Payoneer vs. WorldFirst – Comparing Platforms for Global Money Transfers
If you need to choose between Payoneer and WorldFirst, which would you select?
It depends on what type of international money transfer or bank transfer services you need. Payoneer is a niche player serving a limited customer base, whereas WorldFirst provides comprehensive money transfer solutions. There’s some overlap in the markets served, including online sellers receiving e-commerce payments. Both provide prepaid debit cards for spending or withdrawals.
Comparing Payoneer vs. WorldFirst
In an overall comparison of WorldFirst vs. Payoneer, the stronger offering is WorldFirst for its money transfers. WorldFirst offers more free or lower-rate money transfers at favorable foreign exchange rates and offers volume discounts. WorldFirst lets its online seller customers transfer funds back to domestic accounts for free.
Payoneer and WorldFirst both provide ease of use, security, and excellent customer service.
WorldFirst global bank transfers are received about one day quicker than Payoneer’s. Money transfers from a sender’s WorldFirst account to the receiver’s WorldFirst account are received instantaneously. Payoneer’s transfers sent to another Payoneer account are received within two hours.
Both Payoneer and WorldFirst offer a Mastercard prepaid debit card issued by the insolvent company, Wirecard. The Mastercard is linked to a fund recipient’s Payoneer account or WorldFirst account.
What is Payoneer?
Payoneer is a New York-based global payment service platform. Payoneer lets customers pay freelancers, other service providers, affiliates, e-commerce online sellers, and short-term rental property owners. Payoneer payments are made via ACH and global bank transfers or money transfers to a Payoneer account, with a linked Mastercard prepaid debit card for spending or withdrawing funds.
Payoneer serves all customer sizes, from enterprise to small business. Payoneer customers include:
- freelancing platforms including Upwork and Fiverr paying freelancers,
- Google paying independent contractors,
- Amazon paying online sellers and affiliates,
- in its e-commerce Marketplace, including FBA sellers
- making Amazon Associates affiliate payouts, and
- Airbnb paying short-term rental property owners.
What is WorldFirst?
WorldFirst is a London-based international money transfer company for currency conversion, paying, receiving, holding, and spending funds. The WorldFirst fee structure is based on annual transfer amounts. Customers pay suppliers in local currencies. WorldFirst is used by e-commerce merchants, including some Amazon online sellers, to receive funds.
In February 2019, WorldFirst was acquired by Ant Financial Group, which owns the mobile payments app called AliPay and is 33% owned by the Chinese company, Alibaba.
What Fees Does Payoneer Charge?
Payoneer fees vary by type of transaction, payment method, and whether both the sender and receiver have a Payoneer account. If both ends of the money transfer transaction have a Payoneer account, then the transaction between accounts is free. Fee categories are Get Paid, Withdraw Money (to a local bank account), and Pay Suppliers and Contractors.
For customer payments (through its Global Payment Service) sent to recipients being paid, Payoneer charges transfer fees of 1% per ACH within the USA or per local bank transfer. The transfer fee is 3% for a Payoneer customer payment made using a credit card. Freelancing platforms and networks set Payoneer fees for receiving payments through their platform.
To withdraw funds to a local bank account in a different currency, Payoneer fees, including foreign currency conversion fees, are up to 2% over the market rate. High earners may pay less. If currencies are the same for a withdrawal to a bank account, Payoneer fees are usually: $1.50 USD, € EUR, or £ 1.50 GPB. Banks may charge fees too.
What Fees Does WorldFirst Charge?
WorldFirst doesn’t charge fees for personal transfers. For business customers, WorldFirst charges a quoted fee between £0 and £15 per transaction, depending on volume.
Online sellers transferring funds to their domestic account and private clients can open a free WorldFirst account with no monthly fees or currency transfer fees. For transfers by online sellers to a home account without currency conversion, WorldFirst charges a quoted fee.
WorldFirst charges these foreign exchange (FX) fees for international money transfers, based on the level of annual transfer amounts:
- 0.5% for £0 – £500 thousand
- 0.25% for £500 thousand to £5 million
- 0.15% for over £5 million
WorldFirst offers free money transfers within the WorldFirst network and free overseas and local currency accounts.
The WorldFirst minimum transfer amount for individuals and businesses making international transfers is £1 thousand, according to its website version for British users.
