Ethereum is an open-source, decentralised software platform based on blockchain technology. The platform facilitates the easy and streamlined creation of distributed applications (dApps) and smart contracts without any third-party interference or control. Ethereum was launched in 2015 and Ether (ETH) was trading at around USD 1700 at the time of writing this article.
PayPal on the other hand is a widely accepted payment method across the world today that offers a great deal of convenience and security for both domestic and international payments. In this detailed guide, we will take you over all possible aspects and teach you how to buy Ethereum with PayPal.
5 Steps to Buy Ethereum with eToro Now
Buying any cryptocurrency with eToro is easy, simply follow the steps below:
1Sign up for free with eToro, entering your details in the required fields.
2Fill out the questionnaire, this is both educational for you and eToro.
3Click 'Deposit', you'll then be asked how you want to fund your account.
4Choose your required payment method, follow the simple steps to link your payment.
5Enter the amount you want to deposit and you're good to go!
Compare the 3 Best Places to Buy Ethereum With PayPal
Before you start looking for a crypto exchange or broker platform to buy Ethereum with PayPal, it’s important to note that not many may offer PayPal as an acceptable payment option. This is because of PayPal’s chargeback policy, which is an integral part of its ‘Buyer Protection’ measures. This policy opens up the possibility of false disputes, owing to the irreversible nature of crypto transactions, and can be very detrimental for crypto exchanges/brokers.
Having said that, certain regulated crypto brokerage platforms accept PayPal as a valid payment method. If you’ve made up your mind to buy ETH with PayPal, ensure that you do so only on a fully compliant, reputed and regulated portal. Dealing with unrecognised websites can be very problematic to say the least, often leading to loss of funds.
Why Should I Buy Ethereum with PayPal?
A service like PayPal works very well for online transactions as it provides you with an additional security layer over your original payment method (credit card, debit card or bank account transfer). PayPal offers a reliable and global payment network, with the same convenience as that of a credit/debit card, but perhaps with a slightly reasonable fee structure. Its cutting edge technology keeps the users’ account details safe, and buyer protection measures safeguard against any fraudulent transactions.
Buying Ethereum with PayPal Directly
There is a mistaken belief amongst many new crypto buyers that they can simply buy Ether off-the-shelf with PayPal at some Ethereum website. This is not true. You will need to use PayPal at a crypto broker or exchange site to buy Ethereum. Furthermore, when it comes to buying it at a broker/exchange site, you must go only with one which is fully compliant, reputed and has a proven track record amongst crypto investors.
It’s very important to highlight here that even though PayPal now offers direct Ethereum, Bitcoin, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash purchases to its US customers, and plans to roll out the same feature across select international markets, as well as through its social payments service Venmo, in 2021, the PayPal users won’t be allowed to transfer their crypto holdings out of their PayPal digital wallets (as of now).
This implies that once you’ve bought Ethereum on PayPal, you will need to hold it in your PayPal digital wallet and won’t be able to transfer it to anyone on or off PayPal. The only way you’d be able to utilise your crypto would be to make purchases, at which point PayPal will convert it into corresponding fiat currency at the PoS (Point of Sale).
Buying Ethereum Anonymously Using PayPal
Though it may be possible to buy Ethereum anonymously using PayPal, it is not recommended, as for it to work, you may need to create a fake name, a virtual credit card and a disposable email address, all of which could be in breach of the PayPal’s terms and conditions. In such a scenario, PayPal being a centralised company would be well within its rights to freeze your account at any time. Additionally, you would also need to locate a buyer willing to sell you ETH without identity verification. Therefore, it would be safe to state that you cannot legally buy ETH anonymously with PayPal.
Global Regulations for Buying Ethereum with PayPal
All the regulated crypto exchanges and broker platforms verify their customers’ identities through comprehensive KYC (Know Your Customer) processes. To comply with the KYC requirements, an individual is required to upload a copy of their government-issued photo identity document such as a driver’s license, passport etc. to the platform. In some cases, the person may also be asked to upload a government-issued proof of address.
Being a financial services provider operating at the global level, PayPal too complies with the universal Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Combating the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) laws, as well as the pertinent domestic laws prevalent in different countries. Crypto brokerage platforms and exchanges being facilitators of financial services also come under the purview of the same laws, and are required to verify the identity details of all their customers. Let’s look at the KYC/AML regulations followed in some of the prominent countries/regions of the world.
