Ria Money Transfer Review

This review for Ria money transfer is intended to explain the good and bad of using it for international money transfers. We focus on the important aspects like fees and exchange rates, the quality of the online trading platform, and the level of service provided. To view other companies like Ria, check our best money transfer companies list.

📝 Even though Ria is a big company,it doesn’t make the cut for our top money transfer companies for May 2022, based on editorial rankings. This doesn’t say Ria is not reliable or safe, but we encourage you to have a look at Ria recommended alternatives here.
Logoria-logo
🏛️ Established1987
🌎 International ClientsUSA, Canada and Australia
💱 Currencies Offered100+ to 160 countries (Worldwide reach including Africa and Asia)
💷 Minimum Transfer

No minimum.

Limited to £4,999 in UK

Limited to $2,999 in US

Limited to $2,999 in Canada

Limited to $7,500 in Australia

📲 Trading viaOnline or via branches.
🏢 Offices In

Head Office in California

447,000+ locations to send or pick up money

⚖️ Regulation

FinCEN (USA)

FCA (UK)

ASIC (Australia)

FINTRAC (Canada)

🤯 Fees$3-5 for Bank to Bank transfers, additional $20-$35 incurred with Debit/Credit payments
Promotional CodeNone
👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 Client ReviewsOver 5,800 on TrustPilot.
⭐ Client Rating4.2 / 5 – Great
Websitewww.riamoneytransfer.com
🏆 Awards

Top Money Transfer 2015 – The International Association of Money Transfer Networks

[Best Traditional Model Award at 10th Annual Global Money Transfer Summit 2015
👍 Advantages

One of the largest providers in the world

Very wide global reach

Professional website and support

Fair rates for remittances

👎 Disadvantages

Limited to USA clients

Low payment limits ($2,999 per transfer in US & Canada)

For large transfers the rates are not great


Our Rating: 75.2%

View Rating Breakdown


View Recommended Alternatives:

Discover top 3 Ria money transfer competitors:

EU UK USA Australia Wise (Previously TransferWise): Best to Remit Money Abroad for Cheap
Headquarters:
17 Avenue Marnix, 1000 Brussels, Belgium
86.8% Editorial rating
124,000 Client Reviews
Minimum transfer:
No Minimum - Send From: UK, Europe, US, Canada, Singapore, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand
Why Them?
  • Largest Money Transfer Provider of its Kind
  • Fees for Most Routes under £1
  • Fully-Online Journey with Transparent Pricing
+Read more
Australia UK EU USA New Zealand OFX: Remittances Kings of Australia
Headquarters:
Level 19, 60 Margaret St, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia
90.4% Editorial rating
4,500 Client Reviews
Minimum transfer:
£100 / €100 / $100 or equivalent, Send From: Australia, New Zealand, UK, Europe, US, Canada
Why Them?
  • Excellent Reach - Transfer to Any Country with no Fixed Fees
  • Intuitive Online System, Easy to Understand and Use
  • 24/7 Support Wherever You Are on The Globe - Be Treated with Respect
+Read more
UK EU Currencies Direct: Best for Large or Repeat Transfers
Headquarters:
1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London E14 5AA, UK
97.8% Editorial rating
5,000 Client Reviews
Minimum transfer:
£100 / €100 / $100 or equivalent - Send From: UK, Europe, US, Canada, South Africa, India
Why Them?
  • #1 Rating on MTC for the Past 2 Years - Tailored to Larger Transfers with Excellent Phone Service
  • No Fees on any Transfers, Ever
  • Very Friendly Online Platform
+Read more
EU UK USA Australia One of the Hottest Money Transfer Startups
Headquarters:
Colm House, 91 Pembroke Rd, Ballsbridge, Dublin, Ireland
86.8% Editorial rating
5,000 Client Reviews
Minimum transfer:
No Minimum - Send From: UK, Europe, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore
Why Them?
  • No Fees on GBP payments, EUR Charged at €3
  • Very Low Margins, Down To 0.33%
  • Great Reputation And Client Reactions
+Read more
UK Netherlands Azimo: Fees from £0.99, 4.6/5 on TrustPilot
Headquarters:
Milton Keynes Buiness Centre Foxhunter Drive, Suite 140 Milton Keynes, MK14 6GD United Kingdom
77.0% Editorial rating
51,000 Client Reviews
Minimum transfer:
£1
Why Them?
  • Very well known
  • Good online system
  • Tight margins
+Read more
UK Germnay Turkey TransferGo: Rated 4.8 / 5 from over 22,000 reviews
Headquarters:
241 Southwark Bridge Rd, SE1 6FP, London, United Kingdom
72.0% Editorial rating
22,000 Client Reviews
Minimum transfer:
No Minimum, Remit from UK and Europe to over 65 destinations.
Why Them?
  • ltilingual Support Team
  • Excellent Client Feedback
  • Over 2.5 million Customers to Date
+Read more

