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PayPal
Fastest Transfer Speed
3 days
Minimum Transfer Amount
$1
Maximum Transfer Amount
$10,000

Summary

Sending a PayPal international transfer is convenient and easy, but you can likely get lower fees and better exchange rates elsewhere.

  • Good for sending money within the US.
  • Look elsewhere if you want to send money internationally, especially if you plan to send large amounts.

Pros

  • Fast transfers to other PayPal users.
  • Security.
  • Worldwide network.
  • Free domestic transfers.

In this guide

  • Review
  • Details
    • Features
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question

Details

Features

Available Currencies AUD, BRL, CAD, CHF, CZK, DKK, EUR, GBP, HKD, HUF, ILS, JPY, MXN, MYR, NOK, NZD, PHP, PLN, RUB, SEK, SGD, THB, TWD, USD
Customer Service Phone, Live chat, Email
Pay By Credit card, Debit card, Bank transfer
Receiving Options Bank account, Mobile wallet

What is PayPal?

PayPal is one of the leading payment solutions and money transfer service providers in the world with over 325 million accounts across 200+ countries.

With PayPal, link multiple bank accounts and credit cards to a single, online account, from which you can pay for online and in-store purchases everywhere PayPal is accepted. You can also send money transfers across Canada and around the world though PayPal’s international money transfer service, Xoom.

PayPal was formed in 2000 by the merger of Confinity, a US software company cofounded in 1998 by Peter Thiel, and X.com, an online bank cofounded in 1999 by Elon Musk. The company was acquired by eBay in 2002 for $1.5 billion but has been operating independently since 2015.

How to send and receive money with PayPal

Sending and receiving money through PayPal is easy. Simply login to your account, select Pay & Get Paid and enter the details of your transfer.

DepositsWithdrawals
There are multiple ways of funding a PayPal money transfer:
  • PayPal account balance. Send money directly from your PayPal account balance if you preloaded funds into your account or received money that you haven’t transferred to another financial institution.
  • Linked bank account. Connect your bank account(s) to your PayPal account, and pull funds directly from your bank.
  • Debit card. Similar to a linked bank account, a linked debit card gives you direct access to your bank account through PayPal.
  • PayPal Cash Card. Available in the US, the PayPal Cash Card is a physical card that lets users spend money from their PayPal accounts in physical stores where accepted.
Withdraw money from your PayPal account to your bank using a linked debit card or linked bank account. Similarly, load PayPal funds onto your credit card via a linked credit card.

Login to your PayPal account, navigate to your wallet and select Transfer Funds (or Withdraw Funds, if you’re using the mobile app). Follow the rest of the prompts to complete the withdrawal.

There’s no fee for withdrawing funds from PayPal to an another institution. However, there are fees for sending and receiving international money transfers to and from your PayPal account. See below for details.

PayPal fees and exchange rates

PayPal’s fee structure is transparent but complex. The cost of your transfer depends on the type of transfer, where you’re sending funds and your payment method. International money transfers come with additional fees.

PayPal money transfer fees

How much does PayPal charge for international transactions? How much do PayPal transfers in the US cost? See how PayPal fees break down for personal (non-business) money transfers.

Funding methodDestination countryFees (USD)
PayPal account, linked bank account or Amex Send AccountUnited States$0
Credit card, debit card or PayPal CreditUnited States2.9% of transaction amount + $0.30
PayPal account, linked bank account or Amex Send AccountAny other country5% of the transaction ($0.99 minimum, $4.99 maximum)
Credit card, debit card or PayPal CreditAny other country2.9% of the transaction amount + 5% of the transaction ($0.99 minimum, $4.99 maximum) + fixed fee based on currency

PayPal international money transfer exchange rate

As of April 2022, PayPal’s exchange rate markups generally ranged from 2.9 to 5% or more, depending on the currency.

1 USD =Mid-market ratePayPal’s markup
AUD1.394511.35952.51%
CAD1.28351.24103.31%
EUR0.88570.85663.29%
GBP0.75400.73182.94%
MXN21.001020.32553.22%
PHP50.195548.73762.90%

PayPal commercial transaction fees

When selling goods and services online through PayPal, the fees can vary based on the buyer’s payment method and currency.

How to check PayPal’s exchange rates

  1. Login to your PayPal account.
  2. Select Wallet near the top of the page.
  3. Choose Currency Calculator.
  4. Select the sending and receiving currencies, and the exchange rate will appear.