In Australia, a government agency named AUSTRAC (Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre) uses regulatory measures and financial intelligence to prevent activities like terrorism financing, money laundering, tax evasion etc. PayPal functions as a licensed ADI (Authorised Deposit Taking Institution) in Australia and is subjected to the same Australian regulations and banking laws that apply to any other financial institution in the country.
To purchase ETH with PayPal in Australia, you would need to complete a KYC verification process, irrespective of whether you’re transacting on a crypto exchange or a broker. This will normally entail uploading a valid photo identity and proof of address issued by the government.
The US has a pretty robust anti-money laundering law in the form of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), operational in the country, which is administered by FinCEN (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network). All banks, financial institutions, cryptocurrency exchanges and cryptocurrency brokers must comply with the BSA. Additionally, FinCEN has emphasised time and again that all the US-based crypto brokers/exchanges must abide by the BSA’s record-keeping and ‘Travel Rule’ guidelines, and share information about the beneficiary and originator of every single transaction on their portals. Hence, buying ETH with PayPal on any crypto platform in the US would involve fulfilling their requisite regulatory requirements, including Know Your Customer (KYC) formalities.
A prominent country in
the Europe an Union, Switzerland has some of the most progressive cryptocurrency-related laws in the world. Having been a safe haven for people’s wealth for a long time, it’s a natural fit for facilitating all kinds of crypto transactions. Owing to its crypto-friendly environment, many brokers are operating from Switzerland that will allow you to easily buy Ethereum with PayPal. However, being regulated, they will still ask you to comply with the KYC requirements. Please know, completing such formalities are in your best interest only as they not just aid the prevention of money laundering and other unlawful activities, but also enable these organisations to protect your identity.
Is Buying with PayPal Available in My Country?
Although PayPal is counted amongst the most widely accepted modes of payment throughout the world, there are still some countries where it may not be available. This is especially true in the case of some developing nations wherein governments are constantly grappling with financial frauds. You can easily find if PayPal is offered in your country of residence by visiting this link (https://www.paypal.com/webapps/mpp/country-worldwide)
What are the Differences Between Ethereum and PayPal?
While a large number of people in developed countries like the UK, US etc. actively use PayPal to pay for goods and services on the Internet and offline, cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, Bitcoin etc. are also gradually gaining acceptance for the same purpose. However, it’s pretty clear that these two payment methods–PayPal and Ethereum–differ from each other in various ways.
Ethereum is mainly utilised for two things—trading at online platforms such as cryptocurrency brokers and exchanges, and on the Ethereum blockchain network, to run dApps (decentralised apps). Though it is also used at some websites for the purchase of goods and services, Ethereum cannot be compared to payment methods like a PayPal account, credit card and debit card etc., considering the latter’s market penetration.
For instance, an online retail website is more likely to accept a debit/credit card or PayPal as valid payment methods than Ethereum today. Process-wise, ETH payments are quite like wire transfers wherein one party makes a direct payment to another, but without the involvement of any financial entity in between.
All ETH transactions are recorded on the cryptocurrency’s public blockchain and are processed within a time frame of 30 seconds to 5 minutes. There is a transaction fee involved too, which stood at around $20 per Ethereum at the time of writing this article.
PayPal on the other hand is more of an authentic payment network than Ethereum. It also offers additional buyer protection to the users, who can dispute a transaction and obtain a refund, a reason why a PayPal account isn’t the favourite of many cryptocurrency exchanges and broker sites.
Ethereum transactions once processed are irreversible unless the payee chooses to refund the transferred cryptocurrency. PayPal also charges a fee on the transactions if you choose to pay through a debit/credit card linked to your PayPal account or PayPal credit. This fee is normally 2.9% of the transaction cost plus a fixed fee and a flat fee depending upon the country you reside in.
What Limitations Exist for PayPal While Buying Ethereum?
Apart from the chargeback issue detailed above, there are other limitations too associated with the use of PayPal for buying ETH. The cryptocurrency exchange or broker may place a restriction on the amount of cryptocurrency you are allowed to buy with PayPal. PayPal has its inherent transfer limits too. You can send a maximum of $60,000 through a verified PayPal account, and no more than $10,000 per transaction.
