Anyone who regularly enjoys having a flutter online will have experienced the difficulty of trying to make deposits with PayPal. While some providers accept payments by PayPal, there has always been a risk to the account holder that PayPal will freeze their funds if it is suspected that they’ve been using the account to pay for gambling activity.
For some unknown reason, PayPal have suddenly come to their senses and lifted that ban. For the moment at least, anyway. While the ban was in place, it was a boon for competitors such as Neteller and Skrill, who have had a hard time attracting customers outside of the world of gambling. PayPal is the clear market leader in every other sector, and by returning to the gambling sector, they may as well sound the death bell for other online payment services.
But don’t rejoice too freely just yet, as there’s still the possibility that PayPal hasn’t completely ditched their puritanical streak just yet. We don’t know for certain that PayPal will allow all forms of gambling in all countries, and they’ll almost certainly prevent US customers from spending their PayPal funds with offshore gambling providers even when they are travelling outside of the United States, as has traditionally been the case, due to US law. What we do know is they’ll allow UK customers to play bingo with licensed bingo operators in the UK and perhaps a little farther afield.
All indications are that PayPal will continue to be highly selective about which merchants it will allow transactions to be made to, and which customers will be able to make the transactions (based on your nationality, not where you currently are located).
For you as a player, your major concern will be to locate those merchants which PayPal does approve of and which will allow you to use PayPal bingo to transfer and receive funds online. This is where directory sites will be a big help, because you don’t want to find out the hard way that PayPal is upset with you.
Overall this is good news for players because it means they can use one provider for all their online payments, instead of needing to maintain separate accounts for normal transactions and gambling transactions. On the other hand, there is also some wisdom in the idea of not putting all your eggs into one basket, so perhaps holding onto your existing accounts with other payment providers wouldn’t be the worst thing you could do, provided they’re not charging you for having a dormant account.
Another difficulty you need to be aware of is that bingo games ordinarily are played for low stakes and deposit amounts tend to reflect that. Making large numbers of low value transactions to a single merchant is likely to draw the attention of anti-money-laundering investigators, so it’s a good idea to make sure your deposits are never less than £20 at at time. So-called micro transactions are flagged by authorities as evidence of smurfing, which is moving small amounts of money to remove evidence of the presence of a much larger amount.