For the millions of Russians without a bank account of their own, this wallet provides an excellent way to make online purchases. Even those who trust the banking system enough to have an account will often prefer a 3rd party wallet system for security reasons.
The big advantage of wallets like Qiwi is that you are not giving any sensitive information to online gambling sites. No bank details, credit card numbers or debit card info is sent to the sites. Instead the sites create an invoice, which arrives in your Qiwi Wallet. You can then choose how to pay this. You can use funds which you have in your account, upload more money from your bank account, or go to a retail outlet which supports this system and pay the invoice in cash.
You can also use your Visa Qiwi Wallet for withdrawing profits from poker sites. This means it is possible to keep some of your overall poker bankroll in this app. When there is a good bonus or promotion at an online poker site, you will have the money on hand to take advantage of this quickly.
What are the Drawbacks of Using Visa Qiwi Wallet?
If you do not have a bank account to fund your Qiwi wallet with, then the biggest drawback is that you will need to make a trip to an outlet to fund your account. There are small fees associated with each transaction to consider too. While the biggest and best known online poker sites like 888 Poker and PokerStars welcome Qiwi, many of the smaller brands do not. The only other drawback is that you will have an additional account to set-up and manage. For most people, these drawbacks are insignificant compared to the advantages in terms of flexibility and security.
Practical Guide – Setting Up and Depositing with Visa Qiwi Wallet
When you sign up for a Qiwi wallet account, this uses your phone number as the unique identifier. You can also add your email address. You can download the app, which will let you manage your payments with no need to be sat at a desktop computer. This app will allow you to upload funds from stores on the network, without the need for any card or voucher in between.
Before you can deposit, you will need an account at one of the big poker brands which welcome Qiwi wallet payments. I recommend 888 Poker for this – though you will find many more options over on our poker sites page.
When you head to the cashier to pay you will be asked for your Qiwi wallet account number, along with the amount you want to deposit (plus any bonus code you might have from the poker site). Uniquely, you do not need to have funds in your wallet at this point. When you submit the request, an invoice will be sent to your Qiwi app. You now have a choice of how to pay it:
- If you already have the funds available, you can approve the payment and this will be settled right away. It should appear on your player balance immediately.
- If you linked your Qiwi wallet to your bank account or credit card, then you can upload the funds from there to pay the invoice.
- Alternatively, you can go to a retail outlet, and pay the invoice in cash.
Making a withdrawal back to your app is very simple. The rule is that you will need to have deposited from your account before withdrawals become possible. Here you simply add your account number and the amount to withdraw. The poker sites with the fastest withdrawals will take 24 to 48 hours to check and process your payment.
Alternative Poker Payment Options for Russian and Kazakhstan Based Players
There are a lot of different payment options available these days. While not all of them offer the same flexibility as the Visa Qiwi Wallet app, there are several popular alternatives.
WebMoney works with most online poker sites. This is a desktop and app based payment system, which has a long history of facilitating online payments. You can fund your account via participating retailers, and spend that money at a lot of different merchants as well as at gambling sites. Yandex Money works in a similar way.
Finally, Bitcoin and Litecoin are becoming popular for poker deposits. Here you will only be able to play at the offshore poker sites welcoming US players. The advantage of these sites is that they attract a lot more recreational type players than many of the big international brands.