Back in late September Google announced that they would give publishers in Pakistan and other mostly south and south east Asian countries the option to receive adsense payments via Western Union (WU). This announcement created a lot of buzz in the blogosphere and most publishers were very excited about this new and easy payment method. I was among the publishers who elected to receive their payouts via WU and so here is my review of it.
When news about this new payment method first broke the biggest concern that publishers had was how much it would cost. Google claimed it was free.
In reality while there was no charge shown in your Adsense account Western Union did deduct a significant amount in the currency exchange. In Pakistan we could only receive the payouts in rupees and WU set a considerably lower exchange rate of 59.47 compared to the open market rate of 60.70. This meant that publishers lost more than a rupee for every dollar they earned.
The biggest advantage of this payment method is that you don’t have to wait to receive your cheque and for it to clear the bank. Foreign cheques can take over a month to clear in Pakistan and so speed was a major feature of WU payments.
Google usually issues a cheque by the 27th of a month but with Western Union it issued payments on the last day of the month. A lot of publishers were anxiously checking their adsense accounts waiting for their payment details.
Ease of use
Because this was my first WU payment I was not aware of the fact that you could get payouts delivered to your home! Instead I went to bank, filled out a short form and waited for over 20 minutes while my payment was processed. So much for money in minutes :). Inshallah next month I am going to get my dough delivered to my door!
Currently WU payouts are limited to a few countries but Google says it is expanding the option to include other countries. Some publishers from Egypt, Morocco and Indonesia have reported seeing WU as a payment option in their adsense accounts although they can’t select the option as yet. The suggestion is that these countries will soon have WU as a payment option.
Overall Western Union payouts are faster than cheque payments, more convenient and can be cheaper than secured express delivery cheques depending on your payout amount.