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Exchange Rate

Ace Contributor
Muhammad F Member Since: Dec 23, 2014
1 of 16



I am from Pakistan, i withdrew a payment and got an exchange rate of 155.88 while today's conversion of USD to PKR is 167.65 that's almost 7% less while it should be around 1% or 2% at maximum.


I think this is not protection against volatility (as everything is going up since last two weeks) rather it's a steal from us, Upwork really needs to look into this matter or either change their banking partners.


I lost $30 in conversions, I paid $0.99 for withdrawal and I paid around $40 to Upwork in fees for this transaction, so i am short of $71 from this transaction.


To me, it's not acceptable, what do you guys think?



Ace Contributor
Joost D Member Since: Jun 27, 2016
2 of 16

While I appreciate the sentiment and I agree that the exchange rate is not always optimal, we don't have to use Upwork. It's a privately owned company that can do whatever it wants. Also saying that you short 71 dollars on a transaction when you very clearly accepted the Upwork fees and percentages beforehand seems strange to me.


Do I wish they would offer the actual exchange rate? Sure. But then again, PayPal does the same thing. This is to guard against volatility and again remember - this is a money-making company. They are not offering a free service. And its a service we don't have to use. 

Ace Contributor
Muhammad F Member Since: Dec 23, 2014
3 of 16

Well, i did agree to Upwork fees and withdrawal fee, I certainly didn't agree to 7% stealing by their banking partner.


What you are saying is have no backing to support, you can't charge 7% in the name of volatility, PP doesn't do that much. Banks do this as well and what is the difference between Actual and banking exchange rates? 1 or a MAXIMUM of 2% not more than that. 



Goran V Moderator Member Since: Mar 24, 2017
4 of 16

Hi Muhammad,


I understand your frustration with this and would like to confirm that the difference in exchange rates is not something Upwork can control. When a bank converts a transaction, they will mark up the interbank rate to buy or sell a currency. Online calculators will not take into consideration the mark up that is applied. Since rates constantly change throughout any given day, the rate you received is the rate offered by our bank at the time your specific transaction was processed.

Ace Contributor
Muhammad F Member Since: Dec 23, 2014
5 of 16

Upwork doesn't control, correct!


Upwork can't control, incorrect!


Your banking partner is chosen by none other but YOU. You can bring this matter up with them or change them at any given point.


There are partners that offer way better rates! You can simply switch to them?

Ace Contributor
Muhammad F Member Since: Dec 23, 2014
6 of 16

No one from upwork bothered to respond after an eye opening statement from me over 8 months ago.


The situation is pretty much the same while I am writing this which means upwork simply doesn't care about this!


If this continued the way it is right now, i can see a picture where upwork would be advertising and begging people to sign up on their platform cause we (at least me) can't keep losing a good chunk of money because upwork simply don't want to look into sick practices. 

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
7 of 16

Muhammad F wrote:

i can see a picture where upwork would be advertising and begging people to sign up on their platform 

You can? At a time where Upwork is drowning in freelancers and turning most down? 


If you don't like the exchange rate, you can use a different withdrawal method. That's what I do.

You're also free to establsh a US Dollar account and withdraw via wire transfer (at $ 30) - that way you can exchange at local rates if you find them better.



Ace Contributor
Muhammad F Member Since: Dec 23, 2014
8 of 16

It appears you aren't very familiar with limitations freelancers of different countries have, we don't have many options and THANKS to upwork for that too!


And yes, i can see that picture, it's becoming crowded nowadays but those are newbies who are desperate for jobs Smiley Happy People who spent a fair amount of time here are leaving for other platforms and if you didn't know that, read different discussion forums and you will know. 

Active Member
Mark J Member Since: Aug 25, 2020
9 of 16

Hey saw you post when I was figuring out how freelancers outside USA have to deal with exchange rates. Personally I've had success with for USA<-->UK remitence. I checked, and they support PKR. Can you withdraw USD from upwork into transferwise and then use transferwise exchange to your bank in PKR? Below is an example of their fees, how does that compare for your case?


Screen Shot 2020-08-27 at 5.24.47 PM.png

Active Member
Mark J Member Since: Aug 25, 2020
10 of 16

Hmm not sure this case could work for you, because I don't think Transferwise will open an account for a Pakistan address, I'm not sure? But is there a remitence service you can use?