Isn't it amazing how the internet has changed the world? From bringing people closer through social media to paying bills online, the internet has fast-tracked so many processes that used to be time-consuming and stressful. One of them is money transfer. Thanks to the advent of money transfer apps, now we can sit in the comfort of our homes and transfer money to any place.
The major players in the market like Google, PhonePe, PayPal, and Transferwise compete in the market by offering new-age Indians several features like easy user interface, quicker transfers, low transfer fees, and wallet options. Below is a guide to the various features money transfer apps offer their customers.
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We have gathered points that you can look for to smoothen your money transferring process. Transfer speed, UPI, Rupay, and more other things that you must check before you access the app.
Are you looking for an app you can use to pay merchants, transfer money to your family or friends within India? You should make sure that the app you choose supports domestic payments. But, if you think that you might have to do international transactions as well, you can opt for an app that supports both, or else you will have to use different apps.
It is always wise to choose different apps for domestic and international transactions in India as all the money transfer apps, exclusively for domestic transactions, never charge you any extra money for the transfers, while apps that support both may charge you extra, for example, PayPal.
The new norm in the realm of online money transfer is the Unified Payments Interface, a real-time money transfer/payment system developed by the National Payments Corporation of India.
The initial setup of connecting your bank account and debit or credit card may take some time, but after that it's just a matter of entering the recipient's UPI id or scanning a QR code, entering the amount, and inputting the security PIN. You don't have to go through the hassle of entering long account numbers and waste time searching for the IFSC codes.
Another reason for this technology's drastic increase in popularity is, you don't have to carry cash or cards everywhere. And more and more merchants are embracing this change and have started displaying their UPI account's QR codes for people to scan and pay them instantly.
Before opting for an app/service, make sure to check the following: exchange rate, transfer fees, and maximum transfer time. These factors are not the same for every service provider. A lower exchange rate and higher transfer fees will bring down the amount that reaches your recipient's bank account.
Suppose you are sending INR 10,000 to someone through Transferwise, which offers a mid-market exchange rate, the recipient would get INR 9500 worth of US dollar equivalent. But if your choice was an app that offers a fixed exchange rate, the recipient may only get INR 9000 even if there is an increase in the exchange rate during the day.
One more important thing to check before you choose an app for your international transactions is whether that app supports transactions to be carried in that particular country. Some apps support receiving money from a particular country but may not support sending money to the same.
RuPay card was launched by the National Payments Corporation of India for domestic transactions only. You won't be able to use your RuPay card abroad, nor some money transfer apps support linking RuPay cards to your account. So, check the FAQ section of a company's website before you create an account.
One example of a popular money transfer app that doesn't support Rupay Card is Google Pay. You may be able to link your bank account, but when the final step of confirming your debit card details comes, the app will show you an error. So check your app's FAQ section for Rupay Card support before entering your bank details.
Most companies provide you the maximum time it could take for a transaction to get completed. For example, some companies say one day, while others promise to finish the transaction within a few hours. But most of the time, the money will reflect in the recipient's account much quicker. They mention the maximum time so you can plan your business accordingly.
Have you tried sending a parcel? You can choose the shipping speed; the more money you pay, the quicker your parcel reaches the destination. Similarly, some money transfer companies offer you the choice of standard transfer and instant transfer.
They promise to credit the recipient's bank account faster if you choose the instant payment option and pay more money for that. The extra amount you have to pay differs from one service provider to another.
Digital money wallets became popular right after the UPI technology took over India by storm. The reason being, it is so much faster than even UPI payment. When using a UPI app, you have to enter the secret PIN and wait for the app to connect with the bank and get the transaction done. If the bank servers are down, your transactions will not go through.
The money in your digital wallet can be used directly, as the app doesn't have to connect with the bank servers to complete the transaction. Depending on your app settings, you may not even have to enter a secret PIN. This is beneficial when you are doing bill payments and recharges online.
But keep in mind that transferring money from a digital wallet to a bank account may attract transaction fees. Check your app's FAQ section before moving your money from your digital wallet to a bank account.
Say, the value of $1 is INR 70 at a particular point in time. And if this is the rate when a money exchange app starts a day, this will be the exchange rate for that currency throughout the day. Even if $1 becomes INR 75, you will not get the benefit of that.
Transfer fees also differ from one app to another. But before you choose a service with low transfer fees, check their transfer speeds too. You may save some money on the transfer fees, but if the transaction takes a full day to complete, it may not be worth it, depending on your needs.
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Faster and Reliable UPI App
UPI App With Wallet Option
Open an Online Bank Account Too
Zero Transfer Fees for International Transactions
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Remitly Global Inc.
Send Money to Bank Account and UPI Address
National Payments Corporation of India
UPI App by National Payments Corporation of India
Supports Domestic and International Transactions
Simple User Interface and Faster Payments
Faster Communication and Money Transfer
Google Pay is the most popular UPI money transfer app in India. It only supports domestic transactions and doesn't charge you for its services. The app comes with an easy-to-use interface and an option to chat too.
