CVS Money Order Policy Explained: Fees, etc

Exterior of a CVS Pharmacy store

Short Answer — CVS offers money orders through MoneyGram, but it doesn’t cash them. You can purchase money orders up to $500 for a fee of $1.25 each. CVS also offers MoneyGram money transfers, with fees and limits determined by the transfer destination and amount. Below, we have more details on getting money orders and money transfers at CVS.

Does CVS Sell Money Orders?

CVS sells money orders through MoneyGram.

You can purchase a money order up to $500; if you need more than $500, you can buy multiple money orders.

The fee is $1.25 per money order, and you must pay the entire amount in cash. Debit cards, credit cards, or other types of payment are not accepted for money orders at CVS.[1]


You can buy a money order at CVS whenever the store is open.[1]

Some CVS locations are open 24/7, while others have more limited hours — often opening around 8 or 9 a.m. and closing around 9 or 10 p.m.[2]

How to Buy

To purchase a money order, simply walk up to an available checkout and let the cashier know that you want to buy one.

You’ll need to show a form of government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license or state ID card.[1]

Once you pay the cashier — in cash — you’ll have your money order in hand.


To compare all of your options, see our complete list of places that sell money orders.

Does CVS Cash Money Orders?

While you can buy a money order at CVS, you can’t cash one.

Does CVS Offer Money Transfers?

Customers seeking an alternative to money orders can send or receive money at CVS using MoneyGram money transfers.[3]

Money transfers are available during the same hours as money orders.[1]

Sending a Money Transfer at CVS

When sending a MoneyGram transfer at CVS, you’ll need to have your photo ID, the recipient’s full name as listed on their photo ID, and the recipient’s location.

CVS accepts cash for money transfers.[1][4]

Fees and limits depend on the details of your transaction; the computer will automatically approve or deny the transfer based on its destination.[1]

Fees depend on the total transfer amount and destination, but you can get an estimate on the MoneyGram website before visiting CVS.

After purchasing a money transfer, you’ll receive a reference number, which you should share the reference with the recipient. (They’ll need it to collect the money.)

The recipient can visit any MoneyGram agent to receive the funds.[5]

Both the sender and recipient can track the funds using the Track a Transfer tool at MoneyGram’s website.

Receiving a Money Transfer at CVS

When receiving a MoneyGram money transfer at CVS, you’ll receive the funds in cash.[5][1]

You may want to call CVS before visiting to be sure it has enough cash on hand to complete your transaction.

You’ll need the transaction’s reference number (provided by the sender) and your photo ID to complete the transfer.

Funds are typically available within minutes of the sender’s transaction, but you don’t have to pick them up at a specific time.[5]

There’s no fee for MoneyGram money transfer recipients.[1]


  • Lisa

    Why won’t CVS cash their own money orders purchased by their customers, after all you have to show and give them your Id to scan in order to buy one. Their customers should be able to cash in their money order if it had not been used or written on as long as they have the attached receipt. I think I may start going elsewhere because I am a disabled senior citizen who have problems with walking and breathing that may need to return one and I go to CVS because it is only three blocks from where I live.

  • Mason

    I have a couple of questions.
    1. What is the expiration date of a money order to cash in?
    2. I have a couple that I purchased and filled out to a company, but never sent it to them because of legal matters. Will I be able to get my money back? and how do I go about doing it.

    • First Quarter Finance logo
      First Quarter Finance | Lindsey Desmet

      Hello, Mason! MoneyGram money orders are valid for one year after purchase. You can get your money back after filling out a money order, but you will need to request a refund from MoneyGram directly rather than returning to CVS. Our research on money order expiration has more details, including instructions for requesting a refund. Best of luck!

  • Name* (displayed publicly)

    I understand the need for ID when cashing a money order and fully approve that. However, at CVS, both in Watsonville and Capitola, California, IDs are required when PURCHASING a money order WITH CASH (the only accepted payment, as it should be). This is strange, because, after all, the store is receiving good, US currency to purchase a service, for which CVS receives a fee (again in cash). I do not understand this practice (nor do I object as I have nothing to hide when purchasing a money order for cash, it just is curious and an inconvenience).

    I understand that if the money order is for a huge amount of cash (say $10,000, $5,000, or in that neighborhood), CVS has to be sure that the money is legitimate and the person turning it over to CVS has it honestly, or at least can be traced if something turns out not quite right.

    However, my money orders are for my rent, which is just a tad over $1000 (requiring three money orders, as the limit is $500). That I do not mind.

    • First Quarter Finance logo
      First Quarter Finance | Rebecca Turley

      Hi there!

      The ID requirement when purchasing a money order is for your protection. Western Union and MoneyGram need to be able to trace the origin of the money order in case you lose it or expect fraud when it is cashed. So, although it may seem like a bit of an inconvenience, in the end, it is for your benefit.

  • Gale

    Why does CVS require ID for any money order?

    • First Quarter Finance logo
      First Quarter Finance | Laura Bachmann

      Hi Gale,

      You need to show an ID when you’re cashing a money order, and usually not when you buy one. (Though you could need an ID to buy one if the store usually needs ID to accept the form of payment you’re using to purchase.) When one buys a money order, they indicate the recipient on the money order, making the payment more secure. Therefore, if someone paid you with a money order and you’re indicated as the recipient, you’ll need an ID to prove it’s really you to be able to cash the money order.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *