Top 7 Payment Options for Freelancers in Kenya

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  • Posted by: Aldas

Freelancing can be quite fulfilling. You know, you choose the hours you can work in a day, and you get to work from home. You can also work for anyone in the world. But this career comes with one challenge: getting paid in your home currency. Especially when dealing with clients from other countries.

One of the biggest challenges is getting a reliable option. Especially if you want to choose when to get paid in Kenya as a freelancer.

Companies and clients offer a variety of payment options. Therefore, choosing a mode of payment should not seem like a daunting task. Here are a few factors that you need to consider when looking for a suitable option.

  • The cost of the transaction
  • If the payment option is supported in your country
  • The safety of the payment option
  • If the payment option is fast and convenient to use

Let’s look at the most reliable online payment options for freelancers in Kenya.


M-PESA is a reputable mobile-based service that allows users to send and receive money in Kenya. The system provides transaction services via a registered Safaricom Sim card. Upon successful activation, users can then send and receive funds.

Freelancing sites have recently integrated M-PESA into their systems.  This is to help freelancers in Kenya to receive payment in their home currency.

The mode of operation depends on the system on which the M-PESA service is integrated. The freelancer is charged for the cash withdrawals from the system. In most cases, the client is not charged for sending the amount to a freelancer in Kenya. However, there may be a third party who might offer forex services at a fee.

M-PESA is not the cheapest payment option given the need for third parties such as forex companies. However, it is one of the most reliable payment options for Kenyan writers and freelancers.


PayPal is the simplest way to get paid online globally. It supports over 25 currencies in more than 230 countries. It is reliable for Kenyan freelancers, especially when dealing with clients abroad.

It is easy to join PayPal as a Kenyan freelancer. You need an active email account to sign up. You will need a debit card to verify your account and extend transaction limits.

You can withdraw money to your local bank account from PayPal. This attracts a fee of roughly $2. In Kenya, however, the only bank that allows you to link your PayPal account is Equity.

It takes up to 3 business days for the funds to reflect to your Equity Bank account once you withdraw from PayPal.

You can move funds from PayPal to M-PESA and vice-versa. This option is fast and more convenient. However, it does come with its own forex charges.

Bank Deposits

The client can wire the money to your local bank account. The transaction usually incurs a minimum charge of $1. However, the true cost varies from bank to bank. This method is cheaper compared to other payment options. Even so, you will need to be patient. It takes a couple of days for the funds to reflect in your bank account.


Skrill is one of the popular PayPal alternatives for Kenyan freelancers. It is a UK-based online payment system. Like PayPal, setting up a Skrill account is fast and easy. You need to sign up using a valid email and billing address. This enables you to receive money in and out of your bank account.

Skrill also provides you with an option to choose your preferred currency. As a Kenyan freelancer, it is advisable to choose US dollar or Euro. This will help you to keep track of the conversion rates between the currencies.

There are no charges incurred while receiving cash into your bank account.  You can link Skrill to your M-PESA account to get paid in Kenya shillings.


Payoneer is a New York-based online system that is available in over 200 countries. This makes it to the top payment solutions and its growth is quite promising. It offers low transaction fees.

Upon signing up, a debit master card is shipped to your local address. The card attracts an annual fee of $30. It allows you to withdraw funds from any local ATM.

The client or the online company can deposit payment to your card. You can then withdraw the amount using any MasterCard-enabled ATM in Kenya.


Pesapal is a convenient and secure way to receive payments in Kenya. You must have a valid email address to sign up. You can also integrate Pesapal to websites for payments and invoices.

Pesapal allows money transfer internationally and from one medium to another. Bank accounts connected to Pesapal in Kenya include Equity Bank and Co-operative Bank. It also allows M-PESA fund transfers and Airtel Money transfers.


iPay is one of the many payment options for freelancers in Kenya. It is attached to Mastercard, Visa Card, M-PESA, and Airtel Money. It has multiple products that are designed to suit market needs. You may need to contact iPay if you want to sign up.

As You Consider a Suitable Online Payment Option…

There are as many ways to make money online as there are to receive payment. The payment option you choose solely depends on your needs.

Some payment options are cheaper and/or faster than others. Look into the options available to you. Consider their transaction fees, reliability, convenience, and ease of use. Go with the option that best serves your needs.

Author: Aldas

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