Paga Review: Exchange Rates, Transfer Fees & Alternatives
Paga is different to traditional money transfer companies. The Nigeria-based mobile money payment service supports over 15 million individuals and businesses who use Paga for a variety of services: from receiving foreign payments to making local P2P transfers to buying prepaid airtime.
Paga can only be used to receive international transfers, you cannot use the service to make cross border payments. However, we've prepared a list of top 10 money transfer companies to send and receive money abroad. In this review, we shall focus on making payments using Paga.
Paga exchange rates and fees
Customers making transfers within Nigeria do not need currency exchanges as all transactions are in Naira. For international money transfers, Paga uses its global partners who also determine the applicable rates and fees.
Depending on the transfer route, overseas customers can use Paga partners like Moneytrans, MoneyGlobe, WorldRemit, Small World FS, and TerraPay to send money to their recipient’s Paga mobile wallets in Nigeria.
The exchange rate margins charged depend on the international money transfer operators being used. For instance, WorldRemit charges an exchange rate margin of about 3.6% to send money from the UK to Nigeria.
International transfer fees also depend on the money transfer platform you use. WorldRemit charges zero fees to Paga while Moneytrans charges fees starting from £2.01.
Apart from the international fees, Paga has a price list for local transactions. Here is a summary of the costs involved:
P2P money transfer: This is free, customers only pay 5% VAT.
Funding a Paga account: This is free for both bank transfer and card payments except for a 5% VAT.
Deposit to the bank: Customers pay a transaction fee ranging from 10-150 nairas.
Merchant payments: Fees range from as low as zero to 100 nairas.
ATM transactions: Withdrawals from an ATM or agent attract a fee of 100 nairas.
When making an international money transfer to Paga, the bank may charge you a cash advance fee for using a credit card to pay for your transfer. Paga to bank deposits cost 1.50% of the transfer amount in debit card fees.
Paga pros and cons
Paga’s platform has recorded tremendous growth over the years it has been in the financial services industry. Its multi-channel network has brought lots of benefits to customers. Here are some of its pros and cons to help you get a clearer picture of the service they provide.
What kind of payments can I make with Paga?
Paga is a Nigerian digital payments startup supporting over 8% of the local population. Using the service, you can make a variety of payments. Here is a breakdown of the payments and withdrawal options available on the platform.
Payment methods available
For international payments, the provider you choose will determine how you pay for your transfer. However, for local payments, you can fund your Paga account through any of the following methods:
Automated deposit: Visit a partner bank like Fidelity Bank, Access Bank or GTBank and request to fund your Paga account.
Bank transfer: Customers can use online bank transfers to load their Paga accounts.
Debit card: You can use your naira debit card to fund your deposit.
GT Collections: Use your GTBank mobile app or online platform to fund your Paga account.
GTBank 737: Dialing the *737# shortcode gives you access to the GTBank service menu to help you load your Paga account.
Paga agent: Visit any Paga agent to load your account. There are over 25,000 agent locations across the country.
Withdrawal options available
International transfers are made directly into the beneficiary’s Paga account using their mobile number as the account number.
Local transfers can also be sent into the recipient’s Paga account, bank account, or merchants pay bill account. Anyone with an email address or a Nigerian phone number can also receive funds using the service. Recipients can withdraw the funds sent from their Paga accounts at an agent, ATM, or POS terminal.
Paga also has a request money feature, with customers can also request money from both Paga and non-Paga users from the app or online platform using an email address or phone number.Compare Providers Now
How to send and receive money with Paga
Paga has simplified both person-to-person and person-to-business payments in Nigeria, as well as for users making transfers to Paga accounts from abroad. Here is what the process of sending and receiving payment involves.
How to send money with Paga
If you are transferring funds from abroad, the money transfer company you use when sending money to a Paga wallet will define the process to follow. For local payments on the Paga platform here is the process.
