For online customers purchasing items from China, it is advisable to hire a quality control inspector from China. Several inspection service offices across China offer expert inspection services and often with charges within a similar range. However, different inspection services will have their preferred payment methods for their services, especially when it comes to online methods of payment.

The most common online payment services amongst the various inspection services in China include; Trade Assurance Order, PayPal, X-Transfer, Western Union Money Transfer, and Telegraphic Transfer.

We did a small test by sending one message to 20 inspection companies using and Facebook messenger to see which payment method they accepted. The screenshots below show the various responses from six companies that generally reflected the answers from all companies contacted.

Payment methods Inspectaman accepts

Payment methods accepted by H&L Inspection Services Ltd

  • Zhongbei Inspection Company

  • Qingdao Pinji Inspection Co. Ltd

  • QST Inspection Company Limited

  • Veritell Inspection Company Limited

Now that we know how the inspection companies would prefer being paid for inspections, let us focus on the payment methods and their benefits.


Trade assurance refers to a built-in protection service to cover orders placed on and paid through a particular website. For example, you may be familiar with Alibaba Trade Assurance Order, a payment method that protects all charges and payments made through Alibaba.

Trade assurance is a secure payment method as it protects you, the amazon seller, in a situation where the supplier fails to ship your products on time or delivers products of a different quality from that which was agreed.

Paying for your inspection services through a trade assurance assures you that your hired inspection service will deliver the best from your specifications.

However, this service is only available to people who order from a particular website, in this case, an Alibaba platform.


X-Transfer is a cross-border financial service provider for China-based small and medium enterprises. It partners with banks globally to help exporters and importers simplify trade transactions and lower trade costs. So if you are a small enterprise and using a small inspection company, this payment method best suits you.

Major Benefit

X-Transfer enables you to create an account within a day and gives you access to multiple collection accounts. By simply opening an account with X-Transfer, you can collect your money on local transactions as soon as you transact. Additionally, there are no account opening, maintenance or deposit fees, thereby reducing extra costs in trade.

Concerning cross border transactions, you are assured you are dealing with a safe and reliable service as X-Transfer has five overseas payment licenses, with customer funds being managed by central banks.

Major Risk

Cross border transactions may not be processed within the same day of transacting; therefore, you need to be particular with your timing.


Western Union is a money transfer option that has been available in China since 1990 and has received universal acceptance as a trusted money transfer service. This service is convenient for all international money transfers as it is the largest money transfer network operating in over 200 countries. 

Major Benefit

The transfer is made easier for anyone to use, even importers that may not have accounts with banks within China. This service is available 24/7 and accessible to all regardless of the different time zones and your selected inspection service. 

Additionally, suppose you use the service regularly, the recipient’s data, which is your inspection service office, will be saved to make repeated transfers more effortless and faster for both parties.

Major Risk

Like all the other services, be prepared to cater for any transfer fees that might result in your transaction.


This service has received recognition worldwide, not only for business transactions but also for everyday transactions. 

Major Benefit

This service enables you to send money into another person’s PayPal account or bank account from different borders. For PayPal, personal payments are free for as long as you use your PayPal balance or bank account to send the payments. 

Major Disadvantage

For commercial payments, such as paying for inspection services, the recipient will be charged the association fees as seen in the screenshots from H&L Inspection and QST Inspection companies.


Commonly abbreviated as ‘TT,’ a telegraphic transfer is a means of electronically transferring funds from one bank account to another bank primarily overseas.

Telegraphic transfers are used to speed up discussions in professional settings. In light of this, note that a telegraphic transfer is usually relatively expensive because the transaction is much faster than most. The transaction is generally completed within two to four business days, but this depends on the origin, currency exchange requirements, and a transfer destination.

In Hong Kong, China, a telegraphic transfer is synonymous with an ‘international SWIFT transfer.’ SWIFT stands for the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication. 

Major Disadvantage

Quite often, the sending bank is the one that bears the transfer charge in telegraphic transfers; therefore, you as the importer must be ready to cover this transferred charge.

Major Benefit

Since funds sent through a TT have to go through institutions such as SWIFT, both the sender and receiver are assured of security and an application of set standards and regulations controlling how the transfer takes place. For this reason, a TT is a reliable and standard mode of payment, even for inspection services in China.


Most inspection services in China will specify which of these options are available for you to use to pay for the inspection service. However, in an event where it is undetermined, you ought to weigh your options based on how fast you need the transfer to take place, reliability, security, and transfer cost. 

Just in case you are still uncertain about which method to use, a service like Western Union is highly recommended as it meets most of the determining factors listed. Good Luck!

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