Money orders and money transfers are reliable payment alternatives to cash and personal checks.
Money orders are a non-electronic way to make payments or transfer money, similar to a personal check, while a money transfer electronically transfers funds from one account to another.
If you’d like to purchase a money order, then you’ll need to go somewhere other than Walgreens or Duane Reade. Walgreens does not offer money orders, but they do offer money transfers through the Western Union, at about 7,800 of its approximately 9,000 locations. We have provided a list of similar stores that sell money orders (since Walgreens doesn’t offer money orders, only money transfers) at the end of the article.
With longer hours than banks and credit unions, Walgreens is a good option to transfer money when you’re short on time and you don’t mind paying a little extra for speed.
What Is a Money Order?
Money orders have been a reliable payment method for over a century. When paying with a money order, the buyer purchases the money order with cash (or a debit or credit card, if allowed), pays a nominal fee, and then uses it to pay the recipient, who redeems it for cash. Money orders themselves are notes that often look similar to personal checks. They have many of the same blanks as personal checks, including pay to, amount, and date.
Money orders are safer than personal checks and cash. Because they are prepaid, there’s no risk of a bounced check or having to pay a fee to cash when paying with a money order. When purchasing a money order, the buyer must specify the recipient. In order to cash a money order, the recipient must appear in person and show identification, reducing the risk of theft. Money orders can also be deposited. There are places you can deposit money orders at ATMs and places you can deposit money orders online. And, money orders come with a tracking number, so if lost, they can be replaced. Read more about how to get a refund on a lost or stolen money order.
What Is a Money Transfer?
Money transfer refers to an electronic funds transfer, commonly abbreviated EFT. Walgreens offers money transfer services through Western Union. Western Union and MoneyGram are two of the largest providers of money transfer services, although your bank can also usually transfer money to the recipient’s bank. Services like Western Union and MoneyGram may be more attractive because they have lower fees and fewer restrictions. Banks sometimes charge significant fees to transfer money to an account at a different bank.
Money transfers can be used to transfer cash or bank account funds to another person in cash or directly to their bank account. Money transfers are secure, safe, and eliminate the risk of simply displacing cash. They are a convenient option when your financial institution prohibits or has high fees associated with the transfer you are trying to make. Money transfers are also fast, usually taking only one or two business days, and don’t have a wait time to clear, like personal checks. And, like money orders, money transfers eliminate the risk of check bouncing and associated fees.
Getting a Money Transfer at Walgreens
Does Walgreens do money orders? As stated above, no, though Walgreens offers money transfer services through Western Union. About 7,800 of Walgreens’ nearly 9,000 locations have Western Union services, so call your location ahead of time to confirm that they sell money orders. Duane Reade, the New York-based chain owned by Walgreens, follows the same policy, offering money transfers but not money orders.
What Are the Fees, Limits, and Accepted Payment Types?
You can find out the fees for your specific transfer with Western Union’s online fee estimator. Fees for Western Union money transfers made in person and paid for in cash are $11.00 regardless of the amount of the transfer. “In minutes service,” which makes the transfer available for pick-up at an agent location by the receiver immediately instead of in one business day, has a $12.50 fee. Walgreens is only able to accept cash equivalent forms of payment for a money transfer made in person.
How Do I Create a Money Transfer?
Money transfer services are generally available from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. at Walgreens and Duane Reade. Money transfers are made at the self-service kiosk near the photo area. To make the money transfer, select the Western Union button on the kiosk screen and follow the prompts. You’ll need to enter the recipient’s legal name when making a money transfer. You can send up to $6,000 at one time. Also, be prepared to pay the money transfer fee in addition to the total value of the money order.
How Do Receive a Money Transfer?
At Walgreens, you can receive a money transfer up to $300. As a recipient, you must show a government-issued ID and provide the money transfer’s tracking number (MTCN), sender name, and the amount you’re receiving. Money order cashing services are also done at the self-service kiosk near the photo area.
Other Walgreens Services
Walgreens and Duane Reade offer several other services, so you may be able to save travel time and do multiple errands in one place. Walgreens stores also have pharmacies, clinics, photo printing, and other money services. Use the Walgreens store locator to confirm that your store has the service you need because not all stores offer all services.
- Walgreens Pharmacy
- Offers prescription refills
- Some Walgreens Pharmacies are preferred for Medicare Part D plans and have lower copays.
- Get automatic refills and refill reminders
- Healthcare Clinic (at select locations)
- Treatment for minor injuries and illnesses
- Provides routine, senior, adolescent, and travel vaccinations
- Photo Printing
- Prints: photo books, cards, calendars, posters, mugs, clothes, and more…
- Takes and prints passport photos
- Offers same day pick up for most orders or order online and have photos sent to you by mail.
- Money services
- Gift cards for various stores
- Prepaid Visa and American Express cards
- Often sells local public transportation passes — check with your local transit authority
Similar Stores That Sell and Cash Money Orders
If a money transfer at Walgreens doesn’t meet your needs, there are several other comparable stores that sell money orders. CVS and Rite Aid both sell money orders, and you can also get them at most grocery stores. For a complete list of places to buy a money order, see our article Where Can I Get a Money Order?
If you need to cash a money order, your options are slimmer. The money order is most likely to be accepted for deposit into your own bank account. Your bank might also cash it. Besides that, it’ll be a little tricky, but not impossible, to find some where to cash it. Here is the complete list of places that cash money orders.
So does Walgreens do money orders? No. Neither does Duane Reade. But money transfers work for most situations. Many people even prefer them over money orders.
If you’re set on a money order rather than a money transfer, please use one of the many other stores that sell money orders.
In case you want to bring your pet, see our article, Is Walgreens Pet-Friendly?