WARNING: AVOID USING PAYONEER
This is a warning to all topcoders based on personal experience and the testimony of others that have used the payoneer platform to withdraw their winnings.
About two months ago I won a competition on topcoder and after the standard waiting period, my prize money was made available on 16th November, I then made the catastrophic mistake of selecting payoneer as the withdrawal method. What ensured after this was a saga that has lasted over one month.
After labelling my money as pending on their plaform for several days, payoner then sent me an invoice claiming that the transfer had sucessfully been made to my European bank account and that the transaction was now complete (note that one isn't even given the option to review or pause a transaction on payoneer which is auto initiated after money is sent from topcoder). The invoice showed that an exhorbitant fee had been deducted from my money going far beyond their advertised 3% fee. I later discovered that this is often times due to the fact that they divide a single transfer into smaller transactions which are then independently charged with fees.
After a week without the money in my account, I reached out to my bank which informed me that no such payment had been made nor was it pending. I then fruitlessly tried to reach out to Payoneer support over the course of two weeks through all available channels, and recieved no response except broiler plate automated emails stating that my issue had already been resolved and how they value me as a client.
Out of desperation, I then tried to post on their forums where I found that this was a common issue with numerous posts by frustrated users of their service about extremely delayed or missing payments with no resolution or engagement from their "customer support". This was mirrored else where on the internet as well. After posting my complaint (which was then deleted by them), I instantly recieved a message from a moderator (a payoneer support employee) threating to delete my account if I discussed my case on their forum, note that there was nothing controversial or disrespectful about my post, which simply stated my situation, I informed her that all my support requests had been ignored having only recieved automated messages, she then informed me that I had already recieved my transfer and to wait 17 business days for a review.
At this point with no recourse, I informed payoneer that I was opening a fraud case against the company with the Consumer Ombudsman of my EU country as well as filling a complaint with Topcoder. Topcoder instantly responded with a support request for them to resolve my issue. It took Payoneer 9 days to respond with the claim that their bank was reviewing the transaction.
I realized that payoneer had quitely purged all details in my payoneer account including past transaction details, banking information to support messages and frozen my ability to edit personal details. But I had luckily kept all records of everything. It's now 2 months since the competition ended and exactly 1 month and a day since I should have recieved my money into my bank account. I wonder if I'll be able to get it before the end of the year. My bank informed me that this transaction should have only taken a maximum of 3 days at the most.
My situation isn't an isolated incident and a simple google search will prove this to you.
So fellow topcoders, save yourselves from the deeply frustrating process of dealing with this unethical and incompetent company (payoneer). I hope Topcoder can provide better alternatives like direct bank withdrawals, to us to avoid such incidents occuring.
Regards, and happy Holidays to you all.
Wow @SchrodingazCat I didn't realize you were going through this painful experience. Thank you for sharing and I'll check with our Payments/Support team on how Topcoder can help address this.
@SchrodingazCat, yes, that was not a good experience and I apologize for that. Payoneer never explained why the payments didn't go through but I will say, this is the first time I've ever heard of this happening before - in my Topcoder experience, anyway.
Also, in my experiences with Payoneer Support, they are MUCH better now in responding. They used to be awful but I haven't had an issue in a long while. If anyone has any poor experiences with Payoneer Support, please reach out to email@example.com and we will contact them for you. Thanks!
Hi @kikis .
I reached out to TopCoder support 14 days ago and I am still in touch with them. TopCoder support was very swift and prompt in responding, the bottleneck is/was Payoneer since they took 9 days to respond.
It is now 5 days since payoneer reversed the payment, but I still can't withdraw it through an alternative method like Paypal since to qoute a response by topcoder support, "Payments are always processed using the current active method. Since the active method on your profile is Payoneer, the payment will be processed using Payoneer." unless changed, but it appears topcoder support is having a hardtime changing the mpayment method on my profile to paypal for instance, which could be a technical issue, I don't know - I provided the relevant paypal details I was asked to provide.
If you look through the four payoneer forum links I listed above you will find that each link has numerous other individuals complaining of the same issue on each original post. To be frank, it feels to me like I have spent far more energy and time trying to get paid, than I actually spent on the challenge. For me this has been quite a humiliating experience.
Payoneer didn't provide an explanation or even a simple apology for the delay or botched transfer. I should have recieved this money 32 days ago.
Hi @SchrodingazCat - happy new year!
Was thinking about your problem last night. Thought will check if we managed to help resolve it or not. Did you receive the payment or get any further information about what the problem was/is?