Bogus PayPal Charge

Unfortunately this post is not about a dubious individual hacking into your PayPal account, or somehow managing to swipe some cash.

This post is about PayPal itself charging 2.9%+$.30 per transaction, even when the individual sending money uses their linked bank account, and not a credit or debit card.

PayPal charges 2.9%+$.30 for each cash transfer transaction for a credit or debit card, but is free when sending money from either your PayPal balance, or from a linked bank account.

This makes sense considering standard Visa and MasterCard transactions typically charge the same fee.  Why should PayPal get charged 3% for your cash transaction to family and friends?  Of course they are going to pass that cost on to the customer.

However, there appears to be another case.  In my case I sent my father a request for some money, simply to make the transaction easier for him to navigate.  However, it appears that this is what generated these additional charges.  Had he simply sent me money, without a request, and used his bank account to do so, no charges would have been generated.

I do not see that we should be penalized for me to make such a transaction easier for my older father to follow.  This wasn’t a payment for goods and services, there was no invoice, and we share the same last name, of course.

So, this is not exactly a scam, and it is disclosed in their FAQ/Help section, however, I wonder how many people have been unwittingly duped out of some much needed money, simply because they requested it from a friend or a relative, rather than their friend or relative simply sending it.

And if you think PayPal is hurting, in 2014 PayPal generated $7.9B in revenue, and its founders believe it is on the way to a $100B valuation.

Such a revenue and valuation should be built on complete and utter transparency.

I have been a happy PayPal customer since 2002, and I am still a happy PayPal customer, however these fees for a money request are a bit underhanded.

UPDATE:  PayPal has refunded 55% of the fees, however, my feeling is 100% of these fees should be refunded.  I do not yet know if the case is closed as I have not received an email, however, the ticket had an anticipated queue of 48 hours, so it is possible the balance will be refunded as well.

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