Fiverr Community Forum

I lost 9% of my earnings when withdrawing

Hi. I am a UK based Fiverr seller and I have just withdrawn my earnings to PayPal. However about 9% of my money has disappeared. Seconds before completing the withdrawal my profile showed I had earned £2,268 (the figure in green in the top righthand side of the screen next to profile photo). However, only £2,068 reached my PayPal account. I have lost exactly £200. Can someone explain what happened? Are these Fiverr fees or PayPal fees or has something gone wrong? That £200 represents about 25 hours of work (I sell part time on Fiverr and those were my earnings from the past year). I am totally gutted. I don’t feel the withdrawal process is clearly explained. Should I have transferred to my bank account? Would that have been cheaper bearing in mind that I’m based in the UK? Thanks.

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Did you withdraw in dollars or did you choose to withdraw in pounds?
You might’ve lost that on the conversion rate

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Thanks for the reply. The confirmation email showed I withdrew in dollars. I didn’t know I could withdraw in my own currency :frowning:

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PS. It’s too late now obviously, but for next time where would I be able to change the withdrawal currency? Thanks.

There’s no way. You either withdraw in pounds directly, in which case it gets converted by Fiverr, or you withdraw in dollars in which case you then have to convert inside Paypal and pay their fee. Unless you have a way to get the money out of an ATM in dollars, you’ll always have to convert somewhere.

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Thank you. But does 9% feel like a fair exchange rate fee? It feels huge to me.

Paypal charges a 2.5% fee on top of the actual exchange rate (may vary by country, this is what they charge in Portugal, and I assume EU - not sure about Britain, since they don’t play by the rules for some reason). The exchange rate will vary depending on currency. If 1 USD is worth 0.5 GBP, you’ll get 50% of the dollar value, minus the 2.5% Paypal fee. There’s nothing fair or unfair about it, it’s the way currencies work (except for the Paypal fee, that’s just robbery).

I never let Fiverr handle the exchange, I always cash out in dollars, since then I can keep the money on Paypal in USD and wait for a good exchange rate (when the $ is strong against the €) to batch convert a lot at once.

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Thank you. I guess what I should have asked is is there a more efficient way to withdraw earnings from Fiveer to sterling (£)? As a UK based Fiverr seller it means I lose nearly a third of my gig rate (20% Fiveer fee, 9% exchange rate / withdrawal fee). In fact, because I am self employed and I have to declare earnings for tax - it means I lose around half of my gig rate. All of a sudden selling on Fiverr doesn’t feel very appealing.

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I don’t know how it works in the UK. For me, the most efficient is what I outlined above. Get the money in USD to PayPal - paying 0. If you then buy stuff in $ with PayPal (eBay, for example), you aren’t paying anything to convert. If you need GBP, convert from USD to GBP when the GBP is weak - losing 2.5% conversion fee.

As a general rule, freelancing online is always less appealing when you live in a country with a stronger currency / higher cost of living - and you are location independent in terms of work, so it pays to move. Conversely, if you live on a country with a cheap currency or very low cost of living, you can live very well doing very little, as $1 will stretch much more. Portugal has both a weaker currency than Britain and a lower cost of living - all while having good infrastructure, safety, and stability, which many cheap countries do not have. So, just move here?

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Ha ha! Again, thank you for making the effort to reply. For what it’s worth - I love Portugal and Spain. More importantly I love the people. We all have backgrounds and stories to tell… sadly mine keeps me in my country for a while longer.

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Spain is slightly more expensive in terms of living costs, so if your income is not based on local salaries, Portugal is the better option, no question. Everything else is quite similar. Portuguese people tend to be better english speakers as well, lol (since we don’t dub anything, always subtitles, so we’re way more exposed to the language). That Spanish accent xD

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there are services that provide more favorable exchanges at the mid market rate. That is if you withdraw in dollars to paypal and then transfer the currency using a different service you will get a far better rate of exchange, especially if you are changing larger amounts

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That’s not available here, though. I can’t get the money out of Paypal into another service (revolut, for example), in USD, it forces the conversion to euro on transfer. Paypal doesn’t like to lose that fee.

This leads to the ridiculous situation of getting paid in USD, transferring to revolut (PayPal auto converts to euro on transfer) and then having to exchange it into USD again on revolut to be able to buy stocks (since the investment account must be in $). It’s absurd, but there’s no way around it.

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use transferwise…

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Thanks to everyone for replying. You’ve made me feel better. I just wasn’t prepared (or expecting) to lose such a massive amount of money in transfer fees. Because I withdrew a large amount of money, losing £200 in fees feels like a huge amount (it is!).

Sadly many buyers on Fiverr don’t appreciate the money us sellers lose in fees up to the point of money arriving in our bank accounts. As a proofreader, I try and set my hourly rate so that it’s affordable for small businesses. But even then I find that many European businesses (and I love Europe!) won’t want to pay any more than $15 an hour… after all the fees, this only leaves me with about $10 or about £8. This is below the living wage in the UK - and soul destroying for a professional writer with 25 years’ experience. Living expenses here in the UK are expensive…

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You can’t get money from Fiverr to transferwise directly. If you get it to paypal in USD and then try to get it from PayPal to transferwise, it will convert automatically. Doesn’t work (in the european union at least).

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No of course you cant transfer directly to transferwise from fiverr but if you want to transfer from paypal to transferwise and keep the funds in USD you need a borderless account and then you can change the funds when you like .

You can’t do that in Portugal at least. Paypal forces the currency conversion to euro and doesn’t allow you to transfer money in USD to any other account (other than another PayPal account).

I’ve seen that PayPal charges fees depending on the amount you receive, you can calculate on these types of websites -> https://salecalc.com/paypal

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That’s exactly the same 9% I’m losing when withdraw with paypal. I was so disappointed that I almost gave up (still active but without much motivation). For me, on top of what you mentioned that is lost (which with taxes sums up 50%!!!), I also have expenses like buying filament and shipping items.

I find this platform so bad for sellers, that most of the money everyone work here goes to Fiverr, PayPal, banks and government.

What is sad in my opinion is that I also find this way of doing business by taking advantage of the many, especially people from third world countries where an US dollar buys them a lot of stuff and they just work harder and harder despite of all the money lost.

what I also find very frustrating is that they charge the fee even for tips. I mean I couldn’t believe it, those money are completely optional and are a way of some buyers to reward your hard work and their satisfaction.

Overall this is not a nice place to work; or at least not for everyone

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