Freelancing is supposed to be simple. Work, and get paid. Right? Well, being a freelancer, getting paid isn’t as simple as it sounds, because for most freelancers, the money comes from abroad. This opens up a whole new inventory of problems, such as non-availability of certain services such as PayPal, varying currencies, high transfer fees, long transfer times, and so on. While PayPal is said to be the world leader in the transfer of funds, it isn’t available everywhere. Welcome Payoneer, another popular international payment distribution solution. With its Local Bank Transfer and its widely popular Payoneer Prepaid MasterCard, it can rightly be considered as a serious alternative to PayPal. Whether you are a freelancer, or just someone wanting to send or receive money internationally, Payoneer can be a good option to go with.
Payoneer is an online payment solution for companies and individuals, providing them a friendly way to send funds to remote areas. It focuses on specific payment solutions, such as affiliate mass payments, freelance payments, merchant accounts, and so on. Funds are mainly transferred through Payoneer Prepaid (Debit) MasterCards. Payoneer works closely with Choice bank limited or First Covenant Bank, which issue their cards and processes the transactions. Payoneer MasterCards works all around the world in more than 210 countries, and are used by more than half a million people around the world. Payoneer is headquartered in new York while their development center is located in Israel.
The Payoneer Prepaid (Debit) MasterCard
The Payoneer MasterCard works just like any other MasterCard. You can use it as a credit card to purchase stuff online, you can use it as a debit card for swype through, or you can use it as an ATM card to withdraw money from anywhere in the world! Unlike other services such as PayPal, Payoneer doesn’t require you to have a bank account. You just need to be over 18 years old to request a Payoneer MasterCard. You can receive a card through a Payoneer partner, and verify it to activate and start receiving money.
How it works – sending and receiving money
Payoneer MasterCard makes it really easy to send and receive money. To send money, you simply have to log into your Payoneer account, and select the Transfer to another card option from the Tools menu. You then have to enter the receiver’s card number, or his email address. Remember that the receiver needs to have to have a Payoneer MasterCard of their own to make this work. Simply click Transfer, and the amount will be sent to them in an instant. Receiving money is just as simple. You simply get an amount into your Card, which you can then spend online, or use an ATM machine to withdraw money from.
Besides receiving money into the cards, you can also load your card to add money into it, and send that money to others. Take a look at the video below to get a better idea of how this works.
Why this is a great option for Freelancers?
A lot of Freelancers receive money through PayPal. But many a times, it takes a lot of time for the money to reach, because depending upon their preferences, the money arrives late via wire or bank transfer. Payoneer offers a simpler, much quicker option with its MasterCard, which can receive money instantly.
Payoneer’s advantage lies in its partners. It has a lot of freelancing and eCommerce companies working with it as partners. These partners are responsible for issuing the MasterCards. The major freelancing companies, such as oDesk, Elance, Freelancer etc are partners of Payoneer. Clients just need to request payments through Payoneer. The cards will be mailed to them by the company. It might take time for the cards to reach, but once they reach, money can be transferred instantly. The cards and transactions are handled by Choice bank limited.
Payoneer offers other money transfer services as well. The Payoneer Virtual MasterCard is a virtual (imaginary) card that can be used as a credit card, by without the physical aspects of losing it. Tight security restrictions means only you can access this virtual card, and make purchases and transfers.
Payoneer Local bank Transfer allows people to receive payments from their employers directly into their banks in their local currencies, making it cost effective.
LBT allows Payoneer partners to transfer funds directly to their payee’s bank accounts in their local currency – which keeps the cost of transferring money low, and efficiency high. Besides, Payoneer also offers check transfer, which means you can also get paid via a check sent right to your home! These services are available all over the world in more than 210 countries.
Fees and charges
Like always, there are fees. Card activation can cost anywhere from $5 to $25 depending upon your location. There are monthly card account maintenance charges which range from $1 to $3. Then there are fees on ATM withdrawls (upto $2.75). Hence, there are some associated fees, which you’ll need to be mindful of. So be careful to read their terms of services before applying for an account.
Despite the fees, however, Payoneer is a great service all in all. It is a serious competitor to paypal, and is fast expanding its influence. Hence, a great option for freelancers living in areas where there is no paypal available.