Western Union

Compare Money Transfer and International Money Transfer Services

Consumer Complaints and Reviews

on
Satisfaction Rating

There was a time I used Western Union weekly, never again. My friend was trying to send me funds I desperately needed from her location in Seattle to my location in Florida, Western Union would not process the transfer because of fraud alerts? How do they determine this? How can a discerning adult be prevented from transferring money if they choose to? I will never ever use Western Union again.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Once again, I'm going through a nightmare with Western Union. It's unfortunate. I did a wire transfer at 1:20 PM today. The time is now 6:57 PM and Western Union continues to say "it's being processed." They started out by saying then 1-2 hours. I got a manager on the line, was told 15-20 minutes. When I called back, was told another 1 hour, and so on... now they're saying, they have no idea when they'll be able to release the funds because they're having system issues. Why is that my problem? They said they cannot refund me the money. Cannot release the money. So I just have to wait until they are ready to do whatever it they're going to do.

It's beyond frustrating. All of this for a domestic transaction. Imagine if it was international. I paid $160 fee for this transaction. I could have driven and deliver the funds to my family and it would have taken me 4 hours. I asked if they will refund me the fee because I paid for money in minutes (20 minutes) to be exact not 5 hours and certainly not 24 hours. It's the least Western Union could do. Who is looking out for consumers? Certainly NOT Western Union. They're only interested in fulling their pockets, forget about providing the service they're being paid for. This is becoming more and more ridiculous by the minute.

on
Satisfaction Rating

This was my second time using WU services. The first time I sent money to the same recipient it took multiple trips for him to finally get the money. I had to fax copy of his ID to the US Western Union office that he has faxed over from Ethiopia for him to get the funds in Ethiopia. After a long time of avoiding WU, I decided to give WU another try on June 4. I should have waited until the next day and used a different service since he would have received it in time; but too late. I thought since I have sent money to the same receiver in the past, it should be easy time.

I was surprised to hear that after 2 attempts and 5 days later he still hasn't been able to receive the money. I was told today by a WU rep that it was under review and he can now pick it up but maybe he should try a different location. I think this is the worst customer service I have had. I don't think it is appropriate for me to pay $27 for a supposed money transfer service that is slower than mail service. I will never use them again and I would suggest to others using other services. Very disappointed customer.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I sent some money to a friend from Georgia to Illinois. The person wasn't able to pick it up. So, I called to cancel the transaction because the person never picked it up. Western Union DID NOT refund my fee of $12. They basically stole $12 from me with no remorse. God don't like ugly. Karma has no expiration date.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I received terrible service in Western Union. I tried to send money to China 5 days ago. The person in China cannot received money. I called more than 5 times. No one pick up the phone call. I tried to chat online, after that I was transferred and still no one to pick up the phone to listen to my problem. This morning, after 15 minutes of waiting, someone picked up the call and asked me many questions about my receiver. After many questions, they said they need the ID from the receiver in China. Finally, I give up, I just want my money back since there are too many problems with Western Union. After more than 30 minutes of talking on the phone with the representative, they said they need send the receiver's ID and email to translate and ask me to send the ID to them. I told them China is in the different time zone. I have the ID and I don't have email because we use WeChat system.

After about another 20 minutes, I get a manager and she told me they will let me know in two days if I can get my money back or not. My grandfather need the money because he is in nursing center and need the money to care for him. I thought I can send the money to him fast, now it ends up with a mess, the money is not received in China, and I don't know when I can get my money back. Please don't repeat my mistake. Please don't use Western Union, if you do, you will face the same problem like me.

How do I know I can trust these reviews about Western Union?

  • 792,868 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
  • We require contact information to ensure our reviewers are real.
  • We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
  • Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.

