How does a Western Union® money transfer work?

Make money transfers to over 200 countries and territories around the world. Learn how to make a money transfer online, with the app, in person and more with Western Union.


    FX: 1.00 EUR – Exchange Rates and Fees shown are estimates, vary by a number of factors including payment and payout methods, and are subject to change. To check current rates and other options, simply click “Send now”. X Fee:

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    How to make an online money transfer 24/7

    Sign up for your free account

    Whether you’re online or on our app, simply log in to your profile. If you don’t have a profile, register now for free, then hit ‘Send money.’

    Enter the money transfer details

    Enter your destination and the amount you’d like to send. Bank money transfer service availability varies by destination, but you can check this in the ‘Send money’ form.

    Enter your receiver’s bank details

    To send money to a Western Union location for cash pick-up, select ‘Cash.’ To send money to a bank account, select ‘Bank Account’ as the receiving method.

    Specify how you’ll pay

    Select ‘Sofort’ or ‘Bank Transfer’ as the payment method to send money for cash pick-up. If you are transferring to a bank account, select ‘Credit1 or Debit Card,’ ‘Sofort’ or ‘Bank Transfer.’

    Confirm, pay and track your money transfer

    Almost finished! Complete your money transfer. If you want to pay with your bank account, enter your bank details. We’ll email you the confirmation with a Money Transfer Control Number (MTCN), which you can share with your receiver.

    Convenient payment options for your Western Union money transfer

    Debit or credit1 card

    You can pay for your money transfer with a debit or credit1 card issued by a bank in Germany.

    Bank account/Sofort

    You can pay for your money transfer directly from your bank account or using Sofort.


    Would you prefer to pay for your money transfer in cash? No problem. You can pay in cash by visiting an agent location nearby.

    Flexible cash pick-up

    Situations may change. We get it. So, we make it easy to switch from a cash pick-up to sending money directly into your receiver’s bank account. Follow the necessary steps to update the delivery method. Online updates currently are only available for select countries*.

    Frequently asked questions

    What is an international money transfer?

    An international money transfer involves the process of electronically transferring funds abroad, in a specific currency. With Western Union, international money transfers can be sent to loved ones or another person.

    International money transfers are typically done on what is known as the SWIFT/BIC network. This network is a secure messaging system used by banks to quickly and securely transmit information. The SWIFT/BIC network includes banks from more than 200 countries.

    How much money can I transfer internationally?

    How much money you can transfer internationally depends on where you are sending money to. If you are sending money from Germany, you can send up to 1,000 € without verifying your identity. Need to send larger amounts? You can send up to 50,000 € with Western Union once you are verified.

    You can check the limit per country by clicking send money and selecting your destination.

    How much does a money transfer cost?

    Money transfer costs vary depending on several factors such as how and where you are sending the funds and how you want to pay for the transaction.

    If sending with Western Union, you can and without an obligation to send money later in the ‘Send money’ form.

    How long does a money transfer take?

    The time in which funds arrive varies depending on several factors such as how and where you are sending the funds. Some money transfers take just a few minutes3, while some may take several days depending on where the receiver is located and how their bank or credit1 union operates. If you need to get funds to your receiver quickly, they can conveniently pick-up cash at an agent location in minutes3.

    Is it safe to transfer money abroad?

    At Western Union, your safety is important to us. We are committed to keeping your data and payments secure.

    Learn more about our Privacy Policy.

    How to transfer money with the Western Union app®?

    With the Western Union® app, you can make a money transfer to your receiver’s country on the go and from virtually anywhere—no need to fill out a form. Get step by step instructions here:

    1. Open the app. If you already have the Western Union® app, log in with Touch ID or your credentials. If you don’t have our app, simply download it and follow the steps to sign up with an email address.
    2. Select country and send amount. Start a money transfer by entering the destination country and the amount you’d like to send.
    3. Select the reception method. If you would like your money to arrive in cash at a Western Union location, click on ‘Cash at a WU location.’ If you prefer to transfer money to a bank account, simply select ‘Bank Account’ as the receive method. In certain countries, you can send money directly to your receiver’s
    4. Specify your payment method. Choose how you will pay for your money transfer. You can pay by bank transfer, Sofort, by debit/credit1 card or cash.
    5. Confirm and pay. Almost there! Confirm and pay for your money transfer and your money will be on its way.
    6. Track your money transfer. Finished! We will send you a confirmation email with a Money Transfer Control Number (MTCN). Give this number to your receiver so they can collect the money in cash (if selected) and you can both easily track your money transfer.
    How to transfer money in person from a Western Union location?

    Western Union supports you so that you can be there for your loved ones. Here’s how to send money in person:

    1. Find a Western Union location. Find a Western Union agent location near you.
    2. Head to the counter. Head to the counter and present the agent with your information. You’ll need your ID, My WU number or telephone number, and your recipient’s details. If you want to send money to a bank account, you’ll also need your receiver’s account information.
    3. Pay the way that works for you. Pay the amount you’re sending and the transfer fee2 in cash. If you send money to a bank account, you can also pay with an EC card (Girocard) at one of the participating locations) issued in Germany.
    4. Share the MTCN with your receiver. Your money transfer is finished! We’ll provide you the Money Transfer Control Number (MTCN). Share this with your receiver so the funds can be collected quickly and reliably.

    Still have questions about bank transfers?

    Visit our FAQs or simply get in touch. Our Customer Care team is just a call away.

    International money transfer services at your fingertips

    Send money on the go or start a money transfer and pay at an agent location.

    Track your money transfer in real time.

    Repeat a money transfer quickly to your friends and family.

    Rating as of 26 October, 2023.

    * Valid only for or Western Union® app transactions sent to India, Pakistan, United States, Philippines, Thailand, and Turkey.

    ** Please make sure that the receiver’s name accurately matches the details of the bank account owner. (Account details may vary by country.)

    1 If you are using a credit card, a card-issuer cash advance fee and associated interest charges may apply. To avoid these fees or for reduced fees, use a debit card or check other payment methods.

    2 Western Union also makes money from currency exchange. When choosing a money transmitter, carefully compare both transfer fees and exchange rates. Fees, foreign exchange rates and taxes may vary by brand, channel, and location based on a number of factors. Fees and rates subject to change without notice.

    3 Funds may be delayed or services unavailable based on certain transaction conditions, including amount sent, destination country, currency availability, regulatory issues, identification requirements, Agent location hours, differences in time zones, or selection of delayed options. Additional Restrictions may apply. See terms for details.