PayPal transfers: Step by step

  1. Login to your PayPal account
  2. Select Send toward the top the page
  3. Enter the name, @username, email or mobile number of your recipient. Hit Next.
  4. Enter the amount your want to send and select the correct currency from the dropdown list. You have the option to add a message for the recipient. Continue.
  5. Select a linked card or bank account to pay for your transfer. Hit Next.
  6. Verify the details of your transfer and hit Send Money Now.
Go to site

Pros and cons of PayPal

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Low minimum transfer amount
  • Fee-free transfers within the US
  • Supports a large number of currencies
  • Allows payment by debit, credit and bank transfer

Cons

  • Complex fee structure
  • Percentage fees add up for large transfers
  • Exchange rates are not very competitive

Compare PayPal to other money transfer services

Our table lets you compare the services you can use to send money abroad. Compare services on transfer speeds and fees, then click Go to site when you're ready to send.
1 - 16 of 16
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer)
OFX
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
CurrencyTransfer
24 hours
$0
CurrencyTransfer lets you shop around for the best exchange rate on its online marketplace.
MoneyGram
Within minutes
From $0
MoneyGram has fast cash pick-up transfers to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide.
Remitly
Within minutes
From $0
Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
Remitly
Within minutes
From $0
Special offers like free transfers and better exchange rates available for new customers.
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
Instarem
24 hours
From 0%
New Instarem customers will get a special FX rate and zero-fees on their first transfer.
Instarem offers offers rewards on every transaction.
Wise (TransferWise)
Within minutes
From 0.41%
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
OFX International Money Transfers (Business)
24 hours
$0
Business customers: Send safe, no-limit transfers with no fees and competitive exchange rates.
CurrencyTransfer for Business
24 hours
$0
Increase business efficiency with zero transaction fees and same-day transfers.
Currencies Direct
24 hours
$0
CurrenciesDirect makes transferring money abroad simple with bank-beating exchange rates. Currencies Direct may call you to confirm your transfer, so be prepared for a phone call shortly after initiating a transfer.
Currencies Direct (business)
24 hours
$0
Minimizes costs of international transactions and offers custom solutions for business clients. Currencies Direct may call you to confirm your transfer, so be prepared for a phone call shortly after initiating a transfer.
Xe
Within minutes
$3
Xe has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
Xe Money Transfer for Business
24 hours
$0
Save your time and money with Xe Money Transfer for business.
Western Union
Within minutes
From $0
Enjoy $0 fee on your first online transfer. Western Union makes money from currency exchange. Not valid on credit cards or sends to Cuba.
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries and territories around the world.
Cash App
Within minutes
From $0
With this peer-to-peer payment app make payments to your friends and family with no transfer fees within the US or from the US to the UK or EU.
Airwallex
Airwallex
Within minutes
$0
After spending $15k in your first 90 days, receive a one-time $500 bonus that will automatically be credited to your account on any FX conversion.
Airwallex can help you make business payments to 150+ countries in 60+ currencies.
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1 - 3 of 3
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer)
Cash App
Within minutes
From $0
With this peer-to-peer payment app make payments to your friends and family with no transfer fees within the US or from the US to the UK or EU.
Wise (TransferWise)
Within minutes
From 0.41%
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 45+ currencies.
PayPal
Within minutes
From $0
Use PayPal to safely send money and receive payments from around the world in over 25 currencies with just an email address or mobile number. Try 3 months free of Spotify Premium when you sign up with PayPal.
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Want to compare PayPal to other services side-by-side?

Is PayPal safe?

PayPal takes many measures to keep your money and transactions safe and secure, but how you use PayPal still factors into whether or not it is safe for you to use. PayPal helps keep you and your money safe by:

  • Protecting your sensitive information. PayPal doesn’t share your full financial information with sellers, which may help protect you from identity theft.
  • Monitoring transactions 24/7. Both humans and algorithms monitor PayPal transactions to spot fraud.
  • Encrypting your data. PayPal uses bank-level encryption, including SSL 3.0 with an encryption key length of 168 bits.
  • Offering fraud prevention. PayPal will never contact you asking for sensitive information by email or telephone — always contact PayPal if anything about your account history seems suspicious.
  • Providing dispute resolution. PayPal will help resolve disputes between buyers and sellers when PayPal is used as the payment method.

