Why keep I saying: do not use Western Union?
Paying online has become very lucrative.
In the last 10 years many new payment systems have come up. One thing they have in common is that these payment systems must be secure and safe. And with all these new companies like: Paypal, Stripe, all kinds of bank transfers like iDeal, Qiwi, WebMoney, AliPay etc. you still see a very old payment system.
It’s Western Union.
In all my articles I advised you: do not use Western Union. Use credit cards or PayPal.
Let’s dig out the reasons why.
What kind of company is Western Union
In 1851 Western Union started as a telegraph company and stayed this in all kind of ways till 1987. Since this year an investor bought WU and changed this company into a money transfer financial service. (Wikipedia: Western Union)
Currently Western Union is mostly known for the easy way of sending money between relatives in different countries.
How does money transfers with Western Union work?
You can send money through Western Union without having a bank account. By simply going to a Western Union office somewhere in your town it is possible to send money form your pocket to someone else’s pocket.
You deposit the money at the WU desk to a persons name and place somewhere on this world. The other person can go to their WU office and pick it up.
5 Reasons why people use Western Union
When Western Union started there was a need for this service.
- In countries many people do not have a bank account. For example because they work outside their home country, or because they just don’t have a bank account. With WU they can send money home.
- It’s very easy to instantly send money to relatives and family.
- You can send money (paper cash) direct from your wallet to your relative’s wallet.
- You don’t need the Internet to send your money between countries.
- You can use it if you don’t have a credit card or PayPal account. PayPal is limited in several countries.
These are all plausible reasons.
But when I talk to you, I know you do have access to the Internet. And when it comes to buying online in China, you are not sending money to relatives. And I bet you do have a credit card or PayPal or both of them.
5 Reasons why people should NOT use Western Union
The difficulty with Western Union payments is the lack of protection. A money transfer is very safe if you know the recipient well. But if you don’t, it’s like giving your money to a stranger in the bus and hope everything will work out well.
Why shouldn’t you use Western Union online?
- No payment protection means no refund policy. If your money has been collected, it’s gone forever.
- The recipient can be a third party. Or worse it can be anonymous. If you don’t know the recipient, using Western Union is like throwing dice.
- If a web site only offers WU it can probably a fake or fraudulent site. Because these companies make use of the fact that you have no protection. Or it’s because they are not allowed to use PayPal for their company or accept credit cards (banned by CC or PP).
- Every legitimate online China store offers multiple payment methods. Why not protect yourself and use a safer payment system like PP or CC.
- Western Union advises its customers not to send money to someone that they have never met in person!
The last reason is probably the best reason for not using Westering Union online. And to stay away from this payment system when it comes to online paying. WU is great for sending money between relatives across different countries. But in the online shopping industry, it’s better to use more secure and safer options.
My question to you:
Have you ever paid online with Western Union to buy products?
Why did you do this? Did you receive your products?
Please write your answer down in the comment box below.
I hope this article has given you some insights why I suggest NOT to use Western Union as payment system. These arguments count also for MoneyGram or Bank of China or any other payment system that works like WU.
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Wishing you safe purchases from China!
PS. In the Safe Buying in China Secrets eCourse we have covered several payment systems. Which are safe, which not. What alternatives do you have for credit cards and much more. Click here for more info.