Read More:

Company Information and Credibility


Company size:  

Ria money transfer was established in 1987 by Jesus Perez Santalla, an immigrant from Cuba, and purchased by Euronet Worldwide in 2006, which is also the owner of HiFX and XE Money Transfer. Even before the acquisition, Ria was considered to be the third-largest money transfer service in the world, with over 200,000 agent locations. Euronet Worldwide has a market cap of well over USD4bn and is traded as EEFT on NASDAQ.

That means that together with Western Union, Xoom, and Moneygram, Ria money transfer is most definitely a world leader in international currency cross border payments. The history of Ria Money Transfer looks like this:

1987

Ria opens its first store in New York City with the aim of helping migrants send money to their friends and family back home.

1993-2006

Ria expands its operations to Europe, namely Spain, France, Italy, UK, Germany, Australia, Belgium, and Switzerland.

2007

Ria is bought by Euronet Worldwide, a leader in processing secure, electronic financial transactions.

2010-2011

Ria expands its international footprint to India and Senegal

2012

Ria launches online money transfers for the first time.

2014

Ria partnered with Walmart to create a domestic money transfer service known as Walmart-2-Walmart. The same year, Ria’s parent company Euronet acquired HiFX, the well-known UK-based FX broker.

2015

Ria expands to the Middle East and Malaysia and Euronet acquires XE, a Canadian-based online foreign exchange tools and services company.

2016

Ria’s Walmart partnership expands into Chile with the Lider branded supermarkets.

2017

Ria marks its 30 year anniversary by opening a new cash payout network in India. Ria also launched Asda Money Transfer in the UK, opening up 100’s of pay and cash collection points for Ria.

2019 and beyond

Ria expands into more locations with new partnerships to increase its agent network to over 447,000 locations worldwide.

For over 30 years then, Ria money transfer has been a long-standing provider of remittance transfers. Throughout this time, Ria’s capabilities have expanded to offer a variety of services, including mobile top-up, ATM’s, bill payments and check cashing but its main business comes from money transfers across the world. Though the majority of transfers are still physical via agents and stores, its online business is growing. Citizens from the UK, US, Canada and Australia can now access the online platform.

Ria is widely covered through mainstream media on news websites like CNBC, MarketWatch, and on partner companies like Walmart.


Regulated By: 

FinCEN (USA)

FCA (UK)

FINTRAC (Canada)

ASIC (Australia)


Awards: 

Top Money Transfer 2015 – The International Association of Money Transfer Networks
Best Traditional Model Award at 10th Annual Global Money Transfer Summit 2015

(we believe they would have had plenty more over their 30 years in business but none that we can see in 2015-2021)


Conclusion: 

Ria Money Transfer is a reliable company which boasts over 30 years in the remittance industry and a pretty significant global footprint. They have been chosen by Walmart as their payment service provider in their stores, and they have over hundreds of agents working with them globally to run a network of over 447,000 branches where customers can make international wires and collect cash sent to them by other Ria money transfer users. It’s also worth noting that being owned by a company like Euronet Worldwide Inc. makes the feasibility of them going bankrupt very low.

In accordance with their gigantic size, they are often covered by mainstream media, and considered as a highly-known brand, especially in the states. In terms of online transfers, we do know it’s a growing portion of Ria’s business but it receives not nearly as much exposure from the media about this particular service.

Client Feedback


Research:

Ria money transfer nets a 4.2 / 5 (Great) score on TrustPilot. While it’s indicating an overall positive experience, this is below many other remittances companies who average a score of 4.5+. A score of 4.2 / 5 also indicates a number of complaints. There are plenty of other reviews of Ria money transfer on various websites, but nothing that we thought added value over the TrustPilot reviews.

