Money orders are a popular payment option for people who don’t have a checking account.
One of the most popular places to get a money order is at a post office.
But it can be a major hassle to get to a post office and then run the risk of there being long lines.
The good news is there are many other places that offer money orders.
The problem however is not all of these places offer the best rates on money orders.
In this post, I list 17 best places to get a money order so you know where to go when you need one!
17 Best Places To Get Money Orders
#1. United States Postal Service
The U.S. Post Office is the best place to get a money order in terms of convenience.
They are located almost everywhere and they have thousands of locations all over the country with many open Saturdays for your benefit.
The fee for a postal money order varies bases on the amount of the money order and they only sell money orders up to $1,000.
It is also important to know that the postal service uses its own brand for money orders, and not MoneyGram or WesternUnion.
- Read now: Learn how to survive on $1,000 a month
To pay for a USPS money order, you can use cash, debit cards, or traveler’s checks.
If you have a money order to cash, you can do so at the post office, but you need to have proper ID.
#2. Your Local Bank
Another convenient place to get a money order is your local bank.
Almost all banks offer money orders but they typically have the highest fees of all the places listed.
However, your bank may offer very low fees depending on the type of relationship you have with them.
For example, if you have a high tier checking account along with loan accounts with them like a mortgage, you might qualify for a lower fee.
In some cases, you might get free money orders as well.
Also, many banks limit the amount of money orders to a maximum of $500.
Again though, depending on your relationship, you might be able to get a larger value money order.
To pay for your money order, most banks will accept cash or a debit card.
However, each bank differs, so be sure to ask before you go so you know what form of payment to bring.
#3. Your Local Credit Union
If you have a credit union in your area, you can reach out to them.
Credit unions not only allow you to buy a money order, but cash them as well.
However, you might need to be a banking customer to get the lowest fees and get a money order for the amount you need.
Walmart is one of the best places to get a money order.
Not only are there plenty of Walmart stores nationwide, but they only charge up to $1.00, depending on the amount.
Another benefit is you can get a money order for more than $1,000.
If you need one for more than this amount, you need government-issued ID.
To pay for the money order, you can use cash or a debit card.
- Read now: Learn the pros and cons of debit cards
If you have a money order to cash, you can do so at Walmart.
However, the fees here are much steeper, being anywhere from $4 to $8.
7-11 is a popular place to get a money order since they too are nationwide with roughly 8,500 stores.
The fees for a money order vary by location, and they are different depending on the amount.
The minimum fee is $0.65, otherwise it is between 1% and 3%.
For example, if you get a money order for $50, the fee is $0.65.
If you get a money order for $200 and the fee is 3%, the fee is $6.
The maximum amount you can get a money order is for $500.
To pay for the money order, 7-11 only accepts cash.
If you are looking to cash a money order, you need to pick another option on the list as 7-11 doesn’t offer this service.
Kroger is a grocery store that operates 2,700 locations in 35 states.
Depending on where you are, they may operate under different names like Fry’s, Dillon’s, Smith’s, King Soopers, Fred Meyer, Ralph’s, Pick ‘N Save, and more.
The fee for money orders varies by location, but are generally between $0.84 and $0.88.
The maximum amount for a money order is $1,000 but Kroger states there may be exceptions.
You can pay for a money order with cash or debit card.
Also, Kroger does allow you to cash a money order.
Regardless if you are sending or receiving a money order, Kroger requires valid government ID.
Meijer is another supermarket chain and it operates in the Midwest, specifically Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois.
The maximum amount for a money order is $500 and they limit a daily amount of $3,000.
The fee is a flat $0.65 regardless of the amount, making this a great deal.
To pay for your money order, Meijer accepts cash or debit card as payment.
Meijer does not cash money orders, so you will have to find another option in this case.
If you live in the Southeast, Publix is a grocery store that sells money orders.
The fee for a money order is $0.99 and you can purchase them for up to $1,000.
However in some cases, you can purchase in greater amounts if you have a valid ID card.
To pay for the money order, Publix accepts cash or debit card.
They do not cash money orders.
CVS is a nationwide drugstore chain with over 10,000 locations.
You can buy money orders up to $500 in value with a daily limit of $2,500 per day.
The fee is $1.25 regardless of the money order amount.
CVS only accepts cash as a form of payment and they do not cash money orders.
#10. Rite Aid
If you don’t have a CVS local to you but you have a Rite Aid, you can buy a money here.
The maximum amount is $500 and the fee is a flat $0.99.
You can pay for the money order with cash or debit card.
And like CVS, Rite Aid does not cash money orders.
Walgreen’s doesn’t offer traditional money orders like the other places on this list.
They used to, but now they offer Western Union money transfers.
These are a faster and arguably safer way to send money to others and pay bills.
You can set up the transfer using the Western Union app and then go to a local Walgreen’s location to pay for the transfer.
You can pay for the money transfer with cash, debit card or credit card.
The fees vary based on the amount you are sending and where you are sending it, domestically or internationally.
#12. Online Companies
Speaking of international money orders, what do you do if you want to send money overseas?
Most money orders you purchase are domestic money orders, meaning they are only valid in the United States.
If you want to send money internationally, your best option is to look into online companies.
There are websites that allow you to transfer money online for a small fee.
The fee will vary if you pay with a bank account or credit card.
