PayPal For Dummies
PayPal may be the world’s most recognized online payment service. Knowing what it costs to use the service (usually nothing if you’re a buyer; a small percentage if you’re a merchant) and the error messages you may encounter is handy information. And, because PayPal is so popular, you need to be aware of and beware of potential thieves who try to use the PayPal name to get money for themselves.
PayPal Fee Schedule
If you have a personal PayPal account you use to send or receive money online, you generally pay nothing to manage your account unless you’re converting foreign currency. If you’re a merchant who receives payments through PayPal or have a premier account, you pay a percentage of your receipts to cover the costs — nothing is totally free, right? The following table shows the PayPal fee schedule:
|Activity||Personal Account||Premier or Merchant Account|
|Opening a PayPal account||Free||Free|
|Withdrawing funds from your account||Withdrawing to a US bank is free; the fee for withdrawing to an international bank account varies by country.||Withdrawing to a US bank is free; the fee for withdrawing to an international bank account varies by country.|
|Adding funds to your account||Free||Free|
|Receiving funds||Free||$0.01 to $2,999.99: 2.9% plus $0.30 per transaction
$10,000.01 to $100.000 — 2.2% plus $0.30 per transaction
Over $100,000: 1.9% plus $0.30 per transaction
|Converting from one currency to another||2.5% fee||2.5% fee|
How to Spot a Fake PayPal E-Mail
People around the world know that PayPal is a service that helps people transfer money online. And crooks try to make use of PayPal’s instantly recognizable name in an effort to scam money from unsuspecting customers. Pay attention to the following list so that you’re not taken in by these unscrupulous spammers.
A PayPal e-mail might be a fraud if
You get an e-mail addressed to Dear PayPal Member instead of to you by name.
The e-mail contains an attachment.
You’re asked for your username, password, or other personal information.
The e-mail contains a link that does not take you to the PayPal Web site.
The subject of the e-mail is PayPal Random Account Verification, or something similar.
The e-mail has not been sent to the e-mail account you use as your PayPal account.
The e-mail states that "PayPal" is offering to deposit funds into your account.
The PayPal logo image looks fuzzy, pixelated, or slightly different from the logo on the PayPal Web site.
The body of the e-mail has odd-looking formatting, like everything centered, multiple fonts used throughout, and strange paragraph spacing.
PayPal Error Codes You May Encounter
If you use PayPal just to pay for things online, you’ll probably never run into error codes. However, if you’re a merchant accepting payments through PayPal, you may want to familiarize yourself with the following error codes and their meanings — or at least know that the info in the following table can help explain things if you do encounter an error message.
|Error String or Number||Description|
|10003||Missing Required Arguments|
|10009||Server refused request|
|11001||Invalid argument warning|
|PA_Long_Error_ACH_Not_Verified||Your ACH is not verified.|
|PA_Long_Error_Authentication||Your username or password is incorrect.|
|PA_Long_Error_Authentication_Not_Authorized||You don’t have the correct permission to call the API.|
|PA_Long_Error_Authentication_Invalid_Token||Your token is invalid.|
|PA_Long_Error_Counterparty_Locked_Or_Inactive||The account of the other person in the transaction is either locked or inactive.|
|PA_Long_Error_Currency_Invalid||The payment currency is invalid.|
|PA_Long_Error_Currency_Not_Supported||The currency of the payment is not supported.|
|PA_Long_Error_Memo_Invalid||Invalid characters have been entered into the memo field.|
|PA_Long_Error_Soap_Header_Null||Your SOAP header is null.|
|PA_Long_Error_Transaction_Could_Not_Load||The transaction could not be loaded.|
|PA_Long_Error_Transaction_Id_Invalid||The ID of the transaction is invalid.|
|PA_Long_Error_User_Locked_Or_Inactive||Your account is either locked or inactive.|
|PA_Long_Error_User_Restricted||Your account is restricted.|
|PA_Long_Error_Version_Not_Supported||You are trying to make a call to an unsupported version.|
|PA_Long_Error_Version_Not_Valid||The version is invalid.|
|PA_Long_Warning_Encryption_Failed||A warning message letting you know the transaction ID may be incorrect.|
|PA_Long_Warning_Memo_Truncated||The content of the memo was too long and had to be truncated.|
|PA_Long_Error_WS_Security||The necessary WS security elements were not found.|
|PA_Long_Error_Security||The security header is invalid.|
|PA_Long_Error_Invalid_Account_Number||The account number is not valid.|