I occasionally sell valves on eBay and their Global Shipping Program has been useful, taking away the need for me to figure out postage to individual countries. For a very small trader like me this save a lot of hassle. Or it did.
But here’s the issue. Paypal has become ubiquitous and makes for an easy way to add payments to various things, Uber for example. As Paypal’s own adverts tell you by using them you do not need to lodge any personal information with all the various websites and apps you may use. But there is a huge issue. I currently have someone in China who, after taking over two weeks to pay me for two valves then lodged a dispute with Paypal for non-delivery after just a few days. The tracker shows it is stuck in their Global Shipping Centre here in the UK. Anyway, this person is no longer communicating with me but Paypal transferred the money out of my account leaving a negative balance.
And guess what… now I have a negative balance Paypal transactions are failing. So in one fell swoop this dispute means that Paypal is effectively useless to me. I have already taken it out of Uber as I will need to use them. I found this out the I tried to purchase something on eBay. It added the negative amount and then told me that if I pay by card, which is my only payment method, then it counts as a cash advance and thus I will pay interest from day one. I don’t pay interest on anything. Yes, I can add my bank details and transfer money that way but I don’t want to, and anyway Paypal say this takes 5 to 7 days.
Oh, as to the valves they are marked as undeliverable. No idea why yet. In such a case, eBay will refund the buyer, so no need for Paypal to get involved. But the person has not yet closed the case or even bothered to answer my messages about it and so Paypal is still lost to me. And I suspect this will be permanent because as I change away from it as a payment method what reason is there for me to return?
Update 29/5/17 – I now notice as a seller I cannot leave negative feedback for a buyer! I can leave positive feedback or nothing. How useless. eBay is totally buyer friendly and seller unfriendly now. I only sell a few items a year – I can’t imagine the hassle major traders must face… I expect they simply have to write stuff off. Anyway, given the eBay fees, including charring a fee for postage (why?!), plus the Paypal fees this has probably done me a favour as I will now list valves on the museum site open for offers and just trade p2p. Well done Paypal, because of this eBay will not be getting any more commission from me.
Update 2/6/17 – after Paypal found in my favour and put the funds back the buyer changed the appeal to ‘not as described’. At first I though this meant the valves finally tuned up, but it seems they have not (nor will they ever thanks to the GSP) and so he has fraudulently changed it to try to get a refund via Paypal (eBay, remember, will apparently refund the buyer anyway if the item cannot be delivered so it’s not a Paypal claim even though Paypal will need to actually do the refund). So once again Paypal have left me with a negative balance but fortunately I have now stopped using it so it makes little difference to me!
Update 18/6/17 – Apparently Paypal has sent an email on the 14th that I never received and there is something now about having to wait for a refund. But I’m not waiting for a refund? So, whatever the e-mail said it was 12 days since the fraudulent claim that the item was not as described (it never arrived, remember? It got trapped by eBay). Equally annoying is that because this person took over two weeks to pay me in the first place the seller bill from eBay arrived before the funds. I paid that straight away of course, but because I made a payment to eBay I cannot now close my eBay account until 30 days have passed in case I do to them what this person has done to me and claim the money back!
Of course, now time has passed I am reminded just how easy it is to not have to use Paypal, given just about everything else I need to pay takes cards directly and my various subscriptions have been switched from Paypal to bank transfers.
Update 20/6/17 – Well Paypal tell me they refunded 0.00 to the buyer and have once again put the funds back into my Paypal account, meaning I was able to pay the one thing I still needed Paypal for (a club membership, but future payments can go via Direct Debit). I have removed my credit card details prior to shortly closing my Paypal account. Yes I know I will probably then want to buy something from eBay but I… will… resist!
And so my Paypal account, which I have had for a very long time now, is closed. Gone. Bye. They are apparently sorry to see me go. Hmmm…