PayPal international money transfers review March 2019 | finder.com

PayPal international money transfer review

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A quick and convenient way to send money overseas.

finder.com’s rating: 4.0 / 5.0

★★★★★

How’d we get our score?

Fees & rates: 4.0 / 5.0
Speed: 4.0 / 5.0
Services: 4.0 / 5.0
User experience: 4.0 / 5.0

Sending money overseas with PayPal is quick and simple, but their unfavorable exchange rates can make them an expensive option for large transfers.

Product NamePayPal
Min. Transfer Amount$1
Max. Transfer Amount$10,000
Transfer Methods
Online,
Transfer Options
One off payments
Transfer Speed
Minimum transfer time
3 - 5 days
Customer Service
Phone, Email
Available CurrenciesAUD, BRL, CAD, CHF, CZK, DKK, EUR, GBP, HKD, HUF, ILS, JPY, MXN, MYR, NOK, NZD, PHP, PLN, RUB, SEK, SGD, THB, TRY, TWD, USD
Online Transfer Fee2.99%

Send money almost anywhere with flexible transfer options and an easy process

With low fees on small transfer amounts and fast transfer processing times, PayPal makes it possible to send over 20 currencies across more than 200 countries, allowing you to send money almost anywhere around the world.

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 a day.
  • PayPal’s easy-to-use website allowed us to sign up and initiate a transfer in under 4 minutes.

How much does it cost to transfer money with PayPal?

How much it costs depends on how much money you send, where you send it and how you pay for the transfer.

Base fees

Payment method:Country of recipient’s account:$0-$49.99 USD$50-$99.99 USD$100+ USD
PayPal balance or a bank account linked to your PayPal account.United StatesFee is waivedFee is waivedFee is waived
Funded by a credit card, debit card or PayPal Credit.United States2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)
PayPal balance or a bank account linked to your PayPal account.Canada and Europe$0.99 USD$2.99 USD$2.99 USD
PayPal balance or a bank account linked to your PayPal account.Any other country$0.99 USD$2.99 USD$4.99 USD
Funded by a credit card, debit card or PayPal Credit.Canada and Europe$0.99 USD + 2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)$2.99 USD + 2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)$2.99 USD + 2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)
Funded by a credit card, debit card or PayPal Credit.Any other country$0.99 USD + 2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)$2.99 USD + 2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)$4.99 USD + 2.9% of the transaction amount plus fixed fee (see table below)

Flat fees for sending in a different currency

CurrencyFee
Australian dollar:0.30 AUD
Brazilian real:0.60 BRL
Canadian dollar:0.30 CAD
Czech koruna:10 CZK
Danish krone:2.60 DKK
Euro:0.35 EUR
Hong Kong dollar:90 HUF
Hungarian forint:2.35 HKD
Israeli shekel:1.20 ILS
Japanese yen:40 JPY
Malaysian ringgit:2.00 MYR
Mexican peso:4.00 MXN
CurrencyFee
New Zealand dollar:0.45 NZD
Norwegian krone:2.80 NOK
Philippine peso:15 PHP
Polish zloty:1.35 PLN
Russian ruble:10 RUB
Singapore dollar:0.50 SGD
Swedish krona:3.25 SEK
Swiss franc:0.55 CHF
Taiwan new dollar:10 TWD
Thai baht:11 THB
UK pounds sterling:0.20 GBP
US dollar:0.30 USD

Exchange rates

PayPal’s exchange rates are calculated by a financial institution and updated multiple times a day to reflect fluctuating market conditions. PayPal’s bank adds 2.5% to a wholesale rate price to calculate the service’s retail foreign exchange rate. If you compare the rates offered by PayPal, you’ll see that they can be competitive against the rates offered by banks and other foreign exchange providers.

To view PayPal’s current exchange rates, log in to your account. On your profile summary page, click Details next to PayPal balance, then click Manage currencies. From this page you can enter the relevant information and click Calculate to see the resulting exchange rate before initiating your money transfer.

What types of transfers can you carry out with PayPal?

PayPal does not offer the flexibility of rate locks or forward contracts, but you can schedule recurring transfers using its Balance Manager. Keep in mind that doing so will incur a fee.

There’s no cash pickup option available for your recipient, with all transfers handled electronically.

