How Does a MoneyGram Work?

  1. Money Transfer

    • The process is analogous to the concept of a postal money order. It is clearly unsafe to send cash through a postal or delivery service as it can be easily intercepted, stolen and will be hard to recover. Sending a personal check is only a little better as the sender has no guarantee that the check is sufficiently funded and will not bounce. With a money order, the amount sent is pre-paid, which means the receiver is certain to get the exact amount. No actual money is sent through the mail. The sender pre-pays the money--usually in cash--at the origin branch, and this money is absorbed into the financial service institution's centralized funding resources. Then, the exact amount is dispensed to the receiver at the destination branch. The process is clearly documented from end to end. A unique identification number distinguishes each transaction. The sender has a copy of this unique number that can be used to track down the transaction, and the receiver is issued a receipt. Both sender and receiver must present valid personal identification cards at the respective branches.

    Sending and Receiving Money

    • The typical procedure to send a MoneyGram begins with the sender going to the nearest branch. The sender must bring along the money to be sent in cash and a valid photo ID such as a driver's license. At the branch, the sender will fill out the sending form with his and his intended receiver's information. Once the paperwork is done, the sender gives the money and pays a service fee that is based on the sent amount and the destination. The sender then gets a receipt that contains the transaction's reference number. The sender should contact and inform his receiver that the money has been sent and pass on the reference number so that the receiver can claim the amount. At the other end of the transfer, the receiver goes to the nearest MoneyGram branch, presents a valid photo ID and gives out the reference number.

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