Odesk / Upwork to BPI 2015 Local Funds Transfer (LFT)

I'm new to freelancing and this is going to be the first time that I'll be withdrawing salary from oDesk/ Upwork. I have been reading reviews and forums online about Local Funds Transfer, oDesk/ Upwork payouts and payment methods for a while now. Well, basically just about everything you need to know about how to withdraw your earnings from oDesk/ Upwork.

I wanted to have a clear grasp of how it works before going through the process to make sure that I'll be doing the right thing the first time. Unfortunately, I only have a few options, namely: LFT to BPI Savings; LFT to Unionbank Eon Card; oDesk/ Upwork withdrawal to Paypal then Paypal to Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI).

Through research, I found out that LFT to BPI takes about 5 business days for the amount to be credited while through Paypal, it will only take a maximum of 3 days to be credited to your bank account. With those in mind, I have set my eyes on the Paypal route in comparison with the BPI route to see which is better and leave Unionbank as contingency. Don't worry, when I try it out, I'll tell you all about it.

Over the years, I have been withdrawing money from Paypal to my BPI savings account, so that was the first option I considered doing. I have always been aware that Paypal money transfer charges fifty (P50) pesos per withdrawal if the amount is less than seven thousand pesos (P7,000) and on the other end, BPI charges one hundred fifty (P150) pesos flat rate for incoming. So the total deduction would be around two hundred pesos (P200) excluding the amount $0.99 or approximately forty-four pesos (P44) that oDesk/ Upwork charges per withdrawal.

In my personal experience, Paypal to BPI money transfer or withdrawal can be credited to the account as fast as 2 business days after the withdrawal request and at most was 3 business days. Of course, you do not want to withdraw on a weekend because the request will be processed on the next business day, monday, so it will take longer than the advised allowance of 2-4 business days for you to get your money.

After rigorous web research and reading forums online about oDesk/ Upwork payment methods, I found out that because of the partnership with oDesk/ Upwork and BPI, BPI waives the withdrawal fees when withdrawing from oDesk/ Upwork. Yes, that's 1 deduction down. So when doing direct LFT, it would be less deductions from your hard earned money compared to withdrawing it via Paypal.

Here's my 1st attempt:

As you can see above, I requested withdrawal on April 08, 2015, a wednesday, at roughly around 8PM Philippine Time. The withdrawal fee is $0.99.

The expected delivery date or the date it will be credited to my BPI savings account will be April 14, 2015. The $0.99 oDesk withdrawal fee has already been deducted so the AMOUNT PAID stated above is the clean cut. In this case, it is P7,290.72.

My salary was credited on April 10, 2015, which is friday, as stated in the captured image above. It matches the amount on the previous image which is P7,290.72 clean and no deductions. In addition, it is labeled as Payroll, which is really neat if you are looking at submitting this document to Pag-ibig or HDMF for housing loans and for bank loans.

Summary :

PAYPAL ROUTE: 3-4 days
oDesk -> Paypal                      = ($0.99) P44
Paypal (if less than P7k)-> BPI  = P50
BPI fee for incoming                  = P150
Total                                           = P244

BPI ROUTE: 2 days
oDesk -> BPI                              = ($0.99) P44
BPI fee for incoming                  = 0
Total                                           = P44

There you have it. It took roughly less than 48 hours for me to get my money and I was only charged roughly about P44 to withdraw it. Not bad for my first time!

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Update : I requested payment on April 29, 2015, I got credited on my BPI account the following day April 30, 2015. Really good and cheap way to withdraw salary from oDesk/ Upwork.

Update : I requested payment on December 16, 2015, I got credited to my BPI account on December 18, 2015. Efficient as always!

I will be exploring other ways to withdraw salary from oDesk/ Upwork very soon. I will surely keep you folks posted!

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Update as of May 3, 2016 :

We are very lucky as some friends were very kind to share with us about their experience with Bank of the Philippines - Easy Saver Account.

It takes the same amount of time (1-2 days) as the Regular BPI Savings Account for your Payout to be credited from Upwork/Odesk. *Given that you initiated the withdrawal during Mondays thru Fridays*

The same way, for Upwork withdrawals, it appears with the CO. CREDITS tag and PAYROLL as description.

Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Easy Saver Account Statement - Upwork Payroll

And, NO, there is Zero Fee as well.

Oh! I forgot to add, for BPI Easy Saver account, whenever you withdraw money via the Automated Teller Machine (ATM), it charges P5. I guess that is the catch for opening an ATM account without a maintaining balance. But think about it, that's minimal compared to hundreds of pesos you'll lose with other banks.

Let's keep being awesome Virtual Assistants, Freelancers and Online Filipino Workers! 
Be proud of what we do!