The overall number of reviewers on TrustPilot has grown significantly and you can now find over 5800 reviews about Ria. They also have hundreds of reviews that can be found on other websites.


Positive:

About 81% of the users enjoyed their experience with Ria money transfer(online) and have mentioned these positives:

  • Good prices
  • Worldwide reach
  • Good platform
Negative:

There are a number of complaints we discovered about the company online. The complaints focused on the following:

  • Slow arrival of funds and fewer funds being delivered than expected
  • Unhelpful customer service, disarray
  • Verification issues after the money has been transferred to them
  • Funds withheld in the account for no apparent reason
  • Charities and churches (high-risk industries) working with Ria were cut off with no further explanation

Conclusion:

If you go back to previous years there are positive reviews attesting to the fact Ria have proved cheaper than other major remittances providers in the USA like Xoom. Though it must be said, virtually all Ria money transfer reviews in 2021 are highly critical and lambast the service provided by Ria. The customer service appears to have worsened of late, money seems to be stuck with Ria for multiple weeks and recent compliance changes appear to be causing confusion for customers and causing delays to transfers.

We definitely get the feel that the time for payments to arrive with the beneficiary might be longer than with other companies. Again there were many complaints dealing with this issue, but hardly any positive reviews describing the service as prompt.

On the service side it seems that you’re usually put in touch with an offshore call centre and when email exchanges are required, often information is missing and the instructions on what customers should do to complete a remittance transfer are unclear.

In terms of verification and stopping activity with certain accounts, we can only say that Ria should comply with Anti Money Laundering laws but they must do so in a way which doesn’t confuse customers and result in a lot of back and forth with customer service. For some reason, Ria seems to be causing more confusion in 2021 than it was before. This is perhaps due to increased AML requirements or staff which are less trained to explain the requirements.

Exchange Rate & Fees


Research:

Fees: Fixed for all countries – $3 for transfers below the $100 mark, and $5 for transfer above the mark.

Exchange Rates: We know the exchange rates are good in comparison with other remittances providers. The client reviews have attested for that, and so does the World Bank Remittances Prices site, ranking Ria very well for the bank to bank transfers (usually one of the top five cheapest companies for the transfer) and cash pickups (Ria is possibly the cheapest option for that).

In fact, Ria was transparent enough to provide exchange rates on its Price Calculator, and we spotted a steady 2.5% margin. For some destinations that’s pretty good, especially Africa, South America and East Asia, where companies like Western Union can charge huge markups. For some destinations like Europe, if the transfer amount is $1,000 or more, it’s a huge spread. There are companies like Transferwise which operate in the USA and use fixed 0.5% margins for most destinations.

Rates are somewhat similar to other U.S-based remittances companies like Transfast.

Limits: There is absolutely no minimum, but a daily $2,999 max limit. In certain states, a single day is capped at $999 in transfers. If you need to transfer bigger amounts of money, you should turn your attention to companies like WorldFirst, CurrenciesDirect or TorFX.


Conclusion:

Fees: From USA– $3 for transfers below the $100 mark, and $5 for transfer above the mark if you pay by card. $7 for cash payments and $9 for credit card.

From UK – £1.50 for transfers under £500 and £2.50 for transfers above if paying by debit or credit card.

From Australia – AUD $0 payment fee if you pay by direct bank transfer on transfers of all sizes (maximum AUD payment limit of $7,500). Debit cards charged at $3 for payments of all sizes and credit cards $4 for payments of all sizes.

From Canada – $7 CAD for transfers under $250, CAD $10 for transfers over $250 and under $500, CAD $15 for transfers over $500 and under $750, CAD $20 for transfers over $750 and under $1000, CAD $25 for transfers over $1000 and under $1500, CAD $30 for transfers over $1500 and under $2000, CAD $45 for transfers over $2000.

Note these payment fees are for online bank-to-bank transfers. If you’re making a transfer for cash collection it’s likely fees will be higher.

Exchange Rates: If we look at the  World Bank Remittances Prices site, it ranks Ria very well for both bank to bank transfers (usually one of the top five cheapest companies for the transfer) and cash pickups (Ria is possibly the cheapest option for that). Though it also says Ria charges an exchange rate markup of 0.14% which we just don’t think is correct. It’s possible there is some malfunctioning on the World Bank site or Ria has submitted incorrect spreads to the World Bank. It also says Moneygram charges a 0.48% spread which is definitely not right.

