PayPal will now allow peer-to-peer payments to and from Ukraine. The company announced today that it was significantly expanding its services in Ukraine in the wake of Russia’s invasion. Prior to this, Ukrainian PayPal customers could only use the payment platform to send money outside of the country. Earlier this month, the company announced it was exiting Russia, citing the country’s “violent aggression” against Ukraine.
PayPal users in Ukraine will now be able to send money to and receive money from outside the country, as well as domestically. It’s a move that likely will make life easier for Ukrainians receiving financial support from family and loved ones who live abroad. Ukrainians will also be able to send funds directly to their bank account by linking their Visa or Mastercard debit or credit card.
Perhaps most significantly, PayPal is waiving its own fees (until June 30th) for both sending and receiving funds in Ukraine. The payment platform traditionally charges a fee for international transactions that starts at 5%, and increases depending on your payment method and the region where your recipient resides.
A new payment option is likely to have a significant impact in Ukraine, where only a few options exist to send or receive money abroad. Sending money to individuals in Ukraine (or virtually anywhere abroad) can be costly. Every payment platform that serves a global customer base in Ukraine (including WesterUnion, MoneyGram, Remitly) charges an international transaction fee or commission, and exchange rates can often be unfavorable. Hopefully, this temporary grace period from PayPal will make a significant impact for those seeking to send money to loved ones in Ukraine.