The best international payroll services can help you take advantage of global markets and workforces by letting you process payroll for workers located in other countries. Using these services, you can be assured that your company complies with local tax and hiring laws. Some even let you pay contractors, while others offer employer of record (EoR) solutions—allowing them to handle your international employment needs. Most also provide or connect companies with professional employer organizations (PEOs) to hire, onboard, and manage foreign employees on-site.
In this guide, we evaluated 14 of the most popular international payroll providers and narrowed our list down to the six best.
- Papaya Global: Best overall for businesses planning to expand internationally
- Rippling: Best all-in-one global HR, payroll, and IT solution
- Deel: Best international payroll solution with multiple payment options
- Remote: Best international payroll service with stock option tracking tools
- Oyster: Best budget-friendly tool for paying global contractors
- Globalization Partners: Best for compliance support and digital assets protection
Best International Payroll Services Compared
All of the global payroll providers we reviewed offer EoR services, international tax support, online onboarding, payments for global employees and contractors, and access to localized benefits packages. They also have in-country experts who can guide you through the complexities of managing local laws and regulations. Here are some of each provider’s key features.
$20 per employee for global payroll
$650 per employee for EoR
$25 per worker
Visit Papaya Global
$20 per employee for global payroll*
$599 per employee for EoR*
$20 per worker monthly
Starts at $599 per employee for EoR
Starts at $49 per worker monthly
$699 per employee for EoR
$29 per contractor monthly
Starts at $399 per employee
Free for up to two contractors
Starts at $29 per worker monthly for three and more contractors
Custom-priced for global employee payments
Starts at $49 per contractor monthly
Visit Globalization Partners
*Pricing is based on a quote we received
Papaya Global: Best Overall International Payroll Service
Papaya Global is a fast-growing, well-funded international payroll service that touts a 99% customer retention rate. It offers complete payroll services in over 160 countries and serves companies such as Microsoft, Toyota, Intel, and Wix.
This multicountry payroll service scored 4.59 out of 5 in our evaluation, with perfect scores in many of our criteria. Transparent pricing, solid HR features, in-country and onboarding support, and advanced reporting options contributed to its high ratings. While it also provides nearly any type of foreign payroll services your business may need, including tax filings, it didn’t get a perfect score in payroll features since it lacks local entities in the countries that it services and a tax penalty guarantee. It also scored lower on our popularity measure because it has very few reviews (fewer than 100) compared to Rippling’s 1,000+ reviews.
Papaya Global has an intuitive dashboard that shows a comprehensive view of your international workforce, payroll expenses, and more. (Source: Papaya Global)
Payroll transactions approved via Papaya Global’s “payment management” tool are transferred directly to the employees or via approved third-party payment processors. (Source: Papaya Global)
Papaya Global Key Features
Transparent pricing with a money-back guarantee
Papaya Global is the only global payroll provider in this guide that offers a 60-day money-back guarantee if you are unsatisfied with its performance. It posts full pricing details online—though you still need to call for a precise quote. Rippling may show its starting price on its website but doesn’t specify for which of its several solutions. Meanwhile, the other international payroll services on our list may also share their pricing details online but only for some products.
Robust payroll and tax filing feature
Papaya Global will help you stay compliant with government and local tax laws, file tax forms, and process payments with third-party agencies like the IRS, national insurance, pension scheme, etc. Payroll payouts are made in the local currency and language and, if possible, through local bank transfers or direct deposits. Papaya Global’s acquisition of Azimo, a digital money transfer service, also enables it to offer fast cross-border payments (guaranteed payouts in 72 hours) to more than 150 countries.
Solid HR tools
Papaya Global handles hiring, onboarding, management support, employment compliance support, benefits management, and HR reporting. Its state-of-the-art employee and document management system securely stores all employee information and forms. And for those that use third-party business software, Papaya Global integrates with popular HRISes (SAP SuccessFactors and Workday), expense management tools (Expensify and SAP Concur), and ERP solutions (NetSuite). However, if you need robust integration options, consider Rippling, as it has a network of 500+ partner systems.
It has extensive human resources and payroll tools, statutory reports, customized reporting, and a general ledger. It also has a Payroll Intelligence Suite with business intelligence reporting, a feature unique to Papaya Global.
Extensive immigration services
Unlike the other international payroll services we reviewed, Papaya Global offers immigration services that include obtaining work permits for expatriates and short-term assignments, residence permits, and spouse and family permits. Remote may also have a strong immigrant program but is targeted at refugees.
Accessible and expert support
It has 24/7 phone and email support, online training documentation, and set-up assistance. Papaya Global also has in-house experts on labor laws, compensation and benefits benchmarks, and compliance to help you when needed.