For more information about reviews on ConsumerAffairs.com please visit our FAQ.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Western Union cancels transactions in the name of fraud prevention when in fact they are the ones committing fraud by stopping the transaction so they can hold the money and invest it. I'm positive that they put transactions on hold in order to invest the money. PayPal did the same thing. They choose a certain amount of people at random and freeze the transaction and give you a bug run around. If they do this to a thousands people at any given day, they can maintain a pool of money that they can invest into currency exchange.

They are not breaking any laws because eventually they will give you the money. But when they do this to thousands of people, it gives them a big pool of money to use for investment. Someone sent me money and when I tried to pick it up they said it was on hold and that I needed to contact the sender and have them go down to the office and answer more questions to make sure it wasn't fraud. Several days later after more ** I called them back and they said that I was the one who was being suspected of fraud and I needed to send them a scan of my ID. So which is it? It's just a big run around designed to hold your money so they can invest it.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Western Union must have some of the worst customer service I've ever seen when you send money in min. and 3 hours later no money so you call only to be transferred to where hey India the call center of the world where you are greeted by some guy that definitely doesn't understand a word of what you're saying. So how can he help? Here's how. By putting you on hold to hang up.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have used the site for a long time, every was ok then suddenly I started having transfer issues. Transfer in seconds takes days and I get no help from customer services. Money goes from my bank at the time of transfer but the receiver cannot collect it until several days later, once it was 2 weeks!!! MTCN IS INVALID. On one occasion my transfer went missing and Western Union called me actually suggesting my receiver had collected the money and lied to me about not receiving, Then they called 4 weeks later apologising and saying it was a technical error and refunded my money. Not considering the problem they had caused between my receiver and I. Terrible service and not true to their word. My money is in a Western Union account for days before my receiver can collect it. Clearly this company is benefiting from this.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I made so many inquiries to your different contacts and services, but nothing happen. My € 350 I sent last December 30, 2016 was not received. And now I feel so hopeless because they never care for my case. I have no job because I am sicked and I can't go to my country to make a legal complaints. The authorities here in Italy can't do nothing because it happened in the Philippines. My friend's suggestion is to go on a TV channel who help people having issues like mine.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Now I usually don't have a problem using Western Union. However this last encounter I was sent money from 1 state away and have yet to receive my money transfer. It's been 5 days now and it says still processing. Was told that because the sender used an bank account it there would be a delay. Well if we had known it would take a week to get we would have just done it through the mail. This is ridiculous. Then they have the nerve to charge a fee. WOW never again. Thanks Western Union.

on
Satisfaction Rating

In the last year, I have tried to help a friend a few times until he can get to the States, but Western Union always either cancels or blocks my requests, giving the reason being the name of the country, and name of the person. Excuse me? So, what they are saying is if you have a Spanish last name you are not allowed to receive money through them. Isn't this 2017? Western Union is absolutely biased, and racist with their policies, stating that I have to send them an e-mail to explain why I am sending the money and my relationship with them, and that is none of their God damn business. Then they will get back with me in a week or two.

If I ran my business this way, I would be out of business. It is my money, and I am an adult and it is my decision, that is why I present my id and sign the form as required by law. This company is biased against certain races and countries, harming people that are truly in need, and I don't get how in this day and age, a company can be allowed to act in such a racist manner. I am so angry right now, I truly feel sorry for the people who are not getting the help they need because of this racist company.

He also asked me if I had been sending a lot of money through them and I said no because they have never, ever let me send anything, once again, based on the country and name, which is the most ridiculous excuse I have ever heard. I got in an argument once with a woman at MoneyGram for constantly harping on me about whether I knew that person because of the name. Now she is very friendly instead of being rude because I complained to the store manager. These companies are out of line, once again, I am an adult, and it is my decision to send my money wherever I want. If there is anyone out there that agrees with me, please say it here. My son and daughter are half Hispanic, and I am outraged at these companies that use this as an excuse for fear of being sued. Don't they realize that that in itself warrants a lawsuit?