Pros and cons of using PayPal

Pros
  • Easy. Sending money overseas with PayPal is fast, easy and intuitive.
  • Fast. PayPal international money transfers are faster than many other international money transfer options.
  • Secure. PayPal offers 24/7 transaction monitoring, next-level encryption and dispute resolution options. Its “deep learning” artificial intelligence technology makes it extremely resistant to fraud.
  • Customer service. There are several customer service options available if you need help with a transaction.
  • Good for small transfers. PayPal’s fees are a percentage of your transaction amount, making it a cost-effective solution when you need to transfer smaller amounts.
  • Worldwide network. PayPal is available in more than 200 countries around the world, allowing you access to a wealth of possible transfer destinations.
Cons
  • Not ideal for larger transfers. With fees that are based on a percentage of your transfer amount, PayPal might not be your best option when transferring large amounts.
  • Fees. PayPal’s fee structure can add a lot to the total cost of your transfer. Its fees are calculated based on the amount of money you are sending. If you send a large amount, expect to pay a lot in fees. Fees also vary based on where your money is going. Finally, your fee will be higher if you use a credit or debit card to fund the transaction, rather than your PayPal account or linked bank account.
  • Exchange rates. If you will be exchanging your currency to make your PayPal international money transfer, you might find that its exchange rates are not as favorable as its competitors. PayPal’s currency exchange rates start at 2.5%.

How does PayPal compare to other services?

I want to send

to

Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description CTA Details
USD 0 3 - 5 days USD 0.00 0.876 EUR 4,381 Transfer up to $500,000 with no minimums and no fees. Go to site Show details
USD 1 1 - 2 days USD 7.00 0.879 EUR
4,388
Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks. Go to site Show details
USD 1 Within an hour USD 3.99 0.877 EUR 4,382 Use promo code FINDER to send your first transfer with no fee.
Send to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up.
Go to site Show details
USD 1,000 1 day USD 0.00 0.875 EUR 4,377 Exclusive exchange rate discounts
No-maximum limit transfers with competitive exchange rates for 100+ currencies.
Go to site Show details
GBP 1,000 1 - 2 days USD 0.00 0.876 EUR 4,381 Exclusive: Minimum transfer of $1,000 for Finder readers (normally $5,000).
For larger transfers, get no transaction fees and no maximum send limits.
Go to site Show details
USD 50 1 - 2 days USD 25.00 0.875 EUR 4,355 Simple, zero-margin exchange rates, plus earn loyalty points on sign up, referral and every transaction. Go to site Show details

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How do I send an international transfer with PayPal?

It’s quick and easy to send money overseas with PayPal. If you don’t already have a PayPal account, you’ll need to sign up for one before you can transfer money internationally. Accounts are free to open and you can apply online; you’ll just need to provide the following details:

  • Your name and date of birth
  • Your email address and phone number
  • Your residential address
  • The details of your linked bank account or credit card

Once you’ve signed up, you can use your PayPal account to purchase a range of goods and services online; you can also start transferring money overseas. From start to finish, the whole PayPal international money transfer process takes just a few minutes.

  1. Log in to your account and click on the Send Money tab.
  2. Enter your recipient’s phone number or email address, the amount you want to send and a description of the transfer.
  3. PayPal will give you a total cost for the transaction, including transfer fees and currency exchange rate, when applicable.
  4. Review this information and click Send Money if you are ready to transfer your funds.

You can use PayPal to transfer money internationally from:

  • Your PayPal account balance
  • Your linked bank account
  • Your linked credit or debit card

The funds will be available in your recipient’s PayPal account almost immediately. They can then keep the money in their PayPal account or transfer it to a linked bank account. Transferring it to a bank account can take several days.

You can also use Xoom, a PayPal service, to make an international money transfer without signing up for a PayPal account.

Bitcoin vs. PayPal

How do I withdraw funds from a PayPal account?

There are three different ways to withdraw money from your PayPal account:

  1. Receive a check. Log into your PayPal account and select Transfer to Your Bank under your balance. Then, click Request a Check By Mail Instead. If you’re a US customer, you should receive the check in one to two weeks. However, if you’re outside of the US, it could take up to six weeks for you to receive your check.
  2. Transfer to your bank account. Log into your PayPal account and choose how much money you’d like to transfer to your bank account. Then, select which bank account you’d like to transfer the funds to. The minimum amount you can transfer is $1, there are no fees involved and it usually takes one business day for the transaction to go through.
  3. Use an eligible Visa or MasterCard debit or prepaid card. If you’re looking to get your funds fast, then using an eligible card to transfer funds to your bank account is the way to go. This usually takes 30 minutes or less, but it does cost $0.25 per transfer. If you have a PayPal Debit MasterCard, you can withdraw up to $400 per day from any ATM by selecting Checking Account when you withdraw the money. You can also use your PayPal Debit MasterCard to make purchases using your PayPal account anywhere MasterCards are accepted.

