Flywire, Mastercard Team On Cross-Border Tuition Payments

September 17, 2020

Flywire will work with Mastercard to provide discounted foreign exchange rates on cross-border tuition payments for students, according to a press release emailed to PYMNTS.

The offer will be available for any school around the world offering Flywire as a payment method for international tuition through the 2020 fall term for students from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Kenya and Ghana, the release stated. Students will be able to use their own currencies to pay through Mastercard credit or debit cards.

Mike Massaro, CEO of Flywire, said the partnership would serve to raise up students through cost-efficient measures.

"Our client schools and their student families around the world trust Mastercard for convenient and secure payments,” said Massaro in the release. “We’re pleased to continue to partner with Mastercard on special offerings like this one to ensure a seamless digital payment experience while passing on valuable savings to reduce the cost of international education."

Gaurang Shah, senior vice president of Product Management, Digital Payments & Labs, Middle East and Africa with Mastercard, said the new partnership "will allow millions of parents and students to pay their fees securely, seamlessly and at the most competitive rate," according to the release, adding that it would serve to further support students' educations.

Flywire works to provide international students with a customizable, convenient and safe payment experience. It has the ability to expedite the flow of funds, ease reconciliation and streamline operational expenses, the release stated.

Higher education, like almost every other sector, has been disrupted by the pandemic, with campuses shut down early this year. The basic consensus is that no one knows how to proceed, with no clear way to cram students in classes while maintaining social distancing and no easy way to track infections amidst heavily congested campuses.

For international students, rules are even murkier as new U.S. visa guidelines won't let them attend school in the country unless at least one class takes place in person. That poses a problem for schools as international students have typically paid full tuition up front, providing massive revenues for schools. As such, schools have had to scramble to make deals and accommodate students to encourage them to return.