How to set up a Paypal account: A step-by-step guide

Adam Rozsa
3 minute read

If you’re looking to set up a PayPal account, look no more: in this article we will show you how to do it. PayPal offers both Business and Personal accounts which can be set up using similar steps.

Here’s how to set up a PayPal account to receive money:

  1. Visit the PayPal website and click the Sign-Up Button located in the top-right corner of the page.
  2. Select the account type you want to open—Personal or Business—and click Continue.
  3. On the next screen, PayPal ask you for your mobile phone number to send you a message with a security code. Fill in your number and then the security code and click Next.
  4. Provide your name, email address, and create a secure password, and then click Continue.
  5. Next, PayPal requires a mailing address to open an account. Fill in the forms and click Continue.
  6. PayPal then gives you the option to connect a payment method to the account. To your debit or credit card, click the blue Get Started button, add in your card information and click Add Card. If you want to link other payment options – let’s say, linking your bank account, click the blue link at the bottom of the credit card information page that says ‘Link a bank instead’ and provide your routing number and account number.
  7. Last, you need to verify your email address by clicking the link in the email sent to you by PayPal.

Remember that while sending money between PayPal accounts is free, it requires that the other party has a PayPal account set up.¹ Plus, when sending money internationally, mark-up and currency exchange fees can also come into play. How about an alternative? If you want to send money fast using a fair and transparent exchange rate, we recommend Wise.

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How do you set up a PayPal account (Personal)?

To create a Personal account through PayPal, just follow the steps above. Here’s all the personal information you need to provide to set up your account:

  • First and Last Name
  • Mobile Number
  • Address
  • Email Address

After you verified your email, anyone can start sending you money immediately. However, if you want to send money or make an online payment, you’ll need to provide your card or bank account details.

If you didn’t add your credit or debit card during the setup, just click the Wallet button at the top of the PayPal site. Then you can click the Link a Card or Bank button and enter your information.

How to set up a PayPal business account?

Opening a PayPal account for a business requires more information.

This is the option to select if you want to sell products or services with the ability to accept payments from your customers. Remember, PayPal charges a small fee for this service ranging from 1.9% to 2.9% plus a fixed fee based on the transaction.²

Business accounts allow limited access for up to 200 employees, a customer service email alias that allows you to address customer issues quickly, and other business perks.³

When setting up a Business account, make sure to gather the following information to make the process fast and easy:

  • Name and address of the PayPal account owner—usually the business owner.
  • Account owner’s email address—to be verified.
  • Business name and address
  • Customer service contact information for the business
  • Name of the bank
  • Bank routing number and account number

You’ll need to go through the same verification process on the accounts as explained in the section above.

Want to save up to 19x on fees? A good alternative for your business is the Wise Business account. You can send and receive money, and hold your funds in 55+ currencies. Plus, you can always exchange money using the mid-market rate without any mark-up fees.

Get a Wise Business account 📈

Is it free to set up a PayPal account?

Opening a PayPal account is free, and it’s also free to send and receive money between PayPal accounts within the US. However, if you want to send money to a bank account or transfer money internationally, there are many fees that will come into play.

So, if you want to avoid paying hefty markup fees and prefer to save up to 7x, Wise can be a great alternative for you. With Wise, you can send money at the real market exchange rate with no surprises. It’s fair, transparent and will save you a lot of money.

Join Wise today for free 👀

  1. PayPal - What are the fees?
  2. PayPal - Merchant Fees
  3. PayPal - What is the difference between business and personal accounts?

All sources checked on 4 March 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 TransferWise 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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