You can likely buy a money order with a debit card, depending on where you go. Of course, cash is the most accepted option. However, USPS, some banks, and some grocery stores accept debit cards or cash for money orders. If you’re looking to pay for a money order with a credit card, the transaction will likely be processed as a cash advance, which carries high fees and is generally not recommended. For the list of stores that sell money orders, see our article Where Can I Get a Money Order?
In This Article
- What You Need to Know About Money Orders
- Can You Buy a Money Order with a Debit Card?
- Can You Buy a Money Order with a Credit Card?
What You Need to Know About Money Orders
A money order is a check backed by a bank. Even if you get a money order from a check cashing store or post office, it is still covered by a bank — meaning the bank is responsible for ensuring the check is good. There is usually a small fee to purchase a money order.
You may need a money order for a deposit on an apartment or a large purchase. A money order is a more guaranteed form of payment since it is backed by a bank instead of an individual — like a personal check. Cash is another option, but it can easily be lost or stolen. And credit cards have fees for the seller.
Western Union, MoneyGram, and the United States Post Office (USPS) are the most well-known money order issuers. To buy a Western Union or MoneyGram money order, you have to visit one of their agents — often found in grocery stores, convenience stores, and check cashing stores. At your local post office, just ask the postal worker if you can purchase a money order. It’s that easy.
Can You Buy a Money Order with a Debit Card?
Most of the time, you can use a debit card to buy a money order. USPS accepts cash, debit cards, and traveler’s checks. At banks that issue money orders — like Chase, Citibank, U.S. Bank, and more — you can usually pay with cash or a debit card, or you can have the money withdrawn directly from your account if you are an account holder. Walmart and some grocery stores — like Albertson’s, H-E-B, and more — also accept debit cards when purchasing a money order.
Can You Buy a Money Order with a Credit Card?
Yes and no. Some places — namely banks and grocery stores — will accept credit cards for money orders, but the transaction will often be processed as a cash advance, which can carry some hefty fees. A cash advance results in a much higher APR, as well as an increase in the amount of money you owe on the credit card — not to mention, there may be a transaction fee, as well. All things considered, this route is not recommended.
You can usually purchase a money order with a debit card — and, of course, cash. USPS accepts debit cards, as well as some banks and grocery stores that sell money orders. You may be able to buy a money order with a credit card, but the transaction will often be processed as a cash advance and is not recommended. If you’re looking for another way to pay for a money order, see our article: Can You Buy a Money Order with a Gift Card?