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Finally: here’s how to receive money through PayPal in Zimbabwe…

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PayPal Zimbabwe, Online Payments, PayPal login

For a couple of years now PayPal has been ‘active’ in Zimbabwe. Yes, some of you that are across rivers and bridges may sigh and say ‘big deal, so what?’, but this has been a struggle for us, not only as residents in Zimbabwe, but even for mere visitors to our land.

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Getting paid through PayPal is not easy for a Zimbabwean bank/card account holder, as some have had to have relatives open bank accounts for them in friendly nations and then have them trading under another name, albeit against PayPal’s T&Cs that don’t allow you to do this. But hey, we’re Zimbo, we make a plan.

Anyhow, we’re constantly contacted by Zimbabweans here wanting to know how they can trade using the international payment gateway, whether selling digitally or even physical goods. Sadly our answer pointed to the famous Grade 1 answers – “it can’t”.

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Well that seems to have changed, at least when I managed to register an account today that allows me to both send and receive payments, while in Zimbabwe, using my own account.

I’m not sure how long this has been active (it might have been possible from day one) but what I do know is that a host of opportunities are opened because of this.

Well, the moment you’ve all been waiting for, here’s how to go about opening your PayPal account in Zimbabwe that will allow you to receive funds:

  1. Visit PayPal.com
  2. Opt to Sign Up
  3. Select Business Account, then click Continue
  4. Enter the email address you’d like to register*
  5. Fill in your information** (Enter 9990 for post code)
  6. Advise what type of business it is (Private Company)
  7. Select what category it’s in, together with Sub-Category, add if there’s a website you’ll be trading from and when the business was established
  8. Give the details of the account holder (their Date of Birth, Nationality and Home Address – if different from the work address)
  9. Click Set Up Account and when you get in, on the top right, you’ll see a bell that has a ‘1’ indicating that you need to submit additional information. Fill in that information
  10. Go confirm your email address by clicking on the confirmation link that they send you
  11. Link a bank card to the account. I used the Payoneer MasterCard (referral link), that will allow me to receive money in the US as opposed  to a local Zimbabwean bank account.* I used an email address that had not yet been used on PayPal, I’m sure you could ‘convert a registered email address
    ** This should be the owner of the Business account

Now you can start transacting online using PayPal and if you want to test that it works be sure to share your email address that’s linked to PayPal and have a friend or two send you a few dollars to ‘test’.

Be advised that when receiving PayPal payments, the Merchant/Receiver is the bearer of costs and you need to calculate whether this is with the while for you.

If there is anything else you interested in knowing, or would want to share, please feel free to hit the comment button and post below.


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47 thoughts on “Finally: here’s how to receive money through PayPal in Zimbabwe…

    1. Try again or double check your account info. I received mine in about 2 weeks.

    2. You can apply for the account, it takes minutes, if not seconds, but after that they will mail you the MasterCard, it took about 3 weeks to get to me.

      What challenges are/were you having?

  1. Does it have to be a business account? And does the card have to be in the business’ name?

  2. thanks for this, was recently told its possible with an fnb account, don’t knowcwhy it failed the first time around for me, but will definetly try again.

  3. This isn’t a viable solution for a serious business, you will be in violation of many rbz and tax rules about receiving foreign payments. A work around for the small guy at best. Companies have to get visa and mastercard into their Zimbabwean bank account from their bank or someone like paynow or pay4app.

    1. I disagree that you will be in violation for receiving payment through PayPal. The violation comes in when you opt not to remit that money to a Zimbabwean bank account, which from the looks of things, you are able to do that.

      I disagree that companies ‘have to’ get Visa/MasterCard payments directly into their bank accounts, surely they are allowed to use a payment gateway (which is what PayPal are) to receive funds.

    2. In other words, you are saying choosing PayPal as your payment method is a violation in Zimbabwe, which is not true, unless PayPal is banned by the Zim government. PayPal operates in virtual space (internet) not in a brick-and-mortar store. PayPal is a US registered company, not Zimbabwean, therefore they are not bound by RBZ rules, unless there is an agreement between them. For example, PayPal has an agreement with South African banks, whereby users are allowed to withdraw money to their local bank account. If there is no agreement in place with your country, PayPal gives you an option to receive money in a US bank, which is not a violation but of course Zimbabwe is a backward country in many areas like ecommerce and modern business trends. If the Ministry of Finance and RBZ were smart and progressive like their South African counterparts, they would be creating partnership deals with companies like PayPal.

      1. Thank you, I hope they have softened on their anti “virtual bank” stance.

  4. What percentages does it charge the sender for sending someone some cash.

    Thank you

    1. The sender does not bare the cost of transfer. The person/business who receives the money will pay the costs of the transaction – around 5% thereabouts.

  5. Given the fact I can’t use my PayPal account outside the country It was opened, is there a way I can move the money to my payoneer account and can I withdraw money from anywhere in the world via payoneer?

    1. On your statement that “given the fact I can’t use my PayPal account outside the country It was opened”, I disagree about that. You can use your PayPal anywhere in the world and I have found that you can link cards from different countries too.

      That is my intention, have linked it to Payoneer and hopefully will cash out there and use the card anywhere in the world. Will advise how it goes.

  6. After signing up, you’ll need to wait for them to send you the MasterCard first and then to enter some details that are found on the card that they send.

    Once that happens, I don’t see a reason to link a bank account, I don’t think I linked mine, because you can use the ATM card anywhere in the world.

  7. Keep us posted on developments in this area…especially if it becomes possible to do transfers from/to personal accounts.

