PayPal – the easiest way to be ripped off online

Logo of PayPal.
Bunch of bastards

Recently, I had some issues with my PayPal account (click here for more information). Briefly, I had money move out of my account to pay for something I didn’t buy, and two people sent me a total of ten payments for approximately $30 each.

I contacted the “buyers” who started asking for refunds, which I duly actioned as it wasn’t my money. They hadn’t tried to pay me and didn’t know why they’d “sent” me the cash. I also put a halt on the other payment which was eventually refunded.

At one random point, PayPal decided to take £40+ from my bank account. I eventually found it was because I’d issued to may “payments” (actually the refunds!), they had opted to avoid risk by funding them directly from my bank.

So, even though the money was in my PayPal account and was being refunded to the people it came from, PayPal took money from my external bank account to fund them. And just to put it out there, if you check out here, you’d know that there are many methods through which you can convert your Paypal money to other modes of Payment. And I’m not sure what provoked me to choose Paypal over them.

As a result of this, I ended up a few quid out of pocket as the payments had been made and refunded in dollars. Due to conversion rates changing, the money left in my PayPal account didn’t cover the amount taken without my consent from my bank.

To find out why all this had happened, and was happening, I emailed PayPal. They told me to ring them on their lovely 0870 premium rate number. I asked if there was another number to call them on as that was charged as 10p/minute. I was told “no”, that was the only number they had and they couldn’t resolve the issue by email.

I called. I was on for an hour. Things, after 2 weeks, finally became resolved and my PayPal balance contained the amount taken – without my consent – from my bank. A transaction, incidentally, that put me perilously close to going overdrawn.

I demanded the cost of the telephone call back and was told that this wasn’t policy and that their terms and conditions state that I am liable for all ISP and telephone fees generated as a result of using PayPal.

Hang on.

They can’t do their job over email. They insist I call otherwise I would remain out of pocket. They push me to the redline on my bank account. They tell me that ringing is the only way to resolve the issue…

And then they profit from the phone call?

What a ******* rip-off. This isn’t a business, it’s a scheme to fleece people any which way they can.

Oh, and if you want to lodge a complaint in writing then the address is in Luxembourg, despite them having a physical UK presence.

PayPal – **** you. I’ll find another way of paying for things online. You’re untrustworthy, sneaky, dodgy, conniving, dishonest and very dubious.

And don’t you dare send me another form email starting “On a personal note…”. The second one of those mails I received – from a different employee – made it obvious there’s nothing personal about you. The third just turned it into a joke.

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2 thoughts on “PayPal – the easiest way to be ripped off online”

  1. I only use PayPal if I have to, ie when I’m buying stuff on Ebay (who incidentally owns PayPal). Otherwise, it is a ripoff and I wish it wasn’t so prevalent that everyone thinks it’s the bees knees for paying for stuff online. Online company that deals with complaints via a premium phone line only and not ONLINE?? Rip off merchants.

  2. Online company that has a pefectly able online email system to deal with complaints, but insists that you ring them up to resolve an issue (OF THEIR MAKING) and then blames you for incurring costs?

    Bunch of dodgy bastards.

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