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Wise vs Payoneer – Which Is One Is Better?

Last updated on January 28th, 2024 at 03:23 am

Wise vs Payoneer: Best Global Payment Service for Digital Nomads and Remote Workers, Wise vs Payoneer - Which Is One Is Better?

Comparison Wise vs Payoneer: Digital banking, e-wallets, and borderless payments have grown in the last several years especially with work and business becoming more and more online right now. Read here Revolut vs Wise and Wise vs Remitly

As digital nomads and solopreneurs ourselves, we travel a lot and use online payments for our travels, e-wallets, and borderless accounts in various forms. It is a big part of what we need to do for our work transactions daily.

We’re launching a new series where we’ll compare some of the best digital wallets or e-wallets you can use to secure your money and transactions online, wherever you are in the world.

Let’s start with Wise vs Payoneer – two of the biggest players right now when it comes to digital banking and global payment schemes.

Wise (formerly Transferwise) and Payoneer offer a convenient way to send and receive international payments for businesses. But which one is more suitable for your business needs?

In this comparison article, you’ll learn about Wise (formerly Transferwise) vs Payoneer, their features, costs, exchange rates, and more. 

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Let’s have a look and compare Wise vs Payoneer. 

Wise vs Payoneer – Personal and Business Accounts

Wise vs Payoneer: Best Global Payment Service for Digital Nomads and Remote Workers

First, let’s look at what is the difference between having a personal and business account. Just like normal banking, a personal account is used mostly for fast money transfers between friends and family members.

If you’re sharing bills, sending a gift, or need to help someone, personal transfers online are very important. These transactions are not done for profit, so they are not taxed. These transactions can have limits on how much or how often you send.

Now, business accounts allow you to send and receive payments for work and business. This feature is most commonly used by freelancers and remote workers, to send invoices to clients.

Also, this allows companies to send payments to freelancers, or even merchants to have an easy way to receive payments from customers.

Wise allows you to create and have a separate personal account from your business account. Payoneer offers a business account for both domestic and international payments, with multiple features to support businesses worldwide.

The Advantage of Having a Personal Account with Wise vs Payoneer

The main advantage of having the possibility of a personal account with Wise vs Payoneer, is that transfers between two personal Wise accounts are completely free. No hidden fees. Even if the one sending you money is a client or an employer, no fees will be charged.

If you’re sending a payment in a different currency, a small fee is charged. And right now, Wise is known to have some of the most competitive when it comes to conversion fees. This is why Wise vs Payoneer easily goes to Wise when it comes to least-cost personal transfers.

Wise vs Payoneer – Costs and Exchange Rate

Wise vs Payoneer: Best Global Payment Service for Digital Nomads and Remote Workers

Receiving Money with a Wise Business Account

With the Wise Business account, you can receive payments in 10 currencies. This feature allows you to receive money in your account, like a local, stored in local currencies. With Payoneer, you can receive money in 8 currencies. Let’s do a comparison of Wise vs Payoneer below for receiving cash.

When you’re using Wise to receive money, you’ll have access to a US routing number, IBAN, UK sort code, and more for a one-time fee of $31.

This is one of our favorite features – something a lot of digital nomads need. We can work with various clients around the globe, and save that money in our Wise account or Payoneer account in local currencies so that fluctuations are avoided, and we can withdraw just when we need them, and in currencies we like. Depending on the bank account you have, you’ll always need to withdraw in the local currency of your bank, unless you’re using a card that is directly issued by Wise or Payoneer.

Wise won’t charge you for receiving payments to your account details, with the exception of receiving a US domestic wire transfer and a SWIFT transfer that can cost about $4,14 per transaction.

You won’t be charged for receiving ACH payments.

Setting up your account details takes about a few minutes with Wise. Once you have your details ready, you can share these payment details to receive payments from clients, anywhere around the world.

You can also set up direct debits. You can also withdraw profit from sales platforms and convert between currencies using the mid-market rate. 

Receiving Money with Payoneer

Wise vs Payoneer: Best Global Payment Service for Digital Nomads and Remote Workers

With Payoneer, you can receive payments in 8 currencies.

Once you have your Payoneer account open, you’ll see the options of which currencies you can open with them. In our case, for example, we can have the ability to open US, UK and EU currencies.

With Payoneer, you’ll have the option to order a digital card to use the money you have for online purchases. You’ll also have the option to order a physical card in another currency.

When comparing Wise vs Payoneer, currencies with account details are worth taking into account. As well as the Payoneer costs for receiving money. 

Payoneer won’t charge you for receiving payments to your receiving accounts as long as another Payoneer customer pays you.

You’ll be charged however for receiving:

  • ACH bank debit directly by your clients – 1% of the transaction
  • Credit card directly by your clients – 3% of the transaction
  • USD payments – 0-1% based on eligibility, a minimum fee may apply

You can always check Payoneer’s pricing page for an updated fees and pricing.

It can take up to 3 business days to open a Payoneer account.