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have only used WU few times and had no problem until the last time in April when I tried to send money to Mexico. I was told I couldn't send money because WU had blocked me from doing any transactions, I was given a number to call, from there customer service told me I needed to send an e-mail, which I did. When I finally got an answer I was given a case number and I was told they will contact me within 24 hrs which they never did. I finally decided to call customer care main offices in Colorado just to being transferred 2 more times with no answer.

All I want to know is why I was blocked from sending money (forgot to mention, my husband was blocked too about a week later after I was). They can't provide an answer. They need more information about the transaction, as I told them "what transaction if you blocked me from sending money." I wish it was another company we could use to make such transactions. WU you are too monopolized, you have the control and that is not good. Please I need an answer WHY?

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have been using Western Union since 2009 with remarkably consistent transactions. Due to some legal issues, I needed my last 10 years transaction history to submit in the court, followed their normal procedure, made an online request, no response. Finally called them and advised that I will have it in 21 calendar days. After 25 days did a follow-up call, the staff had no clue about that and in response, they blamed me they didn't receive a form which allows them to access my information, but no such form was sent to me at the first place. Promised by the staff that they will send me the form in 24 hrs, no response.

Again made a call and this time managed to talk to their supervisor and assured by him that company will send my transaction history within 24 hrs. Still no response. I have never experience that poor customer service in my entire life. What a shame. Will never use them again. Also, the staff communication is very bad. Poor standard of English.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I had to do a stop payment/cancellation on a money order for an 83 year old man. I called the "customer service" number located on the bottom portion of the money order. I DID NOT ever get the option to speak to a customer service representative. All I got was the typical automated **! SO FRUSTRATING!!! I followed the instructions from the robot automated annoying voice and did exactly what it stated to do. About 4 weeks later the man received a letter in the mail stating they could not process the cancellation because there was a $15.00 processing fee, yet on the bottom of the money order receipt it said if you didn't include the $15.00 for the processing fee it would be deducted from the refund. LIE LIE LIE!!!

So I called the number listed on the letter that said... wait for it... this is rich..."Call this number and one of our customer service representatives will be glad to assist you." BAAAAA HAAA HAAAA IT'S ALL AUTOMATED! There are no options for a representative!!! I hit every option you could possibly choose and did not get a representative BECAUSE THERE IS NO OPTION FOR A CUSTOMER SERVICE REP! They DON'T HAVE ANY HUMANS WORKING THERE! After this extremely frustrating waste of time I went on Google to find a number for "customer service". Called that number and once again did not get a human. WESTERN UNION SUCKS!!! I will never use them, nor allow my 83 year old friend to use them either. Worst customer service ever!!! If Western Union was a person standing in front of me I'd beat the ever loving ** out of them!!!

on
Satisfaction Rating

They are awful at refunds. They canceled my transfer, and called and said to call the customer service number to get a new tracking number so the refund could be processed. It is totally automated with no options for a new tracking number, though they called and said to call that number. Tried calling Englewood, Colorado and other numbers listed in internet BUT all numbers lead back to this and you cannot find a live number anywhere.

on
Satisfaction Rating

My friend from Oregon sent me $1100 through Western Union to help bring someone home who was stranded in Qatar. I did all the right angles. I have done business with Western Union for many years, as I have sent money through Western Union without a hitch. But my friend sent me $1100 through Western Union, and I went to pick it up at the local Western Union office, which was in a grocery store. First, though, I tried picking it up at Walgreen's, but their payout limit was only $300. Then I went to Harps', the local grocery store, and their maximum payout limit was $1000. Now I am in a rut. I therefore do not know what to do. And I do not know where to pick up the $1100, if the maximum payout in the local area is $1000.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I have been using Western Union for years with one bank account to send money to one person. Today they demanded for me to send a copy of my license or passport. Forever on hold hearing how easy it is to transfer money. They then tell me I cannot cancel transaction without providing a copy of my license. It is utterly ludicrous! If I don't do it the treasury department will contact me about having my money refunded. Of course all these conversations were with people from some other country who I could not understand. I had to have him say treasury like 15 times before I knew what he was saying.

