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Mastercard in Nepal

As Nepal’s economy has been steadily growing, the need for online business has grown alongside it. There is also a growing need for a service like Mastercard in Nepal.

Many entrepreneurs and business people are looking into conducting their business and start-ups online. Being online enables them to avoid the hurdles of traditional business practices like geographical limitations, marketing, and investment while increasing customer feedback and satisfaction.

However, to operate your business online, you need to find an online payment system to perform all your transaction. For this, you could opt for services like Visa card, Mastercard, or Paypal as they are available in over 200 countries and have cross-country transactions available.

person holding mastercard in nepal

Difficulties of Mastercard in Nepal

Unfortunately, while these companies do enlist Nepal in their list of countries they operate in, using the service isn’t as easy.

For starters, these services require you to own and run a bank account with enough credit in a country like the US. So, this is almost impossible to get around if you’re just an average Nepali citizen. Most banks that allow you to apply for a MasterCard limit their usage between Nepal and India.

On top of this, these cards have other restrictions like transaction, purchase amount, and transaction count limit. If you intend to run a fairly big business, this can be quite a problem.

Solution: Payoneer Mastercard

This is where Payoneer Mastercard comes into play. If you were to do a Google search right now about Mastercard in Nepal, the first thing you would see would be about how to create a Payoneer Mastercard account.

Payoneer Mastercard is almost like Mastercard. If any ATM, store or online shop accepts Mastercard, then it will also accept Payoneer Mastercard. Below are a few features of the Payoneer Mastercard in Nepal.

  1. Performing transactions and updating your current balance properly can take a few hours to a few days.
  2. It doesn’t have as tight restrictions as the Nepali banks that provide Mastercard.
  3. The only way to get funds in your Payoneer account from Nepal is to send them from another Payoneer account.

How to get Payoneer Mastercard in Nepal

You first need to start by creating a Payoneer Mastercard account.

  1. To create your Payoneer Mastercard account, go to payoneer.com and click on register at the top right.
  2. Fill in the necessary details like your name, email address, date of birth, address, phone number, your account password, postal code, and national ID. Note that your address needs to be very accurate, as that is what’s used to deliver the card properly. Failing this might result in not getting your card at all.
  3. Your other details like name and date of birth should also be how it is in your citizenship and double-check your national ID.

It will take a few days for Payoneer to approve your application. You will have a Payoneer account ready to use once that is done.

Getting the Physical Card

To actually get your physical card, though, there are still a few steps you need to complete.

  1. First off, you need to have a balance of at least $30 on your Payoneer account. Then you are eligible to order your card.
  2. Now you need to find someone who also uses Payoneer and is willing to send you the required balance.
  3. Once you have $30 in your account, go to settings, click on Card Management, and click order a card.
  4. This can take anywhere between 2-4 weeks to arrive. You can reorder your card if dont get your card in 4 weeks for some reason.
  5. Now, to activate your account, log in into your Payoneer account and click on Activate.
  6. Enter your 16 digit card number and choose a PIN code. You use this PIN code to perform transactions and withdraw money from ATMs. Make sure it’s something you can remember easily and keep it to yourself.

Risks of Alternate Methods

There are a couple of Facebook pages that offer to make your Payoneer account and card for a certain fee.

The problem with this is that to do this, they need sensitive information like a copy of your citizenship certificate, your address, and your phone number. Also, unless you change your Payoneer account credentials and PIN code, they can always access it without you knowing. Misuse might occur if you happen to have a lot of balance on your account.

Some of these pages have even posted some of this information online without even realizing that it is sensitive information. Nepali law considers this a criminal offence. The convict can be charged with a criminal offence because you never intended or authorized these people to have your information posted publicly online.

However, calling the service of making a Payoneer account for someone else and charging money for it a “scam” is difficult. On the one hand, you agreed to have your account made that way, and Payoneer itself has not addressed this in its documentation. On the other hand, these pages don’t seem to inform their customers to change their credentials and are ignorant enough to post some private information online.

Yet, there has been no instance of these customers having their money stolen this way. If these services are not scams, they still have an uncareful and ignorant practice at the very least.

Payoneer Mastercard in Nepal

The Payoneer Mastercard is a band-aid solution to Nepal’s online payment system at the end of the day. Payoneer has its own set of problems, like creation, loading funds, and the number of users in Nepal. While we do have services like eSewa, Khalti, and ConnectIPS, they aren’t useful outside of Nepal. If you are looking into doing transactions or business cross-country, or if you earn money from services abroad, it doesn’t help you at all.

The foreseeable future of online payment platforms like Mastercard being readily available to the general Nepali public seems bleak, and the alternatives aren’t any good either. We hope that our government tries to promote e-commerce and tries to get a service like Mastercard easily accessible for Nepali citizens.