In a nutshell, Local Funds Transfer allows you to withdraw your oDesk earnings directly to your bank account, saving you from using more expensive payment methods like PayPal or Payoneer.
Adding the Local Funds Transfer payment method is definitely easy. All you gotta do is use your bank’s BRSTN code (these codes are PayPal’s bank codes), your exact bank account name, account number, address, and country. Since we’re Pinoys working on oDesk, we’re to use the Philippine LFT payment method.
But I do encourage you to double or triple check your bank information before clicking on the yellow button to continue. Many delays and transfer errors usually sprout from a misspelling or missing number, so avoid making mistakes when entering your bank info, particularly your bank account name and bank account number.
The Actual Withdrawal
With enough money ready for transfer, I visited the Withdrawals section of my Financial Activity and began the process on March 15, a Tuesday. Since this is my first time using LFT, the $1.99 fee is waived and the transaction free.
I selected Local Funds Transfer as my withdrawal method, clicked on Available Balance to withdraw the entire amount, and reviewed the amount that I was going to receive in 3-5 business days. Once everything is correct, I said a little prayer for good luck and clicked Withdraw.
Note: Below the exchange rate a small reminder that the exchange rate to be implemented for your withdrawal will be the rate on the next business day. So even if the exchange rate says 42.50 or higher, expect the rate used to be tomorrow’s exchange rate.
The Final Result
Here’s where the good part comes in: the result of the Local Funds Transfer. What do I think of it? Absolutely easy and hassle-free!
I withdrew my money Tuesday, March 15 an hour or two before noon. I then received it today, March 18, after checking my account around 11:04 AM.
So that’s 3 days for the transfer, which is more or less close to how fast PayPal would send my earnings to my bank account. And since I use a BPI Express savings account, there was no deduction for remittance unlike that nasty P150 fee from PayPal withdrawals.
As for the exchange rate, it was more or less 43.00746 to $1 which is actually pretty good. I’d normally get an exchange rate of about 42.30 if I had withdrawn from PayPal, which was really low for me. Pinoy freelancers on oDesk won’t have to worry about how high the rates are so long as it doesn’t plummet on the next business day after making the transfer.
My LFT Conclusion
I really was nervous about using Local Funds Transfer for my withdrawals, but after this first successful transfer I can finally breathe easy whenever I need to use it to withdraw to my bank account. It’s cheaper, hassle-free, and extremely easy to use that many Pinoy freelancers won’t have to put all of their eggs in one basket anymore (ahem!).
To recap, here are a couple of reminders and tips to make your Local Funds transfers smooth and easy:
- Make sure your bank account name, bank account number, BRSTN or bank code, address, and country is 100% correct.
- To lessen the $1.99 pain, withdraw when you have a big amount of money credited to your oDesk account. 3-4 figures should be okay.
- The exchange rate used is always the rate of the next business day after making the withdrawal.
- Withdraw either Monday or Tuesday to receive your money in at least 3 days. Expect longer if there are US holidays in between days.
- Use a BPI Express savings/ATM account if you want to receive your money in full. It’s only P500 to open, plus bank has agreed to waive their remittance fees for transfers from oDesk.
- Be patient and don’t worry too much. If you have any questions or concerns, just contact oDesk customer support for help.