As per a report by the United Nations, India has the largest diaspora population in the world with around 18 million people from the country living away from their homeland in 2020. Hence, India continues to be the top receiver of remittance in the world. The US, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Canada, Qatar, UK, Kuwait, Oman, Germany, France, Australia and China are the top countries from where remittance money comes to India. There are several ways to transfer money to India online as well as offline. Here are some of the best ways to send money to India along with transfer charges.
Channels that you can use for remittances to India
|Medium||Access Points||Source||Time Taken
(source: World Bank)
|Online Banking||Online or Mobile App||Credit/Debit Cards and Bank Account Transfers||1-2 working days||Citibank (same day transfer)
Remit Money (within an hour)
|No fee (for own and partner bank accounts
$1.64 per $200
|Money Transfer Operators*||Online or Mobile App||Credit/Debit Cards and Bank Account Transfers||1-2 working days||Transferwise (1-2 days)
Moneygram (1-2 days)
|$4.77 per $200
$7.38 per $200
|Agents||Banks and Money Transfer Operators||Cash or Credit/Debit Cards||1 working day||Western Union (within an hour)
Ria (same working day)
|$9.04 per $200
$8.00 per $200
|Call Centres||Banks and Money Transfer Operators||Credit/Debit Cards and Bank Account Transfers||1 working day||Wells Fargo (one working day)
Western Union(one working day)
|$1.60 per $200
$3.94 per $200
|Foreign Currency Demand Drafts*||Banks (branch visit can be required)||Bank Account Transfers||2-3 weeks||ICICI Bank
|Varies as per Bank(For eg: Axis Bank charges Rs.200/- for issuing Foreign Currency DD;ICICI charges Rs.250/-)|
|SWIFT* Transfers||Banks (branch visit can be required)||Bank Account Transfers||1-2 working days||ICICI Bank
|Varies as per Bank(For eg: HDFC charges flat Rs.1000/- for transfers above $500 or equivalent transfers;ICICI charges minimum Rs.1500/-)|
*Money Transfer Operators: Money transfer operators (MTOs) are financial companies (but usually not banks) engaged in cross border transfer of funds using either their internal system or using their collaborations with other international banking networks. Eg: Transferwise.
*SWIFT: Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (Offline money transfer facility that can be availed at bank branches in India)
*Foreign Currency Demand Drafts: A form of demand draft made in foreign currency at various bank branches located in India to remit money overseas. The equivalent amount in INR will be debited for remittance.
How to opt for The Best way to send money to India?
NRIs must contemplate the market behaviour, opt for the optimum medium and anticipate the correct time to remit money to India. This is an entire process, that if you get used to, will benefit you in multiple ways. You should keep a few things in mind before diving into the process:
Take Responsibility! Look around. Don’t go for the very first option that you browse through. A minute of consideration can save you hours of repentance. Select the best channel for transfers. Compare and contrast between them and save more. Always!
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