Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
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Within the last few years, I've paid pals in these ways:

PayPal
44
21%
Other person-to-person phone or Internet electronic payment system
16
8%
Bitcoins
3
1%
Cash
62
30%
Check
56
27%
Money order
2
1%
Barter
12
6%
Precious metal
2
1%
Local scrip, community currency, or loyalty program (get certificates in exchange for local purchases, redeem for other local purchases)
4
2%
Other
5
2%
 
Total votes: 206

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nisiprius
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Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by nisiprius »

[Added] IMPORTANT: This poll is not about whether you use PayPal, it is about whether you use PayPal in a certain way. Is PayPal replacing checks for small local transactions with people who don't have merchant accounts? Some examples, from responses below, that are exactly the sort of thing that qualify are:
  • "I used to pay rent by Paypal in the USA, at the request of my landlord.
  • "Every year my friends and I use it to collect money for Fantasy Football."
  • "Paid someone back for splitting a dinner bill."
-----

Within the last couple of years, have you been in a situation where you needed to pay an acquaintance--that is, someone with whom you had some relationship other than the purchase itself--and used PayPal or some other similar electronic service to do it?

In general, purchases of something from an Internet website (eBay, Bogleheads donation, etc.) don't count. Club dues, donations, reimbursing someone for money they spent on your behalf, church collections, etc. do. Paying small local businesspeople for business transactions count if you know their name and would say hi if you met them on the street. (E.g. someone who does tax prep in their home office).
Last edited by nisiprius on Sat Feb 04, 2012 6:30 am, edited 2 times in total.
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gkaplan
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by gkaplan »

What's Paypal?
Gordon
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by sscritic »

I used it once to buy audio equipment on E-bay from someone who lived on the opposite coast. Now Paypal generates spam in my inbox; 1/3 is actually from them, the other 2/3 is phishing attempts.
FafnerMorell
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by FafnerMorell »

Well, if they had called the site "PayQuasiAnonymousStranger4InterwebsRelatedTransaction", I doubt it would have been as popular as it is.
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mhc
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by mhc »

I try to avoid paypal, but I just used it for a security deposit on a rental that I found on VRBO.

I have used my banks billpay to send my brother a check. I normally don't have to pay people to be my friend. :D
pshonore
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by pshonore »

Paypal generally charges a fee to recipients of payments.
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HueyLD
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by HueyLD »

sscritic wrote:I used it once to buy audio equipment on E-bay from someone who lived on the opposite coast. Now Paypal generates spam in my inbox; 1/3 is actually from them, the other 2/3 is phishing attempts.
I also used Paypal once to make a donation. However, all the spam and phishing emails resulting from a single usage was very unsettling.
Tom_T
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by Tom_T »

Yes. Someone I know, who collects a small amount of money annually from a group of friends for a hobby, asks that we pay via PayPal instead of sending a check. I've done it for the last few years.

As for spam/phishing, I rarely get them. I use Gmail, and Google does a very good job of screening out spam. Previously, I used Comcast, and they also prevented most spam from reaching my inbox.
Last edited by Tom_T on Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
Radnog
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by Radnog »

I've used it several times. I think it's a great service.

Every year my friends and I use it to collect money for Fantasy Football. Since we're not all local anymore, PayPal is the easiest (and cheapest) way to send a little cash to someone.

Just like most financial services, there are tricks to reducing and eliminating fees. example: If you just send someone $100 you can do it free, without a fee. But, if you request $100 be sent to you (invoice) a fee will get tacked on if that user replies with the cash. Thus, send your payment reminders to friends using normal email. That convenient link generated by the PayPal request money feature will cost you a couple bucks!
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greg24
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by greg24 »

Radnog wrote:Every year my friends and I use it to collect money for Fantasy Football. Since we're not all local anymore, PayPal is the easiest (and cheapest) way to send a little cash to someone.
+1
JULIE
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by JULIE »

I use it between friends when I am doing large group orders so people do not have to take time off work or work around their busy schedule to meet with me twice.

I also have paid people who do group amusement park ticket orders in the area so I do not have to drive 1/2 hour out of my way to meet them. I also add on enough for postage so they can dump it in the mail without me having to run out to the middle of nowhere to meet up with them if we do not have plans that week.

I have also used paypal to do pre-orders from crafty friends.
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asnigro
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by asnigro »

There are no fees for when you are doing "personal transfers" and the money is taken out of a bank account or from their Paypal balance.
https://cms.paypal.com/cgi-bin/marketin ... ng_us/fees

I only use the bank transfer methods as to avoid the fees for both parties involved.

