Invoice & Receive Payments

There are numerous options when it comes to freelance translator payment. There’s the tycoon, Paypaid, the runner-up, Payoneer, and then the other subsidiaries like Western Union and Moneybookers. We’ve written this detailed analysis to hopefully ease the process once you get the translator payment step.

Translator Payment: Using PayPal

Today, PayPal is the most popular method for international translator payment. PayPal is an online payment method to send payments and money via the Internet. You can register for free, and to do so, you only need your email address. PayPal charges a small percentage of the amount you receive each time that money enters your account. One good point of PayPal is that you don’t have to reveal your bank information to all your clients; you will just have to provide the email address with which you registered. Sending money has no cost at all, and it can be done by credit or debit card, bank account, or another PayPal account. All in all, it is a very simple and fast method. The transfers are made instantly, and it is very good for international translator payments.

The options to withdraw the money from your account include associating a bank account, add a credit card, requesting a check, or getting a PayPal debit card. However, the options of associating a local bank account and getting a PayPal debit card are only available in certain countries (you can check the PayPal site to see if your country is among this list). This means that in some Latin American countries like Argentina, withdrawing your funds from PayPal can be a problem.

This is where Payoneer comes in.

Translator Payment: Using Payoneer

Payoneer is a company for global payments and money transfers online that issues a pre-paid MasterCard. Using this card, you can withdraw money from any ATM all over the world. You don’t need a bank account to get the card, but you will have to make a one-time payment to receive it. Your account in Payoneer will have monthly maintenance costs, which are actually very low, and each time you make an ATM withdrawal, you will also have a cost (from the bank and from Payoneer). If you use your card to make purchases, there is no cost.

To withdraw your money from PayPal, you need to request Payoneer’s pre-paid MasterCard and the US Payment Service in Payoneer (which is a virtual US account). Then you will have to enter the information of your U.S. account in PayPal and then send your PayPal balance to this account. In a few days, the money will be loaded in your Payoneer Mastercard, and you will be able to withdraw from an ATM or shop as you would do with any credit card.

As a freelance translator, the costs you will have from both your PayPal and Payoneer account and the transactions are the following:

  • Cost for receiving money in your PayPal account
  • Cost for sending your PayPal balance to Payoneer through U.S. Payment Service.
  • Monthly maintenance cost of your Payoneer Pre-Paid Mastercard.
  • Cost for withdrawing money from an ATM (both Payoneer and bank).

Generally speaking, you can estimate that the total cost will roughly amount to less than 15% of the payment you will receive for your job.

Translator Payment: Other Payment Methods

Other translator payment methods include wire transfers from a bank account to another. It works very well for money transfers within a country. You need to provide your bank information for transfers to the client, and he/she will deposit the amount directly in your bank account. However, this option may be cumbersome for international transfers, and the fees charged by the banks are usually high both for the client and the translator. Therefore, wire transfer is not advisable for transfers of small amounts.

Another option is Western Union. But it is not so popular because the sender has to go to one of Western Union’s Agent Locations, complete a form and pay a fee (which is usually high) to send the money. Receiving money is free; only the sender pays the fees.

There are other options such as Skrill (Moneybookers), which is similar to Paypal, or MoneyGram, which works more like Western Union.

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