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Currency Exchange Rates

Active Member
Sundaresa G Member Since: Oct 15, 2016
21 of 30



I agree your point. However, I am not sure why the Upwork itself, shows, less rate. 


When I transfer, it shows less value for Dollar, however I do not see any charges levied in transaction.  


Below is my bank current transaction charges. But I see more deductions from Upwork end.


USA₹ 70.15

Up to USD 1000 – Charges of USD 4

Above USD 1000 – NIL charges

Active Member
Bawenang R Member Since: Aug 29, 2018
22 of 30

The better way to transfer your earnings is by using Payoneer. The exchange rate is fairer there. For example: I have just tried testing to withdraw from both Upwork Direct Transfer and transfering from Upwork to Payoneer and then Direct Transfer it to my bank. The difference is quite a lot. $1 = Rp13.734,48 on Upwork while on Payoneer it's Rp14.364,84. Don't tell me that it was because of the bank's currency rate because I am using the same bank account for those two tries.

Active Member
Shahbaaz Ali S Member Since: Sep 18, 2017
23 of 30

Dear Prateek, 

Let me help with that Smiley Happy

I had the same problem as yours! So I surely understand your frustration.

You have to however remember that UpWork's exchange rates are not the same as the one you see on

Upwork partners with a company by the name of Transfast to help with Direct Payments to Local Banks around the world, 
The rate that Transfast (usually gives) is the Mid-Market Rate (The one you see on with an additional charge of 2.5%

Which means:

If the rate is $1 = INR 73.7445


Then the rate you will get would be approximately around

73.7445 x 0.965 (This removes the 2.5% charge) --> Which gives $1 = INR 71.163

Here's an article which highlights this better:

So there you go!
While I know that losing money to these small payments and fees is truly annoying, Local bank transfers are still the cheapest way to get you the money.

Just keep these costs in mind when you quote the price for your services next time.
Happy Freelancing.


Active Member
Haider R Member Since: Sep 20, 2017
24 of 30

Can you prove this calculation gimmickry on the current 15 PKR difference between exchange rate and Transfast rate? The open market rate is 133. 28, Upwork rate is 117.9. 

Active Member
Umar A Member Since: Dec 1, 2017
25 of 30

I totally Agree with you. Infact, Dollar price is increasing in pakistan But Upwork is still providing PKR117.9 /$1.
This Is very Strange situation.

Active Member
Maximo Obed L Member Since: Oct 6, 2017
26 of 30
I have noticed something similar while converting USD to Mexican Peso. When I requested the payment, Upwork showed that they were going to convert each dollar in $20.21 which was good given that the mid range price in was $20.21. However after three days when the payment was processed, while the USD has not moved on markets on the border, nor on, the exchange rate was $19.86. That is completely wrong as USD has not moved one cent up or down on these three days. First time I see such change. This costed me a total of $50 USD. I think Upwork should work on giving more real time estimates so international freelancers can decide what time is the best to transfer the money.
Active Member
Kenneth G Member Since: Jan 15, 2019
27 of 30

If upwork actually care about the people whose backs they're making money off of, they'd try to negotiate a better exchange rate with their bank. But that doesn't affect them so they don't care. 

Active Member
Vicente V Member Since: Mar 16, 2018
28 of 30

What's the average exchange rate cut?

I'm getting 5.5%~ cut average for the last years... double than what I'm seeing here. So every new gig is about 26% cut :/. Even a 10k+ gig gets a 11% cut. I know that's how the market works but 5.5% seems a bit excessive.

My currency is Chilean Peso. 

Active Member
Shahbaaz Ali S Member Since: Sep 18, 2017
29 of 30

Hey team! So I have been following this topic for a while and here's how to get the BEST exchange rate when getting money out of UpWork:

Want to know how you can get your money at the exact exchange rate as Google? Here's how:

Step 1: Sign Up on Transferwise
I'll cut to the chase - Just like Payoneer, there is a new (and much better ) payment service called Transferwise, Sign up on it - 

**Edited for community guidelines**
Step 2: USD Account
Set up an account with them and within seconds you will be able to set up a "borderless" USD account (based in America)

Step 3: Add Payment Option to Upwork
Add the USD account details to UpWork (takes some time to verify using micropayments)

Step 4: Withdraw
You will now be able to withdraw USD with 0 charges from UpWork to Transferwise.

Step 5: Transferwise to Local Banks
Transferwise will help transfer you the money into your account at the same rate as Google/XE with a small service fee (which is up to 8x cheaper than Bank Transfers)

I did the setup and now I'm Loving it!
Remember to use the following link:
**Edited for community guidelines**

Active Member
Maximo Obed L Member Since: Oct 6, 2017
30 of 30

Thanks for your suggestions and the follow up. It sounds like a good strategy. My only concern would be the reputation and future of Transferwise since we are going to be trusting them our money (I say this because I know nothing about Transferewise). Another concern is if platforms like Upwork will always support these types of accounts. My point comes from the fact that PayPal does not accept Payoneer cards linked to their accounts because they don't consider these types of accounts "safe". PayPal prefers for an established Bank to take care of all securty matters, and they just provide their service based on a "safe" account.


I have another suggestion for those following this thread. This approach will work for you if you can make at least 1 trip to the US.


Due to immigration laws in the US, foreigners CAN have a bank account in the US even though their permanent residence is in another country. I read a post of an Indian freelancer doing this and decided to try it myself since I live close to the border of the US and I have the needed tourist VISA to enter into the country (VISA is not required to open a bank account). Here's my experience:


I called for free via Skype to the bank Wells Fargo and asked for information on how to open an account if my residence is in Mexico. They explained to me this was totally possible and that I would only need to fill four requirements: 1) Mexican Passport, 2) Proof of your residence of your home country, like internet bill, 3) $25 USD as initial deposit to open the account and 4) An additional ID with your picture (in my case it was the INE, the official ID in Mexico). After a process of about 30 minutes, my account was created. Wells Fargo has some nice features, for example, they give for free access to their online banking where you can manage your account.


If you plan to use this approach, call the bank and ask for the requirements for your specific country of residence (this may involve translating some documents), but in general the requirements for the checking accounts are simple. Having the money on a US bank, you can withdraw money from ATM, make purchases, transfer the money and much more.


Hope this info helps!