WorldFirst claims that it offers very competitive currency exchange rates. Take that into consideration when you evaluate any WorldFirst fees.
What is Payoneer Transfer Speed?
Payoneer makes cross-border transfers that are received in two to five business days. Its bank transfer speed within the U.S. is slightly faster than international, with receiving in two to three business days.
What is WorldFirst Transfer Speed?
WorldFirst makes money transfers within its network instantly. WorldFirst international payments take from one to four business days to be received, based on the currency, the bank, and the transaction size.
Payoneer Multi-currency Capabilities
According to Payoneer, “Payoneer offers receiving accounts which enable you to receive local bank transfers from companies and marketplaces in the US, UK, EU, Japan, Canada, Australia and Mexico directly to your Payoneer account.” Payments are received in USD, EUR, GBP, JPY, AUD, CAD & MXN. Payoneer serves over 200 countries with over 150 currencies.
WorldFirst Multi-currency Capabilities
WorldFirst pays in over 130 local and global currencies. It offers free local currency accounts in 10 currencies.
Does Payoneer Have a Prepaid Debit Card?
Yes. Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard is used for purchases and ATM fund withdrawals that can be sent to a bank account. The prepaid debit card is linked to funds in a Payoneer account. Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard was issued by Wirecard, which recently became insolvent. Funds on the Prepaid Mastercard are safe, although customers experienced some delays.
Does WorldFirst Have a Prepaid Card?
Yes. WorldFirst Currency Card is a prepaid Mastercard issued by Wirecard Card Solutions, Ltd. It’s parent, Wirecard, became insolvent in June 2020. The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) suspended, then resumed operations of U.K.-based WCS pending a review. WCS determined that client money is safe after the FCA examination, although some customers experienced temporary transaction interruptions.
Does Payoneer Have Mobile Apps?
The Payoneer app is available for Apple iOS (iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch) and Google Android mobile devices for making payments, withdrawing money in the local currency, and managing foreign currencies and changes in exchange rates.
Does WorldFirst Have Mobile Apps?
The WorldFirst Money Transfer mobile app is available for Apple iOS iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and mobile devices using the Google Android operating system. The app is for making and tracking money transfer payments to set-up recipients, viewing live rates and market updates, and paying by card. WorldFirst also offers an Android smartwatch app for international “wearable money transfers.”
Payoneer Customer Support
Payoneer customer service includes:
- an online knowledge base, FAQs, and access to the Payoneer Community,
- phone support and
- message or live chat online support.
Payoneer offers excellent 24/7 customer support in many languages.
WorldFirst Customer Support
WorldFirst customer support is rated Excellent on Trustpilot. WorldFirst offers guides, online support, FAQs, phone support for online sellers, personal and business accounts, live chat online, limited Monday through Friday office hours, and email support.
Besides its general “Guide to foreign exchange,” WorldFirst guides include how to transfer money to the following countries:
- New Zealand
- UK, and
Payoneer makes global payments and uses local currency Payoneer Accounts. Payoneer serves more than 200 countries worldwide in 150+ currencies. Payoneer offers free Payoneer account to Payoneer account money transfers if both sender and receiver have accounts.
Payoneer customer support is excellent. Security is good. Payoneer is easy to use. Payoneer attracts impressive customers.
Payoneer doesn’t provide a comprehensive international payment solution, although it succeeds in its niche of paying freelancers and other service providers, online sellers in e-commerce, and affiliates.
Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard cardholders experienced temporary interruptions resulting from the insolvency of Wirecard and FCA review of Wirecard’s U.K. unit. But WorldFirst’s Mastercard prepaid debit card was also issued by Wirecard.
The WorldFirst money transfer service has very positive customer reviews and ratings on Trustpilot and award-winning customer support. It’s secure and easy to use. Currency conversion rates are very attractive. WorldFirst offers some free accounts and free transfers between WorldFirst accounts. It bases some other rates on annual volumes transferred, giving volume discounts.
WorldFirst’s parent company, Ant Financial, is stable, with its 33% ownership by Alibaba.
The money transfer provider, WorldFirst, has very few cons. WorldFirst Currency Card prepaid Mastercard holders had transactions temporarily interrupted by the insolvency of Wirecard, causing the temporary suspension of its U.K division, Wirecard Card Solutions, Ltd. during an FCA review. But Payoneer Prepaid Mastercard was also issued by Wirecard.