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fees on international *personal* transaction


fees on international *personal* transaction

I'm being charged a fee of approx 5%, for receiving an international *personal* payment. Is this a transaction fee, or a currency conversion fee?


The sender is in Australia. She couldn't tell the system whether this was a personal or business transaction - the question wasn't asked. Her account is in AUD, but she specified this amount in GBP, so PayPal does the currency conversion.


I didn't expect such a fee - she used PayPal in order to avoid the fees that banks charge to send money overseas. Is this PayPal's commission on the exchange rate? I certainly wouldn't expect the recipient to pay it.


I had an email notifying me that this transaction is on hold. The email, as well as the information when I click "Get Your Money Sooner", treat me as a seller, as if this were payment for something she bought from me. But I've sold nothing - it's a gift! As I said, she wasn't given the chance to state this when sending the money. My account is a personal one, I've never had a business account. I believe hers is a personal account too (I've asked, waiting for her to wake up over there and reply). I've also asked if she paid from her balance or used a card - not sure if that makes a difference, but if it does, shouldn't the system have told her it would, when she was setting up the transaction?


  • Surely a personal payment doesn't incur business fees? Can I correct this with PayPal, or must the sender tell them?
  • Or else is it because it was above a certain amount? If so, why wasn't the sender made aware of this during the process of sending the money?
  • If she cancels this transaction, will one of us lose money in fees (cancellation fees, conversion fees, any others?)? If so it may be cheaper to pay the fee, exorbitant though it is.


I have spent a LONG time reading Help pages, including the User agreement. I can't find an explanation.

I did find (😞

"Sending international personal transactions
Rate - 5.00% of the transaction amount
Minimum/Maximum - The minimum fee is 0.99 GBP and the maximum fee is 2.99 GBP"

… but this is sending from UK to another country, obviously. And in my case, the fee is *a lot* more than £2.99 (which would be 5% of £59.80, and this gift is a lot bigger than that).


Also on that page:

"Receiving personal transactions
Rate - No fee (when no currency conversion is involved)"

… but this doesn't say what the fee will be when currency conversion *is* involved. And relates to sending *from* the UK, of course.

If you can explain this for me, please also show me where it is in the Help pages. I'm frustrated that I haven't found it after spending an hour or two fruitlessly searching. Thank you in advance!