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How to Transfer Money From Chime to PayPal

Byron Mühlberg, writer at Monito.com
Sep 23, 2022
Affiliate disclosure

PayPal and Chime® are two of the US's most popular mobile payment apps. With more than 12 million customers across the country, Chime offers an excellent mobile banking app and debit card. On the other hand, PayPal is the world's largest mobile payments app that offers fast online transfers between tens of millions of user accounts identifiable by email addresses and usernames.

However, despite their popularity, it's impossible to transfer from Chime to PayPal directly as the two platforms aren't connected in such a way that allows direct money transfers between accounts.

While it's possible to send money from Chime to PayPal indirectly, we recommend against it for transfers between different currencies. Among the most expensive ways to transfer money overseas, PayPal charges exorbitant exchange rate margins for international money transfers, and we recommend finding alternatives instead:

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Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services and debit card provided by The Bancorp Bank, N.A. or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC. Credit Builder card issued by Stride Bank, N.A.

How to Transfer Money From Chime to PayPal

When it comes to sending money from Chime to PayPal, it won't be quite as easy as transferring money from an ordinary bank account to PayPal. This is because Chime is considered as a prepaid account rather than a full bank account, and it means you'll have to rely on indirect methods to get the job done. You'll have the following three options, broadly speaking:

  1. You use either PayPal or Chime from beginning to end.
  2. You use a shared bank account (if sending to yourself).
  3. You send money to a PayPal debit card.
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We recommend budgeting two or three days for this process if you're starting from scratch. Successfully linking a bank account to either service or opening a new account can take some time.

We go through each of these options in more detail below:

Option 1 — Use The Same App

Perhaps the most straightforward way of sending money from Chime to somebody else's PayPal account, this method involves one of two options. First, you can open a PayPal account yourself (there's a fair chance you'll have one already) and deposit money from a non-Chime bank account (after linking your bank account, which can take up to three working days.) Alternatively, your recipient could open a Chime account, which would mean they'd be able to access the money from you more quickly as they won't need to link a bank account to receive it. Both options are free, and signup is fast.

  • Best for: Sending money with PayPal to another person with Chime, or vice versa.
  • What you'll need: A PayPal account, or a beneficiary with a Chime account.
  • Cost: None.
  • Speed: Minutes (whether you get PayPal or your beneficiary gets Chime).

Option 2 — Transfer to a Common Bank Account

Either online or over the mobile apps of the two platforms, you can transfer money from Chime to PayPal by linking a common bank account. To get started, you'll need Chime and PayPal accounts in the same name as another US-based bank account. You can then link your bank account to both services and transfer money from Chime to your bank account, and then finally on to PayPal.

  • Best for: Sending money to yourself.
  • What you'll need: A US-based bank account, a PayPal account, and a Chime account.
  • Cost: None (so long as no currency conversion is involved).
  • Speed: 2-3 days.

Option 3 — Use a PayPal Card

A final option you have is to order a PayPal debit MasterCard, which you can use as a bridge between your PayPal account and your Chime account in a similar way to how you would with a checking account. This option is especially useful if you already have a PayPal debit card, but it can be a slow option if you need to order the card first.

  • Best for: Sending money to yourself (if you already have a PayPal debit card).
  • What you'll need: A PayPal debit MasterCard, a PayPal account, and a Chime account.
  • Cost: None for ordinary transfers (see more about fees here).
  • Speed: 7-10 days.

Sending From Chime to PayPal: What To Avoid

If you're planning on sending money from Chime to PayPal in the same currency, then the process should be totally free. However, if you're planning on making a currency conversion at any point along the way, then the costs can stack up very fast, same is likely to happen from Paypal to Skrill or from Paypal to Moneygram.

This can happen in one of two ways if your PayPal account is in any currency other than US dollars. (Chime accounts are always in US dollars as the service is only available in the US.) First, you can convert funds into dollars in PayPal directly using your balance, in which case PayPal will make the currency conversion. Alternatively, you can deposit the money from your PayPal account into your bank account in US dollars, in which case your bank will make the currency conversion.

The bad news is that both options are expensive because you will be charged a highly variable, nontransparent exchange rate margin fee of anywhere between 2.5% and 4.5% for PayPal (and sometimes even higher with the bank) for converting currencies.

At Monito, we recommend against using PayPal when exchanging currencies, especially when sending money to a different country and currency. Instead, if you're planning on sending money abroad, then we recommend you make an ordinary bank transfer to one of the many international money transfer specialist services out there — most of which allow you to take advantage of fees and exchange rates that come in at a fraction of the cost of PayPal or the big banks.

Run a search on Monito's real-time comparison engine below to get the job done quickly and easily:

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