How PayPal really works for Israelis and Shekels

Tools and Apps

[If you’re looking for PayPal customer support, the number is 073-713-7777 and is open 9am to 6pm  Sunday through Thursday.]


There always seems to be confusion regarding how Israelis can use PayPal – can they use it in their currency, i.e. Shekels? Can they withdraw funds? Are there limits they should know about?

Almost a year ago I blogged about an announcement on the PayPal blog regarding new PayPal currencies, one of which was the Israeli Shekel. Despite that post, some questions still persisted, and the accuracy of the information was doubted.

Well, I’m happy to say that I now have the latest info regarding PayPal and Israel straight from PayPal! The following information was provided by Nissim Ohayon, Sr. Business Development Manager at PayPal Israel:

While PayPal services are not fully rolled out for Israeli merchants, thousands of Israeli merchants are using PayPal for cross border sales with great success. Here are some links that will direct you to the products and features available to Israeli merchants today:


  • Main PayPal web page for Israeli users and merchants:
  • Small to Medium Merchants:
    • Email Payments – Click here for full details
      • No integration required.
      • Accept credit/debit card as well as PayPal balance and echeck payments immediately.
    • Website Payments Standard (WPS) – Click here for full details including fees and integration tools.
      • Simple to Integrate. Select from one of three easy integration options.Click here for details.
      • No need to “qualify.” Just open a premium or business account online and follow the instructions.
      • Your site can be integrated and ready to accept credit card payments in a single day.
      • Click here for an online demo (may take a few minutes to load).
      • To see if your shopping cart software already has a kit for Website Payments Standard, please follow this link.
  • Merchants with their own merchant account:
    • Express Checkout (EC) – Click here for full details including fees and integration tools.
      • Some advanced programming may be required.
      • To see if your shopping cart software already has a kit for PayPal Express Checkout, please follow this link.
      • If your shopping cart is not listed on the page at the previous link, please direct your developers to this link to review the API documentation on how they can integrate PayPal Express Checkout to your site.
      • Your account may need to pre-qualify for Express Checkout, so please contact me directly if you wish to integrate this product into your site.

A few important notes for Israel-based users and merchants to consider:

  • Withdrawing funds is now available directly in Israel, in New Israeli Shekels via an Israeli-issued Visa card. Since Visa cards in Israel are typically linked to a bank account, those funds do settle directly into your bank account, via your credit card. Please note that this feature is restricted to a $750/day limit. We have plans to improve on the withdrawal methods for Israeli accounts in the coming months, so please stay tuned.
  • PayPal users and merchants that have a US bank account may link it to their PayPal account even if their PayPal account is here in Israel. This allows Israeli merchants and users to move funds in and out of PayPal directly to/from their US bank account without the daily limits mentioned above.
  • The PayPal web site will not be available in Hebrew in 2009. This means that Hebrew sites will not be able to integrate with the service yet.

To get started, open a PayPal Premier or Business account to start accepting credit cards and PayPal payments today by clicking here.


Note what it says about withdrawing funds: it can only be done with a Visa brand credit card, and the money is transferred through the Visa network and arrives in their bank account. This is because the overwhelming majority of Visa cards in Israel are linked to a checking account. So when Visa goes into the account to withdraw funds, funds will be deposited instead (or, at least offset from some of the withdrawals for Visa transactions).

I hope this information is helpful!