How to add money to PayPal - featured image

So you’ve set up your PayPal account and are ready to start transferring money, paying bills, and shopping online. Your options are pretty limited until you add some money to your PayPal balance. Luckily, it just takes a few minutes to do so, and even better, it can be completely free! Let’s show you how it’s done.

Read also: What is PayPal? How do you use it?


Before we get started

Before we get into the step-by-step for adding money to PayPal, you first need to decide where you want that money to come from. The easiest way is to connect a bank account and transfer from there. You can also connect a credit card, link a debit card, or even add money in person at select locations.


How to transfer money to PayPal from a bank account

How to transfer money to PayPal - bank account

The steps are similar whether you’re using the PayPal website or mobile app. We’ll show you how to do it on the website, just for the sake of uniformity across platforms. Go to PayPal.com and log into your account. Hover the cursor over your name in the top right corner, and then click on Account Settings. Hit the section that says Money, Bank and Cards. Under Banks, select Link a new bank. Choose your bank and follow instructions to link your account to PayPal.

How to connect a bank account to PayPal:

  1. Go to PayPal.com and log in.
  2. Hover the cursor over your name in the top-right corner.
  3. Click on Account Settings.
  4. Select the Money, Bank and Cards tab.
  5. Under Banks, select Link a new bank.
  6. Choose your bank and log into it.
  7. Follow instructions to finish linking your account.

Now that your bank account is ready, it’s time to transfer funds to PayPal. All you need to do is log into the website (or open the app), find your PayPal Balance section, and hit the three-dot menu button. Hit Add Money, select your bank, and hit Next. Then choose how much money you want to add to your PayPal account and hit Next. You’ll get a verification page; select Transfer Now to finish the transaction.

How to add money to PayPal with a bank account:

  1. Go to PayPal.com and log in.
  2. Find your PayPal Balance section, and hit the three-dot menu button.
  3. Click on Add Money
  4. Select your bank and hit Next.
  5. Choose how much money you want to add to your PayPal account and click Next.
  6. Select Transfer Now.

This method is easy and free, but it isn’t the fastest. It can take 3-5 days for the funds to appear in your account, so don’t expect to do any shopping right away.

Related: Venmo vs PayPal


How to add money to PayPal using a debit or credit card

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The next method we’ll cover uses a debit or credit card. The steps are the same for either type of card, but there is a difference in how things work. You cannot transfer funds from a debit or credit card to your PayPal balance. Instead, any time you purchase something with PayPal, or make a transfer, it will automatically charge that amount to your card.

You’ll first need to link a debit or credit card to your PayPal account. To do this, you have to log into your PayPal account, hover over your name in the top-right corner, and select Account Settings. Select the Money, Banks and Cards tab. Under Cards, hit the Link a new card link. Fill in your card details and select Link card. Now you can go into the Money, Banks and Cards section and select Edit next to your card. You can set your card as your preferred payment method from there.

How to add a debit or credit card to PayPal:

  1. Go to PayPal.com and log in.
  2. Hover the cursor over your name in the top-right corner.
  3. Click on Account Settings.
  4. Select the Money, Bank and Cards tab.
  5. Under Cards, select Link a new card.
  6. Fill in your card details and select Link card.
  7. Follow instructions to finish linking your account.
  8. Go back to the Money, Banks and Cards section and select Edit next to your card.
  9. Set your new card as the preferred method of payment.

Now you’re ready to start using your PayPal account. Credit cards might be somewhat more limited than bank accounts, but they are more convenient than transferring money in and out of PayPal.

Also: How to use PayPal on Amazon


How to add cash to PayPal in person

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Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

While it’s not available in every country, the ultimate way to protect your privacy and security is with cash. Thanks to several retail partners, all you need to add cash to PayPal is the app on your phone and a friendly customer service representative. Of course, you also need that cash money!

PayPal’s retail partners in the US include big names like Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, GameStop, Dollar General, and more. It’s important to note that this one has a rather sizeable fee attached, unlike the other methods described above. The amount varies depending on the location you choose, but it’s usually $3.95 per transaction. Walmart is a little cheaper at $3.

Next: How to delete your PayPal account

There’s also a limit to how much cash you can add in a single transaction. The most cash you can add to your PayPal account at once is $500, with a minimum of $20. There’s also a daily limit of $1,500 and a monthly limit of $5,000.

The first thing you want to do is take your phone and cash to one of the physical locations supported. Typically, you want to head over to the customer service desk (not the cashier) and tell the representative you want to add money to your PayPal account. They may or may not be familiar with the process, so please be patient.

On your side, all you need to do is open the PayPal app on your phone, tap the More icon at the bottom, and tap Add cash at store. Then, select the store you’re at and tap Generate Code. This code lasts for 60 minutes. Now have the customer service representative scan the code and give them your cash. They might ask for your ID.

You’ll be charged the amount you want to add to your PayPal account, plus the fee. The transaction should show up on your PayPal account after about 15 minutes. Here are those steps again, in brief!

How to add cash to PayPal:

  1. Go to the customer service counter of a supported store.
  2. Open the PayPal app on your phone.
  3. Tap the More icon (three dots).
  4. Tap Add cash at store.
  5. Select the retailer you’re going to use.
  6. Tap Generate Code.
  7. Scan the code and hand over your cash plus the fee.
  8. In 15 minutes, the money will appear in your account.