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oDesk officially launches Philippine Local Funds Transfer (LFT)


Kudos to oDesk team and good news to oDesk Pinoy Freelancers! It is confirmed that oDesk Local Funds Transfer in the Philippines is officially launched and fully operational.

I received an email from oDesk last April 26 announcing the official launch of  Local Funds Transfer in the Philippines and I must admit that I was happy about it. Who wouldn't want lesser charges and NO third-party payment vendor involved for withdrawal transactions? I think no one.

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What is oDesk Local Funds Transfer?

oDesk Local Funds Transfer (LFT) is a new offering from oDesk that allows Philippines-based oDesk contractors to withdraw their earnings directly from oDesk to their bank account in Philippine Pesos for only $0.99 per withdrawal.
After much testing and negotiation from beta program to full-fledged withdrawal option, oDesk is able to offer two important improvements in the updated version of PHP LFT:
  • The cost per withdrawal has been lowered to only $0.99! (originally $1.99)
  • The withdraw transfer time has been reduced to 2-3 business days. This means that withdrawals made by 10:00 UTC Wednesday (that's 18:00 in the Philippines) are usually available in our bank account by Friday.
Are there any other fees?

Philippine local banks may charge an incoming remittance fee. But oDesk does not originate, apply or collect this fee. It is better to consult your bank about possible incoming remittance fees. For BPI account holders, the remittance fee is waived.

Other banks' estimated incoming remittance fees per transaction, as of December 2010:

    BDO: 200 Pesos
    Metrobank: 76.70 Pesos
    China Bank: 200 Pesos
    RCBC: 100 Pesos
    Land Bank: 50 Pesos
    PNB: 250 Pesos

How do I take advantage of the First Withdrawal FREE promotion?

oDesk is offering contractors in the Philippines one free Local Funds Transfer withdrawal. Your first Local Funds Transfer withdrawal will automatically reflect a $0 withdrawal fee.

Few notes for successful transfers from oDesk:
  • You must enter your bank account number, NOT your EON, ATM, or debit card number. This mistake has been the #1 cause of failed transfers.
  • The account holder information you provide must match what the bank has on record. An incorrect name or address is the second leading cause of failed transfers.
  • Use your bank's head office BRSTN code (list here). Yes, subsidiaries and branches all use the same head office code.
  • Saturdays, Sundays, and bank holidays do NOT count as business days and are therefore not included in the 2-3 day transfer time calculation.
  • oDesk strongly encourage you to transfer funds to accounts in your name, but they currently do not prevent you from entering the bank information of a family member as long as the information is accurate. Just be aware they may need to become involved if there's a problem.

I've made my first transaction with this new program for free. That's Odesk's way of saying thanks for the ones who participated in the beta program. I processed my funds transfer last April 27 and I was able to get it this afternoon (April 29). I checked my BPI Direct savings account and there's no remittance fee as I compared it against the email notification sent by odesk. It's intact with no bank charges. The $0.99 LFT fee will only take effect on the second withdrawal transaction.

Compared to PayPal, Local Funds Transfer is better and I think the most direct and least expensive withdrawal method for contractors with bank accounts in the Philippines. With Local Funds Transfer, you direct deposit your earnings into your local bank account, in Pesos, for a low, flat fee.
7 comments on "oDesk officially launches Philippine Local Funds Transfer (LFT)"
  1. Hi, a newbie oDesk contractor here...

    I just would like to verify if the BPI Direct Saving Account you mentioned is the same as the one you can open online thru BPI Direct Express Teller Savings?

    I just applied for an account with them and curious to know if this would work for oDesk's LFT?

  2. Hello Kai!

    Yes you are correct. BPI Direct Savings account (the one with P500 maintaining bal) can be used in LFT (with no remittance fee).

    Actually I was kinda hesitant before because I thought that only the "main BPI brand" qualifies for the deal of waived remittance fee. But I tried it anyway and luckily wasn't charged of the fee :) just make sure to put the correct BRSTN of BPI listed in oDesk.

  3. how about the BPInoy Savings? the one without a maintaining balance? is there no remittance fee as well? just applied for one. thanks!

  4. Hi Sue,

    I am not certain if BPInoy savings also qualifies for the deal of waived remittance fee. I'm not familiar with BPInoy savings and none of our fellow odeskers had mentioned about it before. Since you have already applied for one then you may want to use it and let me know if you were charge of the fee or not (I hope not). Goodluck!

  5. How about Landbank ATM Card?

  6. Hi Ark,

    Landbank account can be used for LFT. However, there would be a P50 remittance fee for that.

  7. i have LAND BANK ATM SAVINGS ACCOUNT, is okay to transfer my odesk earning there ?


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