PayPal Access Card (replaces PayPal Top Up Card)

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It was only yesterday I asked the question “How long will it before before you can pay for your weekly shopping in Tesco with your smartphone?“. What I actually meant was how long would it be before you can pay with PayPal. Whilst you can’t pay with an online method, PayPal have just sent out their new Mastercards to selected users enabling them to pay with PayPal practically anywhere.

Issued by PrePay Technologies, the card known as the PayPal Access Card lets you use your PayPal account on the high street. You can withdraw cash or shop anywhere MasterCard is accepted, using the money in your PayPal account – no more bank transfers before you can spend your funds.

TameBay reader Board_Surfer was one of the first to receive their cards and gave us the low down on how they work. The biggest change from the PayPal Topup Cards (which were cancelled in April) is that you don’t need to top up your PayPal Access Card, it withdraws funds directly from your PayPal account.

PayPal Access Cards are MasterCard instead of Visa and include the new PayPass technology, which allows you to make instant ‘tap and go’ payments of up to £15 without entering your PIN. A tiny microchip and radio antenna embedded in the PayPass-enabled PayPal Access Card transmits your payment details wirelessly to a high-speed PayPass reader at checkout.

This is the first time in the UK that PayPal users have been able to spend funds directly accessed from their PayPal account on the high street. The technology automatically tracks your PayPal balance and allows you to spend whatever funds are in your PayPal balance. As soon as a payment arrives from a buyer the funds are available through your PayPal Access Card to spend in Tesco (Or, in the screen shot we’ve obtained, in CO-OP).

This might not be quite as elegant a solution as paying with PayPal via a smartphone in Pizza Express, but it does give access to your PayPal funds to spend at any high street retailer or business worldwide that accepts MasterCard.

The cards have no annual fee and no transaction fee, although there are additional costs for cash withdrawals and a few other services such as using your card abroad. Sadly though the PayPal Access Card is currently only available by invitation which selected PayPal customers will receive via email.

17 Responses

  1. As soon as I read this I went to check my emails-No I have not been invited. I wonder what the criteria are? But hopefully the Invitations are to set it all up-Sort of Guinea Pigs. Then within the next couple of months it will be available to all Paypal Account Holders. Thinking about the usual critisism of Free Listing Weekends. They put their childrens old clothes, toys, baby equipment etc on boost their Paypal Account and then go to Tesco(or Co-Op) and buy their Groceries. Seems like a great development. Full Marks to Paypal.

  2. Now that is a step forward. It now means that you can use Paypal funds to buy on Amazon and even at Tesco. Clever move by Paypal but does this now mean they are a traditional bank subject to traditional bank regulation?

    Not too sure eBay or even eBay sellers will be happy with this move. There will be less recycling of Paypal receipts through eBay.

    eBay should now open up the payment market on their site increasing the options and make it easier for buyers to use debit or credit cards online for purchases as an alternative to Paypal.

    There are a lot of potential buyers who are put off eBay simply because they don’t want to be involved with Paypal. If buyers can use their credit cards directly it will bring new business to eBay.

  3. I received my card Wednesday – love that I don’t have to bother topping it up by transfering the funds like the old card.

  4. I’m with Clarky & Whirly on this one. Whilst this may be positive for private sellers , I don’t see this is as being good news for ebay businesses.
    I suspect this will also be beneficial to websites which don’t currently accept paypal , but accept Mastercard, which unless i’m missing something , seems a little odd.

  5. Something to ponder.

    Paypal/eBay will presumably issue Paypal Access Cards to Paypal/eBay sellers who may get random feedback and DSR scores that result in a sales ban on eBay. Or even receive a sales ban on the back of linked accounts and the performance of other family members.

    Is such a ban going to affect credit scores and will it affect the Paypal card status or indeed the status of any cards owned?

    Can you overspend on a Paypal Access Card or is your spending limited only to those funds you have in your Paypal account?

  6. Except for the PayPass technology is this any different than the PayPal Mastercard that US users have had access to for at least the past 8 years? We even get cash back when we use ours.

  7. God i cant wait to be able to pay my suppliers the same day i get money rather then having to keep waiting for the dam transfer.

  8. I received one of these cards yesterday. I used to have the top up card. I am glad I looked on this site. Didn’t realise this card had pay pass terchnology. Can’t wait to use it!


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