Bottom line

If you’re looking for an easy solution to your international money transfer needs, compare PayPal’s features, benefits and fees with those of other money transfer providers to find the safest and most cost-effective transfer method available.
Looking for an alternative? Compare services like PayPal to get the best rates and fees.

Frequently asked questions about PayPal money transfers

Methodology

Our team analyzes money transfer providers offering services in the US — from big names to digital upstarts. We rank rates and fees, speed, services and user experience for:

  • TransferWise
  • XE
  • OFX
  • WorldRemit
  • Currencies Direct
  • Western Union
  • RIA Money Transfer
  • MoneyGram
  • Remitly
  • Payoneer
  • Remit2India
  • Xoom
  • PayPal

Learn the details of our methodology and scoring.

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US International Money Transfers Offers

Important Information*
XE Money Transfer

Transfer up to $500,000 with no minimums and no fees.

WorldRemit International Money Transfers

Use promo code FINDER to send your first transfer with no fee.
Send to 110+ countries for bank-to-bank deposit, cash pickup or mobile top-up.

TransferWise

Enjoy high maximum transfers into more than 20 currencies while saving up to 90% over local banks.

CurrencyTransfer

Exclusive: Minimum transfer of $1,000 for Finder readers (normally $5,000).
For larger transfers, get no transaction fees and no maximum send limits.

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42 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    KingFebruary 9, 2019

    It stated that Nigerian Paypal accounts cannot receive fund. What about refunds, from an online store for example and payment has been made via PayPal?

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaFebruary 18, 2019Staff

      Hi King,

      Thanks for getting in touch with Finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      Generally speaking, you can’t receive money to your PayPal account if it is opened in Nigeria. However, when it comes to refunds from online merchants, I have read people saying that it is possible. They also mentioned that it takes about 2-3 days for the refund to get through. Moreover, the refund would go directly to your linked bank account and not in your PayPal account.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  2. Default Gravatar
    LuckyJanuary 3, 2019

    It is possible for me to receive money from US PayPal account to my Nigeria PayPal account..

    • finder Customer Care
      EllieJanuary 3, 2019Staff

      Hi Lucky,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. At this time Nigerian PayPal accounts cannot receive funds. However, you can send money through PayPal.

      I hope this helps. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us again if you have additional questions.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Regards,
      Ellie

  3. Default Gravatar
    ErikaJanuary 1, 2019

    Is it possible to move money from my European bank account to my American one? Are there any fees I should be aware of?

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaJanuary 2, 2019Staff

      Hi Erika,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      Yes, it is possible for you to move money from your European bank account to your American bank account. All you need to do is ask your bank about the exact steps on how to accomplish this.

      Regarding the fees, yes, there are fees you should know about. Typically, bank fees may range from $0 to $30. You would need to directly get in touch with your bank to know exactly how much fees you need to pay.

      Alternatively, you may also consider using international money transfer services.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  4. Default Gravatar
    JennyDecember 27, 2018

    I’m moving from U.S. to Taiwan. How do I transfer my U.S. PayPal balance to the Taiwan bank account directly? Can I transfer to the foreign currency account? Or, it would be easier if I open a Taiwan PayPal account? Thank you.

    • finder Customer Care
      ValDecember 29, 2018Staff

      Hi Jenny,

      Thank you for contacting finder! You can use the same PayPal account even if you transfer to Taiwan and yes you can transfer to a foreign currency account. Though the exchange rates may not be that favorable, it is advisable that once you have transferred all your funds to your Taiwan bank account, you may update your PayPal details as well.

      Hope this helps

      Regards,
      Val

  5. Default Gravatar
    mcswainDecember 21, 2018

    hi, can my family in the Commonwealth of Dominica open a pay pal account is it available in Dominica

    • finder Customer Care
      ValDecember 21, 2018Staff

      Hi Mcswain,

      Thank you for leaving a question.
      Yes, Paypal is available in more than 200 countries/regions and support 25 currencies.And Dominica is one of the countries they support.

      Hope this helps!

      Regards,
      Val

  6. Default Gravatar
    mrtoeic1November 30, 2018

    Can I ask my aunt in South Korea to open a South Korean paypal account so she can send money to my USA paypal accpunt?

    • finder Customer Care
      AshDecember 6, 2018Staff

      Hi Mr. Toeic,

      Thank you for reaching out to us.

      Yes, your Aunt can open a Paypal Account in South Korea and use it to send money to your Paypal account. You will need to provide her your email address registered in Paypal for the transaction.

      I hope this helps.

