Last week, a little before the Neteller announcement, and thanks to some 2+2 Zoo posts, I decided to withdraw all my money from Neteller, not that I had a lot, but I thought it would be better to have it in some poker sites, after Neteller went out of US business, I was left with little money almost in all the poker sites I play, with one exception, Bodog, I had a lot there (with respect to the other sites), because I haven't met the rollover requirements for a big bonus I had, the day of the Neteller debacle, I tried to complete the bonus requirement, I bet a lot of NBA games, but unluckily for me, by the time the NBA games had finished, Neteller was not an option anymore, not to mention the fact that I went 1 for 7 :( damn; so I wanted to make a withdrawal from Bodog, I reviewed the options they had and decided to try the echeck, I submitted my bank info and waited for the payout, next day I discovered the echeck was not an option anymore, so I cancelled my request and tried to do something else; not many options left, one of them was a Western Union request, so I did it, it was last Thursday January 18, that same day I received an email about the Payout request, stating it will be reviewed in the next 24 hours.
By Friday I received a second email, stating my payout had been issued; great I thought, but wait, what does this mean? what do I need to do now? I sent them a reply asking them, and they replied the same day telling me they would give me more instructions in the next 24-48 hours.
By Sunday, they sent me an email with information about my payout, two different people from Quezon City in the Philippines sent me $3000 each and I just needed to go to a Western Union location to pick up the money.
I went this Tuesday to a WU location inside the nearest Walmart to my home, like a 3 minutes drive; I was wondering if they would be able to give me all the $6000, so, that was the first thing I asked, if they had a limit for a payout, the WU guy told me they don't, wait, I told him, what about if I want to withdraw $100,000; he then told me he believed the limit was $5000 per day, probably his first answer was thinking I was going to withdraw less than that, or probably he just didn't think at all; I told him then, I had 2 requests of $3000 each, he told me he needed to ask somebody if they can do it, he came back and told me it was ok; so I proceeded to fill out the forms with my info and the Philippines guys info, they asked me for some ID, I used my drivers license, they wanted one more and told me my SS# was enough, so I gave them my SS, and after some 10 minutes, they came back with 6 $1000 checks, WU guy told me to sign the checks, I gave him a confused look and ask him if I could just take the checks, he answered of course, he thought I wanted the money instead of the checks, because nobody wants the checks, they always want the cash. I told him the checks were all that I needed. I walked out with my checks, and in the same mall there was a Bank of America location, so I just walked 3 minutes to the BoA and deposited the checks into my account; I had to wait in line, like 15 minutes, but after that, the money was in my account ready to pay my credit cards next month.
In retrospect, even without Neteller, the process had about the same length (less than a week) than with Neteller, Bodog was pretty efficient with the WU option, the difference was, with Neteller, it was just some clicks in my computer and wait for the money to arrive to my bank, and in this case, I needed to do some "physical" activities like drive and walk, and of course waste some time in line.
When I was walking between the WU location and the BoA, I couldn't help but to feel a nice sensation, I remembered the times in the late 90's when I used to do that, after some big 15-30 limit holdem session in my local casino, after playing all night, driving in the morning to the bank and make a deposit to my account of the money I had just won; it was a nice feeling, and for some reason, the money was real then, and that feeling of "reality" was lost in the internet era. So, after all, I enjoyed the WU trip.