On January 2nd of this year, a leading online payment processor for top Canadian sites, Skrill, stopped offering its services for deposits to Canadian poker sites.
Online poker player Ben Sulsky posted an email he got from Skrill on the TwoPlusTwo forums recently, which read as follows:
“We wanted to let you know that Skrill has reviewed its operations and will cease processing gambling payments in Canada. Payments to gambling merchants will no longer be processed from 2 January, with payments from merchants ceasing on 31 January.”
Skrill, formerly Moneybookers, is a UK-based company that was acquired by CVC Capital Partners in August of last year, for 600 million GBP.
Many players in Canada used Skrill as a reliable method of poker deposits and withdrawals. With this major payment setback, many poker players are searching for payment processing companies that will still do business in Canada. The following companies will still, at this time, process payments for Canadians looking to make deposits in online poker rooms and casinos.
Click2Pay has been growing in popularity with poker sites and with players steadily since it was started in 2003. Fairly simple to register with and user-friendly, Click2pay has earned a reputation for relatively fast cashouts to a bank card or will do direct deposits into your bank account.
One of the more trusted and popular payment options for Canadians is Instadebit, which many players are recommending on online poker forums since Skrill removed itself from the Canadian market. As long as you have a Canadian bank account, you can deposit cash into Instadebit, which can then be used to deposit funds into your poker account. It should be noted that some players have taken issue with the fact that InstaDebit can be fairly strict with their account limits.
UseMyFunds, formerly UseMyBank, allows you to use your banking information to link your account with their online services to complete transfers. Transactions are completely quickly and painlessly, which makes UseMyFunds a increasingly popular payment method for poker players.
An option for people who may not want to use their banking information, the EntroPay Virtual VISA Card being suggested as an alternative to other payment companies, and is available to Canadians. Essentially it is a prepaid Visa which works just like a regular VISA card which you can use to deposit at poker sites. The only issues that users complain of are the considerable fees associated with prepaid credit cards. However if you want the ability to withdraw funds to your visa, then from your visa to your bank account, the high fees are probably worth it.
Not a very good option for players that withdraw large amounts but still a viable and convenient option for recreational players. Adding money to your account with a Visa card is as easy as it gets. Withdrawing money is just as easy but if you need the cash, having money put onto a Visa card is not very convenient.
Some players have found success with basic wire transfers or writing cheques. There are some definite drawbacks to these options, however. Wire transfers usually come with a sizeable service fee , so unless you are a high stakes player, it might not make much sense for you to lose money in fees if you are depositing smaller amounts. Cheques are a viable option, but you are then relying on postal and banking services to complete these payments, so you could be waiting weeks before your money is deposited on the site.