There also could be exchange rate fees if you are sending another currency.
#13. Check Cashing Company
Another option is to use a local check cashing store.
These vary depending on where you live, so to find one near you, you should do an online search for ‘buy money orders near me’.
The results will show most, if not all, the places to buy a money order in your area.
Before you pick one however, make sure you do some research.
These places tend to charge the highest fees, so if you are near one of the other options listed, they probably are a cheaper option.
Also inquire about forms of payment.
While all will accept cash, some might take debit cards or other forms of payment as well.
Money Gram not only offers money orders at many of the places listed in this post, but they also have retail locations throughout the U.S. as well.
If you have one near you, you might want to go directly to them to buy your money order.
The maximum amount of Moneygram money orders varies by location and the fees charges are based on money order amount and the type of payment used.
With MoneyGram, you can pay with cash, online bank account, debit card or credit card.
If you pay with a debit or credit card, the fees are significantly higher.
As with Money Gram, Western Union also has locations throughout the United States, allowing you to go direct here as well.
The amount of Western Union money orders you can buy varies by location as do the fees.
You can pay for a money order with cash, debit card or credit card in some locations.
If you are looking to cash a money order, it is best to call ahead as not all locations offer this service.
#16. Your Local Grocery Store
If you live in an area that doesn’t have a larger grocery store chain like the ones mentioned above, you can try your local grocery store.
There is a small chance they offer money orders.
Simply go up to the customer service desk and ask about money order purchases.
Just be sure to ask about the fees, value limits, and if they partner with Money Gram or Western Union.
In the event they do not sell money orders, one of the other options listed in this post will be able to help you.
#17. Local Convenience Store
Most convenience stores allow you to buy money orders.
Again, you need to understand the fees, payment methods, and limits before you go so you can have everything you need.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most common questions I get asked about money orders.
What is a money order?
A money order is similar to a paper check.
It is a paper document that that has a monetary value.
However, a money order is not tied to a checking account like a check is.
Instead, you go to a place that sells money orders and you give them the amount of money you want the money order to be valued at.
Most places will charge you a fee in addition to the amount of the money order.
Why use a money order?
A money order offers a number of benefits over both cash and checks.
First, it is safe.
Because you purchase the money order from an authorized agent, you can be sure that it was not tampered with or manufactured fraudulently.
You also don’t have to worry about someone stealing your checkbook and using your account to write checks.
They are superior to cash because you have a receipt and paper trail, in the case the money order goes missing.
At the end of the day, it is the safest option for those who don’t have a bank account to pay for things.
What can you pay for with a money order?
There are a handful of things you can pay for using a money order.
Here are a few examples:
- Send money to friends or family
- Send money to someone in a correctional facility
- Pay bills
- Make a large purchase without using a credit card
Basically, you can pay just about anyone you want with a money order.
How much do money orders cost?
Money order fees vary by who is selling the money order.
In most cases, places charge a variable fee based on the amount of the money order.
However some places do charge a flat fee.
Most times, the fee is less than $1.00 per money order.
Grocery stores and gas stations tend to have higher fees simply because of the convenience factor.
The cheapest place to get a money order most times is your local bank, but depending on where you live a drugstore or grocery store may have lower fees.
This is why it is best to shop around before you buy a money order.
How do I pay for a money order?
Most places accept cash or debit card as payment for a money order.
Some places will accept credit cards, but this is rare.
How much can I get a money order for?
This too varies by location.
Many places limit the maximum limit to $500 while some places go as high as $1,000.
You may also find places that allow you to buy a money order for more than $1,000.
In addition to this total money order limit, some places have a daily limit as well.
For example, if they only allow a maximum of $500 money order, they might have a daily limit of $2,000.
This means you can get four $500 money orders in a single day.
How to track money orders?
The simplest way to track your money order is to use the confirmation number on your money order receipt.
Most places will allow you to track it online or by calling an automated phone number.
You can also go back to the place you bought the money order as well.
What happens if I lose a money order?
If you lose a money order, not all hope is lost.
In most cases, the issuer will cancel the money order and refund your purchase as long as it has not been cashed or deposited yet.
However if someone cashes it before you realize that it’s missing, there’s nothing to be done about getting a refund.
Also, if you need to send a replacement money order, you will be charged a fee.
How do I know if a money order I receive is legit?
While money orders are a safe form of payment, you can get scammed with a fake money order.
Luckily there are things you can do to spot fake money orders.
The first thing to look for is a watermark.
The United States Postal Service, MoneyGram, and WesternUnion all put watermarks on their money orders.
If you don’t see one of these or a different company, it is a fake.
Another thing to pay attention to is the dollar amount.
Most places limit money orders value to $1,000.
If the money order you have is for more than this amount, there is a good chance it is fake.
Next, look at the money order carefully.
Take note if anything looks weird or if an area looked altered, like the dollar amount.
Finally, if you have the option of going to a post office, WesternUnion or MoneyGram location, do this.
They can track the money order and help you better determine if it is real.
However, this is not guaranteed to stop fraud.
There are 17 of the best places to get a money order.
The most important thing is to shop around so you know what stores you have in your area and what fees they charge.
The lower the fee you pay, the better.
And you should strongly consider opening a bank account as you can more easily make payments and send money with a check as opposed to a money order.