Learn more about Papaya Global’s EoR and contractor management solutions in our Papaya Global review.
Rippling: Best All-in-One HR, Payroll & IT Platform for Global Workers
Rippling offers payroll services, as well as HR and IT support, in 50 countries. Its strength lies in its ease of use and supreme ability to work with other applications. Similar to Papaya Global and Remote, Rippling publishes some of its pricing on its website, earning it some points for transparency. Businesses that don’t have a full overseas workforce find it more useful, as they can usually hire and pay workers as contractors, which leaves the taxes up to each individual.
Since Our Last Update:
In October 2022, Rippling enhanced its HR solution suite by adding global payroll and workforce management tools. Companies with international workers can use Rippling’s feature-rich platform to manage essential global HR, payroll, and IT processes—from tracking employee attendance to monitoring the inventory of laptops assigned to employees across 150+ countries.
Scoring 4.44 out of 5, Rippling earned high ratings (4+) in most of our evaluation criteria. While it has efficient payroll processing tools, its paid time tracking add-on and tax penalty guarantee that only covers mistakes its representatives make prevented Rippling from getting a higher score. It also lost points because Rippling’s pricing isn’t fully transparent for all of its products and services. You have to contact the provider to get pricing information.
Rippling automatically syncs HR and employee data with its payroll tool, enabling it to easily process employee payments. (Source: Rippling)
Rippling comes with a wide selection of reporting options, including a report to track your employees’ business apps and software access. (Source: Rippling)
Rippling Key Features
Automated payroll and tax filing
Rippling syncs hours worked, PTO, benefits deductions, and taxes and withholdings automatically to process payroll in 90 seconds. You can make payroll payments by check or direct deposit where available. It calculates hours worked and deductions and processes employee payments in the appropriate currency via international wire. Rippling also automatically files payroll taxes for your global employees.
Integrated HR tools
It provides HR and IT tools for microbusinesses to enterprises, has benefits support, files US payroll taxes, and helps manage onboarding and HR documents.
Rippling offers HR, payroll, and tax reporting. You can either use its extensive library of pre-built reports or configure your own payroll report. It even has Excel-like formulas that you can add to custom reports, allowing you to generate data showing calculations for tenure, fixed bonus amounts, and more.
Time and task management
Unlike Remote, Deel, and Oyster, Rippling can automatically track your employees’ time in/out, location, and activities in real time. You can also change employees’ pay rates as they move from one job to another.
Device and app management
With Rippling’s device and app management tools, employers can remotely manage and protect international employees’ devices. It can also help you set up and disable all of your employees’ business apps, like Google Workspace, Slack, and Microsoft 365. This is another unique feature for Rippling, which is not present with the other providers in this guide. Further, Rippling integrates with over 500 apps, so it’s extremely versatile. No other software on our list has this breadth of flexibility.
Ease of setup and use
Large companies can deploy in weeks and small companies within an afternoon with Rippling. It has a user-friendly and intuitive interface. If you have questions about its features, you can contact its customer service reps via live chat, although one-on-one HR support is also available (but this is a paid option).
Discover how Rippling can streamline your global HR and payroll processes, read our Rippling review.
Deel: Best International Payroll Service With Multiple Payment Options
Similar to Papaya Global, Remote, Oyster, and Globalization Partners, Deel offers separate plans for its EoR services and contractor management tools to help you hire and pay global employees and contract workers, respectively. It also offers localized contracts, compliance support, online onboarding, benefits plans, tax filing assistance, and automated invoicing. What sets Deel apart from the other international payroll services we reviewed is its 15 contractor payment options, which include payouts via bank transfers, cryptocurrency and digital payment processors, and a Deel contractor card.
Scoring 4.41 out of 5 in our evaluation, it earned ratings of 4 and up in HR features, pricing, reporting, and ease of use. Deel would have ranked higher on our list if it offered time tracking tools and dedicated support for all clients (this is only available for large businesses).
Deel will guide your new employees through the onboarding process—from signing the online offer letter to submitting new hire paperwork (such as bank information). (Source: Deel)
The Deel card works the same way as a debit card, allowing your global contractors to receive their paycheck and instantly use the funds to pay for personal expenses. (Source: Deel)
Deel Key Features
Multiple payroll payment options
Deel is the only global payroll provider on our list that can pay employees and contractors in many different ways. Apart from bank transfers, your workers can receive salary payouts via Binance and Coinbase (as cryptocurrency), as well as through digital payment processors like Wise and Payoneer.
