Accepting payments from international buyers is a breeze with offshore high-risk merchant accounts. They help business owners reduce their risk and exposure by handling transactions in multiple currencies.

Let’s look at offshore merchant accounts, how they work, and who needs an offshore credit card processor

What is an Offshore Merchant Account?

The acquiring bank or offshore payment processor for an offshore merchant account mainly stands outside of the company’s central headquarters location. For example, when a US company opens a payment processing account in Europe, the European account is considered offshore for the US company.

International merchant accounts are comparable to offshore merchant accounts. The primary difference is that the US acquiring banks often classify merchants seeking offshore merchant accounts as high risk. On the other hand, international merchant accounts are utilised by regular and high-risk merchants who wish to take advantage of the worldwide e-commerce boom.

Setting up merchant accounts abroad provides safe havens for high-risk merchants to process payments. And it gives you the best access to credit origination anywhere in the globe, which protects your company’s liquidity.

There are no volume limits on offshore merchant accounts. Banks require a minimum monthly processing history of $50,000 to open an account (or equivalent in other currencies).

Merchants who need Offshore Credit Card Processors

High-risk merchants

A high-risk merchant is a genuine business that is prone to fraudulent transactions due to its nature. Banks classify high-risk merchants as such because they are more likely to have chargebacks, fraud, and multiple refunds. Huge-risk merchants are also prone to high sales volumes, poor credit card scores, and non-compliance with security standards. Because of these concerns, banks frequently charge merchants extra fees or refuse to do business with them in the future. 

Not all high-risk merchants, however, are considered unlawful. Examples of high-risk merchants are cryptocurrency, blockchain, cigarettes, banking, travel, and online pharmacies. If their chargeback ratio is modest, low-risk merchants can also obtain offshore merchant services. Retail, beauty items, restaurants, and other similar enterprises are examples of low-risk industries.

E-commerce companies

E-commerce businesses can also be characterized as high-risk businesses. The expansion of the e-commerce industry necessitates a strategic approach to payment processing for online firms. International transactions can be challenging to facilitate, just as e-commerce enterprises attempt to reach clients all over the world.

Online enterprises may handle international financial transactions with the help of offshore merchant services. They can accept major credit cards and various currencies from consumers outside of the company’s territory. These advantages can help e-commerce enterprises reach out to more customers and increase sales and profit.


This merchant account is for businesses that have a physical location. Low startup and transaction costs are frequently offered to these businesses.

Mobile merchants

If your business goes to events, such as food trucks, you’ll need a mobile merchant account. You can get mobile credit card processing equipment that is simple to set up and operate and accept mobile credit card payments.

Why Choose Offshore Merchant Accounts?

The world is becoming a consolidated commercial hub, allowing internet retailers to expand their deals and perks beyond defined national lines. Organizations with offshore merchant account acquiring banks in specific business sectors save processing fees, increase customer orders, and reduce operating costs.

It’s a smart move to open multiple offshore merchant accounts with banks all over the world. Thanks to a single module for offshore payment entryways, you may manage all payment processing accounts from a single control point. Due to the apparent centralization, data can be processed more efficiently and quickly.

Offshore merchant accounts might help you save money on operating costs. You can do it by lowering or eliminating costs in unfamiliar trades. Moreover, offshore merchant accounts also provide you with complete control over your income anywhere in the world.

Tips in Finding an offshore merchant services provider

Look for the tried-and-true best. Businesses must find an offshore merchant service processor with a demonstrated track record of success when working with high-risk consumers in the same industry. To avoid chargebacks, they must also offer dedicated price assistance and essential tools.

Save money by avoiding additional fees. When dealing with high-risk clients, avoid an offshore merchant services provider that relies on predatory, inflated prices, which may be regarded needless despite the high cost.

Be forthright and truthful. If a company decides to use offshore payment processing, they must inform their provider about their company’s nature, activities, and methods. Discrepancies and relationship challenges might result from not being transparent or honest about critical business facts.

Check out any client testimonials that are already available. Client reviews help to determine how good or poor a given offshore merchant services provider’s reputation is. Businesses must thoroughly consider their options before selecting the best provider for their purposes. It is pretty beneficial to conduct research.

Check out what they have to offer. Companies should always work with an offshore merchant services provider that can provide high-quality services. An offshore payment processor must know how to take care of their clients by providing excellent benefits such as 24/7 assistance, debugging, and maintenance, in addition to persuading businesses into entering a partnership agreement with them.

Choose the terms that are shorter but more flexible. Because business demands might change at any time, opting for more extended contracts or contracts with an automatic renewal clause is not the best option. Instead, companies should seek out providers who can offer time-flexible contracts.


As you can see, there are so many advantages to having an offshore bank account. However, to get the most out of your account, you’ll need to do a lot of research. Before opening the account, it is also critical to seek advice from a skilled lawyer, offshore agent, and tax planner. It is simple to open an offshore bank account, and you may not even need to fly.

Provide an agent with the required information and documentation, and they will start the account for you. The only difficult part is deciding which currency to keep your money in. It will be much easier for you if you take the time to research the best solutions available.

Finally, the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) mandates the reporting of all offshore accounts. This is the only way to stay out of trouble with the IRS.

Ready to create lasting results?  Check out James Clear’s Best Selling book, Atomic Habits If you’re only going to read one book on habits, this is it!  Clear’s book is not only engaging, it’s full of practical, actionable advice focused on helping you obtain real and lasting results. 

Ponder your yesterday, did you do your best?  

If so, celebrate your success like crazy.  And if not, today is a new day.  Reflect on what “your best” looks like, and focus on getting 1% better!

Christopher Allen

Creative Thinking Misfit

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