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You can now use your PayPal account to shop online and make PayPal friends and family payments in Singapore and around the world¹ .
PayPal Singapore has a slightly chequered history, having previously offered personal payments, before stopping this service back in 2013². However, the good news is that PayPal personal payments are back - and this guide has all you need to know, including PayPal Singapore fees, availability and the answers to some common PayPal Singapore questions.
Before we get started it’s worth noting that here we’ll focus on the PayPal fees for personal accounts. If you’re interested in getting PayPal for business, check out the full guide to PayPal business accounts in Singapore here.
As with any financial product you’ll want to understand how much it’ll cost to use PayPal before you sign up. While many simple transactions - and most local shopping you’ll do online - are free, there are some costs to consider for more complex transactions. These can mount up fast if you’re caught unawares.
Let’s start with a look at the key PayPal transaction fees for Singapore.
|Transaction type||PayPal Singapore fee|
|Shopping online||No fee unless currency conversion is required³|
|Send payments||Free to send when funded using your PayPal balance or a linked bank account⁴. If the payment method you choose will involve a fee, you’ll be notified before the payment is processed.⁵ Recipient fees may apply. Sender will pay any relevant currency conversion fee|
|Currency conversion fee||3% - 4% depending on transaction type|
|Withdraw funds to your local card||1% of amount transferred, to a maximum of 15 SGD|
|Withdraw funds to a USD bank account||3% + any applicable currency conversion fee|
For local payments to friends and family, which you fund with your PayPal balance or a linked bank account there is no fee. However, if you’re sending money internationally or require currency conversion at all, you may find there’s a charge.
You’ll be notified of transaction fees before you confirm your transfer - don’t forget to check the applied exchange rate if you’re sending money overseas, too. As we noted above, you’ll likely pay a currency conversion markup of up to 4% which can mean your recipient gets less than you expect in the end.
There’s not usually an upfront fee for receiving money - however, if someone sends a payment in a different currency you may need to convert it to SGD to receive it. This currency conversion will be processed using the PayPal exchange rate, which includes a markup of up to 4%.
In some cases it is possible to receive foreign currency payments to your PayPal Singapore account and simply start a new balance in the foreign currency instead. You can then use these funds later when you shop online with international retailers for example. However, because you can often only withdraw funds from PayPal in your home currency, you may need to convert any foreign currency you hold before you can transfer it back to your regular bank account.
You’ll see the fees which will apply when you start to set up your withdrawal of funds from PayPal Singapore. The costs vary depending on the currency balance you hold, and how you want to withdraw it.
If you’re withdrawing SGD to a local card, you’ll pay a fee of 1% of the total withdrawal value. Withdrawing USD to a USD denominated account costs 3% of the value. Don’t forget there will also be any relevant currency conversion costs if you hold balances in different currencies.
PayPal will show you the fees you’ll pay as well as any relevant exchange rate when you set up personal payments and transfers. However, you can also use an online PayPal fee calculator, or the handy Wise PayPal fee calculator if you use - or are considering using - PayPal to sell overseas, to check out the costs involved here.
There are limits to how much you can send to friends and family with PayPal. These limits do vary and are linked to your account type, and how many verification steps you have completed. Check the limits which apply to your account online - you may be able to complete further verification stages to increase the applicable limits.
PayPal is a giant in online shopping, and has handy ways to send quick transfers to local friends and family. However, when it comes to any international transactions, PayPal’s fees may not offer the best value available.
If you’re sending money to a friend, family member or business based overseas - or if you love to spend online with international retailers, you could save with Wise and the Wise multi-currency account.
Send one off payments, or open a Wise international account online for free - here’s what you’ll get:
- Currency conversion which uses the real mid-market exchange rate with no hidden fees or conversion cost
- Send money to a broad range of countries, and open a Wise account to hold and manage 50+ currencies in the same place
- It’s free to spend any currency you hold, just convert your fund to the currency you need to shop, and avoid foreign transaction fees
- Get a linked Wise debit card for ATM withdrawals and in person payments - or add your card to Apple Pay or Google Pay for mobile payments
- Wise is MAS licensed and regulated, so you know your money is safe no matter what currency you’re holding it in
When you send money to someone with PayPal the time it takes to arrive will depend on how you fund the payment and where it’s headed. Typically payments funded with a bank account take longer than those using a card or your PayPal balance - and international transfers may take a little longer than local ones.
You’ll be able to check the payment status within your PayPal account to see when it’s likely to arrive.
When you send money to someone with PayPal Singapore, they’ll need to have - or create - their own PayPal account to receive the funds⁶. If they don’t already have PayPal, the recipient will get an email saying there’s money there for them, with instructions on how to create an account. They’ll need to do this, and accept the payment within 30 days, or the money is returned to you.
PayPal is a household name for a good reason, with some great services for people who want to send payments and shop online. However, while PayPal is typically convenient it may not be the best value out there, depending on the type of transactions you need to make. If you’re sending or spending internationally you could save considerably with the 6x cheaper international account and card from Wise. Get your Wise account for free, with no minimum balance and no monthly charge to worry about, so you can see what all the fuss is about.
- PayPal Singapore Help Centre - How do I send payments with my PayPal account?
- TechCrunch - PayPal Stops Personal Payments In Singapore
- PayPal Singapore - Consumer fees
- PayPal Singapore - How to make payments online
- PayPal Singapore - PayPal User Agreement
- PayPal Singapore Help Centre - What does it mean if my PayPal payment is denied, refunded, or unclaimed?
Sources checked on 14th September 2021
This publication is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to cover every aspect of the topics with which it deals. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You must obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content in this publication. The information in this publication does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its affiliates. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.
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