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Should I go with paypal??

Hi Guys,
I want to sell services via my site, I wouldn't expect many transactions for now. Anyway, I browsed the questions posted before on JoelForum about the paypal saga. I've made my research on google, and have come across too many horror stories about paypal to give me more then enough nightmare scenerios for days on end.
My question is, has anyone had bad experiences with paypal, or even good?. And is there a viable alternative to paypal if its not suited for me.
For the record, I live in Australia. So transfer fees might differ then those in the U.S.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Paypal is something I have a membership to, but have no idea which account I am using, which e-mail I have it forward to, and the inability to create a new account because I can not remember my old e-mails to restore the account.

In other words, it is too dependent on internet concepts, instead of bank concepts.

So I can use it whenever I feel motivated enough to figure it out, but ... I love my Visa.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Back in 2002-2003 I was doing lot of contract work with people from all over the place. I used PayPal 90% of the time I had not trouble at all. One time a guy in England had paid me for a job but then it turned out he did not have and could not use mysql on his server so I just did a push back on the money and it worked fine. I too read of people who had lots of trouble but I did not experience any. One odd thing is they have my main email address which I have not been able to change. I don't even own the domain any longer. That is the only odd thing. email addresses should not be unique identifiers. Of course they allow you to assign other email addresses but I should be able to delete any email address.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Try I am using them, very confusing to set up but pretty reputable.

Aussie Chick
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Log in, add your new email address, make it the primary address and delete the old one. IIRC, you can log in with any address in your account.

Perpetual Newbie II
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

I've intermittently used paypal for several years for buying and selling on eBay with zero problems.  I don't think they're perfect but I don't think there's anything better for small scale transactions.  They're under constant assault from scammers so they're paranoid and, when they think there's a problem, they may go overboard.  I'm sure they have many happy customers.  Since money's involved, the people with trouble complain loud and often.

A good way to avoid problems is to have a dedicated bank account linked to your paypal account.  Immediately transfer funds from paypal to this bank account then get the funds out of the bank account as soon as possible.  This way you can walk away with minimal losses if things go south.  If that sounds like too much work and you plan to have more money than you want to lose in play then I'd stay away.

Also, avoid doing stupid stuff like changing linked accounts and addresses repeatedly.  That seems to send up red flags - surprise, surprise.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Can you automate the checking of paypal payments? 

Say I set up a website with members-only content, and I ask you to register, and when you register I give you a number saying "send your paypal payment with this # in the subject line to activate your access".  Or whatever, just some way to automatically process a lot of small payments without having a human review each one?

Yes, I could probably find this on google.  Just asking if anyone knows offhand.

Matt Conrad
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

FWIW, this has been discussed before, notably by The Man himself since he wasn't satisfied with the online paying system he was using at the time:

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Ok, i can see the experiences here have been more positive then negative. Has anyone used, there based in Australia.
It seems to be recommended at
they charge 2.5% for one to recieve their funds.

But as for paypal, how much do non-U.S. users get charged to receieve their funds from paypal.?
So strictly speaking, if you have $100 in your paypal account, and u were transferring it to your aussie (or anywhere outside the U.S.) bank account, how much
would you end up with?
Most of it i hope.:)

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

Here's an excellent tool for comparing various software registration services:

Jacek Artymiak
Wednesday, March 3, 2004

The PayPal fees are pretty easy to find on their site:


To answer your question, $1AUD.  If you get could a US bank account then withdrawals to it  would be free.

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

I've used Paypal for several Ebay and other transactions and I've never had a problem with it. I went for the checking account linked to Paypal, which allows me to inhale any funds sitting in the Paypal account into my bank account.

There is this site:

My last web host stopped accepting Paypal when their account and the funds in it were frozen by Paypal. The gist of the problem with stopping use of the service is that when a Paypal account is frozen, Paypal does not prevent anyone from sending money to that frozen account! So basically, the Paypal account becomes a "black hole" of funds.

My third hand knowledge of Paypals' practices is that they have (or used to have) an extraordinarily bureaucratic process for someone who owns a frozen account to correct the problem and to withdraw their funds. And they set the "bar" for fraud detection very, very low. Example, if they see what they believe is an attempt to access an account from certain parts of the world (such as the Phillipines) the account will be summarily frozen. This is all internet heresay, of course, but this basic story gets repeated continually from multiple people.

My advice would be to use Paypal, to link a checking account to it (not your primary account but an account specifically set up for Paypal) in order to get immediate access to your funds, and to NEVER keep more than a couple of hundred dollars in Paypal at any given time.

Bored Bystander
Wednesday, March 3, 2004

Oh, and Paypal used to be a US only service. There is a very similar service called Ikobo ( that I used once to send money to an artist in Russia who designed a logo for me.

Bored Bystander
Wednesday, March 3, 2004

Just found this: (expose of Paypal by a former employee):

Bored Bystander
Wednesday, March 3, 2004

I'm currently using Register Now which charges a hefty 20% per transaction. They used to be very reliable and friendly, but lately there have been all kinds of problems:

- profits were not added up for a few days (it was alright in the end though)

- they added 'hackersafe' logos to our order pages without asking which made the pages look as if they were hacked

- they now routinely refund a few orders each month without prior notice because they think they are fraudulent; never mind that I've had 0% fraud in the last five years and that each customer tries ordering again and I ask them each time to approve the order anyway

So... swreg here I come.

Frederik Slijkerman
Wednesday, March 3, 2004

Anyone use ikobo i notice i can't use paypal on there anymore
Anyone heard any news about that

jane Doe
Saturday, March 27, 2004

To tell you the truth I used to have a paypal account but after they froze it for no apparent reason (I wasn't doing anything illegal like trading porn or something like that) I terminated it, and lost 43$ in the process (that's what I had in the account).
After doing some goggling I ran into this iKobo company. They are new but advertised pretty attractive services and fees. Decided to sign up since it was free I didn't have anything to lose. So I did that at, and a relative of mine from another country transferred some money from his paypal account, into my iKobo account. Yes, apparently you can do that. After that I received a visa plus card free of charge and was able to withdraw my money from an ATM without any problems. Sounds too good to be true? Maybe I'd say the same thing if I hadn't actually done it. They also say they have a good merchant account program complete with shopping cart, single item purchase as well as IPN. Can’t say I know how well it’s really working since I haven’t used it, but if it works as good as their P2P money transfer then I’d say they’re a pretty good choice for anyone trying to do some type of e-commerce.

Victor P.
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

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