I have transferred funds using banks, PayPal, Revolut and Wise – nothing compares to Crypto | by Al Anany | November 2022

With cryptocurrencies, a client transferred me $5k in 120 seconds

Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

Person: “Ugh. Crypto again. Have you heard of the disgraced Sam Bankman-Fried? He got “fried”, didn’t he?

Me: “God, that’s the worst you’ve ever been. Well, the worst I’ve been in since I’m writing this.”

Person that? I do not exist?!”

Me: “No, no. We’re not doing the whole hypothetical talk of you becoming a self-aware AI, not in this article.”

Person: “Okay. So crypto sucks, man. You know it. You can’t even withdraw the $120 you forgot on Blockfi.”

Me: “There are always scandals and mistakes that are made, and they are going to be made. I predict a couple of other exchanges similar to FTX will follow. That does not mean that cryptocurrencies are doomed.”

If you are reading one of my articles for the first time, I am Al Anany. (Pleasure…)

I’ve been a business consultant for quite some time, helping startups raise investment and prepare for their investment rounds. In my job I collaborate with clients and other freelancers to help me with related tasks.

I do not limit myself to a specific region. For example, you might need an encoder in India or New Zealand. Alternatively, the designer could be here in Switzerland or Malaysia.

When I need something, I need the process to be smooth. These freelancers need funds and those clients must pay. Therefore, speed is of extreme importance. So I’ve been testing different FinTech products for years. Here are a few I tried:

  • PayPal
  • Payoneer
  • revolution
  • Wise
  • Western Union
  • Bank transfer: from my Swiss UBS.
  • Crypto: through Binance or Coinbase.

I will not review all applications. However, I will give you my one line verdict on each one.

PayPal – not everywhere and with huge commissions.

I love Paypal in Switzerland. It is quite easy to use and sometimes the transfers from the account to my bank account arrive the same day. However, they charge quite a high currency conversion fee.

However, many of my freelancers don’t like receiving money in PayPal for those fees, plus the fact that in some countries, you can’t actually withdraw these funds to your bank account.

Payoneer-Meh.

I used it when I was working on Upwork. It’s okay. His commissions are acceptable per se. But its process is too slow. For example, a transfer from one account to another can take 24-48 hours to be approved. Then it will take a few days to reach a bank account. So, uh…

Revolut: I had my hopes pinned on you.

Revolut is expecting to become almost the super app that Elon Musk dreams of. I was very excited and used it to transfer funds from my account to a freelancer in Turkey. It took three days, and it was pretty smooth.

I then asked them to sign me up for a business account so I could use them instead of Stripe. Their commissions are lower. They sent me a cool black card. I was quite happy with them.

So I wired another $241 to that freelancer in Turkey for another job. Then his bank started making mistakes, which led us to cancel the transaction. So Revolut said that they will start the withdrawal process. More than 90 days have passed. I don’t entirely blame Revolut. However, in terms of my business operations, I can no longer depend on it, as this could happen again.

Wise: not too fast.

I have not experimented with Wise numerous times. I received a $5k payment there once, which was an acceptable process. I have also sent hundreds to other international freelancers. It’s similar to Revolut but takes longer, from my experience. The freelancer had to wait about ten days for the money to appear in his account.

Western Union – I had to physically visit their office several times.

The one-liner sums it up.

Bank transfer: It is what you would expect it to be.

They don’t promise too much, but they deliver. My Swiss bank, UBS, is quite comfortable in the trades. I made several transfers. However, out of 10 transfers, one of them is pending for more than 60 days because they are verifying certain information about the recipient’s name. (Really?)

It was a friend living in London who I had to pay back the money he spent while we were on vacation. So it should be pretty straightforward.

Whether Bankman-Fried destroys his empire in a few days or CZ becomes the richest CEO doesn’t affect my operations. So I’ll save the news for my morning reading. As a transfer method, I am not disappointed every time I use it. It has, according to my records, a 100% success rate.

  • A client recently transferred $5k to my coin base purse.
  • Another transferred an additional $3k to me Binance purse.

The next day the money was in my account. However, let’s be honest, if you had received those funds on fiblockfor example, you would not have been able to withdraw it right now and you would be claiming.

At this stage, I trust Binance and Coinbase, but could they become the next FTX? Definitely.

This doesn’t change the fact that this method is still by far my favorite. I would recommend diversifying into payment options if you are doing similar work. Use Revolut on some occasions, while on others you would be wise to use Binance.

Obviously, if the recipient has the same bank as me, I wouldn’t think about Binance or Revolut. Instead, you would do an internal transfer which should be instant.

I would bet on Binance and go all-in, but it has only been in our world for five years.

Here are some recommendations I follow when accepting crypto transfers.

1. I never accept funds in a volatile currency, or convert them immediately.

For example, if your customer transfers USDT to their account, sometimes the fees are quite high. On the other hand, Solana or Litecoin may be cheaper.

So what I do is initially get the funds in Litecoin, for example, and then convert them to USDT or USDC. Since it will probably take a bit of time to reach my bank account. However, it cannot guarantee price fluctuations during that time.

2. Make sure the crypto account is corporate.

Regulated or unregulated, it wouldn’t hurt to create a corporate account instead of a personal one for legal purposes. They usually require some paperwork, but it’s not that difficult.

3. Check the legalities of your country.

Some still consider it illegal. For example, in Egypt, if you participate in any crypto transaction, you could be fined up to $400,000. (Yes, you saw it well).

4. Finally, know when you’re investing and when you’re not.

Tesla invested some money in BTC. El Salvador is doing it too. But they have studied this decision. What you shouldn’t do is “Oh, I got a transfer in Solana. I’ll keep it there for a few months. Why not?”

That does not count as an investment. This is more of a speculation on your company’s funds, which is unwise. Solana, for example, dropped 91% of its price a year ago. So if you were thinking of delaying the transfer of your client’s advance to your bank account because, “Why not?”then think again.

If you want to invest in specific volatile assets, you should do your homework and possibly consult a financial advisor or analyst.

I usually don’t attract readers, but I’m quite curious: Have any of the above fintech tools failed you before?

am al anany, a business consultant in Zurich, Switzerland. I believe in the power of delivering value to you, the reader. You will find me on most social platforms simply by Googling my name. Follow me if you are interested in the value of my content.

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