Contractor payment card
With Deel, you can provide global contract workers with a contractor card they can use to receive payroll and pay for personal purchases. It has virtual and physical versions—although the physical card doesn’t support ATM withdrawals. Note that the other providers on our list don’t offer a global contractor payroll card.
Dedicated customer success manager
Aside from 24/7 in-app support and compliance assistance, Deel provides a dedicated representative to help with system setup and serve as your point person whenever you have queries about your account. Note, however, that the dedicated rep is only available to large businesses.
Contractor misclassification protection
Subscribing to Deel’s higher plans provides you access to contractor misclassification protection, wherein Deel will cover costs of up to $25,000 in case there’s a misclassification issue. The amount covers all legal fees and tax penalties, as well as third-party indemnity costs. Apart from Oyster, none of the global payroll providers in this guide offer similar coverage.
Remote: Best for Businesses Looking for Global Payroll With Stock Option Tracking Tools
Remote is an international HR and payroll service that can provide global payroll and a full EoR service. Like Papaya Global, Remote has solid payroll functions plus provides compliance tools and assistance, customizable reports, and benefits options for international employees. If you want to provide stock options as an incentive to your international employees, Remote can help you track stock option plans and manage the applicable tax requirements that come with granting, vesting, exercising, holding, and selling stocks. It even offers free EoR services if you plan to hire refugees.
It offers affordable contractor payroll tools, transparent per-employee pricing for its EoR services, and quote-based pricing for global payroll—features that contributed to its overall score of 4.36 out of 5. Its discounts for startup and Series A businesses, social purpose organizations, and companies that hire refugees make Remote stand out from the rest on our list. However, its online support features are not as good as those of Deel and Papaya Global, as it doesn’t provide dedicated support to its clients.
Remote’s main dashboard shows updates and tasks that require your attention. (Source: Remote)
Remote lets you pay both local and international contractors with just a few clicks. (Source: Remote)
Remote Key Features
Special discounts for qualified companies
Oyster may have discounted packages for nonprofit organizations and companies hiring refugees, but Remote’s plans are more budget-friendly. In addition to its discounted pricing and special packages for startups and social purpose organizations. Remote offers a free EoR solution for hiring refugees, something you won’t find with the other international payroll services on our list.
- Discounts for startups: Qualifying pre-seed, seed, and Series A businesses can get this and the following perks:
- 25% off its EOR service for up to 10 employees for 12 months
- 30% off its contractor management services for an unlimited number of contractors for 12 months
- Discounts for social purpose organizations: Qualifying nonprofits, charities, trusts, social enterprises, and benefits corporations get this. Its other special perks and discounts include:
- 25% off its EoR service for up to 10 employees for 12 months
- 30% off its contractor management services for an unlimited number of contractors for 12 months
- Co-marketing opportunities
- Special plan for hiring refugees: Remote will act as a free EoR for your refugee talent. You can activate this when hiring a refugee who has the legal right to work in any country where Remote has an entity.
Perfect for hiring contractors
Remote’s contractor management solution lets you onboard contractors locally, pay them in their currency with zero exchange fees, manage their employment documents, and get 1099s for US contractors. The contractor platform works seamlessly with the employee payroll platform, so you don’t have to switch between the two.
Highly informative website
Remote is not stingy with its information. The website contains a wealth of information about different country regulations and running HR; even if you don’t go with Remote, it’s worth exploring. The websites of other providers on our list may also have similar features, such as Papaya Global’s CountryPedia (which shows per-country payroll and employment details), but Remote’s is the most extensive.
Let Remote act as your employer abroad. It will onboard, pay, and manage contractors and employees. It provides HR support from local experts, as it has legal entities in every country it serves. Aside from offering competitive benefits, it tracks stock option plans and ensures your intellectual property and invention rights are protected. And while Papaya Global, Oyster, and Globalization Partners can help manage refugee hiring, Remote offers this service for free.
Multicountry payroll, one invoice
You can view and approve payroll for all of your global employees on a single platform. Once payroll is approved, you can send employees’ salary payouts in their local currency with just one click. Further, Remote supports over 100 currencies in 178 nations—and it does not charge interchange fees. It handles your local taxes and ensures you stay compliant with local regulations.
Oyster: Best Budget-friendly Global Contractor Payroll Solution
With Oyster, you can hire, onboard, pay, and provide benefits to employees in more than 180 countries. It supports more than 120 currencies, offers invoicing and expense management tools, and provides access to locally-compliant contracts. Onboarding employees is a breeze with Oyster’s easy-to-use platform, although new clients also get system setup and initial onboarding assistance from a dedicated customer success manager.
