Payoneer vs PayPal: Which is Better for Freelancers in Nigeria?


Freelancers in Nigeria often need reliable platforms to receive payments from international clients. Two popular options are Payoneer and PayPal. Each has its strengths and is suited to different needs. Here’s a comparison to help Nigerian freelancers decide which service might be better for them.

Payoneer vs PayPal

1. Fees and Charges

  • PayPal
  • Charges a cross-border transaction fee depending on the amount sent and the destination country.
  • Additional fees include a currency conversion fee of around 4%.
  • Payoneer
  • Fees vary based on the type of transaction, with charges ranging from 1-3% for payments received through the Billing Service or marketplaces like Upwork.
  • Withdrawals to a bank account in the same currency cost $1.50.

2. Exchange Rates

  • PayPal
  • Adds a currency conversion fee ranging from 3.5% to 4% on top of the mid-market rate.
  • Payoneer
  • Typically adds a margin of 2% on the mid-market rate for currency conversion, up to 3.5% with credit card payments.

3. Coverage and Availability

  • PayPal
  • Operates in over 200 countries and supports transfers in 25 currencies.
  • Payoneer
  • Supports over 200 countries but offers transfers in only 7 main currencies and 4 additional currencies for tax payments.

4. Speed of Transfers

  • PayPal
  • Transfer times vary, with payments to PayPal accounts being almost instant but withdrawals to bank accounts taking 3-5 business days.
  • Payoneer
  • Transfers to bank accounts typically take 2-3 business days but can sometimes be processed within 24 hours.

5. User Experience and Security

  • PayPal
  • Offers a user-friendly app and website, with services available in 17 languages. Uses advanced encryption technology for security.
  • Payoneer
  • Supports 70 languages through customer service and offers an easy-to-use platform. Registered as a US Money Service Business (MSB) and uses PCI Level 1 Data Security Standards.

6. Reviews and Reputation

  • PayPal
  • Mixed reputation with complaints about high fees, frozen accounts, and poor customer service. Trustpilot rating of 1.3 out of 5.
  • Payoneer
  • Better reviews, with users praising its responsive customer service and efficient platform. Trustpilot rating of 4.5 out of 5.


For Nigerian freelancers, Payoneer seems to be the better choice for business-related transactions due to lower fees and better exchange rates. However, PayPal might still be a viable option for those needing to send or receive money casually from friends and family. Each freelancer should consider their specific needs and the preferences of their clients when choosing between the two platforms.

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