Receiving payments online in Pakistan is what makes freelancing a lot more difficult for us Pakistanis. Many freelancers in Pakistan are facing difficulty receiving payments from International clients. The main issue here is that most overseas clients use either Credit Cards or PayPal to pay online.
PayPal doesn’t work in Pakistan and credit cards can only be accepted if you have a local merchant account.
However, other reliable payment solutions exist, which can be used to receive online payments in Pakistan.
Read my previous post on how to find more freelance work using freelance job websites.
Receive Online Payments in Pakistan
I have personally used all given payment methods myself and had no problem whatsoever. Keep these things in mind when creating accounts on any of these websites to get payments on time and reliable service.
- Use your real name which is mentioned on your CNIC and Passport when creating a new account on Payoneer, Xoom, etc…
- When they ask you to verify your accounts, always provide real details. If you hide things, they have a legitimate reason to terminate or block your account.
- Sometimes payment get delayed due to weekends and holidays. So, there’s no point asking on forums and facebook groups unless payments get delayed up to a week or 10 days at least.
- Make sure to use as many of these payment methods, so your clients have multiple options to pay you.
1. Wire Transfer
This is a solution if your client has to send a big payment (around $1000 at least). Because the client has to pay an international wire transfer fee which can be between $10 — $100. Different banks charge different international wire transfer fees.
So what do you need to do in order to receive an international wire transfer outside of Pakistan?
You need to provide these details to your employer/client:
IBAN Wire Transfer
- Full Name
- IBAN Number
- Bank Name
Swift Wire Transfer
- Full Name
- Bank Account number
- Swift Code
- Bank Name
- Branch Name
- Branch Code
Note: You may need to call your bank to get a swift code, branch code, full branch name, etc…
You will receive payments within 1–5 business days. Since Pakistan has been included in the FATF grey list recently, it might take more time. But don’t worry, you will receive the payment.
Well, you can say it is a close alternative to PayPal. However, it is not profoundly used by people from western countries but if you have a client you can send him a payment request which he can pay with his/her credit card.
Payoneer supports most countries but there are a few countries and some US states from which you can’t receive a payment.
The payments can take around a week to get into your bank account. First, the payment will be loaded to your Payoneer account. Then you have to add your local Pakistani bank details to receive that payment directly into your account.
Also, you can use their debit card to withdraw payments immediately through ATM in Pakistan.
3. Xoom by PayPal
Although you can’t receive business transactions using Xoom because it is a service to only send a remittance from the United States.
I wouldn’t recommend Xoom as a regular payment method if you are a freelancer. Because things can go wrong if they find out you are using it for business purposes rather than collecting remittance from family/friends.
If you want to use it, you have to provide these details:
- Official Bank Name
- First Name
- Last Name
- Postal Code
4. Western Union
Western Union is probably the oldest among these newcomers. You can easily collect payments sent through Western Union by going to a bank and showing your CNIC and MTCN.
- Sender can directly transfer amount to receiver’s bank account
- You can either collect cash or cheque from authorized agents of Western Union eg: Various banks, Post Offices, Merchants.
- You can check your nearest Western Union agent by entering your postal code on Western Union website.
Let me know in the comments what other payment options have you used personally and how to make this blog post more informative for freelancers in Pakistan.