One of our neighbours has just rung me to ask about PayPal. He is looking to order some goods from a company that only accept PayPal as a means of payment.
Anyone who has bought or sold through Ebay will already know that PayPal is a subsidiary of the auction site and is used for most transactions by buyers and sellers.
As I explained to my neighbour, I had used PayPal for a number of years in the UK to buy and sell via Ebay. When we moved to Spain, I continued to use PayPal which was still linked to my bank account in England.
A few years ago though, PayPal changed its rules and required verification of the address our bank account was linked to as part of their security measures. Unfortunately, their system would not accept a Spanish address for this process. My PayPal account was therefore temporarily frozen for transactions from it. Eventually, they agreed to unfreeze the account for a short period to allow me to close it and release funds.
I then set up a PayPal account which was linked to my Spanish Spanish account. The process took a couple of days to complete during which time they took two small payments from my account which were subsequently refunded.
Now I can use PayPal again but of course payments from and to the account are made in euros and not sterling. When it is necessary, a conversion rate is applied to the transaction.
There are advantages to using PayPal. In the case of a dispute, PayPal will handle this for you and refund your account in cases where the goods simply did not arrive or where they were defective. For the buyer, there is no fee involved, it is the seller who pays the fees to PayPal.