Starlink has cited two Nigerian fintechs as recommended options for Nigerians to make payment for its product.
"For Naira payments, please use Payday, Barter, or similar", reads a statement on Starlink's official order page which shows up after a customer has specified their service address.
The website copy update comes weeks after many Nigerians complained about not being able to make payment despite SpaceX displaying Starlink's price in naira.
Assuming Starlink's display price was in dollars, many of the country's residents would not bother trying out their local cards because they are familiar with the country's restriction on foreign payments.
So, when we wrote about setting up Starlink in Nigeria, one of the frequently asked questions was, "what payment method can I use to pay for Starlink"?
In that article, we mentioned that virtual dollar cards offered by the likes of Payday continue to work as a viable payment method for Starlink. So, Starlink referencing "...Payday, Barter, or similar" confirms virtual dollar cards work on their site.
Fun fact: Flutterwave provides regulatory backing for both Payday and Barter.
Today, I finally completed an order for Starlink using Payday. Here are five things I noticed.
First, although Starlink says that "For naira payments...use Payday..." it doesn't mean that Nigerians can make payments using a naira card from Payday. They mean that Nigerians can make payments using Payday and the like.
Payday doesn't issue virtual naira cards; they only issue USD Mastercard and Visa.
Second, I could create a virtual Mastercard on Payday for free! No card creation fee. Many card issuers charge a creation fee to help cover some of the costs incurred from the card schemes.
Third, Payday offered an option to create a virtual Visa card but with a $3 creation fee. The Visa card gives customers who want additional security more comfort with its 3D secure feature. However, because I like free and can control how much is in my card at a time, I opted to use the Payday Mastercard for my Starlink order.
Also, the difference between the cost of funding and withdrawing from a Payday virtual dollar card is not drastic. I could fund my Payday with naira at the rate of ₦760 to $1 and withdraw dollars at the rate of ₦743. Some other virtual dollar card providers I've come across, fund high, and withdraw low with an arbitrage of more than ₦50.
Finally, the conversion fee on Payday is 0.5% of the amount but capped at $5, which is economical for high-value transactions.
Steps to create a Payday virtual dollar card
If you are keen on trying out Payday, follow these steps:
- Download, sign-up and login to the mobile app
- Create a virtual card.
- Top-up the card from your USD wallet. If your KYC is incomplete, you'd need to fill it out by entering your BVN, Date of Birth, Gender, and Phone number.
Then, to pay on Starlink's website, you grab the card details from the app and enter them on the order page. Viola!
Check back on Wednesday, February 22, 2023, for more updates and screenshots.