Hpe this is the correct forum..
Buying some stuff from Ebay UK and paying with Paypal.
Would it be better for me to choose Paypal's conversion rate(which is given), or choose the other option(not sure what the exact wording is) to get billed at the credit card company's(mastercard) exchange rate...?
Is there much of a difference?
I've not noticed it to be very different. Unless you're spending a lot (thousands) then it's not likely to be that much. There's also a % fee for currency conversions, that the credit cards charge. This can be anything for about 1.5 to 4%, depending on your bank.
Some people claim that Paypal's rate is way off the banks, but banks (especially credit card sections) don't make it easy to find out what their rate is right now. Rates change several times a day, so you can never be sure what you're about to get, except with Paypal, which shows you the rate just before you pay.
You could do a test. Buy something on eBay for £10. Go to Paypal and start payment procedure using Paypal's rate, but don't go through with the payment, and instead check what rate they give you. Then, in your profile, change to use the credit card's rate, and make the payment. Compare what turns up on your statement with what Paypal had quoted you. This will give you a good idea.
Credit card is better
Lots of people say that, but I've never seen anyone back it up with proof.
right now, xe.com gives a Sterling rate of 0.885765 to the euro. Paypal are giving 0.862928 to the euro. No bank will ever give you the xe rate, they're always 2-3% off that, which is exactly what Paypal are right now.
€112.41 EUR from Mastercard X-XXXX [ More funding options ]
PayPal exchange rate of 1 EUR = 0.862928 GBP on Feb 18, 2009. [ Conversion options ]
Item Cost £97.
Will go with MC for this one and compare and post when it shows up on CC statement... can't be much more than Paypal's rate but at least I'll know.
I found my CC rates are better, but not by much..
ALso better to choose CC for Aer Lingus.
I have seen the proof for myself many times, it is not too much different but invariably CC was better, both MC and visa. I bought a few identical items from the same shop at the same price with paypal & visa/MC, just to see the difference, post was free and it was from jersey so I wanted several packages to avoid duty too.
A while ago somebody posted a visa site, on this it had the days current rate and a place to input your banks visa % crossborder fee. Then you can go to paypal and attempt to send money to find out their rate (no need to buy something on ebay, just log into paypal and attempt to send to a previous person you paid, and do not go through with it all). Without fail visa was always cheaper for me. Very little mind, sometimes I still use paypal for convenience on very low cost items.
After reading this thread, I just made a payment on Ebay with Visa Debit and found the rate to be better than paypal... The amount was £317, Paypal option showed 448 euro where after choosing own bank rate I ended up paying 436 euro.