Difference Between IMPS, RTGS & NEFT

Today, banking has digitalized to such an extent that online services have eliminated the need to visit a bank for most tasks. The only reason you may have to visit a bank is to deposit or withdraw the cash. Even these two functions are now available through ATMs. Regarding money transfer, India has seen a revolution in the form of UPI, IMPS, RTGS and NEFT. UPI has more market penetration than any other method of money transfer. In addition, it has also captured a large share of the rural market.

The mainstream methods of transferring the money are through IMPS, RTGS & NEFT. You would be able to see these options on your account while you are transferring the money. But do you know the difference between IMPS, RTGS & NEFT? In this article, we will share the detailed differences between the three payment modes. We will also tell you about the working of IMPS, RTGS & NEFT.


Difference Between IMPS, RTGS & NEFT

Let us first look at the differences in the tabular form. This will give you the difference at a high level, and it will help you compare the three modes of payment.

Description IMPS RTGS NEFT
Minimum Payment Amount Re. 1 Rs 2 Lakh Re. 1
Maximum Payment Amount Rs. 2 Lakh No Limit No Limit
Mode of Payment Online Online & Offline Online & Offline
Settlement Type One to One One to One In Batches
Settlement Time Immediate Immediate 2 Hours
Operational Time 24 x 7 Varies per Bank 24 x 7
Transaction Charges Depends on Bank None None

All About IMPS

The most popular method to transact is through IMPS, which stands for Immediate Payment Services. IMPS gives you a limit of Rs. 2 Lakh, and the settlement happens immediately. This mode of payment is also available 24×7, and hence there are no timing constraints to the payment. The only problem with IMPS is that the bank charges a service fee for this transaction. The charges are usually between RS 2.5 to Rs 15 plus the taxes. You can use IMPS on a mobile banking app or through net banking. Apart from this, this payment service is also available on bank holidays and other day-offs.

The good thing about IMPS is that you can make these transactions even when you don’t have the account details. You can use the account number to make the payment or the MMID along with the mobile number to initiate the payment. The method of payment is also straightforward. Once you begin the payment on the banking app or website, select IMPS and then make the payment after authenticating it.

All About RTGS

RTGS stands for Real-Time Gross Settlement. If you have to make large payments, you can initiate a payment using RTGS. The advantage of RTGS is that the payments are reflected immediately in the receiver’s account. Apart from this, the payment mode is also available 24×7. So, as soon as you make the payment, you will get a confirmation about the payment status. As mentioned earlier, RTGS settles immediately, and you can access it anytime. The RTGS transactions are managed by the Reserve Bank of India and are completely secure. You can initiate RTGS using a mobile banking app, net banking or even by visiting the bank. The RTGS payments are backed legally, reducing the risk of fraud.

To make the payments through RTGS, initiate the payment flow once again using net banking. You should have the beneficiary registered, and you should have the account number, IFSC Code and the account holder’s name. You can then enter the transaction amount and select RTGS to initiate the payment. Once you authenticate the transaction, your payment will be completed. The only drawback of RTGS is that the minimum transaction amount is Rs 2 lakh for the RTGS. So, if you have to make a high amount of transactions, then RTGS is undoubtedly better than any other mode of payment.

All About NEFT

NEFT stands for National Electronic Fund Transfer. Since banks charge for IMPS Payment, NEFT is the next preferred mode of payment. When you make the NEFT payment, it is settled in batches. Some banks have a batch settlement frequency of 30 minutes, while others may have it as high as 2 hours. So, once you make the payment from NEFT, it may take up to 2 hours for the receiver to get the money. All the banks in India offer NEFT payments. You can make the NEFT payment online or visit the bank to initiate an NEFT. However, most people prefer making payments through banking apps or online apps. NEFT was earlier available during the restricted time, but this has been updated. Now, the NEFT is available 24×7.

To transfer money through NEFT, you need to have a payee registered. Some banks do allow one-time payment without registration. When you initiate the payment, you will see the option for NEFT. Click on NEFT, and the payment will be made. Please note that you must have the Account Holder’s name, Bank Account Number and IFSC Code to initiate the NEFT Transaction. The minimum amount you can transfer using NEFT is Re.1, and there is no limit to the maximum amount. So, if you have to make a lot of NEFT transactions, then you can use NEFT as this will reduce the transactional cost.


You can use RTGS, NEFT and IMPS depending on the type of payment you are making. If you wish to make immediate payment and the amount is less than Rs 2 Lakh, then you can go for IMPS. If you don’t have an urgency and are fine with a slightly longer settlement cycle, then you can opt for NEFT transactions since that will reduce your transactional cost. If you are making a high-value transaction, then RTGS should be the one for you. We hope that all this information will have helped you make the right choice between the three available options. You can also try UPI transactions as an alternative to IMPS, but there are certainly more restrictions. Lastly, always transfer a small amount to ensure that the payment goes into the right amount before making a bigger payment. This is the best way to safeguard your interest and avoid financial loss.

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