In fact, we don’t necessarily believe there to be any purposeful wrongdoing as Ria is transparent enough to provide exchange rates on its Price Calculator, and by our analysis, we spotted a steady 2.5% margin. For some destinations that’s pretty good, especially Africa, South America and East Asia, where companies like Western Union can charge huge markups. For some destinations like Europe, if the transfer amount is $1,000 or more, it’s a huge spread. There are companies like Wise (Transferwise) which operate in the USA and use margins starting at 0.35% for most popular destinations.

Rates are somewhat similar to other U.S-based remittances companies like Transfast.

Limits: There is absolutely no minimum, but a daily $2,999 max limit for transfers from USA and Canada. Transfers from the UK are capped at £4,999 and transfers from Australia are capped at $7500. If you need to transfer bigger amounts of money, you should turn your attention to companies like Moneycorp, CurrenciesDirect or TorFX.


Conclusions:

You can’t compare apples with oranges so we won’t be comparing Ria’s exchange rates to the ones offered by other specialist foreign exchange firms, else this rate would not look particularly attractive. When you compare it with other companies in the remittance sector, with this ultra-wide reach, and considering the fact it is very transparent in its approach (allowing to view prices before sending), we grade it as middle of the road. Cheaper than the likes of Moneygram and Western Union but more expensive than Wise, Azimo, and CurrencyFair. Its exchange rates for cash pick up are really pretty good.

The payment fees are on the whole reasonable, with the exception of Canada. At $45, payment fees from Canada are ridiculously expensive for transfers over $2000. This is much like you’d expect from a bank and not a money transfer or remittance specialist. We wouldn’t recommend using Ria from Canada for this reason.

Global Reach & Service


Research:

  • Dedicated Dealer: No.
  • Offices: USA but 447,000+ transfer agents around the world.
  • Ways to approach: Phone, Email.
  • Translations: None.
  • Accepts clients: Online payments can be made from UK, USA, Canada and Australia..
  • Currencies Handled: 100+
  • Client reviews: Mostly satisfied but still, many complaints.

Conclusion:

On one hand Ria is a truly international company. With 447,000 agent locations and stores across the globe, they have the right connections to sort out any issues and make cash collection possible in countries where recipients may not have a bank account. They handle a lot of very important corridors in Africa and make it cheaper for immigrants to send money home.

On the other hand, for those who want to transfer large sums of money into less remote parts of the world, Ria isn’t a perfect solution. With competitors like OFX you get a dedicated dealer helping you with every step of the transfer (including currency-related consultancy), and they are reachable via various channels – and this gets them much higher client satisfaction than with Ria.

Additional Functionalities

There are no other FX functionalities to this service besides sending and receiving funds into bank accounts or in cash pickup. There is now an app although it seems to be having a lot of teething issues, there are no hedging tools, and no regular transfers that can be done automatically. It’s far from the best money transfer apps out there in the market.

There’s a helpful search tool online which will list all of the agent locations Ria has. This is particularly appropriate for payments made for cash collection. As the sender you can ensure the person you are sending money to has a local agent that they can easily access. In some instances they might not – in Tanzania for example Ria only has a cash partner in the city of Arusha so if the beneficiary lives far away from here, Ria may not be an appropriate provider. The tool, however, at least let’s you check this with Ria ahead of making a transfer.

 


Conclusion:

Ria is an international currency transfer service. Easy and simple. Not meant for large transfers and thus there are no hedging tools of any sort. Regular transfers could have been nice, but it’s not an absolute necessity with this type of service.

Ria Money Transfer Review Summary
76%
76 of 100 1 review
  • Credibility Score - 85%
    85%
  • Client Feedback - 68%
    68%
  • Fees, Exchange Rates - 85%
    85%
  • Global Reach, Availability, Service - 70%
    70%
  • Added Values - 70%
    70%

Bottom Line

Ria money transfer is a solid remittance provider for those who want to send small amounts of money online to a developing country, or a remote place in the world. Originally only available to US citizens, the firm has expanded into the UK, Canada and Australia. It is a far cheaper option than using options like Western Union. On the other hand, if you’re sending money to locations like Europe you could use companies like OFXor Currencies Direct which offer cheaper rates and a more personalized service.

