PayPal - transaction limits, other options?

Hey all-

I’m setting up donation collection for an organization. They were looking at, but I have severe reservations about their privacy policy which indicates they may sell, rent, etc., submitted information. Furthermore, fees are nuts.

They want, for now, a reasonable-cost, no/low commitment account while they get a handle on their transaction levels, organizational structure, and also developing some subscription based online services for the future. Eventually, they intend to move to a normal merchant account.

I am looking into PayPal Pro, possibly tied up with OSCommerce. I know this seems a bit overkill for donations, but they want full access to donor information.

  1. Does PayPal have a maximum transaction limit? I’ve been told we could run anywhere from $10 to $500,000 (which I am thinking something non-automated is a better choice for anything that big).

  2. Any other services that people know of that are suitable for this scenario? Reporting and international capabilities are a plus.

Any suggestions are much appreciated.

PayPal’s limit on individual transactions is $10,000. Unverified users may be subject to a Sending Limit that is lower than the maximum transaction size. There is no set limit on the volume of payments you can receive.

$500,000 via Credit Card? If you get a transaction fee of only 2%, thats $10,000.

Would it not be better to cap credit card transactions at say $1,000 and do the rest via bank transfer?

Also, says PayPal accounts get flagged for investigation if you withdraw more than $2,500 frequently. So you could wake up some morning with you PayPal account frozen.

Thanks–I spoke with the client again, and clarified that transactions over $1000 or so will not be coming through the site.

I’ll have to look into the $2500 thing. That doesn’t seem like a reasonable “red flag” number if an account is getting $10000+ a month in payments.

If you use PayPal, any eChecks you receive will have a maximum transaction fee of $5 regardless of the transaction amount. If you are using PayPal Pro, you would only be able to receive eChecks through Express Checkout (the Direct Payment API can only process credit card information).

Customers who log in to PayPal through Express Checkout and have a Verified bank account will have an option to pay you by eCheck, but you would not be able to select that option for them automatically.

Sorry, I was talking about doing an offline bank transfer to avoid fees.

If it’s a charity, you might check out something like

Thanks Tony. Actually, we did just that and are planning to go with (merged with NetworkForGood a few months ago).