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Do You Need Cash for a Money Order?



You do not need cash for a money order.

More Info: Most money order vendors accept alternate forms of payment. For example, the US Postal Service will accept cash, traveler’s checks, or debit cards.

How Does a Money Order Work?

A money order may look like a personal check in many ways, but financially speaking it is closer to cash. The fact is that in order to purchase a money order, you must pay for it up-front. The recipient of the money order receives it as a form of guaranteed payment. There is no possibility for a money order to be returned for insufficient funds, for example, as is the case with a check.

Cash Equivalent Required for Purchase

Because a money order is considered a cash equivalent form of payment, you will need to purchase it with cash or a cash equivalent.  Cash equivalent forms of payment include a traveler’s check or a debit card.

Is There Any Way to Use a Credit Card?

To use a credit card, you will need to take out a cash advance on the card and then use the cash to purchase the money order.  This form of payment is likely the most costly as you will incur both the fee for the money order and the fee for the cash advance transaction.

Where to Buy a Money Order

You can bring your cash, debit card, or traveler’s check with you to a bank or credit union, a convenience store, a grocery store, a postal office, a check cashing retail store and more. These are all venues that typically sell a money order.



“ – Using Credit/Debit Card to Buy Cashier’s Check   .” N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Oct. 2012. <>.

“Money Orders.” United States Postal Service. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Oct. 2012. <>.

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