STAY AWAY FROM WESTERN UNION!!! Unless you want to spend hours of your Sunday afternoon hearing recordings of how efficient they are as they are being anything but. When you ask to talk to a supervisor they tell you no, not unless you listen to them. So, for the fourth time I listen to a foreigner trying to speak English to tell me what I already know. I can't send money without providing an i.d. I can't cancel transaction without providing id. I get it... I will never use them again. Hopefully I can cancel through my bank. Ridiculous! Terrible service! Use another service!

on
Satisfaction Rating

I try to send money to Panama a year ago. The person could not retrieve the money because WU made it very difficult. Now a year later after 15 calls to Customer Service, I still cannot get my money back. I have spoken with 15 Customer Representatives, which are very hard to get... You need to wait at least 20 minutes online with the machine to get one.... And then they are rude and they do not solve anything. Use another service. This company has no customer service.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Immediate transfer was not done. So my sender went into a Western Union in SoCal to do a quick transfer to India. They accepted the money, gave an MTCN no and that’s it. It has been 12 hours now, the MTCN no is not traceable on https://www.westernunion.com/us/en/self-service/app/tracktransfer. They also did not answer their customer service phone calls as soon as we realized there is a problem.

on
Satisfaction Rating

My fiance lives in Philippines, we have been dating for three and a half years and plan on marrying in the next few months. I have flown there many times to spend a lot of time together. But now I am home in the USA and she ended up in the hospital with pneumonia and asthma, almost died. Her pneumonia was so bad she needed two vials of antibiotics injected into her dextrose IV. In Philippines you need to pay for the medicines first. So I sent her money Western Union for the two doses of antibiotics. I'll try to make this short, they denied the transfer, I called them and told them it's life and death situation but all I got was a bunch of nothing and ignorance. They couldn't grasp she might die, they don't care.

Now it being 10 pm here where I live I have to wait til my morning to get the money back and send through a reputable money transfer site. I'm going to file a lawsuit for the intentional and knowing of the situation and directly related to making her more sick. Also I'm going to contact the district attorney's office and franchises that use Western Union to try to get to switch to another type of money transfer. Oh FYI most MoneyGram call centers are in the Philippines and the starting pay for a worker there is 750Php a day, that equals 7USD a day. Could imagine only making only $7 a day. they are being taken advantage of big time. They make about $10 a transfer and only pay their workers $7 a day. This is true, been there I see the hiring Ads.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I started to use the app. It worked fine then all of a sudden after two transactions it sent me a message saying I exceeded my limit after an amount of 100 dollars. I called them. They said they put limit on some countries. I ask "Where is this stated?" Couldn't answer. I replied "On your web site you say send any time anywhere 24 hours." Still no answer. I tried to send. Recently the message I got was "couldn't process by this payment method" which I did in the beginning but said if I go to an agent and pay double the transfer fee it fine. This is extortion and should be investigated. 10 dollars online. 20 dollars at an agent. I live small rural town and I have no other options. I think Western Union should be shut down in Australia and the ACCC should investigate for extortion.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I am trying to get a person to talk to me when I called Western Union. I tried all the numbers and also went to their site to get customer service number. Unfortunately I am unable to get a person to talk to me. All I need is to change the person's first name to her last name, which I told them before to change it by going to one of the place to send money. Still they did not change it. Now I have to go back to the place where I sent the money to change it again. Your service sucks Western Union. You can't even provide a person to talk to for customer service. YELP.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I used to send occasional help to a very long time friend in Ghana. Not a lot, just here and there. She hadn't needed any for a long time, but this year, needed help with her son's school books. I'd never had trouble before sending cash to her in Ghana, but this time, they flagged and cancelled the transfer. They didn't say anything to ME about it, just gave me a tracking number. She went down there - can't be picked up. They tell me to e-mail an explanation, I'll get an answer within 24 to 48 hours. 2 days later, they finally answer me, only to tell me, now they need to talk to HER. Then they tell me that they've cancelled it altogether. Forget it! Enough! I now have no idea how to get this money to her, having been screwed over by Western Union and no time left to get it there!!