1.Step 1 Sign up for an account
2.Step 2 Account verification
3.Step 3 Fund your account
4.Step 4 Transfer funds
How to receive money with Paga
Paga can transfer funds to the designated recipients’ bank accounts, Paga mobile wallets, merchants’ business accounts, or even non-Paga recipients using email addresses or their Nigerian phone numbers.
Does Paga have a mobile app?
Yes. Paga has a mobile app through which customers can do the following:
Sign up for an account
View transaction activity
Users of the Paga app appear to have a positive experience; it has a 4.4 rating on the Play Store and 4.5 on the App Store.
How fast are Paga’s transfer speeds?
Local and international transfers are instant when using Paga, one of the big benefits of using the service.
Are there maximum and minimum transfer amounts?
The minimum and maximum transfers users can make depend on the level to which their account is verifiied. Here is a summary of the daily limits per level.
Level I customers: Can transfer up to₦50,000 or $138
Level II customers: Can transfer up to ₦200,000 or $551
Level III customers: Can transfer up to ₦5,000,000 or $13,780
Can I trust Paga?
Paga is a mobile payment company that has gained popularity in both Nigeria and other partner countries since it was launched in 2012. When using a service to send your money, the primary concern is whether you can rely on the platform, so here’s a quick summary of everything you need to know about Paga’s trustworthiness.
Pagatech Limited was founded in 2009 by Tayo Oviosu to help Nigerians abroad to make international money transfers to their families back home directly into their Paga mobile money wallets. Since the commercial launching of the service in August 2012, it has grown exponentially adding millions of users and thousands of agents to its network.
The service is registered as a private limited company by the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) and regulated by the Central Bank of Nigeria as a provider of electronic payment systems services.
Key industry partnerships
In a bid to expand its reach, the company has partnered with the following global payment operators.
Paga also has collaborations with local banks and payment rails such as Visa to help facilitate customer payments.
Encryption and customer data
Paga prioritises customer online safety and has bank-grade security measures in place. Transaction information is protected using SSL encryption technology.Compare Providers Now
Investors and awards
So far, Paga has had 4 investment rounds- a Series A, two Series B, and an Angel round, raising a total of $34.7 million. The top investors include:
Goodwell West Africa
Global Innovation Fund
Capricorn Investment Group
Enhancing Financial Innovation & Access (EFInA)
Jim O'Neill -Angel Investor
Tim Draper -Angel Investor
In 2013, Paga was shortlisted for the Financial Times & ArcelorMittal “Boldness in Business" Awards.
Most Paga customer reviews are on Instagram and Twitter. Users speak favourably of the company, with these being some of the most common comments:
Can I cancel my transfer?
No. Since transfers are instant, cancellations are impossible. In case of an erroneous transfer, you’ll have to get in touch with the recipient for a reversal.
The only destination for international transfers is Nigeria, the rest of the transactions on Paga are performed from within Nigeria.
To get in touch with Paga customer support, use any of the following channels.
Telephone: Customers can get help within Nigeria on 07000007242 or 012777160.
Online ticketing: Users can create a support ticket online for further assistance.
WhatsApp: The WhatsApp messaging line is 08099227242.
Email: Customers can email the support team directly at email@example.com.
Paga is a Nigeria-based mobile money transfer service that allows customers to receive money directly into their mobile money wallets. Overseas users can transfer money to Paga wallets using partner remittance providers such as Western Union, Moneytrans, and WorldRemit.
Apart from international transfers, customers can make P2P transfers within Nigeria to their recipient’s bank accounts, merchants’ wallets, and Paga mobile wallets. However, with regional competitors like Kenya’s M-Pesa, Cellulant, Paystack, and Flutterwave around, it helps to do a quick comparison to know who is cheap and efficient.
Our money transfer comparison tool can help customers conduct a quick analysis of the major players on this transfer route. You’ll usually find Paga’s name near the top of the list when looking for money transfer services in Nigeria, but taking a couple of minutes to compare your options can help you ensure you’re getting the best deal possible.Compare Providers Now