as the recipient’s name, address, and bank account information. You’ll need to provide them with the currency information as well.
- Fund the transfer. Pay for the transfer using whichever method is supported by your provider. As said before, fees will vary based on the institution you choose.
- Keep the transaction number or PIN handy. Once the transaction initiates, you will receive a transaction number or PIN. If the transfer recipient is receiving cash instead of a direct deposit, they will need to provide this PIN. They will also need to supply an ID to prove their identity.
Sending Money Instantly with Your Bank Account
There is an alternative to sending money online instantly — which is sending money via your bank account.
Sending funds via your bank account is the best way to send money instantly if it is a domestic transfer. You can often send finances directly to the recipient’s bank account via your bank’s mobile app or through a third party such as Zelle.
International money transfers with your bank account are not as straightforward, thanks to strict verification processes. International transfers can often take between 1-5 business days. You may also incur higher fees from your bank if you choose to do peer-to-peer transfers. Using a money transfer company to facilitate the transaction means you will pay less, and your money will be more secure.
How to Speed Up Your Money Transfer
There are a few ways you can speed up your money transfer.
- Take care when setting up your account. When you set up and verify your account, make sure every detail is correct. It will reduce errors when you initiate the transfer because they often take information from your account to fill in forms. If anything is incorrect (for instance, if your legal name is Samantha but you register as Sam), it will take longer to redo your documents.
- Browse all options. Carefully look at all payment providers and choose one that offers the fastest transfers at the best rates. Remember that rates fluctuate, and the best company today may not be the best tomorrow. If you spend time doing your research, you’ll be confident you’re choosing the right company.
- Look for customer service. Ensure that if you need assistance at any hour of the day, the provider you choose will be available to help you. Problems can and do happen, so it’s best to have top-notch customer service on hand to help you through it, especially where finances are involved.
- Don’t wait until the last minute. Generate your account before you need it to send money online instantly. Waiting for the company to verify your account can take some time, so make sure you have enough leeway to go through the verification process.
- Fund your transfer with cash or a debit card. It’s best to set the delivery method as cash pickup for the fastest delivery. You should also fund your transfer with cash or a debit card. Credit cards can take longer to process, and bank transfers typically take the longest.
Frequently Asked Questions About Transferring Money
You may have questions about how to send money online instantly. It can seem like an arduous process to send money, especially when you must send it to another country or overseas.
You’ll be glad to know that many other people have the same questions. We’ll answer some common questions for you in our FAQ section below.
Are instant money transfers really instant?
Typically, the transfer is not instant. The money needs to transfer to the company doing the conversion, then converted, then sent to the recipient. Most money transfers will take between 1-7 business days. However, there are steps you can take to make the process go faster. We will go over these steps later in the FAQ.
What factors affect money transfer speed?
Many factors affect money transfer speed, including:
- Countries you are transferring money between
- Chosen payment method
- Chosen delivery method
- Chosen money transfer company
- Whether you already have an account with the payment provider
- And more
Some companies will be specialized in transferring money between specific countries and will therefore be faster with those transactions. The way you pay for your transfer can also affect how long the transfer will take. There are many factors, so it’s best to use a comparison tool to see which company is best for you.
How much does it cost to make an instant money transfer?
The cost to make an instant transfer varies based on market conditions. Most institutions will not charge you a transfer fee but will instead take a margin of the exchange rate. Therefore, how much you transfer, the current exchange rate, and what percentage they take from the exchange rate will determine how much you will pay for your instant money transfer.
Can instant money transfers be sent anywhere in the world?
Yes, but where your finances can go depends on where you choose to send your money. Some institutions do not operate in certain countries. Double-check the institution to ensure they own banks in the location of your choosing.
Are instant money transfers reversible?
Instant transfers are not reversible. Instant money transfers are processed as soon as they are received, so there’s very little chance of stopping the transaction after you’ve started it. To prevent mistakes, check all the details before you initiate a transfer to ensure everything is correct.
What’s the maximum amount of money I can send instantly?
The maximum amount of money you can send instantly also depends on the institution you choose. Some will allow a maximum of $1,000, while others will offer up to $50k.
At the beginning of this article, you were wondering how to send money online instantly. Now, you not only know how to send money online instantly, but you also know the best institutions to help you do so.
You don’t need to struggle to send money online instantly. It’s as easy as finding the best institution, signing up for an account, and initiating the transfer. Our number one recommend service is Currencies Direct…
Matt is a veteran of the moving industry, a recognized moving expert and is the founder of MoverFocus. Matt holds a Bachelor of Commerce (BCom) majoring in Finance and Marketing and Bachelor of Arts (BA) majoring in Economics and History. He also has completed the EiM (Essentials in International Moving) course from the FIDI Academy. His advice has been featured in Reader’s Digest, Yahoo Finance, MSN Money, Business News Daily and The SpareFoot Blog Go. Read more.