Published on April 20th, 2018 | by Chuck28
Things to Know about eBay and Paypal
[Updated and reposted 4/20/18 – if you see anything not current, please let me know.]
We post a lot of about eBay on the site; sometimes it’s about temporary deals and other times it’s information useful for the long term. In this post, we hope to capture all the evergreen information on eBay and Paypal in one post for easy reference. I hope to keep this up-to-date with any changes that come in the future so that anyone can reference all the current details at any time.
- Alway use a shopping portal when making purchases on eBay; check the best current rates here. There are numerous exclusions which vary by the portal and change constantly so check out the fine print before purchasing. Some portals won’t allow claims for eBay, some have a $50 limits, some might not pay out for gift card purchases or for items purchased when you paid with a gift card. The original post is a bit dated since the portal terms change so often, but it will give you a good idea what to look out for.
- As of November 2016, eBay began enforcing a portal restriction for items on which they don’t earn any money, usually items in their Daily Deals specials. This includes many gift card deals as well.
- eBay has a store program called eBay Bucks. The program rewards us 1% back on most purchases. The rewards can be used for future purchases. Max of $100 per purchase and $500 per quarter can be earned, and you can only have eBay Bucks active on one eBay account.
- eBay also releases bonus Bucks offers which offers up to 10% back on most purchases.
- Many people wonder how they can get themselves targeted for eBay Bucks promotions. Be sure to have your communication settings set up properly, and hopefully that will do it. Still not getting them? Here are a few suggestions.
- You can no longer buy an eBay gift card with eBay Bucks, which is useful to extend the expiration since gift cards don’t expire. You can buy third-party gift cards with eBay Bucks so that’s an option for using them up.
- As of October 1, 2016, we no longer earn eBay Bucks when buying gift cards.
Buying Gift Cards on eBay
- There a quite a few authorized gift cards sellers on eBay. The five sellers who sell brand-new gift cards are Giftcardmall, Paypal Digital Gifts, SVM, Cardency, and Nationalgiftcard. Authorized second-hand sellers include Giftcardoutlet/Cardpool and Cardcash. You can also buy second-hand cards from individual sellers, but it’s less secure than dealing with a company.
- These sellers frequently release special offers to get discounts on gift cards, sometimes as part of eBay Daily Deals. These are often reselling opportunities which can help you meet a minimum spend requirement or even profit cash. We post about these gift card deals all the time, and we sometimes post about the resale possibilities. Check out this post for some (expired) examples to get a feel for it, and check out Giftcardwiki for updated resale rates. Here’s a complete guide to selling gift cards for cash and here’s another view.
- Don’t try circumventing quantity limits on eBay by making purchases with two separate eBay accounts as this can result in a ban on your account.
- Paypal Digital Gifts sells electronic gift cards on eBay, and they have some weird limits as to how much they’ll sell you before erroring out on you. These limits have evolved over time (1, 2, 3), and recently they’ve been getting better with allowing purchases go through for a lot of people.
- Here’s a list of the top gift card brands sold on eBay.
- Paypal Buyer Protection does not include gift cards or e-gift cards, but eBay’s Buyer Protection should cover you. (Paypal does offer buyer protection on digital music downloads and the like.)
- eBay will sometimes show a listing as being “restricted to pre-approved buyers.” This happens often with gift card deals that are not yet available. If you see that message, you know the deal is coming soon.
Which Credit Card to Use
- Purchases from Paypal Digital Gifts paid used to earn 5x/3x with the Chase INK cards, but that no longer works. Nor does Citi ATT code at 3x any longer. (These are the same for both PPDG-eBay purchases and PPDG-direct purchases.)
- You can buy physical eBay gift cards from Thegiftcardstore on eBay and earn 5x with Chase INK when paying with Paypal.
- My experience has been that Giftcardmall, Cardency, and PPDG purchases on eBay paid via Paypal with the ATT Access More card have been getting 3x rewards, while SVM does not. As for other sellers on eBay, some work and some don’t; there doesn’t seem to be a discernible pattern.
eBay Gift Cards: Buying and Using Them
- eBay limits us to using $1,500 in eBay gift cards per month and a maximum of $1,000 per day.
- There is a limit of 8 eBay cards that can be used per transaction. All coupons/Bucks/promo-codes count as gift cards toward this limit.
- Partially used eBay gift cards are tied to the eBay account, and can’t be used with a different eBay account. They aren’t tied to the Paypal account anymore as it used to be.
- eBay gift cards can no longer be used to buy third-party gift cards or anything else in the coupons category. Nor can they be used to buy bullion or to buy eBay gift cards.
- eBay’s gift cards system is a bit funny and requires meticulous tracking to ensure you aren’t leaving any unused balances on the cards. They don’t use up gift cards in the order they were entered, rather it’s (usually) used up based on the gift card digits, lower numbers first. Always double check that your gift cards were used up before mentally marking it as used up.
- There are numerous ways to purchase eBay gift cards at a discount, the main one that remains currently is buying at the grocery to get bonus cash back from the credit card.
- Here’s a list of retailers who carry eBay gift cards. It used to be easier to buy eBay e-gift cards online, but eBay has recently reduced that availability.
- Check your eBay gift card balance here. (It used to be possible to see the balance in various places in your Paypal account and over the phone too, but no longer.) Be sure to do meticulous tracking, as mentioned before.
Selling on eBay
- Here’s how to sell gift cards on eBay. There’s some risk in selling on eBay since you don’t know if the buyer is honest; be sure to follow all the rules and hopefully eBay will have your back.
- Paypal Seller Protection does not cover gift cards or e-gift cards. eBay Seller Protection should cover you if you followed their rules.
- For product reselling on eBay, see Reselling Part 8: Amazon vs. eBay vs. Craigslist/Other where we compare selling on eBay vs. Amazon. And see Reselling Series Part 5: Reselling Products from eBay for info on sourcing products from eBay to sell on Amazon.
- There are various levels of Paypal accounts. It starts with just entering a valid credit card which confirms the billing address on the card. Other verifications include adding a bank, confirming a bank or card, and adding your date-of-birth or social security number. Certain actions using Paypal will need a higher degree of verification.
- Paypal has a convenient shipping feature which lets us print out postage inside a Paypal account at paypal.com/shipnow. It’s even better than USPS for small packages since they let us print out USPS First Class Parcel online.
- Aside from an online Paypal account, Paypal offers a few financial products including the Paypal/eBay credit card, BillMeLater, Paypal business debit card, and Paypal prepaid card.
- Paypal partnered with Visa to offer instant bank withdrawals using any Visa debit card.
- Pay with Paypal and get Free Return Shipping. This is nifty shopping benefit – be sure to activate first.