One thing that I found out that discourages most Nigerians from freelancing is the difficulty in getting payments in Nigeria.
Most clients prefer to pay via PayPal and several of them aren’t willing to consider any other payment method.
I have had to decline some gigs because the clients insisted that they can only pay me via PayPal and I couldn’t find anyone to help me receive the payments.
Luckily from freelancers in Nigeria, the fintech landscape around the world is changing and PayPal no longer has the monopoly of the payment system it once held.
Today, most of my clients have agreed to pay me through several methods other than PayPal and I will share those methods with you below.
TransferWise is my personal favourite at the moment because of the ease with which I receive funds when my clients pay me through them.
All you need is your name, bank account number and email address. The clients would pay you in whatever currency you have worked for and you would receive your payments in Naira directly in your Nigerian bank account.
Most times it takes less than ten minutes for me to receive the payments.
The downside to this method is that their exchange rate could be low, but frankly I don’t care that much about that.
Open a TransferWise account by clicking this link.
Skrill is another payment method that allows Nigerians to receive payments from their clients from all over the world.
All you have to do is open a Skrill account and get it confirmed. It would give you an email address that you can send to your clients through which they can make payments to you, just like PayPal.
Payments received through Skrill as also usually instant, you make your withdrawal from the app to your bank account.
Skrill seems to have the poorest exchange rate among these payment methods so far.
Payoneer was the payment method that saved me when I had no other alternative to PayPal. This company offers you a debit card that you can use to withdraw your earnings in any ATM worldwide.
Payoneer also gives you an international bank account, usually a USA bank account that companies can make payments directly to.
To withdraw your funds, all you have to do is to request for the card and withdraw the naira equivalent of your earnings with your card at any ATM.
You can also use your card to withdraw your earnings through TransferWise, which is what I prefer because I don’t have to deal with an ATM queue.
There are charges for every time you use the card at an ATM too, you get charged for withdrawals and ATM errors.
Payoneer offers the best exchange rates from my experience.
Electronic Funds transfer
You can also ask a client to make an electronic funds transfer from their account into yours.
This is usually a safe method of receiving payments like most of the others on this list, however, the charge can be very high so I don’t advice it except you have no options.
The bank exchange rates in Nigeria can also be criminal, so it is best you use another payment method if you can.
They have also paid me through Western Union. And it was fast. All your client would need is your bank details and they can send the payments through.
It would give them a unique code called the MTCN number that you can use to track your payment until it hits your account or that you can use to receive your payments at a bank that has a Western Union outlet.
When I have used it, the payments have arrived almost instantly and the exchange rate was fair.
MoneyGram is very similar to Western Union, and yes, you can receive payments through it in Nigeria.
I haven’t received payments through MoneyGram yet, but I know a few people who regularly get paid for their freelance gigs through MoneyGram.
What other method have you used to receive payments which I haven’t shared here? Drop it in the comment section and I’d add it to this list.