Our only concern is the level of negative feedback the firm has received in 2021 – it appears the majority of clients that took the time to leave a review had a poor experience. Whilst people who have a bad experience are more likely to leave a review we would have still expected four out of five users to report a positive experience as Ria has a 4.2 / 5 review score.  In fact, four out of five Ria Money Transfer reviews in 2021 appear to be negative.

 

 

Subscribe
Notify of
21 Comments
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
desmond
6 years ago

I am look for Ria money transfer office in Sierra Leone

jun tomis
6 years ago

i send money in the philippines and i want to trak it if it is already deposited in the bank so i can advised my family to take it.thank you so much…

Michael Dempsey
5 years ago

I am investigating the possibility of sending money from a bank account in Los Angeles, California USA to a friend who lives in Accra, Ghana. I would like the funds to be available for cash pickup. Can this be done? If so, what locations in Accra are available for my recipient to do a cash pickup?

Thanks in advance for your help.

onyi
5 years ago

Hi please what is the maximum amount of money i can send from a branch in the U.S..

Aditya
5 years ago

Ria is horrible. It might give you slightly better rate but eventually fustrate tou through its tardy money transfer and pathetic customer service. Any email sent to them will not get response in less than 10 days. Use it only if you want to lose peace of mind and add frustration to your life…if time, effort and money are precious to you then Stay away from Ria. There are better reliable service providers.

Abhijeet Rajput
5 years ago

DON’T USE THIS COMPANY FOR ANY TRANSFER. ATLEAST I AM NOT GOING TO USE. 1). THEY SAY THAT THEY ARE GOING TO TRANSFER MONEY IN 3 BUSINESS DAYS. AFTER THE TRANSACTION WAS COMPLETED, I RECEIVED A CONFIRMATION TO RECEIVE BY 1/12/17 2). I INITIATED A TRANSFER ON 1/4/17 AND UNTIL TODAY 1/14/17 THE MONEY IS NOT TRANSFERRED. 3). I CALLED ON 1/12/17 ABOUT THE STATUS, AT THAT POINT I WAS INFORMED THAT MONEY WAS READY TO BE TRANSFERRED BY 1/5/17 BUT THERE WAS SOME ISSUE WITH THE BANK. PROBLEM IS NO COMMUNICATION IS MADE TO YOU AND YOU KEEP HOPING… Read more »

Jim W
5 years ago

RIAMoneyTransfer.com: Not quite there yet I live in NY and my wife and I were trying to send money to the Dominican Republic which we already do monthly via Xoom.com but lately their fees (as well as USD to DOP exchange rate) are just not competitive. Like any company that’s grown enough and captured ample marketshare, service and value go down. So we figured we’d give Riamoneytransfer.com a try. In short, you get what you pay for (or don’t pay for in the case of these smaller players like Ria) and in our case we were never able to complete… Read more »

Papa Ndiaye
4 years ago

If I could I would rate RIA 0 STAR RIA is the worst money transfer company I have ever used. They debited my bank account in a second and fail to fulfil the contract of sending the money to the beneficiary. They haven’t put the right information on their website to guide the customer. When you put for example £5,000 on their website, the website will display “Please enter an amount greater than £1 and less than £5000”. When you enter £4,999 the website will accept it. But when you send the £4,999 they will block the transfer and will… Read more »

MARK BRYAN
3 years ago

I have been blocked from sending by western union and MoneyGram. Can I send through RIA without problems???

Raj
3 years ago

How many amunt paid Ria money for withdrawl money point in india

Subramaniam Poopal
3 years ago

Dear Sirs, Today 1st December 2018, I went to Ria money transaction center in BONN near Central Railway station , behind Mcdonalds office at exactly 17.46 hrs, even though at the door it was stated Saturday closing time is 18.hrs it was locked and the clerk signaled me its closed,but I showed him the time that it was 17.50 and still there is 10 mts to close, he refused and did not serve me. THIS IS AN ABSOLUTE DISGUSTING OF AN EXTREMELY POOR CUSTOMER SERVICE YOU ARE OFFERING TO YOUR CUSTOMER. There was two Tellers and only 2 customers waiting… Read more »

cathy young
3 years ago

looking to send money from nz throu ria to ghana on line if possibale

Jeremy
8 months ago

Ria exchange rates are not the best but they are one of the very few that have branches in many locations. I use it to send money to my grandparents and because they are nontechnical, it’s pretty much the only company to work with.