How to pay freelancers abroad

How to pay freelancers abroad

Depending on the nature of your business, you may occasionally need to pay a freelancer overseas. Employing a remote contractor may be a cost-effective option for your company, but that’s not the only reason you might look further afield. Sometimes there may be a skills shortage in your country and getting a freelancer is your best alternative. Continue reading to find out the best way to pay freelancers based overseas.      

Agree on terms and conditions

So you’ve found the perfect freelancer – that’s great news for your business. Before any work begins, you should agree to the terms and conditions of the contract. 

Establishing these initial details makes paying a freelancer in another country easier in the long run. The agreement should include:

  • The nature and length of the work, e.g. website graphic design. 
  • The amount you’ll pay the freelancer.  
  • Which currency you’ll pay them in.  
  • The payment method.
  • How and when they will invoice you.

Use your bank

You can use your bank or building society to pay freelancers abroad, and it might seem like a convenient choice, but banks are a slow and expensive option for international money transfers

If you’ve agreed on a pay date, it can also be frustrating for your freelancer to wait up to an additional week for the payment. In addition, overseas transfers from one bank to another usually incur charges that can apply to your business or your contractor on collection. 

Make a credit card payment

Freelancers sometimes accept credit card payments via mobile apps for their services. Apps like PayPal handle these payments but they are rarely the cheapest option available.

When you send business payments to China, for example, the contractor may be also charged withdrawal fees just for transferring payments into their own bank accounts. 

Before you use an app to pay by card, bear in mind the exchange rate mark-up that they charge you. This isn’t usually advertised, and you could end up losing a significant chunk of your cash if you’re not careful. 

Firstly, it’s unlikely you’ll be offered the mid-market rate, i.e. the best exchange rate. Secondly, you’ll find that the rate on offer favours the app by around 10% – meaning they’ll take that much from the amount you send.      

Pay with a freelance platform

Another way of paying a freelancer in another country is to use platforms like Fiverr and Upwork. Services like these are great for finding freelancers but can be expensive when it comes to paying them. 

Companies like these can charge the freelancer up to 15-20% of their fee. High charges like these often leave the freelancer with no other option than to overquote your business for the work. 

For more value for your money, try finding a freelancer independently and paying them with a specialist business money transfer provider.     

Try Azimo Business for paying freelancers abroad 

There are many money transfer services around, such as WorldRemit and Western Union. However, some of these companies are expensive to use and provide a ‘one size fits all’ service to both personal and business customers. 

Azimo Business offers dedicated business accounts to everyone from sole traders and start-ups to multinational corporations. You pay a single, low fee and get some of the best exchange rates on the market. Registering with Azimo Business takes just a few minutes and your first five transfers are fee-free.

See how much you could save versus other providers with the Azimo Business price comparison table.

You can pay your freelancers by transferring money to 195+ countries including China and Poland. And, instant or one-hour delivery is available to over 80 countries – so you can stop waiting for your bank. 

Plus, you can convert and send money to over 60 currencies including Swiss francs and Polish zloty.

Azimo Business is the faster, cheaper, safer way to make business payments overseas. Download the Azimo app on iOS or Android and start sending cash to freelancers and contractors around the world.