Exchange rate – Wise vs Payoneer

One of the more popular features of Wise is that they use an ‘interbank-exchange rate’ more known as the mid-market exchange rate. Easier explained this allows Wise to have one of the best exchange rates when it comes to money transfers around the world at the moment.

Payoneer bases their rates on wholesale currency market rates and they also use XE to collect data.

Wise vs Payoneer – Features

How fast can you Receive Money with Wise

Ahh, instant sending and receiving of money is now a very important feature.

Wise tries to process international business transfers as soon as possible, so it’s possible to receive money instantly or on the same day. More usually, transfers can take from 1-2 business days, depending on the currency and payment method. You’ll always see the expectation dates on the app or website, at the time you process the payment.

Withdrawing money from your Wise currency account can be as simple as sending money to your local bank account. It works the same way as the ‘send money’ function so the same speed should apply as above.

How fast can you Receive Money with Payoneer

Payoneer states that your bank transfers should arrive at your recipient within a day. However, they claim that this is an estimated time for most transactions.

Bank transfers with Payoneer should take about a day. These time frames are always estimated. Withdrawing from Payoneer to your local bank takes about 2-5 business days, with transfers within the US taking less time, about 2-3 business days.

Convenience in Receiving Money: Wise vs Payoneer

Both Wise and Payoneer provide a lot of convenience in receiving money. This is the main reason for e-wallets and digital banks. Managing payments are easy as well, as you can do this with both the official website and their apps.

Payoneer supports withdrawing to local bank accounts for more than 150 countries and currencies. Wise supports sending and receiving internationally in 80 countries and 54 currencies. 

Security and Reliability with using Wise vs Payoneer

Happy to say that both companies have the highest standards when it comes to security and their customer service. Both are huge international companies that can support these features.

2-step login for example allows you to put extra security in all your logins.

Wise will kick you out of the system after 10 tries of an incorrect password and will ask you for more verification. With Payoneer, they systematically make you log in with a pin code from your registered phone number periodically.

Wise vs Payoneer: Pros and Cons

We believe that both Wise and Payoneer offer very strong features to digital nomads and freelancers and normal users when it comes to transferring and receiving money online.

Here are some pros and cons of using Wise vs Payoneer that you might want to look at when deciding which one to use. Suggestion: You can actually have accounts for both and use Wise or Payoneer, depending on your particular need.

Wise Pros

  1. Wise (formerly Transferwise) biggest selling point is it provides a low-cost way to send money or transfer money internationally. Whether you’re paying/receiving money for work done, or sending money to friends and family, Wise is guaranteed to give one of the lowest costs in the market at the moment.
  2. Wise allows immediate transfer of money using a debit or credit card.
  3. No exchange rate markups – this is the Wise ultimate promise. The biggest differentiator they have among all the payment transfers available online is Wise’s use of the midmarket rate. Wise doesn’t charge a markup on the exchange rate.

Wise Cons

  1. The biggest con of using Wise is that they only offer you to receive money ONLY to a bank account. Other money transfer services offer multiple ways for you to receive your money transfers.
  2. Bank transfers can be slower than others. For example, if you funded your transfer through a bank account, the transfer can take up to a week, if not more. This is mostly because of Wise’s process wherein money is initially deposited to Wise’s bank account receiving money, the conversion process after, then the delivery to the recipient’s bank account. For the UK, Germany, India, and Mexico, the average waiting time is about 3-4 business days. Still not very bad, but definitely not an immediate transfer option.
  3. US Phone customer support is only available by phone, from 10am – 3pm Central Time on Weekdays.

Payoneer Pros

  1. Payoneer allows you to invoice clients directly from the Payoneer platform, so you can receive payments from Mass Global Clients of Payoneer. With this option, you’re guaranteed to have low fees when it comes to accepting payment for work.
  2. Local bank transfers and e-checks cost only 1%, while transfers between Payoneer customers are free of charge.
  3. You can easily move money between currencies, and if you need to receive money from clients that pay in different currencies, this can be an easier and cheaper way to receive money.

Payoneer Cons

  1. As amazing as Payoneer sounds, the only con for us is their automated fraud detection system. They have this set up automatically, so when they detect a suspected fraud in their system, they can freeze payments, hold your funds, or in some cases, even terminate your account. Of course, any money you have will be available for withdrawal. Payoneer will not take your money away from you. However, just be careful in case you’re using Payoneer as your ONLY digital banking. Better to have a few options available. In our case, we use it as our main way to receive payments online, and due to their automated fraud system, this was triggered for our account and removed the feature of receiving money for us. We have a way to spend our money, but we can’t use Payoneer to receive any payments anymore. This is inaccurate of course, and we have to go through a rigorous and long process of having our receiving feature re-initiated. Solution: Have a Wise account!

Final Thoughts

You can’t go wrong between Wise vs Payoneer, although Wise definitely has the lowest exchange rate at the time of writing this article. Things change, so always check to see and get updated about this. We use them both, and we can attest to how good these two services are!

If you have experience or any questions, what do you think about our Wise Vs Payoneer blog post, let us know and we’d love to help if we can!

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