on
Satisfaction Rating

I opened up an online account two weeks ago, l had to wire my mother-in-law some money to clear her things through customs we sent her in Jamaica. Now today I tried to wire my sister $300 in Chicago and they denied the wire transfer stating security purposes and terrorist activity. I can send money to Jamaica but not in the United States where I live.

on
Satisfaction Rating

So, I'm just using Western Union for the second time to send money from Sweden to my sick mother in Brazil and the money was taken from my account and they never gave me a track number so I could give to my mom. Now 3 days have passed, lucky my mom is still alive without her medication and the customer service still tells me I should wait and wait and it feels like they are reading some script when they are speaking to me. Now I am a student so I don't have more money to send it again to my mom, so I don't know what else to do. Thank You Western Union for offering such a bad service with a terrible customer service. Will never use Western Union again and I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS COMPANY!

on
Satisfaction Rating

After receiving and sending money with Western Union for a number of times. Today I went to one of your branches to collect money that was sent to me by my partner in Kenya and I was told I couldn't receive the funds! They needed to verify my details yet I have been receiving money from them. I'm extremely angry with Western Union. I have bills and to food to pay for having a small children. I need money to provide for him. All I was told that it would take up to 3 days. I'm now wondering how am I supposed to go on for 3 days with no money!!! You need to sort it out as soon as possible otherwise I will never use Western Union ever again!!!

After numerous calls and emails only to be told in 24 hours I will be able to receive the money! I received an email. "Thank you for contacting Western Union. This is not the experience we would like you to have. Record shows that your transaction is under review due to Compliance. Thus, may we ask for your phone number so we can forward it to our Compliance Team please? We are looking forward for your response and please accept our apologies for the inconvenience that you have experienced regarding this matter. If you have any additional comments or questions, please do not hesitate to contact us back at uk.customer@westernunion.co.uk."

I also replied... "Hi again. I'm still waiting for a response from your side. Still nothing! I have been told since Monday I will receiving a call from your team but it's all a lie! You are not professionals in the service you provide, if you cannot even make an effort to call. You guys are not sorry about anything so kindly don't fool me by your silly apologies!!! I have a small child at home that I need to feed yet you guys are holding on to my money for your own benefits of interests!! I have sent you all my details and copies of my ID and etc. but still you're fooling me about and you haven't been able to resolve the issue!

I will be writing bad reviews about your service on every social media! I will make sure another people don't follow victims like myself! I have been using WU for the past 3 years sending and receiving but after this terrible experience I will never make further transactions with WU! I have been told on phone by several members of WU that this will be resolved in 48 hours since Monday! Bear in mind the money was sent on Thursday last week! I have attached my IDs and my address prove again!" AFTER THAT EMAIL I AM STILL WAITING! From Monday when I was told to give them 24 hours I am still waiting. Today it's Thursday! Not to forget the money was sent a week ago!

"Again I'm still waiting for a response from your side. Still nothing! I have been told since Monday I will receiving a call from your team but it's all a lie! You are not professionals in the service you provide, if you cannot even make an effort to call back your customers in the time frame given to them! I have already started telling people about my experience with WU and trust me I will be putting it in my local newspapers!" I feel so bad they have made feel vulnerable as if I have committed a crime! I would never use them again and I will tell everyone that I know who uses WU to stop immediately. They're fraudsters! AS THEY KEEP MY MONEY I AM FORCED TO WATCH MY SON GO HUNGRY!

on
Satisfaction Rating

It's been a month since I made transfer in the Western Union website. First they needed an ID card of my receiver and me. I sent it, then they sent a mail saying that it's done. But my receiver that I know very well has not received the money in his account. Now Western Union doesn't know where the money is. No news from them. I'm very disappointed to have trust in this company and now I see that many people have had the same problem.

