Update 27 December, 2016: We no longer recommend Payoneer, due to the poor client reviews we are seeing here and on other internet forums. We still appreciate their unique payments model and were impressed with their staff, but the service is just sub-par. Read full detail below.
Update Nov 2016: Payoneer review score was downgraded from 89.8% to 82.8% due to multiple reporting of a slow service and unhelpful support. It will take 5 days to receive an initial response from the firm after signing up, and possibly a whole month to receive their debit card via email.
Quick FactsPros and ConsExclusive Offer
International Clients: ✓ VERY Widely Accepted
Currencies Offered: 150
Best for: Freelancers, Online Merchants: Overseas Collection Accounts, Receiving Money from Abroad for Work; Businesses: Paying Overseas Employees, Affiliates, and Freelancers
Payoneer was founded in 2005 by Yuval Tal, who was the CEO at the time as well as the lead investor. Mr. Tal is a prominent Fintech entrepreneur, and prior to Payoneer , he founded E4X, one of the first startups in the online payments domain, which was later re-branded as BorderFree, and was acquired for a staggering sum of USD 380m by Pitney Bowes Inc in 2015 .
Since its inception, Payoneer has been receiving serious attention from leading investment firms across the globe, and raised more than USD 90m up to date, from companies like Ping An – a leading Chinese insurer which employees 200,000 people across the globe and generates more than $60bn in revenue each year.
Using these investments, the company has grown to become a leader in cross-border payments, boasting more than 10 global offices and employing 660 people (many of which deal with the complex compliance / legal aspect of the business). It is moving abroad billions of dollars each year, and serving more than 3m registered clients.
✓ Financial Services Commission (Gibraltar), ✓ Customs and Excise Department (Hong Kong), ✓ Money Transmitter License (Most USA states).
The Payoneer Prepaid MasterCard card is issued by Choice Bank Limited, which is supervised by the main bank of Belize. It is handled by Payoneer’s partner Wire Card Solutions which is authorised by the Financial Conduction Authority (UK) as an e-money transmitter.
Awards and Media Recognition:
Payoneer has won some of the most lucrative awards in the payment business, including
🏆 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2016 – For Scott Galit (CEO)
🏆 B2B Innovation Award 2016 – PYMNTS Innovation Project
🏆 Deloitte’s Fast 500 (Fastest Growing Companies) – 2015
… and many more (smaller) industry awards.
Payoneer is constantly appearing on mainstream media and Fintech conferences, as well as specialist payments / commerce magazines. Major publication include: The NY Times, Fox News, Tech Crunch, Forbes, Wall Street Journal, Inc. Magazine, Fortune Magazine, Wires, the Daily Star and many more.
Considering the information provided in this section, as well as the fact that Payoneer’s board include some of the heaviest hitters in the business, like SWIFT’s former CEO, it is certain that Payoneer is a safe and reliable company, and not a fraud or a scam or any of that.
Any suspicion that Payoneer is not legit would have deterred companies like Amazon or Google in partnering up with them.
How Does Payoneer Work?
Payoneer provides an innovative solutions for both private and corporate clients who need to receive payments from abroad. The way they operate is via the creation of collection accounts abroad for each client. Any payment deposited into an off-shore account is translated into the local currency as defined by the Payoneer client, and then can be wired to his bank account or alternatively, be withdrawn through any ATM with the Payoneer MasterCard.
Here are the biggest advantages of using the Payoneer system:
Easy to sign up. Completely online on-boarding process.
A very simple solution that doesn’t require a lot of overhead attention. Once a client has been approved, he will automatically receive access to all available currencies, and be able to use any available bank account abroad.
It simplifies the payment process also for the payer. In fact, there are more than 200 prominent freelancer and ecommerce marketplaces (like Amazon, Google, Freelancer and Upwork) which already have Payoneer as one of the default payment solutions.
Payment processing is almost instant.
Invoices are automatically generated through the Payoneer system.
Clients are able to wire the money they have received on their Payoneer account back to their local bank account, or withdraw it in cash through the Payoneer MasterCard. In fact, this is a huge advantage for developing countries where banking systems are corrupt – you don’t even need a bank account in order to use Payoneer.
The Payoneer MasterCard can be used from almost any location around the world.
You can’t send payments through the Payoneer system (with the exception of businesses who can move funds to other business-owned Payoneer accounts).
The Payoneer MasterCard requires an annual fee (more on that – on our fees and exchange rate section).
The Payoneer MasterCard is a limited debit card which can’t be used for certain activities like gambling.
Payoneer clients are limited to a subset of locations around the world where they can open a bank account.
Payoneer provides solutions which are simply unattainable by any other means. Online sellers who receive large payments from abroad have several similar alternatives, but when it comes to private clients, none of the foreign exchange companies we have reviewed on this website offers these sort of solutions.
In our opinion, Payoneer provides a PERFECT solution for people who receive their salary from abroad, as well as for businesses who get paid by overseas clients.
3)Bank wire fees: none besides recipient bank fees which are outside of Payoneer’s control.
4) Currency exchange charges: 2% above mid-market rate, lower rates for VIP clients. This fee is applicable for both card withdrawals and wire transfers.
Limits: There are no limits to receiving money with Payoneer. There are limitations for intra-platform payments which are available for VIP clients (more on that below).
