The post office has not become obsolete. Having evolved to adapt to the multiple needs of customers over the years, it today allows the latter to equally send money orders in a safe and reliable manner.What are money orders?

A money order is a type of prepaid payment. This paper document, not so different from a check, allows the person named on it to receive a specified sum of money as a cash payment, once both sender and receiver sign it.  Money orders are considered a safe alternative to checks and cash. Unlike checks, they do not bounce since they are issued only after the person pays for it.

Money orders are guaranteed by a third party, unlike the case with a personal check. The post-office, banks or certain money transfer services like Western Union, act as the guarantee. Money orders are an attractive option because of its numerous security and convenience features.

When are money orders by post more convenient options?

Cash payments or checks are not always secure methods of payment. In some cases, they are not even accepted. Opting for money orders is a safe alternative and may be very convenient in the following situations:

  • When you do not have a checking account and need to pay bills.
  • You are apprehensive regarding checks that may bounce.
  • You need to be certain that only the recipient will use it.
  • You do not want to disclose your bank account number for safety reasons.
  • If you need an alternative to wire transfer.

Sending domestic money orders by post

In the United States, all full-service post offices can issue money orders. Even if the procedures are simple, there are certain regulations that need to be respected. For instance, you will not be allowed to send more than $ 1,000 in a single domestic money order. In case you need to send more than $ 3,000 on the same day, you will have to fill a specific form and present a photo ID bearing your full name and home address.

Purchasing domestic money orders generally entail minimal fees not exceeding $ 2. You may make the payment with a debit card, cash or with a traveler’s check if the purchase amount is more than half of the check’s amount. On the other hand, military members can benefit from reduced fees if they are purchasing military money orders.

Filling out the form and sending the domestic money order

The task is simple and straightforward. The money-order forms generally ask for the following information:

  • The date you are sending the money order
  • Your full name
  • Your exact address
  • The recipient’s full name
  • The recipient’s exact address
  • The amount of money being sent
  • A memo explaining the purpose of the money order

Once the form is filled, put the money order in a stamped and addressed envelope. Fill all the address information and use the appropriate postage that depends on the weight of the envelope.  A single first-class stamp is enough if the envelope weighs less than an ounce.

Buying additional security features

Additional security features are available for domestic money orders. Indemnity coverage is free of charge. In case of loss or theft, the money order is then replaced for a nominal fee. If you wish to add extra security, you may choose to purchase an insurance or features like a registered mail or restricted delivery.  The postal clerks can provide you with necessary information. Last but not least, do not forget to take a receipt as proof of payment and place it in a safe place. In case of loss or theft, it will help you obtain a refund more rapidly and easily.

Tracking your money order

Post offices offer Postal Service’s tracking feature to help clients keep track of their money orders. You will be able to monitor it and also note when it is expected to arrive at its destination. Should the package go astray, you will be able to inform the Post Office right away and begin the money-order replacement process quickly.

Cashing a domestic money order

Of course, cashing a money order at the place that issued it is the best option. Remember to present your ID. You may equally cash it in other locations like banks or certain large convenience stores. Bear in mind, though, that you may be asked to pay a fee.

In case you do not need the money immediately, you may deposit it in your bank account. Banks accept US Postal Service money orders without any problem.

Sending international money orders by post

In the United States, money orders may be purchased up to $ 700. Do check on the recipient’s country’s regulations as well as certain countries such as El Salvador or Guatemala do not accept money orders bigger than $ 500. To make the purchase, you may use a debit card, cash or a traveler’s check. Note that if you are using a traveler’s check, you will only be able to make the purchase if the money order is more than half the value of the check. International money orders entail transaction fees. In the United States, this amounts to $ 4.50 and is added to the total amount you will have to pay.

Filling out the form and sending the international money order

As is the case with domestic money orders, sending an international money order is straightforward. You will be required to provide essential information such as:

  • The date you are sending the money order
  • Your full name
  • Your exact address
  • The recipient’s full name
  • The recipient’s exact address
  • The amount of money being sent
  • A memo explaining the purpose of the money order

Once you have filled the form, place the money order in an appropriate envelope. Do not miss any address information.  The stamp required depends on the weight of the envelope.  A stamp of about $ 1.15 is enough if the envelope weighs an ounce.

Security and tracking features are available

The same security and tracking features are available as for a domestic money order. In other words, you may wish to purchase extra security features like insurance and you may keep track of your money order at all times.