How to send money from PayPal to Wise: A Full Guide [2023]

If you have money in your PayPal account and want to switch it to a different currency you might be wondering about the best way to convert and withdraw currencies from PayPal.

While PayPal is a global leader thanks to its fast and intuitive services, it’s not always the cheapest option when it comes to international payments and currency conversion. Switching your currency via a free multi-currency Wise Account could save you a significant amount thanks to lower fees and a better exchange rate.

More about the Wise Account

Why sending money from Paypal to Wise can save you money

PayPal tends to have high fees when sending international payments or performing any sort of currency exchange. That means that if you need your PayPal balance switching to a different currency you may get a better deal by avoiding PayPal’s currency conversion process.

The good news is that you may be able to do that by opening a free Wise multi-currency account, and linking it to your PayPal account for withdrawals.

The Wise account comes with local bank details for 9 currencies which let you get paid for free from over 30 countries. Simply send your PayPal balance to Wise using these account details, and you can then convert it to any currency you need within Wise using the real exchange rate.

It helps to know that the bank accounts you can link to PayPal do vary based on your residence and where you opened your PayPal account. If you have a PayPal New Zealand account you can link local New Zealand bank accounts to withdraw in NDZ; and depending on how your PayPal account is set up, you may also be able to link a US bank to withdraw in US dollars. The good news is that you’ll get NZD and USD bank details with your free Wise account to make it easy to send money from PayPal to Wise. More on that later.

Read our full review about the Wise Account to learn more.

How to send money from PayPal to Wise

Let’s get into the details of how to withdraw money from PayPal to Wise. Depending on your situation there are a couple of things you may need to do:

We’ll run through these steps one by one now.

PayPal Steps

Got a Wise account already? Great – you can simply set up a link from your Wise account to PayPal online or in the PayPal app. If you don’t have a Wise account just yet, don’t worry, getting set up is free and doesn’t take long. That’s covered in detail below.

Step 2: Verify your Wise account with PayPal

To keep your money safe, PayPal will ask you to complete a verification step before you use your linked account for the first time. You can do that through a manual process where you’ll be sent 2 transactions of small amounts, and will need to then enter details from these transactions into your PayPal account to verify it.

In some cases you may also be able to confirm your bank account automatically using your online banking details instead.

Step 3: Log into PayPal and view your Wallet

Once your Wise account is linked to PayPal you’ll just need to log into PayPal online or in the app, and head to the Wallet section. Here you should be able to see the account balance and transfer it out.

Step 3: Click Transfer, then withdraw to your linked bank account

Under the balance amount you’ll see the option to transfer money – select this to be taken to details of how you can transfer money out. You should be able to select the button to withdraw to your linked bank account, and you’ll be presented with the accounts you’ve linked.

Just choose the Wise account and follow the prompts on screen to add the withdrawal amount details. You’ll also get an estimate of the time it takes to get your money deposited in your account. PayPal New Zealand states that transfers to a bank account usually take 1 business day, but can take up to 5 business days depending on your bank’s own processes.

Step 4: Review and confirm your withdrawal

Finally, check over the details of your withdrawal and confirm it if you’re happy. You’ll get a confirmation screen and you’re all done.

Start now

While there are a couple of different steps to take to withdraw money from PayPal to Wise for the first time, none of them should take very long – and all can be done conveniently from your laptop or mobile device.

Ultimately once you’ve integrated your Wise account with PayPal it becomes really easy and fast to make withdrawals to your linked account – and you could stand to save a significant amount by completing your currency conversion with Wise instead of PayPal, too. More on that later.

Get started on Wise

Opening a Wise account can be done entirely online or through the Wise app. The process is simple:

  • Register in minutes with an email address, Google, Facebook or Apple account
  • Verify your identity – more on that below
  • Enable the currencies you need within your Wise multi-currency account
  • Use your Wise account details to get paid by others and make PayPal withdrawals

To keep customers and their money safe, Wise will ask you to complete a verification step when you open a multi-currency account. That’s just like when you head into a bank to show your documents and open a new account – but this time you can do it online or via the Wise app without needing to leave home.

You’ll usually need to upload images of a proof of identity and a proof of address, and you may also be asked to take a selfie with your document to show it matches. You’ll be guided through the process – and you don’t have to upload everything at once, either. If you run out of time just save your progress and return to it later.

Get started on Wise

How much does it cost to transfer money from PayPal to Wise

There’s not usually a PayPal New Zealand fee to withdraw funds to a linked account in either NZD or USD. However, if currency conversion is required before you make a withdrawal from PayPal there’s an extra fee of 3%.

