A money order is a financial tool, like a check. You can deposit your money order or cash it at your bank. If you want the cash, some retail stores will also cash a money order, or you could visit a check cashing service. Say you decide to cash your money order; how do you go about it?
To cash your money order, visit a place that cash money orders (preferably where you bought the money order from), endorse it, provide identification, pay the required fees, and get your cash.
Did you buy a money order and are looking for how to cash it yourself? Cashing a money order yourself is very easy, just like when a recipient cashes a money order sent by you. Below, I highlighted how to cash your money order.
Can I Cash My Own Money Order?
Let’s begin with tips on how to cash a money order.
Cashing a money order is as simple as ABC. You can walk into a location of your choice with your money order and walk out with cash in a few minutes. Here is how to go about it:
- Go to a place that cashes money orders.
Do you have an account at a bank or credit union? If you do, you can redeem your money order there free of charge. However, if you don’t have a bank account, or if your bank is shut when you go to cash the money order, there are many other alternatives like convenience stores, grocery stores, and post offices.
- Endorse the money order
Walk up to the desk and sign your name behind the money order. Don’t do this until you are at the location and have determined that it will take your money order. If you endorse it beforehand and then lose it, whoever picks it up could try to cash or deposit it themselves.
- Provide an identification
When you submit your money order, you must also provide valid identification to confirm your identity. To ensure that your ID is accepted, use a government-issued photo ID. Common options are a driver’s license, a passport, or a military ID.
- Pay any applicable fees.
Depending on where you cash your money order, you might have to pay a fee for the service. In many cases, this fee can simply come out of the amount of cash you get. For example, if you present a $1,000 money order and pay a $10 fee, you’ll get $990.
- Get your cash
Finally, the teller will accept the money order and give you your cash. Don’t leave the location without counting your money in case there was a mistake. You should also ask for a receipt if you weren’t given one. Make sure the cash is stored in a safe place before walking out of the store.
You can decide to deposit a money order made out to yourself or cash it if you like. To cash a money order made out to yourself, follow the same process used to cash out a money order made out to a third party.
Visit where you purchased the money order, endorse it, provide the necessary identification, pay the required fees and get your cash. It is that simple!
Where to Cash a Money Order?
There are many places to cash a money order, including:
- Banks and credit unions:
Most banks and credit unions let their account holders cash money free of charge. But, you cannot always get the full cash immediately. You may need to deposit most of it and receive only a part upfront. If you use a bank where you don’t have an account, you’ll have to pay a fee for the service.
- Money order issuers:
You can also cash a money order at where you purchased it. For example, you can cash Western Union money orders at Western Union offices. However, not every office can cash money orders, so do your research before visiting the office, so you don’t waste your time.
- Post offices:
The United States Postal Service is also a money order issuer. In theory, if you have a USPS money order, you can cash it at any post office in the US. But, if it’s for a big amount, a small post office may not have the capacity to pay it.
- Check-cashing stores:
A check cashing store is a business specifically for individuals without bank accounts to change checks and money orders to cash. But these stores often charge high fees for their services.
- Grocery stores:
Big grocery stores sometimes offer Western Union of MoneyGram services for customers. If your does, you can cash money orders from the issuer at the customer service counter.
- Convenience stores:
Some convenience store chains, like 7-Eleven, offer money orders. But, individual stores that sell money orders don’t often have the capacity to cash them.
- Other retailers:
Some other retail chains sell and cash money orders. For example, you can cash Western Union and MoneyGram money orders at Walmart. Some pharmacies, like CVS and Rite Aid, have Western Union or MoneyGram counters.
Where Can You Cash a Money Order for Free?
Want to cash a money order for free instead of paying huge charges? You can do so by taking the money order to your bank or credit union. Provided you have an account, you won’t pay a dime in fees.
In most cases, you can also escape fees by taking your money order to the issuer. For example, there is no fee to cash a postal money order at the post office.