      Please do not hesitate to reach out again to us if you have additional questions that you need help with.

      Cheers,
      Ash

  7. Default Gravatar
    DennisOctober 10, 2018

    I have been sending 1000$ to my wife in Czech Republic and it costs like 75 to 115 dollars from Western Union. Pay Pal customer service just told me that a 10 Crown fee and a maximum 4.99$ fee would be the max – Only – one time- dream come true fee for the same amount. Is this true by your experience?

    • finder Customer Care
      JoshuaOctober 14, 2018Staff

      Hi Dennis,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well with you. :)

      Yes, this is true. when you send money outside the US, the flat fee is between $2.99 and $4.99. There are also other options that you might want to try. Check our guide on how to send money to the Czech Republic and know other ways to transfer money to your wife.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  8. Default Gravatar
    BryannaSeptember 3, 2018

    Hi, my name is Bryanna, I was wondering if a friend of mine was sending a paypal of 500 pounds which is 648 dollars in US where I am from. He is from Scotland. He sent the money Friday and today is Monday, I was wondering how long it’ll take to show in my paypal?

    • finder Customer Care
      johnbasanesSeptember 6, 2018Staff

      Hi Bryanna,

      Thank you for leaving a question.

      Normally, Paypal transfer between personal accounts takes 2-3 business days for this to be processed. If you have not received it yet after this time frame, you may want to call Paypal customer service for further assistance. Hope this helps!

      Cheers,
      Reggie

  9. Default Gravatar
    OrdlyAugust 28, 2018

    Hi, I send money to a friend,
    And his paypal is linked with his atm card. can he withraw the money thru his atm card? If not, where can he withraw the money.

    • finder Customer Care
      johnbasanesAugust 28, 2018Staff

      Hi Ordly,

      Thank you for leaving a question.

      Depending on how your friend setup his Paypal account when it comes to withdrawing funds, he may be able to withdraw it using the ATM linked to his Paypal account.

      Hope this helps!
      Reggie

  10. Default Gravatar
    LizAugust 8, 2018

    If someone is sending money from a European country to the US, how long does it generally take? Also, will it show that a payment is pending into my account?

    • Default Gravatar
      joelmarceloAugust 9, 2018

      Hi Liz,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      The international transfer time using Paypal will usually take 3 – 5 days.

      Here are some definitions to help you understand the status of a payment you send:

      – Canceled: You canceled your payment, and the money was credited back to your account.
      – Cleared: Money from an eCheck that you sent has been deposited in the recipient’s account.
      – Cleared by Payment Review: They reviewed the transaction and the money is in the recipient’s account.
      – Completed: The transaction was successful and the money is in the recipient’s account.
      – Denied: The recipient didn’t accept your payment, and the money was credited back to your account. View the transaction details to see why your payment was denied or contact the recipient for more information.
      – Failed: Your payment didn’t go through. We recommend that you try your payment again.
      – Held: They’re reviewing the transaction and your payment might be reversed. You should check the Resolution Center in Paypal for more information.
      – In progress: Your payment was sent, but the recipient hasn’t accepted it yet.
      – On hold: They’re holding the money temporarily because either you filed a dispute or They’re reviewing the transaction. Look for an email from Paypal with more information about this transaction.
      – Paid: Someone requested money from you and you sent them a payment.
      – Partially Refunded: Your payment was partially refunded.
      – Pending Verification: They’re reviewing the transaction. We’ll send your payment to the recipient after your payment source has been verified.
      – Placed: They have placed a temporary hold on your payment. Look for an email from them with more information.
      – Processing: They’re processing your payment and the transaction should be completed shortly.
      – Refunded: The recipient returned your payment. If you used a credit card to make your payment, the money will be returned to your credit card. It can take up to 30 days for the refund to appear on your statement.
      – Refused: The recipient didn’t receive your payment. If you still want to make your payment, we recommend that you try again.
      – Removed: The hold on your payment was removed and the transaction should be completed shortly.
      – Returned: Money was returned to your account because the recipient didn’t claim your payment within 30 days. PayPal members can manually reverse unclaimed payments before the 30-day automatic reversal.
      – Reversed: Either you canceled the transaction or Paypal did.
      – Temporary hold: Money from your account is being held temporarily during the authorization process. The recipient isn’t able to use or withdraw this money until the authorization is complete.
      – Unclaimed: The recipient hasn’t accepted or received your payment. Unclaimed transactions are automatically canceled after 30 days.

      If you just sent the money, instead of saying “Pending” it will say “In Progress”. Hope it helps!

      Cheers,
      Joel

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