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Help with payment to South Africa please ...
Thread poster: Vittorina Klingbeil

Vittorina Klingbeil  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:43
Italian to English
+ ...
May 31, 2006

I would appreciate some guidance... I have completed a translation job for which the poster really really wants to pay me. Problem is, I am in South Africa, a country which does not accept Paypal funds. Moneybookers is not an option for the poster as the charge is too high for them, as is a wire transfer to my bank account. They have suggested a company check or an gift voucher. I'm not keen on the latter as I then have to pay tax and duty here on items I buy. Can someone give me advice on the company check part, or perhaps suggest some other payment methods? Many thanks.

[Edited at 2006-05-31 07:23]

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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:43
English to French
+ ...
Company cheque May 31, 2006

Hello Vittoria,

I am not even near South Africa, but I must say that I find that company cheques are the best thing for payment - as long as it doesn't cost you too much to cash it in. In Canada, I pay a flat fee of 2$ to cash in a foreign cheque of any amount - and they convert the money into Canadian funds. The downside is that the money is held for almost a month before I can get access to it. Foreign funds on cheques take longer to clear...

With that said, I like cheques because they are safe. There is a paper trail of it, and the money goes into your account straight away. You don't have to deal with PayPal, who take too large a fee off the transaction in my opinion, especially considering all the money they make. They're probably the bank with the most accounts in the world...

I'd say you can't go wrong with a company cheque - as long as you can wait for it to clear and don't have to pay too much for clearing it.

Good luck!

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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:43
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Cheque is an option May 31, 2006

Vittorina Klingbeil wrote:
They have suggested a company check or an gift voucher. I'm not keen on the latter as I then have to pay tax and duty here on items I buy.

No matter what you do, somewhere down the line you're gonna have to pay some sort of commission or tax... be it duty on imports or bank transfer fees.

I'm also a South African, and I have received funds from overseas in the following ways:

1. Direct bank transfer. I have no idea what the bank fees are/were because I generally don't check to see if the amounts are absolutely correct, as long as they are more or less in line with what I invoiced for.

2. Cheque sent by mail, in foreign currency. You walk up to the forex desk in the bank, present the cheque, and they pay the amount into your account (minus forex charges and possibly some other charges).

3. Cheque sent by mail, in ZAR. I have on one occasion received a printed company cheque with the amount listed in ZAR, so it might be possible for some overseas banks to make out cheques in your currency (liaising with a local bank, probably). I just paid it in, but I'm not sure what other charges were involved.

4. Postal orders. When I was on a working holiday in the UK, I sent my folks money using standard post office postal orders. They used to cash them at a bank (not at the local post office). Again, there are forex fees.

5. Cash. Yes, on one occasion a US client managed to get his hands on real ZAR cash, and mailed it to me between two sheets of paper in an envelope. I wouldn't recommend it.

Another option for payment in kind may be something that you download directly (such as a software licence), or a magazine subscription.

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Elina Andriamananahasinoro  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:43
English to French
western union May 31, 2006

Hi Vittorina

You can also consider payment via western union. It is reilable and they have got many agencies all around the world. Just check their website.

Good luck

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Ugne Vitkute  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:43
English to Lithuanian
+ ...
Books Jun 3, 2006

The practice that I have developed with countries the customers from which send cheques that are subject to suspiciously high commission fees in Lithuania is that I choose books from Amazon or eBay, provide the customer with the link and they pay for me. Of course this I do with small sums that by transfer or cheque would become not even worth going to a bank. (That recently happened to me with who checks from the UK, both were GBP 10. After one month of waiting I received the total of GBP 10 instead of 20, because 10 went to the bank as the servicing fee.)

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Claudia Aguero  Identity Verified
Costa Rica
Local time: 01:43
Spanish to English
+ ...
Credit card or waiting to have a large amount due for a wire transfer Jun 6, 2006

May be you can ask if a deposit in your credit card is possible, an European client proposed that for me (by the way he never paid).

Regarding cash, the best way is to place the bills between two carbo paper sheets, which, in turn, are folded in a sheet of paper in an envelope. When I worked at a company, we used this method for international payments and never had problems.

Maybe, you can ask the client wheteher he plans to continue sending translations. I worked for a US company and we agreed that whenever thwey owed me a fixed amount of money, they would make wire transfer in order to lower costs. If this is your case and the client doesn't want to pay for charges, you can proprose to go 50-50.

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