Other than make payments on eBay and other e-commerce sites, I use Paypal to:

-accept rent payments from tenants

-pay rent to my landlord

-pay misc sports bets against friends

-pay and collect fantasy football dues.

-transactions on craigslist (after talking to the person on the phone and other methods of determining if they're legit)

Has worked great for me so far.
BuckyBadger
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by BuckyBadger »

I use it a lot for personal stuff. There are no fees going from bank account to bank account.

I've used PayPal to do the following things:

Cleaning lady
Rent
Repayment of utility fees to the person who paid the bill
Paid my dad back for materials he used to do some repairs on my house
Paid someone back for splitting a dinner bill

I love it. I also, of course, use it for eBay.
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daytona084
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by daytona084 »

I do not use cash for anything. My favorite way to send money is P2P payment via my online bank. PayPal also works fine. I have another online bank that can make payments via Popmoney but have not tried that yet. I might try it out by sending a payment to myself to see how it works.

Whether PayPal collects a fee depends on what type of account the recipient has and whether a credit card was used for the funds. PayPal tells the sender exactly what the recipient will get before sending.

I have been a PayPal user for probably 10 years and do not receive regular emails from them. There must be a way to unsubscribe.
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ejvyas
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by ejvyas »

pshonore wrote:Paypal generally charges a fee to recipients of payments.
Only if you use Credit Card. If you pay by bank to bank it is free. There are no fees.

I have 0 spam emails via paypal. I am surprized people are complaining about Spam when it is so easy to filter out messages. I hardly receive any Spam in my mailbox nowadays. May be its the magic of Gmail
RookieMistake
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by RookieMistake »

I just started using Chase Quickpay to pay/collect money to/from friends. It's free and easy.
griffins80
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by griffins80 »

I used to use paypal to pay friends and for fantasy football collection, etc. There was a fee but not sure about now. I have been using Discover card's send money function which uses paypal. There is no fee and I get a cashback bonus. Pretty cool! There are lot of P2P payment options nowadays...its so much more convenient than money order/check.
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ladders11
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by ladders11 »

gkaplan wrote:What's Paypal?
Paypal is an unregulated bank, and a monopolist on eBay auction payments. They sell accountholder's personal data and they sell credit cards. For auctions, they are judge and jury in one.

Most people use it to pay for an eBay auction, or to receive payments for eBay auctions. Their fees are charged on top of the eBay auction fees. Should you receive a payment, beware that they are interested in preventing you from withdrawing it, unless to pay eBay. They consider it legal to "hold" your money, and to "change your account status" so that your money is always held, even if you have had the account for 10 years and done nothing that could even possibly be considered negative. If asked for a reason, they may just send you a whole list of potential reasons, none of which apply to you, other than the fact that you are not generating enough income for them to care about.
BuckyBadger
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by BuckyBadger »

I get about 1 email a week from PayPal. And that might be an overstatement.
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plannerman
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by plannerman »

Yes, but not intentionally.

Last Saturday morning we received an e-mail from Paypal saying they had discontinued our credit card and it could no longer be used to pay for items we purchased using Paypal.
Since we hadn't made any recent Paypal transactions, we called them as soon as we opened the e-mail to find out what was going on. To make a long story short, some one charged $999.00 for "Professional Services" on our credit card using a "guest" Paypal account (you may want to Google that). The transaction apparently triggered Paypal's security software which kicked out the e-mail saying they had discontinued our card. We immediately called Citibank to cancel our card to minimize further unauthorized charges. Citibank could see the $999.00 charge from Paypal but it wasn't posted to our account yet. I thought we had caught the fraudulent transaction before Citicard paid Paypal and all we would have to do is deal with changing the canceled credit card number on file with a couple dozen online retailers. But on Tuesday, lo and behold what appeared on our online credit card account--the $999.00 Paypal charge.

Kinda boggles the mind. Both Paypal and Citicard knew the charge was bogus, but that didn't stop them from posting it to our account.

So yes I guess I have paid someone using Paypal.

plannerman
Last edited by plannerman on Fri Feb 03, 2012 4:06 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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interplanetjanet
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by interplanetjanet »

Yes, mainly to loan money quickly to two friends - one was travelling internationally at the time.

I use USAAs free ACH push service much more often though, about four times per month. I love that things clear next-day and I've never, ever had a problem with it. Someone does have to trust me enough to give me a voided check for this to work.

-janet
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NAVigator
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by NAVigator »

ejvyas wrote:
pshonore wrote:Paypal generally charges a fee to recipients of payments.
Only if you use Credit Card. If you pay by bank to bank it is free. There are no fees.

