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Showing posts with label tips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tips. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

ePassporte to Limbo

Since the Port Security bill secured the United States ports (??) by making it illegal for US financial institutions to transfer funds to or from online gaming institutions (including online poker!) the major players (Firepay, Neteller) have turned their back on the US market and other funding solutions have taken their place. One of the more popular of these is (ePassporte) who have actually been around since 2002 (well before the new law) and it's also one with the most problems... Customer support is dismal and requests for help or information about your account can take weeks for response. On the bright side the service runs efficiently most of the time and you can generally sidestep the issues by following some simple rules:
  • Don't let your account balance go over $5000. If you do they require paperwork from you and the paperwork is going to take time and lots of it.

  • Don't use the new "instant fund" option from your bank account. Doing so will cause your account to be locked for 8 business days (yes business days and they're very strict on that) so if you use this funding option on, say, a Friday you won't be able to get at your money for 12 days (locked from any withdrawal option including visa and atm and online charges). The regular method is slower but typically won't take 8 business days and won't cause your account to be locked.

  • Do plan ahead for your withdrawals. If you need money in your checking account you'll have to withdrawal it $600 at a time (and that's IF you've ponied up the extra money to increase your daily limits) and that money will take a week to get to your checking account. You definitely don't want to wait until the last minute when rent is due to start making this withdrawals.

  • Do increase your withdrawal limits by paying the $5 fee--taking money out $300 at a time is obnoxious and you'll regret it when you want to. Plus this limit extension may not happen instantly so get it started.

  • Do get the physical visa. The price is worth it to have plastic you can use around town.

  • Don't expect fast responses from customer support. You won't get them and sometimes they never respond at all.
When the ban on online poker is lifted (and I have to believe it will be) then other funding options will appear and ePassporte will have to get its ducks in a row to compete, but for now they're sort of like the phone company--the only real choice for a lot of people--and they know it. I hope these tips save you some aggravation until then.