on
Satisfaction Rating

It's impossible to send money into Cambodia - even to oneself from a US account. I was in person at a Western Union inside a Pavilions in CA, cash in hand to send to Cambodia. Why do they even have offices in Phnom Penh. It's pathetic. I was denied online after going through their idiotic verification process both online and with phone operator who had an accent so thick I could only think of curry frosting.

on
Satisfaction Rating

Yesterday I tried to transfer some money to China and looked up the closest Western Union office - a Walgreens Pharmacy nearby. As soon as I've got to the desk I was told the system is down - no big deal I thought, happens all the time here in Puerto Rico. So I went to the next Western Union office - same story. Finally at home I tried to create an account, but as soon as I entered all information and was transferred to the login page the credentials didn't work, so I clicked on the 'forgot password' button. Never received an email message to recover. So I just placed the question in Google 'why having problems to create a Western Union account' and found hundreds of complaints on Consumer Affairs. Thanks to all of you, saving me from having trouble with this organization. Hopefully they will be shut down soon.

on
Satisfaction Rating

I used to use Western Union in past. I was quite happy with it. You pay, fill the name of a person who should get the money and the number. I accepted the fact, that one does not know ahead how much they will charge. Well, people had a problem with picking up the money since the WU office out of USA started making up their own rules, requested this or that. I called WU and some rude Asian lady could not care less. Basically told me... they do not care, and I do not have to use a service. Fine. I wanted the money to be returned. After all... it gets as expensive as using a bank, banks actually get money delivered... WU does not. So what the heck... I want the money to be returned to me for pick up. And what a scam it become!!!

Week ago nice customer service gave me a case number and instructed me to call back to get transaction number with which I can go and pick my money back. So I attempted to call back... suddenly it is impossible. One can't get through the automated call line to the live customer service. Took me one hour attempts because there just does not exist such an option on the automated line. It just does not transfer you through. So when I just finally (have no clue how) I got there. And waited for long time for Indian guy to pick up (and you know how that goes...). So he just put me on hold and never pick the phone back... Basically I got ripped off for a transfer fees... and money stayed for WU and I got attitude from few people whose English is worse than mine. NEVER EVER AGAIN.

Expert Review

ConsumerAffairs Research Team

The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.

Western Union (WU) was founded in 1851 as an American telegraph company, and it began offering money transfer services in 1871. Now, Western Union is one of the world’s largest and most well-known money transfer companies. In 2015, it facilitated the transfer of more than $150 billion. It offers consumers and businesses options for sending and receiving money both domestically and internationally.

  • Fee tool: Consumers can use the fee estimator on WU’s website to see how much it will cost to send money to someone else online, in person, over the telephone or through the WU app. The tool will also show consumers how long it will take for the funds to be available to the recipient.
  • App: The Western Union Money Transfer app, available for both iOS and Android devices, allows consumers to send money directly from their mobile phones. Money can be sent to other individuals or be used to pay bills at select businesses.
  • Rewards: The My WU rewards program lets customers earn points for money spent on transfer fees. Rewards points can be used to make free transfers, enroll in select Udemy online courses or make matched donations to the Western Union Foundation.
  • NGOs: Western Union partners with the Clinton Global Initiative to help non-governmental organizations (NGOs) get money to individuals around the globe who do not have access to traditional financial institutions. In some locations, funds can be sent to users’ mobile wallets.
  • Refer-a-Friend: The Refer-a-Friend promotional program rewards customers who invite others to use Western Union. The first time the invitee sends money, both the original customer and the new customer receive a $20 Amazon gift card.
  • Best for Western Union has services that meet most customers’ needs, including individuals, entrepreneurs, business owners and charitable organizations.

Compare Money Transfer and International Money Transfer

Western Union Company Profile

Company Name:
Western Union
Website:
https://www.westernunion.com