I have 0 spam emails via paypal. I am surprized people are complaining about Spam when it is so easy to filter out messages. I hardly receive any Spam in my mailbox nowadays. May be its the magic of Gmail
What's spam?

I also use gmail and it is extremely effective.

I have used Paypal several times for various payments and donations. I have used it many times with eBay.

Jerry
"I was born with nothing and I have most of it left."
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Ice-9
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by Ice-9 »

I've always avoided Paypal. I don't see any use for it.

I pay for most stuff on the internet using credit cards. If it's a sketchy website that gives me jitters about providing my real credit card info, I generate a one-time secure number on Discover Card's website.

I pay my "pals" either by internet check from my brick and mortar bank's website or else if we're comfy exchanging account numbers by ACH transfer using ING Direct's P2P payment feature.

As I said above, I didn't have much use for them anyway, but Paypal lost any potential for my business a few months ago when they started sending me the personal info of an account holder with my last name. I called them to notify them of the mistake, then received e-mails stating that they were temporarily locking the account while it was being investigated, and then the next day that they were reopening the account. Then I proceeded to receive more and more of these e-mails intended for another person. I tracked that person down on the internet using the personal info Paypal sent to my e-mail and told them all about it, and that individual managed to get it straightened out a week later.
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GregLee
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by GregLee »

I don't have any financial relationships with pals. I do use Paypal, mainly for Ebay purchases, through a credit card. No complaints. I don't get spam or phishing that I can identify as being associated with Paypal.
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by sscritic »

NAVigator wrote: What's spam?

I also use gmail and it is extremely effective.
We may have a definitional problem. Spam that goes into your spam box is still spam. If you don't want to miss the e-mail your Aunt Sadie sent you from her new Hand Crocheted Foot Socks for Cats business, you have to look in your spam box once in a while. Not looking at it doesn't mean you didn't receive it.
(messages that have been in Spam more than 30 days will be automatically deleted)
Hooray, no spam here!
Gmail's spam filters also work in your IMAP client by automatically diverting messages that are suspected of being unwanted messages into '[Gmail]/Spam' and keeping them out of your inbox.

If you find a message that should be marked as spam, just move it to '[Gmail]/Spam.' This is just like clicking 'Report Spam' in the Gmail web interface and helps us to improve our spam filters.

If you find a message wrongly classified as spam, you can move the message out of '[Gmail]/Spam' to the appropriate folder in your client.
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Cloud
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by Cloud »

I usually pay with my online bank using bill pay and try and avoid Pay Pal at all costs.
rylemdr
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by rylemdr »

I don't think the OP understands that the intended name for PayPal has nothing to do with your pals.

The name PayPal denotes that the company is your "go to" payment service.

It is more, "PayPal is your best friend for making payments", rather than, "PayPal is used to pay your friends".

I have used PayPal to receive payment from my sales on ebay. :)
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NightOwl
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by NightOwl »

greg24 wrote:
Radnog wrote:Every year my friends and I use it to collect money for Fantasy Football. Since we're not all local anymore, PayPal is the easiest (and cheapest) way to send a little cash to someone.
+1
+2. Great ff payment mechanism.

I also used PayPal to reimburse the organizer of a friend's bachelor party this past year. Very convenient.

Btw, I'm old enough not to say "what's a check?", but I'm on the cusp. I have two checkbooks sitting in a drawer, and I think I write about two checks per year for things that I somehow can't pay otherwise. Talk about obsolete.

NightOwl
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GregLee
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by GregLee »

rylemdr wrote:I don't think the OP understands that the intended name for PayPal has nothing to do with your pals.
We would know for sure that there was this misunderstanding, only if the thread had been titled: "Have you ever actually used Paypal to do that?"
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sscritic
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by sscritic »

The OP is usually pretty clear:
More generally: within the last couple of years, have you been in a situation where you needed to pay an acquaintance--that is, someone with whom you had some relationship other than the purchase itself--and used PayPal or some other similar electronic service to do it?
I can read "acquaintance" and I can read "similar electronic service." "Paypal to pay a pal" was the hook to get you to read the thread. And it worked. I don't see any misunderstanding on the OP's part.
rylemdr
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by rylemdr »

sscritic wrote:The OP is usually pretty clear:
More generally: within the last couple of years, have you been in a situation where you needed to pay an acquaintance--that is, someone with whom you had some relationship other than the purchase itself--and used PayPal or some other similar electronic service to do it?
I can read "acquaintance" and I can read "similar electronic service." "Paypal to pay a pal" was the hook to get you to read the thread. And it worked. I don't see any misunderstanding on the OP's part.
Aha! Misleading post! I got suckered in..
sscritic
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by sscritic »

This thread actually derives from the thread about using checks. Some people claimed they never wrote checks, but questions arose around the issues of the PTA, children's lessons, etc. That brings us to this: do you really use Paypal or your bank's bill pay system to send $20 to your grandchild for his birthday? In other words, do you pay a pal with Paypal? And that is this thread. I still don't see how anything was misleading. It seems it would only be misleading if someone read the title of the thread but didn't actually read the OP.