Case study: Katia's experience

Katia Iervasi profile photo
Katia Iervasi
Writer
I mostly use PayPal for online shopping. My account is connected to my Australian bank account and debit card, so I rely on PayPal when I’m shopping on my favorite Australian sites so I don’t have to worry about currency conversion.

Thanks to its ironclad security, I also like using PayPal for eBay purchases or whenever I’m shopping on a site for the first time. I know that if I have any issues, PayPal’s team will step in to help me to recover my money — which they’ve done in the past.

However, PayPal’s fees and charges can seriously stack up, especially if I opt to pay with my card. For that reason, I still turn to trusty Wise whenever I need to send money to and from Australia and my adopted home in the US. I like Wise’s interface better, too.

How do I contact PayPal?

There are multiple ways to get help if you have questions or need help with your account or transactions. Visit the Contact section of PayPal’s website, or login to your account and click Help at the top of the page to access your options.

  • Message a PayPal Customer Support Agent online
  • Contact PayPal by phone.
  • Report problems in PayPal’s Resolution Center.
  • Chat with other PayPal users via a dedicated community board
  • Find solutions for common questions and issues in PayPal’s extensive library of support articles

Other PayPal services

PayPal has more to offer than just money transfer services. Check out these other features and services for managing personal and business funds.

Personal products

  • Online shopping. Pay for online purchases without getting out your credit or debit card. You can also donate to charities and make gaming purchases.
  • Credit and debit cards. Earn rewards on gas, dining and online spending with the no-fee PayPal Extras MasterCard. Access to your PayPal funds with the reloadable PayPal Debit Card.
  • Lines of credit. Buy now and defer payment with zero interest for up to six months with PayPal Credit.
  • Mobile wallet. Pay for in-store purchases at an ever-expanding list of physical stores.
  • Xoom money transfers. Send money overseas for cash pickup (select locations) or directly to your recipient’s bank account.

Business services

  • PayPal Ventures. Invests in fintech startups and other early stage companies looking to get off the ground.
  • Digital loans. Access flexible, fixed-fee loans with a PayPal business account. No credit check required.
  • Card processing. Add a PayPal button to your e-commerce site to accept debit and credit cards and simplify your accounting.
  • Mobile card reader. Use PayPal’s mobile card reader with your phone or tablet to accept mobile payments.
  • Point-of-sale solutions. Accept business payments through PayPal Here or PayPal Chip and Swipe POS systems.

Finder’s review of PayPal

Must read: Our experience transferring money with PayPal

Here’s what we found when we sent live transfers to Mexico and France through the digital wallet PayPal.

  • While PayPal offered accurate delivery estimates, it took three days for our recipient to transfer money from their PayPal account to a French bank.
  • PayPal offered exchange rates that were 2.7% above the mid-market rate on average, with rates updated multiple times throughout the day.
  • PayPal’s easy-to-use website allowed us to sign up and initiate a transfer in under four minutes.

Bottom line

PayPal is great for fee-free direct domestic transfers to other PayPal accounts. But international transfers come with a complicated fee structure that drives the cost up the more your send. You can probably cut the cost of sending money overseas with other online money transfer services.

That being said, PayPal’s extensive range of products and services to help individuals and business owners manage their money is impressive.

Alternatives to PayPal

Frequently asked questions

  • How long do PayPal international money transfers take?

PayPal transfers between PayPal accounts are instant, but transferring to your bank account can take up to one business day. Sending money internationally through PayPal can take three to five business days.

  • What is PayPal’s limit on sending money?

PayPal money transfers must be at least $1 and are capped at $10,000.

  • What does PayPal charge for international transactions?

Sending money to places outside the United States will incur a fee that varies based on how much you send, the destination country and your payment method.

  • What information do I need to provide to send a PayPal international money transfer?

To send a PayPal international money transfer, you need your recipient’s email address or mobile number and details about the amount and currency you wish to send.

  • How safe is PayPal?

PayPal uses industry-standard data encryption methods to protect your personal and financial information from being stolen. Humans and digital technology monitor the platform 24/7 to detect and prevent fraud. Buyers and sellers who use PayPal as a payment method can use the dispute resolution center to handle disagreements.

  • What is Xoom?

Founded in 2001, Xoom is a money transfer service provider acquired by PayPal in 2015. Xoom supports money transfers to over 160 countries around the world. Customers can send funds directly to bank accounts, for cash pickup or for delivery to recipients’ doors — where this service is offered. Find out more about Xoom in our review.