About a month ago, I asked fellow WAHMs for suggestions on a payout processor. See, I’ve been having serious concerns about my current processor. I’ve been with them since 2012, and honestly, I was only really happy with the service for maybe the first four months, when service was on time. After the honeymoon period, everything just went downhill. I have written about our bumpy start here and here, and after those times, I just had to go with the flow, as choices have really been limited.
I could take the crappy customer service, for as long as they credit my payout on time. But even that just felt too much to ask from them. And so last month, I just felt that I need to move on. I feel so bad, really, because I was among the first WAHMs who endorsed them to clients and fellow freelancers. But we all need to get paid on time, right? So, I’m moving on…
I’m really grateful to fellow WAHM, Kristine, for suggesting Western Union in my survey thread on Facebook. There were other great suggestions, of course, like Paypal, Xoom, Orbit Remit and RemitHome. But after going through each one of them, except Xoom [you already know what happened there] and Paypal, I decided to give Western Union a try.
And it did not disappoint.
Here’s what clinched the deal for me…
My scheduled payout is always the 15th of the month. But because present payout processor has never acted on my transactions on time, I have since requested client to allow me to process my salary on the 10th. I would receive my payout around the 20th, or worse, even later. There were months that processing my transactions would take them 15 banking days, so you can just imagine my frustration. Of course, I would not want to request the client for an even earlier payout. It’s not fair to him that he should suffer for the inefficiency of our present processor.
So last December 9, I went ahead and processed my payout, thinking that the Christmas parties might get in the way of employees attending to their tasks promptly. What do you know, they acknowledged the transaction on the 12th. Three days for a mere acknowledgement!
So I was thinking, maybe it’s time I look at other ways to get paid. I remember that my client has a Western Union account, so I went ahead and logged in, checked out the terms and then sent out a proposal to my client for a change in processor. Within minutes, he replied with a go-ahead. And so I did. That was yesterday morning. And this afternoon, the money was credited to my bank account. Amazing!
So now, my only dilemma is the other transaction with the [now] old processor. Since they have a sending limit, I always have to process my payout in two separate transactions. So I have transactions A and B with the old processor. What I did yesterday was to process the amount of transaction B with Western Union, as a test on how they would perform, and then immediately sent a request for the other processor to cancel Transaction B, but keep Transaction A. Alas, up to this time, they have not acknowledged the request for cancellation, nor do they have any notification on the status of my other transaction. Based on our bank records, both amounts have been withdrawn, and should be credited to my account already. But well…
Suffice it to say that we will be using Western Union from hereon.
Here are some share-worthy notes:
- No sending limits – you can get paid with any amount, the sending fee is adjusted according to the amount being sent. Fee is competitive, as well as the conversion rate.
- Different sending options – your client can send using either his bank account, a debit card, a credit card, or can go to a WU branch and personally transact.
- Different receiving options – you can opt to receive through your bank account, or pick up from hundreds of accredited establishments. Most major banks in the Philippines are listed at the WU site.
- Opt to send free of charge, just adjust the sending date. So let’s say you want to receive your payout on the 15th. Your client can save on the sending fee if he chooses to send using his bank account balance. It’s free for the client, but it will take 4 days to reach you. So you can work around that by sending the money just 4 days earlier.
- Instant notifications. Your transaction is acknowledged in real time.
For yesterday’s transaction, I chose the option for my client to pay via his credit card. At the WU site, it says that it will take 1 to 2 days. But as it is, it only took 1 day to reach me. Good, yeah?
Some points that might appeal to your clients:
- If what you are getting is substantial [more than the sending limit of your processor], then doing the transaction twice proves to be more expensive in the end. With a flat fee of $4.99, if your client has to process twice, then it will amount to $9.98, as opposed to WU’s $8.00.
- Using their credit cards can earn them points with the card issuer.
- They earn WU reward points for every transaction fee they pay.
And of course, it may also be good to point out that Western Union has been around for decades. And with the news of remittance companies being shut down by Westpac in Australia, we would want to be with a service provider that has been in the industry long enough to weather these kinds of storms.
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