Google Pay promised to credit the recipient's bank account within minutes of sending the money. The app doesn't provide a wallet feature. You can send money by scanning a QR code, search a user using their phone number or enter the UPI id of the user.
Google Pay supports recharge and bill payments options too. A convenient feature for you to save your time and energy.
PhonePe is an online payment or money transfer app with a digital wallet feature that you can use to carry out domestic transactions. You can load money on to the wallet for using it in case of an emergency. In case your bank servers are down, and you want to send money or pay a merchant, you can use the money in your wallet to take care of it.
You can send money by entering the UPI id, or scanning the QR code sent by the recipeint.
You can transact on PhonePe through the wallet, your linked bank account, or the linked debit or credit card. PhonePe also offers recharge and bill payment options for customers.
Paytm was founded in 2010 and quickly became a sensation in India. It started as a UPI money transfer and wallet app and quickly started offering other services like online shopping, recharge, and bill payments.
The online bank feature of Paytm works just like any other bank. You can get a debit card, opt for a fixed deposit, and also apply for loans. You can transfer money from a Paytm bank account to another bank account free of cost but, you will have to pay a 5% fee if you are transferring money from your Paytm wallet to a bank account.
Western Union has been around for a long time now. It is an international money transfer service that supports sending and receiving money internationally. Please check the official website to find out if the country you are residing in or the recipient country is supported.
This company promises zero transfer fees for sending money, but keep in mind that the maximum you can send is the INR equivalent of $10,000 per transfer for education and $5000 for other purposes.
When receiving money from abroad through Western Union, you can opt for a cash pickup by the recipient from a local Western Union office, or the money can be sent directly to a bank account.
Amazon.com is the most popular e-commerce website in the world and also in India too. The money transfer/UPI payment system of Amazon is called Amazon Pay. It's a convenient option as you pay for your shopping directly from the Amazon Pay account balance too. Yes, this app has a wallet feature.
Amazon Pay works just like any other UPI app, It supports only domestic transactions, and you can load money into your wallet for using it during emergencies. There are several recharge and bill payment options inside Amazon Pay, making it one of the most convenient money transfer apps in the market.
The most beneficial feature of Amazon Pay is that you can transfer money from your wallet to your bank account free of cost.
Remitly supports sending money to over 130 banks in India from 17 different countries. This app also offers zero transfer fees if the sending amount is above 1000 USD. The company was launched to support non-residents in these 17 countries to send money to their home countries for comparatively less transfer fee.
A key feature of Remitly is that the money can be sent to a bank account in India as well as a UPI id. But keep in mind that as of now, you cannot send money from India to any other countries. You can only use this app to receive it.
When the National Payments Corporation of India launched the United Payments Interface, they launched an app supporting the same too. The BHIM UPI can be used the same way as any other UPI app in the market.
Anyone with a bank account, connected phone number, and a debit card can carry out transactions within the country using the BHIM app. You only have to know the recipient's UPI id or scan the QR code displayed by the merchant or sent by the recipient.
Since the BHIM app was developed by the National Payments Corporation of India, it supports Rupay Cards too. This app doesn't have a wallet feature but supports bill payments and recharges.
PayPal is not a UPI app. But you can use it to carry out international and domestic transactions. You will have to search for a user on PayPal using their email address to send money. Simple as that. You can create an individual account for sending money between friends and family or a business account for getting paid or paying for services carried out internationally.
PayPal doesn't have a wallet feature, and any money sent from abroad or within the country will automatically be sent to your bank account. As of now, PayPal doesn't offer a manual withdrawal feature for Indian customers.
Founded in 2009, MobiKwik became a worthy competitor for other digital payment and wallet apps in the market. Anyone with a debit card, bank account, and a connected phone number can open a MobiKwik account and start sending and receiving money easily.
This app only supports domestic money transfers but also offers recharge and bill payment options. MobiKwik is also known for its promotional offers across various websites and services for using their interface to make payments.
Customers who have installed this app are impressed about the easy-to-use interface and the fast money transfer speeds.
Even though WhatsApp hasn't officially announced the release of its Payments feature, many users have gotten this feature in the setting tab of their WhatsApp.
Since WhatsApp is a popular messaging app and most people have installed it on their phones, you can message your friends or family in case of emergencies for a quick transfer that can happen through the app itself, making it an extremely convenient feature to have in a messaging app.
WhatsApp already has a separate app aimed at small businesses. The integration of the Payments feature into a communication app that has already taken over the world by storm is a clever move by the company as this makes carrying out selling and purchasing activities easier than ever before.
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Online money transfer apps make our life so much easier. As we have talked about in the buying guide, it is always wise to use a separate app for domestic transactions and international transactions to avoid paying unnecessary extra charges.
While choosing an app with a wallet option, check the app's FAQ section to find out the wallet to bank account transfer fees, if any.
Author - Arun F Xaviour
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