It’s not possible to withdraw funds from a PayPal New Zealand account to a linked card.

Wise does not charge to receive payments using the local bank details that come with your account. Learn more about Wise fees.

Is there a transfer limit?

PayPal doesn’t declare any limit to the amount you can withdraw to your linked account through the standard process.

PayPal vs Wise: International money transfer fees

If you have a balance in PayPal and need to send money to someone overseas, you can also do that directly from your PayPal account. However, it’s good to know that PayPal’s fees for currency conversion and international payments can stack up quickly.

Here’s a look at the costs for PayPal transfers for both local and international payments to friends and family – compared against the same transactions from Wise.

PayPal Wise
International transfers 6.99 NZD when funded with a bank account or PayPal balance


6.99 NZD + 3.4% + fixed fee when funded with a card

Cost depends on send amount and currency: From 0.41% + low, fixed fee
Domestic transfers No fee when funded from PayPal balance or linked bank account


When funded with a card a fee of 3.4% + fixed fee applies


Currency conversion fees will apply if you hold a balance in a currency other than NZD

Low, fixed fee
Exchange rate Currency conversion fee of 3% Mid-market exchange rate with no markup

Read our detailed comparison article on Wise vs PayPal

Can I do a PayPal transfer to someone else on Wise?

Generally when you send money with PayPal it’s deposited into their PayPal account. From there the recipient can withdraw the funds to their own linked account or card as they wish.

That means you can’t easily send money from your PayPal balance directly to someone’s Wise account. However, you can withdraw your funds from PayPal to your own linked bank account and then use this balance to send a local or international payment with Wise. Because Wise uses the real mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees, sending money this way can work out far cheaper than going directly with PayPal.

Can I pay with PayPal on Wise?

If you want to send a Wise payment funded in NZD you can pay using:

  • Bank transfer
  • Debit or credit card
  • POLi
  • Your Wise account balance

That means the easiest way to use your PayPal balance to make a Wise transfer is to withdraw your PayPal funds to a Wise multi-currency account and then transfer this balance out in the currency you need.

You can use PayPal to fund a Wise transfer directly if your Wise account is based in a country located within the European Economic Area. This service is available for personal customers only at the time of writing.

Why does PayPal have a fee compared to Wise?

Wise is a financial technology company which was built to make it cheaper, faster and easier to move money internationally.

Wise has created its own payment network to drive down the costs of sending money across borders, and passes the savings achieved on to customers in the form of low prices.

One of Wise’s key principles is price transparency – so Wise uses the mid-market exchange rate for all currency conversion, and splits out any fees so they’re easy to see and understand.

PayPal is a great service which has built a huge global fan base. When you’re shopping online, PayPal can often make it easier and faster to pay, with extra buyer protections in place so you know your transaction is safe.

However, when it comes to international transfers and currency conversion, PayPal fees are high. This is in part because it’s not PayPal’s core business – it’s just not been necessary to drive down the costs involved.


If you need to withdraw a balance from PayPal to send a payment overseas you could save by using a linked Wise multi-currency account. Exactly what your options are will depend a little on your PayPal account type.

However, by linking your Wise account to PayPal you may be able to withdraw funds in NZD or USD, which you can then hold or convert to any currency you need using the real mid-market exchange rate.

Overall, if you need to send a payment internationally, you’ll probably pay less with Wise compared to PayPal thanks to Wise’s low fees and better exchange rates.

Get started

How to send money from PayPal to Wise – FAQ

  1. How much does it cost to create a Wise account?

You can create a Wise personal account online or in the Wise app for free. If you’re creating an account as a business owner you’ll pay a one time fee of 40 NZD.

  1. How much does it cost to create a PayPal account?

You can create a PayPal account in most cases for free. Transaction fees apply on the services you then use.

  1. How long do PayPal and Wise take to send money internationally?

The amount of time it takes for a payment to arrive depends on the destination and currencies involved. 50%+ of Wise international payments are instant, and the vast majority arrive within 24 hours. PayPal transfers to other PayPal accounts can be instant – but fees on currency conversion are typically high.

  1. Is Wise really cheaper?

In cost comparisons, Wise consistently comes out as one of the cheapest providers available for international transfer and currency conversion. That’s usually because Wise uses the real mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees for services.


Claire Millard
Fintech copy and content writer
Claire Millard is a content and copywriter with a specialty in international finance. Her work has featured in The Times and The Telegraph, as well as industry magazines and leading personal finance blogs.
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Ileana Ionescu
Content manager
With a background in business journalism, Ileana is an experienced content manager, creating content for Exiap that helps its audience make informed decisions about their finances.
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Last updated
December 19th, 2022