Getting money from abroad can prove quite a hassle for Indians. And sending money abroad is almost impossible unless you comply with strict rules and regulations set by the Reserve Bank of India. Given this scenario, most Indian bloggers, freelancers, foreign students, and even businesspersons turn to PayPal, the single-largest international payments system in the world.
Why PayPal Alternatives
In recent years, PayPal is also tightening its rules for India. If you’re a freelancer or blogger, for example, you’ll have to provide a Goods & Services Tax Identification Number (GSTIN) to use PayPal. This can prove a burden for most freelancers and bloggers whose income doesn’t really justify going for a GSTIN. Not to mention the lengthy documentation and expenses on a Chartered Accountant to assist for complying with GST laws.
Then there are other hurdles in getting money from foreign countries or making payments abroad too: some organizations and individuals will simply not accept PayPal for any number of reasons.
Now you have this amazing opportunity as a freelancer and blogger to expand your reach and earn more. But PayPal becomes a hurdle. What’s to be done?
I’d recommend that you go for the top seven PayPal alternatives for bloggers and freelancers. They are equally reliable and meet all international standards while complying with Indian laws.
Top 7 PayPal Alternatives for Bloggers & Freelancers:
Actually, I would suggest every blogger and freelancer use at least one more alternative for PayPal. You mightn’t have any apparent problems with PayPal but there’s no harm either in having an alternative. Here’s a selection of seven best PayPal alternatives you can consider.
Personally, I would rate Payoneer as equal to PayPal. I mean, there’s no significant difference between the services they offer. Payoneer has over four million users worldwide and operates in some 200 countries. Major companies like Upwork.com, Amazon, and Fiverr.com– which most freelancers and bloggers usually use for getting money from abroad.
Signing up with Payoneer is simple. Fill in your name, address, Permanent Account Number (PAN) and bank details. Usually, Payoneer takes two to three days to verify your credentials. You’ll get an email once your Payoneer account is active. You can also pay for online shopping from foreign websites such as Rakuten and Airbnb using Payoneer.
If you need to send money abroad and send it instantly, try Skrill. This website and app don’t charge you for sending money outside India. However, such outward remittances of money from India are subject to rules and regulations of the Reserve Bank of India and the Indian government. Skrill doesn’t charge any commissions for receiving and sending money. However, you might have to pay a small service fee that depends upon the amount of money you are getting from a foreign source.
A salient feature of Skrill is their instant foreign currency to Indian Rupee calculator. It’s particularly useful for sending money outside India. You can get real-time foreign exchange rates with the Skrill currency conversion calculator. Also, you can find how much money you would get in Indian Rupees from freelance or crowdsourced project using this calculator.
WebMoney is a universal payments system that’s popular worldwide. Most freelancers and bloggers use it as an alternative for PayPal to get money from the USA. The reason is simple: WebMoney usually offers a better currency conversion rate than those prevailing in the market. So you can get a little money extra by asking payments from WebMoney.
There are several unique features on WebMoney. It can be used as a mobile or online wallet where you can store cash and send it to bank or use for payments when necessary. It also has a budget planner. Another excellent feature of WebMoney is ‘Raise Funds’. This is particularly useful for emergencies and if you wish to get crowdfunding for any legit and genuine purpose.
For bloggers and freelancers in India, there’s another option available for PayPal. That’s Instamojo. It’s a fully homegrown universal payments system that allows freelancers, bloggers, and businesspersons to get money instantly from foreign sources. Though a relative newcomer in this highly competitive field of universal payment systems, Instamojo has over a million users. Its user base is growing by some 10,000 new additions per day.
Instamojo has its own online shop where you can buy indigenous and foreign stuff. Their online payments system allows you to transfer money without any effort when you buy something. However, there’s a slight drawback with Instamojo. It can prove a little difficult to send money abroad with this website and app. Yet, it’s a superb app if you are going to get money from abroad.
The WorldRemit global payment system is specially made for India. This company has agreements for instant cash credit with various leading Indian banks. You can send or receive the money within seconds if you have an account with any of these banks. While getting money from abroad from WorldRemit is easy, you might experience some hurdles in sending larger sums of cash outside India. However, that’s not much of a hassle if you compare the excellent features of this payments system.
You have four options of sending or getting cash: direct credit to your WorldRemit online wallet, credit to your bank, bank-to-bank transfers and mobile recharge. Yes, it’s right. Anyone anywhere in the world can recharge your Indian mobile number with WorldRemit and also enjoy some discounts.
Yes, you got it right. Paytm is gradually overcoming all hurdles regarding foreign currency transactions. It is now offering conversion of over 20 different foreign currencies to the Indian Rupee. However, these services are yet to gain momentum since people in India mainly use Paytm for local purchases, savings, and investments.
An advantage you have with Paytm is its wide acceptance in India. You can send and receive money directly from Paytm to Bank account. You can also open a Paytm Payments Bank savings account for free and get a Paytm Rupay debit card for a nominal fee. Paytm also has various features that allow you to invest money in various schemes such as Mutual Funds.
UK-based Transferwise is yet another very popular global payments system in India. The company has included some extra features to make Transferwise attractive for the Indian freelancer and blogger. Transferwise has five-star ratings from several top financial organizations around the world.
What makes it an attractive alternative? They have a real-time transfer update system. Means, whenever you send or are receiving money, Transferwise sends you automatic email updates. These updates tell you at what stage your transfer is pending or processing. Hence, you can be assured there would be no frauds or scams that affect your incoming or outbound money. Transferwise can be the best PayPal alternative.
A simple search on Google will display several options and alternatives for PayPal. Before you choose any, read their reviews and customer ratings. There could be some scammers too. I would have also recommended Bitcoin Wallet since a lot of foreign companies use the crypto-currency to pay foreign suppliers such as freelancers and bloggers. However, there’s a draft law of the Indian government that completely banks crypto-currencies in India and makes their possession a non- bailable offense. Actually, it makes good sense for every freelancer and blogger to have more than one global payment system in their quiver. It helps overcome all sorts of hassles that a foreign party you may have.