Google Pay is officially expanding into the international remittances market. The app now allows users based in the United States to send money to GPay users in India and Singapore.
As TechCrunch reports, the move is the result of collaborations with Western Union and Wise (formerly called “TransferWise”). When sending a payment, users will have the ability to choose between Wise and Western Union for its facilitation, and will be notified about how long the payment will take and the exact amount that the recipient will get.
Initially, the remittances service will only be available on a person-to-person basis, with businesses excluded.
Speaking to TechCrunch, Google Director of Product Management Josh Woodward indicated that there are plans to expand Google Pay’s remittances services worldwide by the end of 2021.
The expansion into remittances could be a disruptive effort on Google’s part. Global remittances fees average around 6.5 percent, whereas Google says it will not charge any extra fees above those of its partners. Wise has indicated that its fees will vary from country to country, but Western Union claims it will not charge any fees for the transfers, though there may be caps to how many transfers users can make starting in mid-June.
The move comes after Google’s mobile payments platform gained further credibility as a payments alternative last autumn when Citigroup and Mastercard collaborated to enable digital Citi Plex accounts based on the Google Pay app. And that came after FIS added Google Pay to its Worldpay Hosted Payment Page platform earlier in the year.
Google Pay’s remittances feature launched today and is now live for all U.S. users.