For small to medium-sized businesses that need budget-friendly global payroll tools, Oyster’s starter contractor package is free to use, provided you have up to two workers only (none of the international payroll services we reviewed offer a free payroll plan). If you have more than two contract workers or need EoR services, Oyster’s Lite and Business plans come with all the essential tools you need to manage a global team, at price points that are more affordable than the other providers in this guide.
In our evaluation, Oyster earned an overall rating of 4.23 out of 5 with perfect marks in pricing and high scores (4+) in ease of use, payroll functionalities, HR tools, and in our expert review. It lost points due to the lack of time tracking capabilities and limited report customizations. It also received a low score in our popularity criterion because the average number of user reviews in third-party sites like G2, Capterra, and Trustpilot is fewer than 500.
Oyster Key Features
One of Oyster’s standout features is its reasonably-priced plans, with contractor payroll packages and EoR services that are less expensive than most of the providers in this guide. Oyster’s starter monthly pricing for its EoR solution is only $399 per employee—which is lower than Deel ($599 per employee monthly), Papaya Global ($650 per employee monthly), and Remote ($699 per employee monthly).
For hiring and paying contractors, Oyster’s monthly starter pricing is $29 per worker—also lower than Deel and Globalization Partner (both are priced at $49 per contractor monthly). While Papaya Global’s contractor management solution only costs $20 per contractor, per pay cycle, Oyster has a free starter package for businesses that only have up to two global contract workers.
Solid customer support
Oyster prides itself on the type of support it provides to customers. It assigns dedicated customer success managers to new clients and offers access to a team of experts to ensure that you remain compliant with country regulations and labor laws. For those planning to recruit several international employees in one go, Oyster will even offer the services of a dedicated hiring success manager to help business owners find and hire candidates that best fit their requirements.
Access to global HR and employment tools
Oyster’s online platform and website is filled with free-to-use tools to help you navigate global hiring and manage a distributed workforce. Aside from an online calculator that shows your total employment cost, it has a “benefits advisor” tool that provides you with a list of statutory and best-in-class benefits plans that local benefits advisors recommend. However, what’s unique about Oyster is its employee misclassification risk analyzer, which is helpful if you are unsure whether to hire a worker as an employee or a contractor.
Globalization Partners: Best for Compliance Support & Digital Assets Protection
Globalization Partners provides payroll services in almost 190 countries, which is more than the other providers on our list cover. It is also one of the best services for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance, digital asset and personal information protection, and legal support. While Globalization Partners offers a payroll platform with administrative and employee features, its most valuable offer is its local partners. This service can find local candidates, interview and hire international employees, onboard new hires, manage payroll compliance issues, and assist with tax filing.
Scoring 4.03 out of 5 in our evaluation, Globalization Partners earned perfect marks in HR features and reporting, given its solid HR and compliance support and robust report options. It scored the lowest in pricing and popularity among users because it doesn’t publish its pricing online and has limited user reviews on third-party review sites like G2 and Capterra. Reviewers said that its setup and onboarding processes, including its customer service, are excellent; however, there was a lot of paperwork to accomplish, and it was quite expensive compared to other providers.
Snapshot of Globalization Partners’ payroll dashboard (Globalization Partners)
Apart from offering onboarding tools, Globalization Partners can help you create locally compliant employment contracts. (Source: Globalization Partners)
Globalization Partners Key Features
Extensive HR tools
Globalization Partners provides complete localized HR, PEO, and EoR services and tax and legal support. Also, unlike Rippling’s HR tools, which serve both domestic and international hires, Globalization Partners offers these features solely for employees hired outside of the US. It even automatically generates global employment contracts that comply with local labor laws.
Automatic payroll services
It handles payroll, deductions, and taxes. It pays employees in local currencies and pays your taxes according to each country’s schedule. Once Globalization Partners issues the payroll, it sends you the bill with all employee expenses included.
It provides a wide range of reporting options that cover hiring, payroll, compliance, and more.
It can pay your global employees through traditional direct deposits or manual checks. Globalization Partners also has flexible payment options, allowing you to fund your payroll either through bank transfer, Venmo, and cryptocurrency. None of the international payroll service providers we reviewed offer a cryptocurrency funding option (except Deel).
Globalization Partners has a special contractor solution, G-P Contractor, to help you manage international contract workers. Similar to Deel, Oyster, and Remote, it comes with all the online tools you need to handle the entire contractor lifecycle—from onboarding to pay processing and offboarding.
Ease of use
Setup, hiring, onboarding, security, compliance, tax, training, and legal services are available. It also has customer support available 24/7 for your needs. However, unlike Deel, Papaya Global, and Oyster, it does not have a dedicated support representative.
Not sure how to choose the best international payroll service for your business? Check out our guide on finding the right payroll solution.
