Money Order vs Cashier Check: US Banking Basics

In this article, we’re exploring the differences between a money order vs cashier check. This will primarily be useful for US residents or foreigners who managed to meet the stipulations of opening US accounts.

This will include a direct comparison of the differences, a discussion about how to choose between them, and answers to the most common questions we receive.

Feel free to use the table of contents to jump ahead to the sections most relevant to you.

Table of Contents

  1. Money Order vs Cashier Check
  2. Frequently Asked Questions
  3. Ready to Open Accounts With Banks in the USA?

Money Order vs Cashier Check

The main difference between a money order and a cashier’s check is that a money order is a financial instrument that can be issued by a wide range of institutions while a cashier’s check is exclusively issued by banks and credit unions. 

Additionally, money orders typically have limits of USD 1,000 while cashier’s checks have significantly higher limits, making them suitable for use in high-value transactions. Of course, to make use of higher transactions, the payee needs to have sufficient funds in their account.

Lastly, money orders are a suitable financial instrument for completing cross-border transactions, while cashier’s checks are typically only accepted within the same jurisdiction in which they are issued.

Needless to say, both money orders and cashier’s checks are suitable forms of payment in different situations. However, it’s important to compare both options (along with other alternatives) to decide which method of payment best meets your needs.

If this is your first time visiting GlobalBanks, don’t forget to download your FREE US Banking Starter Guide. It’s designed to help non-residents with opening bank accounts at top financial institutions in the US.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are five of the most common questions we receive from people looking into money orders vs cashier checks. If you have further questions you would like to ask our team, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

What Is a Cashier’s Check?

A cashier’s check is a guaranteed form of payment that is issued by a financial institution. Unlike a personal check, a cashier’s check is issued directly by a bank in the name of the recipient. In other words, the bank is guaranteeing and issuing the check instead of an individual. This offers the recipient additional guarantees, which is why they are often used when making down payments on property, purchasing used vehicles, and in other high-value transactions.

Why Would a Person Use a Money Order Instead of a Check?

A person may choose to use a money order instead of a check if they are interested in a secure form of payment that is guaranteed, an added layer of privacy, and wider acceptance when dealing with banks in different jurisdictions.

Do Banks Give Money Orders or Cashier’s Checks?

Banks give both money orders and cashier’s checks to customers. In most cases, the choice between a money order and a cashier’s check will come down to the specific purpose for obtaining the form of payment and if there is a specific requirement to complete the transaction. Of course, additional considerations include the value of the transaction, the fees charged by the bank, and more.

What Is the Limit On a Money Order?

The limit on a money order will depend on the specific institution issuing the money order. That said, in most cases, money orders are capped at approximately USD 1,000. However, in certain instances, it may be possible to purchase money orders of a higher value. Of course, when higher values are required, it is possible to purchase more than one money order.

Is a Money Order More Secure Than a Personal Check?

Yes, a money order is considered more secure than a personal check. In addition to requiring identification in order to cash a money order, they are prepaid instruments and guaranteed by the issuing institution. On the other hand, checks can bounce due to insufficient funds and are more prone to fraud.

Ready to Open Accounts With Banks in the USA?

If so, you can get access to GlobalBanks USA (our dedicated US banking service) in just a few clicks.

GlobalBanks USA is a 100% personal account opening solution. It provides direct access to our team of US banking experts.

When you join, you receive…

+ Expert suggestions on where to open US bank accounts.

+ Step-by-step support to navigate opening US bank accounts.

+ Direct introductions to helpful and responsive bankers.

+ Plus, detailed guides to maximizing the value you get from your new US bank account.

And “yes!” GlobalBanks USA helps foreigners and non-resident individuals open bank accounts.

In fact, GlobalBanks USA even helps non-resident US LLCs and foreign & offshore entities.

To learn more about GlobalBanks USA, visit the product page to see how our team can help you successfully open US bank accounts!

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GlobalBanks Team
GlobalBanks Team

The GlobalBanks editorial team comprises a group of subject-matter experts from across the banking world, including former bankers, analysts, investors, and entrepreneurs. All have in-depth knowledge and experience in various aspects of international banking. In particular, they have expertise in banking for foreigners, non-residents, and both foreign and offshore companies.

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