How to Send Money to Africa

Updated on April 10, 2024

At a Glance

  • Visa holders can send money to Africa for various reasons like supporting family, investing, or paying for weddings.
  • Safe methods for sending money include bank transfers, writing yourself a check, using PayPal, and utilizing third-party services like MoneyGram or Western Union.
  • Remittance companies like TransferWise, Xoom, and Remitly are recommended for secure and efficient transfers.
  • In some cases, obtaining a personal loan in the U.S. and transferring the funds to Africa can be a viable option for specific financial needs.

Millions of people from Africa live and work in the U.S. and they have even more family members back home. Life in Africa can be hard and you probably often have to send money back home to support your family. But how does it work? Is it safe and what do you need in order to send money to family in Africa?

Here you can find some more information on how to send money to Africa. Use this information to help look after friends and family back home.

Can a Visa Holder Send Money to Africa?

You’re probably wondering whether it is even possible to send money to Africa. The good news is yes, you can. But you’ll have to find ways that are safe to do it. Sure, you can send cash via physical mail with a post service. But that is very risky. You need to use proven and safe digital ways to send money.

Before we go into too much detail, let’s first look at why people from Africa living on a visa in the U.S. would want to send money back home.

3 Big Reasons African Visa Holders Send Money Back Home

People have different reasons why they work. Some do it because of an inner drive to reach a goal. Others love the industry they are in. But many Africans have far more personal reasons for working and working abroad. Here are the three most common reasons why people send money abroad.

Supporting Family

Many Africans send money home to support their families living in impoverished areas. They have a deep respect and love for their parents and siblings and want to help them with financial support. Some Africans living in the U.S. may even be forced due to circumstances to live apart from their spouses and children and they need to send money to them to provide for them.


Some Africans working in the U.S. have established businesses or investment portfolios back home. They invest money in their home country’s economy regularly. Some people even plan their retirement back home and look for opportunities to buy land.

The U.S. Dollar is relatively stronger than most (if not every) currency on the African continent. The spending power of a Dollar in African economies is also very strong. People from Africa then leverage this advantage to invest their dollar income in opportunities that suit their investment needs back home.

Paying for a Wedding Abroad

Weddings are beautiful and magical events. They are also usually quite expensive and require months of planning (and saving). Deposits need to be paid long before the wedding starts and some types of wedding vendors may even charge extra costs after the day is done.

In Africa, there are often multiple ceremonies for a large number of guests. So, People often send money to Africa to help pay for their or their family’s weddings.

5 Best Ways to Send Money to Africa

There are evidently many reasons you might want to send money to Africa. The question now is how do you do it in a safe way? Here are the 5 main ways in which you can send money abroad. Keep in mind, most of these methods or services have a daily limit on the amount of money you may send per day.

Bank Transfer

This is probably the most basic one. But it does require a bank account in Africa before it is possible. It’s very simple. Get the details of the bank account of the recipient in Africa. Open your U.S. bank account’s online service. Register the new African recipient on your profile and send the amount of money to that account. It is as easy as that.

Write Yourself a Check

If you still use checks you can always write yourself one. Simply make the check out from your U.S. bank account to yourself. But remember to add your African bank account as the recipient for the check. Go to a branch of your African bank and cash the check.

Send Via PayPal

PayPal is a digital payment service that acts as an online wallet. You can send money to a PayPal account anywhere in the world (as long as both parties have an internet connection). Create your own PayPal account and then transfer money to it. Then you can transfer the money from your PayPal account to your African bank account. Follow the instructions provided on PayPal’s website. Make sure to have a look at their fees and costs before you use their services, however, so you don’t get any surprises.

Use a Third-Party Transfer Service

Third-party transfer services want to offer you a hassle-free service. Go to MoneyGram, TransferMate, or Western Union and use the one you like. Go to their website or physical stores. Add your cash and destination details. Visit the agent in Africa or have someone collect it on your behalf. Receive the U.S. Dollars and go exchange it for the currency you prefer. Remember, they will ask a transfer fee for their services.

Withdraw from an ATM in Africa

You can also simply withdraw money from your U.S. debit card at a participating ATM in Africa. Your bank will allow you to withdraw money from an ATM that supports your bank. Please note that international cash withdrawals are expensive and may prove to be more expensive than some of the other solutions. But it is a solution nonetheless if you can’t use any of the other options available.

Top 3 Remittance Companies for Sending Money to Africa

We’ve already looked at international remittance as a way of sending money to Africa. Here are three companies you can consider if you want to choose this option.


Transferwise is simple to use and they also vow to never hide any fees from you. Open a free account with them, set up your transfer, tell them a little bit about yourself, provide the details of the recipient, check the details and the amount, and confirm the transfer.


Xoom works with PayPal as one of their service providers. They want to provide a seamless international money transfer service. In some African countries, they promise to deliver the money in the same business day it is transferred. Simply start a transfer with them, select the options, and the money gets delivered. No-fuss, no-frills and easy to use.


Remitly offers two ways to send money to Africa. They have an Express or Economy option. Express is the fastest way and requires a debit or credit card. The economy has the lowest fees and requires a bank account to send money. Open a free account with Remitly and choose your delivery partner. Enter the recipient name and provide the payment information. Click transfer and track it with sophisticated email and text updates. Your recipient will also receive email and text updates about the progress of the money transfer.

Personal Loan to Send Money to Africa

Sending money to Africa can be seamless and easy. But you might find yourself in a situation where you need to finance something back home but you don’t have the cash to do it. You have a solid income in the U.S. but you just don’t have all the cash right now required back home in Africa.

Have you thought of a personal loan? You can take out a personal loan in the U.S. and transfer the money to Africa. You will remain responsible for the debt in the U.S. but at least you don’t have to worry about that problem or need back home anymore.

Stilt offers personal loans of up to $25,000 and starts at an APR of 7,99%. Borrowing money in the stronger U.S. economy may also mean you pay less interest when compared to African loans. You can even pay more than the required monthly installment without incurring an early payment penalty. Make sure about your eligibility for a personal loan and apply.

This is how it works.

1. Submit an Application

Apply online for the loan amount you need and submit your best possible application. Remember stronger applications get better loan offers.

2. Receive an Offer

Someone will contact you within 24 hours of your application. Provide any additional information required since it will only improve your chances of a loan. Soon you will get a loan offer and a promissory note. Please sign and return that note if you want to accept the loan.

3. Start Making Payments

The loan will be disbursed into your account within 2-3 business days. Set up your repayment method online. An autopay option will help you to pay on time every month.

It’s that simple. Once you’ve received your loan you can use one of the methods listed above to send money to Africa. Whether it’s a wedding, and investment opportunity, or family in need of support. You can use a personal loan for whatever you want to.


Millions of Africans live and work in the U.S. and they often need to send money back home. There are different reasons for that, but something connects them all. They want a safe, cost-effective, and fast way to get it done. Listed above are 5 ways in which you can send money to Africa. There are even 3 remittance companies you can choose from as a solution to your problem.

Did you know you can even loan money in the U.S. to send to Africa? Whatever the need, you can take a personal loan in the U.S. to support family or invest in Africa. Apply today and send your money to Africa.

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Frank Gogol

I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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