How We Chose the Top International Payroll Services
We started our research by comparing 14 reputable international payroll providers for criteria such as transparency in pricing, PEO services, HR support, customer support, and payment options. After thoroughly exploring each provider’s offerings, we scored and ranked the services to narrow our list to the six best international payroll services.
Click through the tabs below for our full evaluation criteria:
25% of Overall Score
We looked for convenience features like automatic pay runs, local tax filing, and the ability to pay contractors and employees with manual check capabilities and direct deposit. Providers rank better if their services are available in more than 100 countries, with a team of in-country payroll and HR compliance experts. Globalization Partners earned the highest score in this criterion.
20% of Overall Score
We highly favored providers that showed straightforward pricing with multiple plan options. In addition to each software’s per-employee pricing, we checked if any required setup fees. We also gave more points to providers that allow unlimited pay runs and have multiple plan options. Papaya Global and Oyster received perfect marks here.
15% of Overall Score
The best global payroll service includes essential HR features, such as onboarding, self-service portals, and benefits. We favored companies that offered tools to help with legal compliance issues. We also considered PEO services and benefit and deduction assistance. Papaya Global, Remote, Deel, and Globalization Partners earned perfect scores in this criterion.
15% of Overall Score
The global payroll software should have no setup fee and be easy to use. We also looked for an intuitive user platform, including live phone support, training options, and flawless integration with other software. Papaya Global earned the top spot here, followed closely by Oyster.
10% of Overall Score
In addition to the number of payroll reports, we considered whether they are customizable or if you could create special reports for your specific need. Apart from Oyster, all the providers we reviewed scored high here for having their own set of built-in and customizable reports that users find very useful in making their business decisions.
10% of Overall Score
Sometimes, a service can check all the boxes but not be the best fit for a small business. The expert review is our opinion on how well a service meets SMB needs for payroll and HR, including its general value for the dollar. Papaya Global and Rippling both earned perfect scores here.
5% of Overall Score
We took the average review ratings from third-party sites like G2 and Capterra, which are also based on a 5-star scale. Any option with an average of 4+ stars is ideal. We also favored software with 1,000+ reviews on any third-party site. With more than 1,000 positive reviews for its intuitive platform, responsive customer support, and value for money, only Rippling earned a high score here. The rest were well-regarded by users but did not have a lot of reviews.
*Percentages of overall score
International Payroll Services Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is a global payroll service?
A global payroll service helps you manage pay processing functions for all of your business locations across the world. A provider who offers global payroll services ensures that you pay international workers (either employees or contractors) correctly and on time, while keeping you compliant with country tax and labor laws. Its services also involve calculating the applicable wages and deductions, remitting payroll tax payments, generating and filing tax forms, and providing pay slips to employees.
How do I choose the best international payroll service?
In choosing the right payroll solution to handle your international pay processing needs, look at the size of your workforce, the location and number of countries where your business operates, and your budget. You should also consider the features you need (such as online onboarding, time tracking, employee benefits, and locally-compliant work contracts) and whether the provider offers the support services you want (like 24/7 assistance, dedicated support, and access to compliance experts).
What should I consider when hiring and paying global employees vs contractors?
Just as with finding and hiring workers in the US, you need to decide what types of employees to get for your international business locations. Besides that, you will also need to consider the local employment laws of countries where you’re planning on hiring.
When it comes to paying international employees and independent contractors, it’s important to understand the method of payment, labor laws and tax regulations, and operational considerations you must comply with. This will prevent you from facing penalties and fines because of worker misclassification (e.g., you hired independent contractors, but if you direct their work, they are considered employees).
What are the advantages and disadvantages of hiring international employees vs contract workers?
If you choose to hire international employees to manage day-to-day operations, you can control their work schedules, oversee how the work is completed, and even implement performance management measures.
On the other hand, when working with foreign independent contractors to complete specific projects, you are not legally allowed to direct how and when contract workers can do the job—they can set deadlines and define the output of the project. Note, however, that the definition of a contractor can vary in different countries. We recommend you consult with hiring and compliance experts to avoid potential worker misclassification issues.
For some of the pros and cons of employees vs contractors, click through the tabs below.
International payroll services can help businesses that are expanding their global workforce. These service providers also help keep companies out of legal trouble by ensuring that local tax and employment laws are followed. If needed, they will also provide PEO, EoR, and outsourced HR services locally.
If you are looking to expand your business beyond the US, consider partnering with Papaya Global. It is affordable, offers an EoR solution, and has solid international payroll services. In addition to providing local tax filing assistance and compliance support, it can help you manage and administer benefits plans for your global workforce.