Remittances play an important role in Pakistan’s economy. They value almost 9.9% of the country’s total GDP which is the highest remittance to GDP ratio in the world. This means that more Pakistani people are living abroad, and they need reliable ways to send money to their loved ones in the country.
In the past, people used traditional methods like Hawala or Hundi to transfer their hard-earned money. However, since the financial monitoring, Pakistan has kept a tight check and discourage any method that is not backed by a financial institution. So, here we will discuss that how to save money when sending money to Pakistan.
Factors to consider when sending money to Pakistan
There are various factors that you must consider whenever you want to send money to another country. These factors will have a direct impact on the amount of money your recipient gets and how many deductions you face.
Exchange rates – The exchange rate that the money transfer method offers will impact the money your recipient receives. A higher exchange rate means more money.
Transfer fees – On contrary to the exchange rate, transfer fees also impact the total amount received. A higher transfer fee means more dollars lost in the name of the fee. Thus, the recipient may receive less money even with a higher exchange rate.
Security – The more secure a method is, the less are the chances that your money will be lost. This was the biggest issue with traditional methods in that those methods had no official value and were less secure. Almost all banking channels are secure.
Speed of Transfer – In the past, wire transfer would take as much as 2-3 weeks before the recipient receives the money. While this causes frustration, it also causes uncertainty about where the money is now. A faster transfer speed will ensure that the money is safe.
Best way to save money when sending money to Pakistan
There are many ways to send money to Pakistan through banking channels. However, here we will discuss some of the best ways to save your money while sending money to Pakistan. Here are they:
When it comes to cost, no other transfer method can beat Remitly. It is a licensed service provider to help you transfer remittance to your home country. Remitly is best known for giving the best exchange rates along with the lowest costs than many other service providers. Thus, Remitly is the first choice for many ex-pats.
There is no minimum limit on Remitly which allows users to send even small amounts to their loved ones. You can use the Remitly mobile app or website, whichever suits you better. On the other hand, your recipient in Pakistan can receive the amount through their bank account or withdraw using their credit/ debit cards.
Remitly Express option is the fastest among all while the cash receiving might cost you a higher fee. Most top banks in Pakistan support Remitly which includes HBL, MCB, Bank Alfalah, Allied Bank, and others.
Undoubtedly, WU is the most common way to send personal remittance to your loved ones. The easy, seamless method and country-wide coverage in Pakistan allow it to stand among the best ways for money transfer.
You can visit their agent, transfer directly through the official website or mobile app, and pay directly via your bank account or card. There is no transfer fee as Western Union takes its commission from the exchange rate which makes it the best method if you want to transfer some thousand dollars.
Western Union has a cap for the maximum single transaction which differs for each country. For Pakistan, you can send as much as $5000 in a single transaction. However, Western Union is only for personal money transfers, and you may face difficulty if you want to transfer money for business purposes.
Another method similar to Western Union is, MoneyGram. The sending methods are similar to visiting the store or using online methods including a website or mobile app. On the other hand, you can use your US bank account or bank card to make the payment.
There are more than 5000 MoneyGram agents in Pakistan, so your receiver won’t face any issues. MoneyGram also offers you a cost estimator so you will always know how much money your receiver will collect.
While Pakistan is not on the list of supported countries for PayPal, its money transfer service, Xoom, keeps you covered. There are many pickup locations for Xoom in Pakistan while you can also transfer directly to most Pakistani bank accounts.
The best thing about Xoom is that it charges a flat fee which is not affected by the amount you send. Hence, it is one of the best ways to transfer large amounts and save money. You can send money directly if you already have a PayPal account or just create a Xoom account to start using its services.
Being an online wallet, Skrill Money Transfer is also among the top cost-effective ways to transfer money to Pakistan. When you are using its service to transfer money to an international bank account or a mobile wallet, Skrill doesn’t charge you any hidden fee. Moreover, there is no hidden mark-up.
You can use various methods like a bank account, bank cards, or Paysafe Cash to send money using Skrill. The person in Pakistan will directly receive the funds from this bank.
Another popular and affordable way to send money to Pakistan is, OFX. You can use it to transfer funds to most banks in Pakistan. Once you create an account on OFX, you can get a quote about the fee for your desired transfer amount. OFX takes its commission from the exchange rate it offers.
Remittances were always a backbone of the Pakistani economy. However, due to the recent monitoring conditions, more people are using banking channels to send money to Pakistan. In this article, we covered some of the common ways to transfer money to Pakistan at a lower cost.
I like Western Union for its simple and easy way. However, you can use any transfer method mentioned in the article as each one is an affordable and safe way to transfer funds to Pakistan.