Payoneer’s banking fees are not the lowest we have encountered in this industry, but it’s hard to compare them with other companies reviewed on our website because the nature of their service is so unique. VIP clients, though, can get great rates if their volumes justify it.
Since the service is mostly geared to freelancers in developing countries, we can compare them neck to neck with Paypal, which is probably the most popular payment method in this sector:
Payoneer VS Paypal – Fees & Exchange Rates
Personal Transfer Fees (Paypal) / Loading Fees (Payoneer)
Currency Exchange Fees
Free to $5
4.5% and up to $5
1% (waived for our clients)
2% or lower
2% or lower
As you can see from the comparison above, Payoneer is a much cheaper solution than Paypal for freelancers. It is also a cheaper solution than other ewallets.
For businesses/eSellers, Payoneer can be a great solution if you are eligible for the VIP program (annual trading volume of 100,000). You can view more online seller banking solutions here.
Exchange Rates & Fees Rating
Global Reach & Service
Support availability: Telephone, Chat, and support tickets – available Mon-Fri in standard working hours. Priority VIP support for VIP clients.
Offices: USA San Francisco, North Carolina, Israel – Tel Aviv, UK – London, Spain – Barcelona, Gibraltar, Hong Kong, China-Beijing, India, Philippines, Japan.
Translations: Available in several languages – Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Spanish and Russian.
Accepts clients: Client acceptance is truly global. In fact, unlike other companies reviewed on this website which will not accept clients from regions like Russia, Bangladesh, India or China – they would happily accept them.
Currencies Handled: 150.
Time it takes to receive a reply: More than 5 days. We have read several reviews online and sent our mystery shopper through and it is verified that dealing with Payoneer is a long and possibly excruciating process.
Payoneer has one of the most complete global payment solutions we’ve seen up to date. A very strong compliance and risk departments allow them to accept clients on a truly global basis, and even provide solutions to the “unbanked” (adults who do not possess a bank account or, alas, reside in countries where the banking system is unreliable).
Nothing can be simpler than accepting payments directly into a Payoneer account and using a dedicated debit card to withdraw it through the ATM, especially for people who reside in countries like Russia, the Ukraine, India, or any other developing/high-risk countries.
In addition to the fact they accept clients on a global scale and offer them with superb solutions, they have local bank accounts in many countries. Thus, the recipient of funds through a wire transfer can enjoy a domestic transfer of funds in local currency when he withdraws funds form the account, and skip the exorbitant fees applied by banks on receiving international wire transfers.
The only real vice is the slowness of service. It takes 5 days to get a response from support after signing up and it can take a whole month or more to receive your Mastercard debit card.
They have horrible Customer support. it takes them 5 business days sometimes to get bank to the customer. Chat is not helpful and makes you wait for the email for unknown period of time.
International call line does not work and it seems they are not planning to do anything about it. people complain and they either don’t respond, or respond and tell them to wait. It’s not clear how to withdraw funds from your payoneer account. you need to wait months (sometimes 8 months) to receive payoneer card. There are a lot of issues with bank transfers. Tania, A Client Who Left Her Comment Below
Global Reach Score
– Mass payout: Businesses can pay multiple recipients instantaneously, while private clients can request to be paid by Payoneer automatically in many of the world’s most popular platforms (like Freelancer.com, upwork.com, clickbank, Amazon, Google, Getty Images, Lazda, Linion, etc).
– Billing Service: Request payment from a company by sending them a bill generated via the Payoneer system. Receive payments via credit card, eCheck or direct wire transfer.
– Tax form automation: The system auto-generates W-8 forms for all payments generated through it.
– Pay other suppliers on Payoneer: Businesses with VIP status can pay their suppliers directly through the Payoneer system with no extra charges. For them, Payoneer becomes a multi-currency virtual eWallet and then can conduct all business without ever involving their bank besides withdrawing the funds at the end of the month.
Payoneer has a fully functional mobile application for Android and iOS which is one of the most popular money transfer apps in the world. There are 100,000-500,000 downloads on Android’s Google Play alone.
The app allows Payoneer clients to check their balance at any time and perform necessary actions (like requesting a withdrawal), and is ranked 4.3 / 5 by more than 7,000 users, attesting for its usefulness.
Payoneer has a high variation of solutions embedded into its platform. Businesses can pay thousands of recipients in one click in more than 150 currencies, and automatically get the necessary invoicing and tax forms which is a huge advantage.
Clients can get automatically paid into their Payoneer account with ease in almost every ecommerce or freelancer market in the world, and withdraw the funds in cash using their Payoneer Mastercard.
The only real vice Payoneer has is outbound payments which are limited to VIP clients who can only send to other Payoneer clients.
Special Features Score
Credibility - 98%
Functionality - 95%
Fees - 80%
Special Features - 80%
Response Time - %
Payoneer offers a truly unique solution for people who need to receive overseas payments. With free bank accounts in multiple countries and currencies, and a dedicated MasterCard, it's simpler journey than ever before to accept payments and withdraw them in cash. For businesses and VIP clients, the Payoneer solutions becomes even more powerful with no wire fees, intra-platform supplier payments, MassPay option, free invoicing, free billing and free generation of tax forms. The response time is truly horrible, though, and thus we don't longer recommend them.
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