Setting Up a PayPal Account

••• Original image: 'glass $' by: Flávio Takemoto

A PayPal account can provide a convenient way to handle many kinds of financial activities online. You can securely send and receive money, purchase items from online merchants and even pay some of your household bills without revealing your financial data or credit card numbers to strangers. PayPal makes these services available through your computer and through mobile devices. Like your local bank, PayPal also lets you download a monthly statement and other reports about your online activities. EBay owns PayPal, and it is the preferred payment method for many buyers and sellers in EBay auctions.


Visit the PayPal site to review the account types (personal, premier and business) and the terms of service. You must provide your name, address and email address to begin the registration process. After PayPal confirms that your email address is valid, that email will become your login identification. You will choose your own password during the registration process. You must also select two challenge questions and answers that you will use to request a lost password if yours is lost or forgotten.


After you register, PayPal must verify your identity and your financial information before you can use your account to make payments. Verify your account by giving PayPal your bank account information, a credit card number or your debit card information. To verify that you have an account at the financial institution, you must agree to allow PayPal to make a small deposit to the account that you provided account. After your financial institution acknowledges receipt of the PayPal deposit, you will be ready to use your PayPal account.

Linking Accounts

PayPal gives you the option of linking your credit card or bank account to your PayPal account, after verification. When someone sends funds to your PayPal account, you can leave the money there for future use, use it to shop or make payments. You will also have the option of transferring the funds out from your PayPal account into your bank account that is on record in your profile. If you prefer to keep your funds separate, you can make deposits to your PayPal account from your regular bank account. When you use PayPal for online transactions, you can choose each time whether to use only the funds in your PayPal account or to use funds from your bank or credit card account. PayPal also offers a reloadable MasterCard debit card that qualified account holders use to immediately transfer their funds from their PayPal account. It is accepted at ATMs, as well as online and offline merchants that accept MasterCards.


You may need to upgrade your personal account to Premier or Business if you need to accept credit card payments. PayPal charges Personal account users fees for receiving money from credit card payments. It also limits your total monthly transactions. Premier and Business accounts have higher monthly transaction limits; however, they also have fees for receiving credit card payments.

About the Author

Carol Luther has published feature articles in print magazines, ghostwritten blogs, and produced digital content since 2007. She has published personal finance and small business articles for the Houston Chronicle, Mahalo, the Nest, USA Today, Wahm, and Zacks. Carol has designed, implemented and managed multi-year, multimillion-dollar domestic and international projects services for higher education, nonprofits, and small to medium businesses for more than 20 years.

Photo Credits

  • Original image: 'glass $' by: Flávio Takemoto