P.S. You may have walked into the middle of a conversation that had already been going on for a while (the other thread). When you miss the first half of the conversation, you could be lost and not understand for a while.
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kramer
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by kramer »

I use Paypal for:

* ebay auction payments
* one night's prepayment on hotels (common method in SouthEast Asia, rarely use my credit card in SE Asia)
* funding my Skype account
* I once sold some airline voucher credits and was paid by Paypal both times
* I leave my Paypal debit card in the USA during my extended travels. In an emergency, I can use it as a credit card to fund internet things remotely (like my mail service which would send me replacement debit cards) and even to pay back my family if they ever had to send me money.
* I used to pay rent by Paypal in the USA, at the request of my landlord. I don't think there were any fees the way it was set up.

I would use it to pay my family electronically, but none of them have Paypal and so I write them checks or pay cash.

Kramer
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nisiprius
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by nisiprius »

Anyone who checked PayPal thinking it just means "I use PayPal," please un-check it unless you are using it in the specific way I was asking about.
rylemdr wrote:I don't think the OP understands that the intended name for PayPal has nothing to do with your pals... I have used PayPal to receive payment from my sales on ebay. :)
No, I didn't misunderstand. I was a very early adopter of PayPal. When I started using PayPal they gave you $5 or $10 for opening my account and they didn't charge the recipient if the payer used a credit card, that's how early I was. I was, perhaps, too clever in my thread title. Perhaps you don't remember, but the name PayPal accurately reflects the way it was originally promoted in its very early days.

Its use on eBay skyrocketed, perhaps unexpectedly; I've used PayPal more for eBay purchases than all other uses combined.

I was indeed following up on a thread about how many checks people write and should have said so. My main use of checks is for settling small obligations with acquaintances, club dues, local businesses without merchant accounts, etc. I was curious to see whether things had progressed to the point of using PayPal for that kind of near-personal payment.

Let me repeat. The poll is not asking whether you use PayPal, it's about whether you use it in a certain way. It's not "do people use it on eBay, or as a substitute for a merchant account." It's more like, "can you assume that people of the Skype and Facebook generation all have PayPal accounts?"
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LonePrairie
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by LonePrairie »

I've used PayPay a few times over the years when a friend was collecting donations for gifts such as a certificate for Waiters on Wheels for someone who had just had a baby ... things like that.
AlohaJoe
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by AlohaJoe »

nisiprius wrote:can you assume that people of the Skype and Facebook generation all have PayPal accounts?"
If you restrict yourself to America this may be "true enough". But Facebook has over 800 million users so the "Facebook" generation extends far beyond 300 million Americans.

Other countries (my only actual experience is with Australia but I'm given to understand we are not unique here) have electronic banking systems that are superior to what Americans have. I can pay any merchant in Australia, or any friend or acquaintance for that matter (I have done so many times), without involving PayPal or any third party. It is basically the equivalent of EFT deposits that most Americans do with their paycheck, except I can go to my bank's website, select "Pay Anyone" from the dropdown and fill in the necessary details. When I buy from an Australian merchant on EBay I often use direct desposit in this manner.
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PaddyMac
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by PaddyMac »

I try to avoid using Paypal, unless required. I don't like them as a company (read horror stories galore online). They need some competition so customer service improves.

However, I do a number of websites for small organizations with 50-200 members, and adding Paypal to their website allows their members to take in dues, pay for workshops and so on, with a credit card. The org. loses 3% or so, but if it helps with renewals it's worth it.
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Abe
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by Abe »

My wife sells items on eBay and Paypal is real convenient. Most of the time, when our auction ends, our Paypal account is credited with the payment within an hour or so. We don't have to wait for a check and then wait for the check to clear, etc. We know immediately that we have the money and we can ship the item without any more worry. I don't like having to pay a fee to eBay and also pay a fee to Paypal, but that's the way it is. It's worth it to us.
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daytona084
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Re: Have you ever actually used Paypal to pay a pal?

Post by daytona084 »

I totally understood the OP to mean paying friends... not just "Do you use PayPal"... But posters are still answering "do you use PayPal" even after the OP clarified that's not what he meant. The poll asks specifically about "Paying pals".
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