There may also be purchase limits depending upon whether your account is verified or not. Additionally, not many exchanges or brokers may accept PayPal as a valid payment method. High convenience fees and conversion fees are other deterrents that may come into play.
What fees are associated with PayPal?
You may need to pay a range of fees when you choose to use a PayPal account to buy ETH from a cryptocurrency exchange or broker website. First and foremost, the platform may charge you a convenience fee for using PayPal, which can be as high as 10% on some portals. A conversion fee of 2.5% to 4% may also be charged if your local currency isn’t supported by the platform.
What are the Pros and Cons of Buying Ethereum with PayPal?
Bank transfers work out to be the cheapest but can prove to be very slow and involve difficult processing. Credit cards are extremely convenient, however, require a higher fee payment. PayPal stands somewhere in the middle of the two and offers a healthy mix of cost and convenience.
In general, PayPal transactions work out to be cheaper than credit cards.
PayPal offers the same level of buying convenience as a credit card.
PayPal transactions are highly secure and encrypted, with no scope of fraud or theft.
Buying through a credit card linked to your PayPal account can help you accumulate rewards over a period of time.
PayPal has a very solid buyer protection policy, as per which you can reverse your transaction/s and claim complete refund/s.
With excellent customer support and an intuitive interface, PayPal is extremely easy to use.
If the data on your mobile phone or computer gets compromised, someone can log into your PayPal account and possibly execute unauthorised transactions.
Being amongst the largest payment providers of the world, PayPal has been targeted by cybercriminals time and again.
Is Buying Ethereum with PayPal the Best Method?
There’s nothing such as a worst or best payment method to buy Ethereum. It all boils down to which method suits you the best. While credit/debit cards offer the maximum convenience for buying cryptocurrencies, PayPal provides some of that, but at a lesser expense. Bank transfers on the other hand continue to be the most popular payment means for the purchase of crypto coins, owing to their lower transaction costs and easy transfer of funds between bank account and crypto exchange/broker site.
Further Tips for Buying Ethereum with PayPal
Once you’re sure that you’d like to use PayPal to buy Ethereum, you would first need to find a crypto broker website or exchange willing to accept PayPal as a payment method. Please know, in case you choose to transact on an exchange, make sure you are technically proficient enough to effectively use the platform. Exchanges can be far more complex than broker sites.
Brokers on the other hand feature lower fees, are regulated, have flexible trading options and are normally not averse to PayPal transactions. Furthermore, avoid falling for any phishing websites or emails which may try to illegally obtain your critical payment information. This can be done by thoroughly checking the website you’re transacting on, prior to typing in any payment info and never replying to any email with your payment-related data.
Ethereum, Bitcoin and a handful of altcoins have emerged as solid investment options lately, especially after the early 2021 bull-run in the crypto market. Hence, it may just be the right time for you to buy Ethereum with PayPal. In this detailed article on the different aspects of such a purchase, we went over PayPal’s limitations, fees, regulations, pros-cons and more. Hopefully, we were able to provide you with all the details you need regarding ETH purchase with a PayPal account.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can, if you reside in the US. But then you won’t be able to transfer crypto coins out of your PayPal digital wallet and will have to mandatorily use them for some online/offline purchase.
In addition, there are other cryptocurrencies that you can buy directly through Paypal, at the time of writing this includes Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash. These crypto-assets can be purchased by logging into your account through the website or the PayPal app.
No, there’s no risk in buying Ethereum with PayPal. PayPal has a very robust ‘Buyer Protection’ policy.
Broker platforms are normally preferred over exchanges as the good ones are fully compliant and regulated, offering you a lot of protection. They are more welcoming of PayPal payments too.
Yes, it is legal to buy Ethereum with PayPal as long as cryptocurrency purchases are allowed in your country.
It’s important to store your Ethereum coins in some secure wallet after buying them. Presently, hardware cold wallets are considered the best in this regard.
Yes, each Ethereum user is provided a backup phrase which s/he can use to retrieve his/her coin and its private keys.
Ethereum is counted amongst the safest cryptocurrencies in the market today. But no system is full-proof so please use 2FA and other security measures to protect your account.
Ethereum transactions are processed within a maximum of 5 minutes.