If you have ever received international payments via PayPal for services rendered or wanted to buy something online; on Amazon, eBay etc. then you know how cumbersome withdrawing money from PayPal can be. This has been such a problem that some people have resulted to starting backdoor PayPal to Mpesa services, where you transfer money to their PayPal account they transfer cash to your Mpesa minus a commission so big, it’s uncouth.
However, those times seem to be behind us now as Safaricom has just launched a new service transfer of money to and from PayPal, straight to your M-Pesa account. The transaction takes between four hours to three days depending on the amount you are transacting.
The new service will allow users to transfer a maximum of Ksh.70, 000 per transaction with a daily limit of Ksh.140, 000; and depending on the amount withdrawn, will reflect in your M-Pesa account between two hours and 3 days. For the fervent shoppers-who make up a large portion of PayPal users, depositing money into PayPal can now be done through the PayBill number 800088, allowing shoppers to transact with over 18 million merchants that use PayPal globally.
“ We are excited to bring the M-Pesa mobile wallet and PayPal joint services to the Kenyan market which makes it more convenient and secure to withdraw and add money to their accounts while participating in the global digital economy, “ said Efi Daha, PayPal General Manager for the Middle East, Africa, and Russia.
The connection of the two PayPal and M-Pesa will be facilitated by Singapore based TransferTo who specialise in connecting financial institutions and digital financial service providers to enable money transfers to and from emerging markets.
You can access the service by opening a PayPal account; choose either a personal or a business account (if you sell things online and want to become a merchant), PayPal only requires basic details, an email address and a secure password to set up your account.
Once you are done, visit PayPal’s mobile money site- PayPal-MobileMoney, and you will be given the option of connecting your M-Pesa number to your account. Enter your M-Pesa number and a 4-digit confirmation code will be sent to your phone, accept the site’s terms of service, input the 4-digit code and click to confirm. If you already have a PayPal account, you will only need to confirm your M-Pesa number similar to the above process.
How to Withdraw to M-Pesa
Log on to your PayPal account and Select Withdraw. (Your available balance will be displayed.) Note that you will only be able to withdraw up to the available balance amount in your PayPal Account
Enter the amount to withdraw from your PayPal Account in US dollars and click ‘withdraw’. You will be redirected to a page showing the amount to be received in Ksh, the exchange rate used for the currency conversion and an estimation of the transaction processing time. Click ‘Confirm’ to confirm and complete the Withdraw Transaction.
How to Top-up to PayPal
Log on to the M-PESA PayPal website and select Top Up Funds, enter the amount to top up in US dollars and click ‘calculate’ to get the equal converted amount in Ksh. to be transferred from your M-PESA account (Exchange rate used will be displayed on the same page).
Go to your M-PESA menu and Select ‘Lipa na M-PESA’ then ‘Pay Bill’ option
- Enter Business no. 800088
- Enter your phone number as the Account No.
- Enter the Amount in Ksh.
- Enter your M-PESA PIN and Send
The biggest competitor for Safaricom will be Equity Bank, which has so far been a major player in the PayPal remittance market. Competition is bound to be stiff as Equity Bank has recently reviewed its transaction charges to make them more attractive, the new pricing structure will see transactions charges drop to 1 % for withdrawals of $5000 and above, while transactions of $500 and below will be billed at 1.5 % of the withdrawn amount.
PayPal withdrawals through Equity Bank takes up to 3 days same as M-Pesa’s service. On the other hand, while PayPal/Mpesa service limits users to Ksh.140,000 per day, withdrawal through Equity Bank has a transaction limit of $ 10,000 (Ksh.1,000,000) which could attract transactors of large amounts.
Speaking of Paypal, it is one of the platforms you can use when being paid for online gigs