How old do you have to be to have a PayPal? – Answered

Since banking has gone digital, the rise of alternative methods to send and receive money have become popular.

While apps such as Venmo and Cash App provide a solid enough service, there is no doubt that PayPal is the king when it comes to these kinds of apps.

Due to its popularity, many people under the age of 18 are well aware of PayPal and how it works.

Teenagers also see it as a way of gaining control over their finances given that their bank accounts, if they have them at all, will more than likely be controlled by their parents.

In this article, we are going to look at how old you have to be to get a PayPal account and how to go about setting yourself up on the platform providing you are of legal age.

How old do you have to be to have a PayPal? In a nutshell

In order to legally have a PayPal account you need to be 18 years of age or older.

Our recommended choice if you want a payment app but you’re not quite 18 yet is Cash App, which allows users as young as 13. You may also want to check out these other PayPal alternatives.

The reason why nobody under the age of 18 can set up a PayPal account is to do with the law and legally binding contracts – something which PayPal requires each user to sign upon sign up.

The legal age for entering a binding legal agreement in most jurisdictions is 18 and therefore PayPal must abide by this.

If anyone under the age of 18 attempts to sign up to a PayPal account they will likely fail as soon as verification comes into it. PayPal attempt to try and automatically verify everyone through the electoral roll (which those under the age of 18 won’t be on).

If automatic verification fails then they will ask users to submit an age verification document such as a driving license and/or passport.

Again, those under the age of 18 may well have one or both of these documents but they will show their true age and will result in the PayPal account being permanently deleted.

Long story short, if you are under the age of 18 then you are wasting your time trying to set up a PayPal account.

As another potential alternative, most banks these days offer bank accounts to children aged 11 and above. You will need parental consent, but at least this way you can have a place to store your money.

How to get set up on PayPal

Assuming you are of legal age, then it is time to begin your PayPal journey. It is a really simple process and all you need to know is your own personal information, in addition to your banking details. To set up a PayPal personal account, please take the following steps:

  1. Head to PayPal on a web browser and select ‘sign up’.
  2. Select ‘Personal account’ – we will discuss business accounts shortly.
  3. Enter in your mobile phone number and verify it.
  4. From here, simply answer all relevant fields relating to your personal information including name, age and email address.
  5. Link your bank account and/or credit/debit card to your PayPal account – you will need verify this with your bank for a successful link.

Once you are all set up and verified with both PayPal and your bank, you will be able to use PayPal to send/receive money to/from friends and family.

This will come in really handy if and when you owe someone money for a lunch or coffee and you don’t have any cash on you. It also cancels out the potential faff that online banking can sometimes feel like.

PayPal business

You will notice that when you are signing up for a personal PayPal account that you will also be given the option to set up a business account.

This is a section of PayPal that should only be used if you have a registered business and want to set up a PayPal strictly for business purposes.

It basically allows business owners to separate their personal funds from their business income, helping them to see how well their business is doing and also making tax payments easier to calculate.

While there are individuals under the age of 18 who do own businesses in the United Kingdom and abroad, it is still illegal for them to create a PayPal business account.

This may seem ridiculous, but we don’t make the rules, we’re just here to advise you on the amount of PayPal accounts you can have.

If you are over 18 though, and want to create a PayPal business account, then head to the PayPal website, select sign up on the top right hand side of the screen and then click ‘Business account’.

From here, just follow the on screen instructions and input all relevant information to get set up as a business on the platform.


To summarise, you need to be over the age of 18 in order to legally set up a PayPal account. While there probably are some people out there under the age of 18 who have successfully slipped the net, we would absolutely advise against trying.

This is because the odds are massively against you and when you are caught, it can result in you getting a lifetime ban from the platform.

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Andy is a Professional Content Editor with expertise in a whole host of areas (or so he tells us anyway). His main interests are sports, tv/film and social media. He has reviewed over 100 apps so far for Apps UK.

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