  8. I understand to link a card you must have some funds in the associated account for verification purposes, now how did you guys add funds into your payoneer account besides from freelancing, since last year my account is still $0.0 therefore i cant link it with my paypal acc.

  9. There is just one problem with this article Chui. You can’t withdraw money from PayPal into your Payoneer account. Yes you can link your card to PayPal and use the card buy things online but you can’t withdraw into the card. Theoretically you could withdraw from PayPal by adding your Payoneer bank account but we never had luck with that. PayPal doesn’t accept Payoneer bank accounts. I would be very surprised if you managed to add yours successfully.

    Instead of Payoneer, we have had much better luck with the prepaid BancABC Visa card. I know you weren’t so lucky with it, so maybe it’s just luck in our case but we never had a problem with it. You can withdraw to the card directly plus the money reflects on your card pretty fast (less than 10 minutes most times), not the 3 – 5 business days that PayPal says is usual.

    1. Rushmore , l do have a Bank ABC VISA prepaid card , can you please tell me how you linked this card to Paypal,Did you open a Paypal Business or Personal Account,please tell me more

      1. hie Ritchie i linked mine just recently…. you have to load your card form the bank coz PayPal charges a certain amount to verify your account using your card… the amount charged can vary from either $1-$3 ….. they reimburse this money after a month back into your.

  10. thanks so much to the writer of this article,i have just opened my paypal business account,l will update if l manage to recieve any payments with such an account

  11. If I real wanted to have an account with PayPal I would definitely take a screenshot of all the confusion above and send it to PayPal with a request to clear this confusion. They are more than willing to give you the advise so that whatever you do removes risk from you and that whatever you do is within the law. I want to operate within the law all the time.

  12. If I may ask. Can’t I just add my pioneer account to my old ebay and paypal account created in Zim and selling?

  13. I set up the account and asked a friend to try and send me some money as a test. This is the message she got from paypal: This recipient accepts PayPal payments only through their website. To complete this payment, please go to their website and follow their instructions, or email the recipient for instructions.
    I can’t send a money or payment request either… I don’t think this works

  14. Has anyone tried using a USA PayPal account from Auction Essistance to send and receive money?

  15. i’m failing to link my BancABC prepaid visa card to PayPal those who managed to do that how did you do it

  16. recently opened my paypal business account just as the writer elaborated…..but seems it didnt work for me.tried sending money to that account but paypal returns an error message,saying ‘We’re sorry, but we can’t send your payment right now’.maybe its because the reciever (my paypal business account) cant recieve money.also tried linking it to my Payoneer US Bank account with no success at all.Paypal is returning a message’you cant link a bank account at the moment’.am stuck

    paypal ngaitinzwirewo tsitsi,tinodawo kureceiver mari just like anyone else the world

  17. Hi guys. I was following the post and here’s what I want to add for my fellow Zimbos based on my personal experience. The info from the comments is good if your business is small and if you know it will take long for your transaction activity to total $20,000 (both inbound and outbound). The danger is once your total transactions reach the $20,000 threshhold, your account will get suspended (funds locked), you won’t be able to withdraw, send or receive until you provide verification information. The information (scanned documents of ID, proof of residence) you provide must match exactly the details in your profile for the account to be reactivated. Business/ company documents will be required as well so I suggest (from experience) choose the sole proprietor option when opening a business account to avoid being asked company documents. It’s also dangerous to open an account using a virtual card, Paypal crawlers will detect that long after you have opened your account and suspend it. The more your account is transacting that’s the more frequent crawlers index your profile (for fraud detection and anti-money laundering). I suggest opening a real bank account then get a proper VISA or MasterCard to use on your account. What Paypal recognizes is VISA and MasterCard and it doesn’t matter if its Steward Bank or Barclays, just get your card from the bank and link it. If you have a close relative who lives outside the country you can ask for permission to use their details (name, surname and address) which they use. If you open a Business account and choose sole proprietor their name will NOT appear when your customers are making payment but rather your Business name e.g qwerty Pvt LTd. This will come in handy if your account gets suspended, your relative will give you documents like phone bill etc which will get your account up and running again quickly. Accounts can also be suspended even if you have not reached the $20,000 threshhold. Two of the reasons I experienced was receiving money from someone from a country in the middle east, someone using Paypal for suspicious activities or receiving money from someone who logged into their Paypal account using a proxy/VPN.

    My last advice to my fellow Zimbos is if you are sure to use Paypal for your business please withdraw your hard earned money after you receive it, what might be working an hour ago may not work when you try it again. ZIMBO POWER…..

  18. Admin wePage rino, has anything changed. I am trying to send a payment to someone in Zim but his acct doesn’t have that facility.
    Plus I wanted to know whether the ecocash debit card is of any use in all this affair.

  19. Hello all. Please tell me if Zimbos can still get this PayPal receive funds service as of today the 22nd November 2016. Thanks

    1. i received my cash in my prepaid visa card from paypal on the 19th of November …. it took 5 days from the day i had requested it though but it got transferred …. good luck on getting yours

      1. Hi Vee, how did you do it? Firstly were you able to open a PayPal business account? I am only seeing the personal account option. And secondly, were you able to link your Payoneer card to your PayPal account successfully?

  20. Hi Guys,

    I would like to know when loading funds into your Paypal account from your Zim held bank account how long does it take to reflect into your paypal account?

    Any information regarding this would be greatly appreciated.

    Many thanks.

  21. hie l want to purchase some goods online and how can l get accessed to paypal currently l am a student

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