500 Mexican pesos notes on a table with traditional Mexican ornament.
500 Mexican pesos notes on a table with traditional Mexican ornament. Getty Images | Daniel Sambraus

NEW YORK CITY - Mexico saw an increase in money being sent home through remittances last year, with around $57 billion being sent from the U.S. to Mexico between January to November, the Bank of Mexico (Banxico) shared in its latest report.

Though analysts caution for a softened remittance activity due to Mexico's peso appreciating against the U.S. dollar, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador touted back in May of 2023 that the country's economy would see a boost thanks to these international transfers, which largely come from the U.S. to Mexico.

If you're one of the over 37 million Mexicans living in the U.S., or just know someone in Mexico, remittances are a great option to send money back home quickly and efficiently. But what are the options that could save you the most money while ensuring your addressees receive their money? Below is a comprehensive guide on how to send remittances from the U.S. to Mexico.

The Importance of Sending Remittances Through Reliable Services

Before you send money through an international transfer, it is important to analyze what the best option is for you. Because of exchange rates— the amount of pesos that will be delivered to Mexico— the quantity received by your beneficiary may vary depending on the alternative you choose.

At the same time, when thinking about sending money from the U.S. to Mexico, safety should also be considered. Most transfers today are made by electronic means such as wire transfers, use of cards (debit, credit, prepaid) or even via the internet. Before you give sensitive and personal information to any website, company or person, make sure their services are trustworthy and that they will successfully deliver the money to your beneficiary.

Choosing the Right Money Transfer Option

There are several options and platforms to send remittances available. When considering making an international transfer, it is important to check which ones best accommodate your needs.

At the time of choosing an option to send money from the U.S. to Mexico, you may want to consider the following:

  • Asking the service platforms about rates and fees you will be charged.
  • If it is not an urgent transfer, consider choosing an option with lower fees but slower services. Usually, immediate transfers have higher service fees.
  • Get in touch with your beneficiary in Mexico and discuss what the best option to send money is.

Bank Transfers

When exploring the option to send a remittance back home, you may see the option of a bank transfer. While this is similar to a remittance, there is a technical difference that you may want to consider.

While a bank remittance refers to a funds transfer from one bank account to another as a gift or payment sent through an electronic payment system, wire transfer, mail, draft or check; a bank transfer refers to when you move money between your accounts, whether locally or internationally. A bank transfer usually involves an intermediary organization that operates between the payer and the payee.

In addition to that, there are several shipment options offered to send international transfers.

  • Directo a Mexico is a service that allows you to send money from an account from a financial institution that subscribes to the program "Directo a Mexico" in the US, to any bank account in Mexico or any telegraph office.
  • Cash Transfers are carried out by institutions located in the US and which have agents throughout Mexico in charge of delivering the cash.
  • With Wire Transfers, American banks work with Mexican banks to transfer the money. The most popular ones being Citibank, Wells Fargo and Bank of America. In order to carry out this option, the payer must have a checking account with the American bank, and the payee must have a checking account with the Mexican bank. These services are usually free or have low costs.
  • Some banks in the U.S. offer special bank accounts specifically for sending money internationally through the use of debit cards that you may give to your relatives. You may transfer the money at an ATM in the US and the person receiving it can dispose of it at an ATM in Mexico.
  • Online Transfers allow you to make online payments through an app or a website. You can just pay a service fee through a checking account, and your beneficiary can pick it up, have it delivered to their home or have the money deposited to their account.
  • Prepaid Cards allow you to give a card to your payee in Mexico so they can use their money at home. You do not need a bank account for this service.
  • Telegraphic Transfers are used by people who live in rural areas where it is hard to find a financial institution. For this service, you must go to an institution in the U.S. who has an agreement with the telegraphic office in Mexico.
  • Money Orders are documents issued by remittance institutions, banks or money exchange houses. These services usually take longer than others because they are carried by ordinary or certified mail.

Online Money Transfer Platforms

The technology boom of the 21st Century has made online transfer platforms increasingly popular to send remittances. These platforms allow you to give money you want to transfer plus a fee to the institution in charge of sending the money and they send it to the final destination. The money can be usually picked up in pharmacies, money exchange houses, grocery stores, etc.

Some of the most popular cash transfer online platforms are Western Union, MoneyGram and Vigo. These platforms offer very similar services, so you may want to compare each of their service fees before you make an international transfer.

Considering Exchange Rates and Fees

Exchange rates are the amount in pesos that will be delivered to your beneficiary when you send money from the U.S. to Mexico.

There are two types of exchange rates. A fixed rate is determined by the monetary authority of a foreign country, while the floating exchange rate is determined by foreign exchange markets based on supply and demand, which causes it to fluctuate regularly.

If it is not an urgent transfer, you may want to keep an eye out for fluctuating exchange rates to make sure you get the best offer to send remittances.

Receiving Remittances in Mexico: What to Know?

Though sending remittances today may be a relatively easy process, as a beneficiary it is still important to stay in the know with international transfers. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when receiving money through remittances.

  • Get informed about the estimated amount you will receive and the time it will take.
  • Tell the person who is sending the money from the U.S. about the institutions that deliver in your locality.
  • Never allow the institution that will deliver the money to condition the service or purchase merchandise and never allow payment in species rather than cash.


Sending remittances from the U.S. to Mexico has become increasingly popular in the past couple of years as more migrants make their way to the States. While the process has become considerably smoother as technology advances, it is still important to be aware of the pros and cons of each service. Service fees, exchange rates and shipment methods are just a few of the factors that you may want to think about when sending money internationally.

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