A detailed write-up on Payoneer India, its operations, customer support and a comparison with PayPal. Sign up with Payoneer, verify the documents, and receive $25 signup bonus when you receive $100 via Payoneer from one of your clients.
What is Payoneer?
Payoneer is a cross-border B2B payments provider used to send and receive payments, globally.
Yuval Tal founded Payoneer in 2005 with 2 million USD seed funding. In the subsequent years, Payoneer received funding from Carmel Ventures, Greylock, Crossbar Capital, Nyca Partners, Ping An and others. In October 2016, Payoneer received its latest round of venture capital funding of $180 million.
Payoneer is used in over 195 countries with 100+ currencies. Fiverr, Elance, Airbnb, 99Designs and Google are some of the established organisations using Payoneer to make payments worldwide.
Payoneer India Operations – Before 2011
Payoneer India division had to shut down its operations by 2011 due to certain directives issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). If you’re interested, you can read about it on Shout Me Loud and IM Tips. Payoneer used to offer its own Debit MasterCard to Indian account holders. Using the card, you could not only fund it with payments received from marketplaces like Elance and oDesk but use it to withdraw money from ATM’s anywhere in India.
However, the RBI directive forced Payoneer to close its India operations.
This was also the time when PayPal introduced their automated withdrawal facility with which you can’t keep funds in accounts for more than 24 hours. The same directive applies to Payoneer as well.
Anyways, after a gap of almost 4 years, Payoneer has repackaged and reintroduced their ‘India only’ product and I sincerely hope it won’t suffer any setbacks this time.
Payoneer India Review: Is Payoneer Suitable For You?
If you’re a freelancer, small business owner or anyone who receives payments online, Payoneer is suitable for you. It’s easy to create an account and maintain it. The conversion rates and fees are less too, as you’ll see detailed below.
Here’s what Dipesh Garg, the founder of Truelancer.com had to say about Payoneer.
If you choose the Payoneer Global Bank Transfer Service, they charge $3.00 for each transfer to your bank account in INR. They convert funds from USD to INR using rates of up to 2.75% above the official mid-market rate at the time of transfer. You can estimate mid-market rates using websites such as XE.com. It will really help Indian users who receive payments from International websites. Now they can enjoy better exchange rates and lesser fee. Truelancer has also partnered with Payoneer to provide its services to Freelancers on the website. It provides local bank transfer to other countries and helps sending payments to places where not easy and even lot of options is not available in countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh and other nations. Dipesh Garg
Also Read: List of Freelancing Sites in India
Payoneer India – User Benefits
Being part of an exclusive circle of Payoneer India beta testers, I had the chance to experience its features and benefits first-hand. Here are some users benefits which favors me and I am ensure it will be purposeful to many other Indians reading this.
1) Higher Exchange & Conversion Rate
I can’t help but compare it with PayPal service. For every $100 received in PayPal, we get about $95 in account and we lose some more rupees in forex conversion. Here’s a screenshot of $100 received in PayPal and its INR exchange in February 2015.
At a conversion rate of 59.90 INR, I received Rs. 5,708.
Now, compare it with the same received in Payoneer account in March 2015.
Screenshot 2: The money received from US client.
Screenshot 3: Amount received in my bank account.
I paid $2 for $100 received and benefited about Rs. 300 in all.
December 2016 Update: The conversion rate for Payoneer India is still going strong.
2) US & UK Bank Collections Account
This feature is immensely beneficial.
I am sure to receive your approval when I say that sometimes we come across clients who only wish to pay to local bank accounts. For example, a US client might prefer to pay only to a local American bank account. What can we do? Either we lose the client or incur heavy fees to cover the financial exchange through wire transfers.
Payoneer eliminates the complete hassle.
Once you sign up and account is approved, you’ll receive a US and UK Bank Collections Account. What does this mean? You’ll receive a bank account, complete with account number and router number, and you can ONLY use it for collecting payments.
Once the money arrives to your, let’s say, US account, Payoneer automatically transfers it to your local Indian bank account within 24 hours.
The above is a screenshot of my virtual US bank account. Now, whenever I have to bill a client in US, I share the above US checking account details and the client makes the payment. It’s like Internet banking / NEFT that we do in India. You just need the bank account of the other person to make a payment. The same works with Payoneer. Once the client transfers the money to your US checking account, it is automatically withdrawn and sent to your India bank account.
3) Automated Withdrawal
You don’t have to login to withdraw money. Amounts, if any, are automatically withdrawn to your account at the end of each day.
You receive an email of the transaction.
4) 24-Hour Turnaround
The local transfer to my bank account took less than 24 hours. Again, I can’t help but compare – PayPal takes about 3 days, even today when I have used PayPal since 2008-2009.
When we do business online, we expect smooth inflow of funds. Even though PayPal is good, who doesn’t want speedier money transfer Check out the demo video to learn how to receive payments with Payoneer.
December 2016 Update: Based on latest RBI updates and PM Narendra Modi’s demonetisation program, you might experience some delays in receiving the money in your India bank account but there is no reason for concern.
Payoneer vs. PayPal
Here’s a comparative chart highlighting the differences between Payoneer and PayPal.
Should You Leave PayPal for Payoneer?
It’s completely your decision.
I have highlighted the benefits of using Payoneer and now you’ve to decide. Personally, I will use both PayPal and Payoneer, and use the accounts to receive payments depending on the nature of clientele.
For instance, I will use Payoneer to receive funds from marketplaces like Elance and use PayPal to receive funds from individual clients. You could do the same.
If you’ve any doubts using Payoneer, ask your question in the comment form below.