Why is PayPal bad and what alternative to use instead?

When it was first released in 1999, PayPal was revolutionary. I created my account with the service in 2004, when I was still in high school.
Back then, PayPal was the only way to transfer money easily online. Even more, not having a local alternative it was irreplacable.
However times change, but PayPal keep their bad practices the same. In this article I will mentions some of the appalling ways of PayPal and suggest how to avoid them.

This post contains a lot of nitpicking, so if you don’t like it, please look away.

Conversion rates

This link, explains where to find PayPal’s exchange rates, however, when you’re logged in, the content is missing…
https://www.paypal.com/lu/smarthelp/article/where-can-i-find-paypal's-currency-exchange-rates-faq1976

Expensive fees

  • Even though they support many currencies for their accounts, PayPal doesn’t allow you to withdraw into these currencies to your bank account. Instead they want you to withdraw in your local currency, giving you vey bad conversion rates. Even worse than those your bank may offer, which was my case.
  • The only other withdrawal option is to use a VISA or Mastercaard, and withdraw in USD. The catch is that, again, they will want you to provide a card issued by a local bank, so you can’t use some services that offer an international card. Also they will take 2USD/EUR based on location for every withdrawal, so it makes no sense to withdraw small amounts of money.
  • Be very careful if you are an eBay user outside of the USA - collectively eBay and PayPal charged me around 30% of the purchase price, when I sold an item…

Very restrictive

Their policies are very restrictive. I sent the following unquiry:

Hello. I have a bank card in USD currency, to which i want to withdraw some USD. Your system automatically converts everything to my local currency. How can i avoid the conversion and just transfer the money in USD?

To which they replied:

You can not withdraw money to your bank account in USD only in BGN.To be able avoid conversion you need to tell us last four digits of card which you need to change currency and we will do that for you. Minimum withdrawal to card will be 10 USD and maximum 500 USD per transaction and fee would be 2 USD per transaction. I look forward to receiving your response and assisting you further.

Okay, I understand - maybe it’s not possible to send foreign currency to a local account for some reason. Now they say I should provide a card number, so I wrote them the information they need and here’s what happened:

You can not withdraw money to your bank account in USD only in BGN. You can not withdraw money to Rewolut bank account only to local Bulgarian bank.To be able avoid conversion you need to tell us last four digits of card which you need to change currency and we will do that for you. Minimum withdrawal to card will be 10 USD and maximum 500 USD per transaction and fee would be 2 USD per transaction. I look forward to receiving your response and assisting you further.

Then again, i inquired about the reasons why this is like that…

You can not withdraw money to Rewolut bank account only to local Bulgarian bank

May i ask why it is not possible to withdraw money to my Revolut account?
Your system allows it just fine, but still in EUR instead of BGN or USD.

You can not withdraw money to your bank account in USD only in BGN

Your system actually tries to send EUR to my bank accounts, so it must be possible to change that to USD. This time there is no fee, but there is still conversion. Is it a technical reason that I am denied the change to USD for a bank transfer or ToS don’t allow it?

… and this last time i didn’t receive a response.

Alternatives

Afterthough

If I have any choice, I’d never use PayPal again. Unfortunately the service is still very popular and convenient for some countries, like the USA. While the other services are gaining traction, they still have their own limitations. So far, Transferwise looks like the most promising competitor out there.

Custom maintenance page on Nginx Migrating Wordpress to Hexo and what to be careful about.

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