PayPal “near real-time” transfers to take 6 hours

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According to the BBC, PayPal reckon that all their technical glitches are over and payments should now be hitting your bank account more quickly.

The article explains that “technical issues” in the UK that led to a string of transactions being sent for security checks have been solved. They go on to say that transfer of funds into bank accounts should now take place within six hours. PayPal still have a regulatory obligation to make a certain number of security checks so for a small number of transactions it may take longer but it will be a “very small proportion”.

I have to say I’m slightly bemused by all this. I was under the impression that Faster Payments was in most cases instant and at the worst would occur within two hours. Six hours isn’t “Faster” payments, six hours is a four hour hold for everyone followed by an eventual faster payment.

It’s understandable that PayPal won’t be sharing their algorithms for selecting payments for hold – be it frequency, amount, seller history etc, as that would enable selers to game the system to access their funds. What isn’t understandable is why if a transaction isn’t selected for a security check what the four hour delay is for.

Contrasting transferring money to your bank account, I’ve yet to hear of anyone complain that every time they try to make an eBay purchase PayPal delay the payment for up to six hours. Personal payments between PayPal accounts also seem to be instant. If I can spend my money or send it to a friend why can’t I withdraw it to my bank account in a timely fashion?

I’ve been reviewing the statement that PayPal gave Tamebay in January which said “although PayPal is not a UK Bank it will give its UK customers the same almost instant real time money transfers to bank accounts as offered by UK banks in the Faster Payments scheme. Other organisations use the Faster Payments system in a different way, delaying the transfer of funds by a number of hours. PayPal took the decision to be the first non-UK bank to provide near real-time transfers to give our customers the best possible experience“.

Six hours is by no means “near real-time transfers”. Come on PayPal, you promised you’d give us Faster Payments. You let us pay trading partners with “near real-time transfers”. Now let us transfer money to our bank accounts at the same speed.

16 Responses

  1. The last request to put funds into my bank account via paypal (about 3 days ago) took nearly 48 hours! I have two paypal accounts, one as a private seller, the other as a business, they both constantly get held for assessment.

  2. What a joke, it isn’t fixed what so ever.

    I made a withdrawal this evening at 22:05 for £444 and was informed at Paypal that it would take 4 hours to review and 2 hours after that to go in the the bank… all well and good.

    I’ve just received an email now at 22:36 stating the usual message of :-

    “For security reasons, we are reviewing your withdrawal request, which could take up to 24 hours. After our review is complete, PayPal will release your funds. It can take up to an additional 2 hours for those funds to be deposited into your bank account.”

    Absolute joke, every withdrawal I’ve made over the last 2 weeks has been reviewed up to 24 hours.. its funny it goes through at near enough 24 hours each time, is there never a time they’ve reviewed it after 6 hours, 10 hours, 15 hours, 20 hours???

    Seems a bit fishy that it takes the whole 24 hours and then it has suddenly been “reviewed”

    Dodgy dodgy Paypal.

    As a follow up I clicked on the link on their email to their “User Agreement” which gives me :-

    What do I get here?. …

    “You have requested an outdated version of PayPal. This error often results from the use of bookmarks.”

    Oh Paypal you really are so poor.

  3. Why are u all moaning? Amazon keep hold of my money for 2 -3 weeks. 6 hours is nothing to wait. I am sure the 99.9% of people are happy with PayPal, I am

  4. I’m the same as Chris… Only one out of five withdrawals in the last week or so, has been honoured immediately. Everything else is taking 24 hours.

    Strangely enough they had no problems for a few weeks before their supposed “technical problems” with all withdrawals being immediate.

    .. and yes Darren, Amazon are horrific but they stick to their T&C. Paypal have signed up to a code of conduct that requires them legally to transfer funds pretty much immediately. If they’d promised 24 hours there’d be no (well, few!) complaints, but they’re promising one thing and delivering something totally different…

    It’s called taking the p*ss and blatantly so.

  5. Unusually for PayPal, my payment has arrived in my bank account about ten seconds after request – and that was despite the usual PayPal messages saying it would be reviewed for ‘up to 24 hrs’. It seems that the message on the PayPal page after you make the request always appears whether they’re going to ‘review’ the payment or not.
    I should also add that my payment request was for only £70, not £444. perhaps the small-fry like me are not subject to the same persecution that the bigger guns are….

  6. Darren obviously you didn’t read my message.

    They said 4-6 hours… on Paypal, I confirmed this… then 30 minutes later I get an email saying 24 hours.

    Mmm…. didn’t I just AGREE to 4-6 hours? oh yes.. hen Paypal changed it without warning.


    Yes, Paypal are a lot quicker than others, but just because they are the best of a bad bunch for withdrawal speed doesn’t make it ok just “because”.

  7. The key seems to be £400. Try the ‘back’ button trick when withdrawing £399 (assuming your withdrawal is flagged for a 4 hour review) and then try £405…

  8. Still 24 hours despite saying 4 (plus 2) hours in the email.

    Much better than it was, of course, but the whole episode has left a nasty taste in the mouth. Of course, I’m not saying that banks can be institutionally greedy, manipulative and deceitful…oops, I just did!

  9. Still not fixed, I withdraw 5 times a week normally and NONE have not made it without a “security” review since the swap over in August; now they are all a min of 24 hours; it’s making trading difficult as you can’t predict how long it will take and it’s not a small proportion as hinted in the BBC article and as unusual, paypal are very quiet on this issue on their forums, extremely unprofessional….

  10. still 24 hours or more even though they say 2 hours, its not the time taken that annoys us ,its the patronising deception

  11. Yep, can confirm, got a 21 hour “review” again last night and every other withdrawal is taking about the same sadly.

    Strangely in the early hours of Sunday I was told my bank couldn’t accept the payment even though for 2 years I’ve been withdrawing to the same bank without an issue, not sure if that was a Paypal problem or not but got charged 50p for my troubles. Tried again 10 minutes later and was told it had gone through, only to be told again 5 minutes after there was a problem and the money returned… this time with no 50p charge.

    The funny thing was those two attemps are the only time it WAS going to go through in 2 hours… or so the site told me… if you believe that 😉

  12. I requested £367 to be withdrawn @ 0630 this morning and by 0652 it was in my account, so im very happy with the service at the mo. They said it would take 2 hours but was done in less than 30 mins

  13. PayPal payments seem to be sorted and withdrawals are in my account within about 2 hours.

    I have also received a refund in to my account today of £575 for all the £5 Express transfers I have made this year.

    Very happy.

  14. Finally, most of the time faster payments seem to be working. Minimum time seems to be about 10 minutes for smaller payments and up to 6 hours for larger ones.

    BUT, I made a withdrawal on my mobile last week and made the mistake of withdrawing it on the Paypal Android App. The money took THREE DAYS to hit my account. Won’t be using the app again!

  15. I’ve mainly been using my app to withdraw on either the ipad of iphone and this has been consistantly taking 3 working days. So I got quite a nice surprise when I used the site today and got an email saying it would be in my account in 2 hours . . .and it was!!!


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