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Paypal – how to set preferred payment method?

I’m trying to figure out how to set the default or preferred payment method in my Paypal account. Because I’ve run into credit card fraud twice in the past couple months, I’m being very careful about where I enter my credit card details. In this case, I’m trying to get Spotify to use my Paypal account instead of my credit card directly.

When I click the Paypal payment link, it signs me into Paypal, which proceeds to inform me that it will be using my default payment option (which I know is my bank account). I’d like to change the preferred (default) Paypal payment method to be my credit card so I can get points! It tells me I can change this by going into my Profile’s money settings, but I don’t see the setting anywhere?

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16 Comments on "Paypal – how to set preferred payment method?"

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Shin
Shin

If someone still needs help with this, let me know.

Rachel
Rachel
PayPal will not let you set your credit card payment as the default because they want to skim every last penny from your transaction, and they keep a bigger cut if you use your bank account. They don’t make very clear when you jump through the hoops to add your bank account that you will have to use it as your primary payment option. They know customers are not happy about this – it has been voiced for years on their help forums. They could easily allow you to change the settings. But they don’t – they don’t care about… Read more »
Rick
Rick

If you have a bank a/c and CC setup in Paypal, you cannot set the default to CC. Ie. the bank a/c will always be the default. I have been trying to do this. Finally called Paypal and they told me that the only way to do this is delete the bank account.

Lee
Step 1: Login into PayPal, click “My Account” and browse to Profile > My money (left-hand side menu) > and under “My pre-approved payments” click on “Update.” On this page, you’ll see a listing of your active PayPal subscriptions. Click on “Set Available Funding Sources” and uncheck the payment methods (i.e. bank account) you don’t want to use. If you only leave your credit card check, it will default to that. Note that PayPal will always drain your PayPal balance before resorting to an alternate payment method (such as your bank account or credit card), regardless of the setting you… Read more »
Fran
Fran

Clearly PayPal wishes to avoid paying credit card fees and is forcing customers to use bank accounts when it can. Bad customer service, but PP has a lot of market share and perhaps an over inflated sense of its own power right now. I’ll be pre-funding my PayPal account with credit card funds if possible so I can avoid this. Alternately, I’ll just not make purchases if I have to use my bank account. I already force-change it manually on every purchase I can.

Andrew
Andrew

The best thing to do to make PP stop using your bank accounts as the preferred payment method is to just delete them all from your PP account then by default PP will use your credit cards for the Preferred Payment Method. I think that you can reorder the list to pick which one to use first.

Emily
Emily

Yeah, Paypal sucks! Those crooks make it so hard to find the option, and what a waste of time!!! Cost me a whole day figuring out this crap! And then after you go through their maze, they won’t link the card because it’s “used in another account”. No wonder many have left this crap service!

Spring
Spring
I can certainly sympathize with the author of this post. Being careful to avoid credit card fraud is a desirable goal. However, PayPal is one of the most secure payment processors online. In fact, by acting as as go between with the customer and a number of other online merchants, it actually makes things even more secure. By the same token, everyone is free to determine how they want to set up their PayPal account. By default, each time you are sending out a payment, it will pull the funds first from your normal balance. I also keep a fair… Read more »
kauf
kauf
Making changes in a PayPal account can be an interesting and time consuming experience. It seems that many times, it can be a little difficult to find any reliable information about how to make a desired change. One of these changes involves the primary or preferred payment method. The default is set to use your PayPal balance as the first funding source for any payments you wish to make. For most people (myself included), it is probably good enough to make all payments out of my balance before reaching into my bank account or a credit card. However, I also… Read more »
Alex
Alex

Within Paypal, browse to Profile > My money (left-hand side menu) > and under “My preapproved payments” click on “Update.” On this page, you’ll see a listing of your active Paypal subscriptions. Click on “Set Available Funding Sources” and uncheck the payment methods (ie. bank account) you don’t want to use. If you only leave your credit card check, it will default to that.

Note that Paypal will always drain your Paypal balance before resorting to an alternate payment method (such as your bank account or credit card), regardless of the setting you specify here.

Gail
Gail

Thank you so much for this post. have been looking for that solution for years!

Gail
Gail

Well, it looks like i spoke too soon. i followed all the instructions here and still i can’t make cc to be the default payment over my bank account. i can’t delete my bank account as i need to use it from time to time but don’t want it to be the default method.

Any other ideas? thanks

Berger
Berger
“Note that Paypal will always drain your Paypal balance before resorting to an alternate payment method (such as your bank account or credit card), regardless of the setting you specify here.” Not in my case. My PayPal’s default settings are that my balance stays intact, while the money is being drained from my debit card which is linked to my bank account. I tried literally everything to set my PP to drain the balance first (including the procedure you described above) but nothing helped – I keep getting the message “You cannot remove all of your instant funding sources from… Read more »
Clark
Clark

Doesn’t work, did you test this? I did and have been trying to solve this for over a year. PayPal will not answer this question and your process does not solve the problem.

Ralph
Ralph
I tried your method just to be sure nothing had changed since I last researched this issue, and unfortunately one still cannot set a credit card as the “Preferred Payment Method” for one-time payments. Another commenter posted instructions for changing the Preferred Payment Method for subscriptions and other recurring payments to a credit card, but the method Walter listed only serves to choose which credit cards (in the case of multiple credit cards on one Paypal account) to use first. Furthermore, with the exception of Paypal Credit Products (Paypal credit card, and I believe they have some sort of e-check… Read more »
Alex
Alex

Sorry you’re having troubles with this. Can you list the exact steps that you took and explain in detail what’s not working? There’s so many nuances to this issue that it’s difficult to address a particular situation without details.

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