Whether sending money to loved ones or friends, finding a bank or money transfer service that’s inexpensive and fast isn’t easy.
For those looking to transfer money from India to Canada, the options aren’t limitless, and it isn’t always cheap.
Indian immigrants are one of the fastest-growing communities in Canada, which means viable transfer options between the two countries need to exist as the population and demand for money transfers grow.
I went through the options and came up with several ways those living in India can send money to Canada. Here are my top choices.
The perks? Wise is fully transparent about its fees. You can see what you’ll pay using their online calculator. Transfers are fast and secure.
Wise tops my list of top money transfer companies because you can send to over 80 countries in multiple currencies, and there aren’t hidden fees added at the last minute.
They use the mid-market rate, the midpoint between what banks are willing to buy and sell for different currencies. Other companies will add a margin on top of that rate, making it costlier for users to send money.
With Wise, you can send money from India to Canada through a bank transfer, debit or credit card with limited fees. Using the calculator on its site, you can get an accurate picture of what you will pay.
In the example above, you can send 100,000 rupees, and the recipient will receive 1,605.97 Canadian dollars. The total fees are clear, along with a guaranteed rate for the next 24 hours.
Because sending money from India to Canada is a popular trade route, the time it takes for a successful transfer isn’t long. Most times, it’s done within the same day. However, depending on your location and destination, it could be as long as one day.
The perks? Cheap rates with no hidden fees. Plus, most transfers, especially to popular service areas, are instant or arrive within one business day. Their rewards points program is unique and could pull in users that frequently transfer money.
Instarem consistently ranks at the top of money transfer companies because of its low fees and speedy service.
Like Wise, Instarem is transparent about its fees and issues a small markup on the mid-market rate. According to its website, users can expect to pay about .25% – .50% of the transferred amount.
It also shows the total fees included in the transfer.
Most transfers arrive instantly or within a business day, another perk to this transfer service. You can fund your transfer with a bank transfer or using a debit or credit card.
Instarem stands out from its competitors because of its points program. With every transfer or friend referral, you can earn points to redeem during your next transaction.
The above table represents how using InstaPoints can translate into savings during your next money transfer.
The perks? BookMyForex is a quick way to send money without additional fees, according to the company’s website.
Like other money-transferring sites, BookMyForex features an online calculator to help you estimate your transfer amount. According to its website, here are common fees associated with the transfer:
The company claims they will not charge any additional transfer fees, and you’ll have the option to lock in your rate for three days. Transfers are quick, too. Most get processed within 24 hours of receiving the funds and sent to the beneficiary within a day.
There are two different ways to send funds, a wire transfer or a demand draft. Wire transfers are much quicker than demand drafts but typically more expensive. Most banks in India will charge a fee to initiate a transfer.
A demand draft initiates a transfer without a signature. Like a cheque, a demand draft is usually cheaper but requires a longer wait time to move funds. Demand drafts were the main source of transfers in the past, but with updated technology, they’re becoming obsolete.
BookMyForex has a calculator on their webpage to view how much your recipient will receive. You can even break it down further by entering the city you’re transferring from.
However, unlike the other two money transfer services, this company doesn’t break down any additional fees for you, so it’s hard to say if anything additional will be added.
Here’s an example of the company’s calculator.
Other Ways To Send Money
4. Bank Transfers
The perks? It might be convenient, but that’s about it.
There aren’t too many money transfer services that do India to Canada transfers, so many people rely on their own banks. It’s easy to do because you already have the money to send at your fingertips.
While it seems a reasonable option, bank transfers are expensive. The exchange rate is usually lower than money transfer companies. Plus, both banks (the sending and receiving ones) typically charge a flat fee just for completing the transaction.
Additionally, sending money through your bank means knowing a lot of information about your recipient, including their name, address, and financial institution information.
5. Western Union
The perks? Reliable and easy to use. Plus, money transfers are quick.
One of the original money transfer services, Western Union can get your recipient their funds quickly, but you’ll pay for it.
While it’s well known and reliable, Western Union charges a flat fee for transfers depending on the speed needed and the location of both sender and recipient.
In addition, the exchange rate isn’t the most competitive, and you’ll also incur hidden fees, unlike other money transfer services.
However, if you’re looking to get funds to your recipient instantly and from a tried and true service, Western Union is a good pick. Otherwise, there are many other cheaper options.
Currently, users cannot send money from India to Canada with Google Pay. In May 2021, Google announced US customers could send funds internationally through its app to India and Singapore, with more countries added soon.
This means that people in India looking to transfer money to Canada are out of luck, for now.
The 2020 Finance Act introduced provisions on foreign remittances out of India. This means sending money from India to Canada is taxed, but those sending money from Canada to India are not.
A 5% collecting tax at source (TCS) is imposed on foreign remittances that exceed Rs 7 lakh (Indian currency) in a financial year.
However, there are certain instances where the tax is reduced to .5% if over that amount – mainly for remittances used for loans for education abroad.
If you have friends or family that live far away, it’s hard enough when you can’t see them that often. But sending them money shouldn’t be a hassle.
With all the different ways to transfer money, I made Wise my top pick because of its low fees and speed of service. If you’re looking for more information on the company or its other features, check out my Wise review.