PayPal Confirmed Address

If you surf eBay a lot, you inevitably run across the phrase “will ship only to PayPal Confirmed Addresses.” It took me a while, but I’ve finally been able to understand what this means.

When you first sign up for a PayPal account, and give PayPal your bank account information, you go through a process where you identify the amounts associated with two small deposits that PayPal deposits in your account, therein proving to them that you are the owner of the bank account. Once this process is complete, your account becomes “Verified,” and you can do certain things you couldn’t do before.

However this doesn’t mean that your address is “Confirmed” with PayPal. To get “Confirmed,” you have to add a credit card to your account, and then go through a similar “identify a code that PayPal includes in the transaction details on your credit card statement.” Because PayPal can tap into the credit card world’s address verification system, through this mechanism they can “confirm” your address.

Except when they can’t.

Address verification doesn’t work for all locations for all credit cards. PayPal’s help system says:

Please note that because not all credit card companies are currently able to confirm an address, only some UK and Canadian addresses may be confirmed at this time.

The confounding thing is that the PayPal website offers no way to tell whether your own address is, in fact, “Confirmed.” I emailed PayPal about this, and their reply was:

When you view past transactions, if you look at the details of the transaction, it will tell you if your address is confirmed.

The problem here, of course, is that if you don’t have any recent transactions, then you’ve got nothing to look at. And this is a problem if you want to buy something from someone who ships only to “Confirmed” addresses. A chicken and egg problem, in other words.

The email from PayPal also told me that my address is “Confirmed,” so it appears the only way to get this information otherwise is to email them with this question. Odd.


Paul's picture
Paul on August 29, 2006 - 01:38 Permalink

One way to check your “confirmed address” status is to send a very small payment, say $.50 to the seller. If that shows that you have a confirmed address then you can proceed with the full payment.

xxx's picture
xxx on October 21, 2006 - 15:57 Permalink

check under Profile, Postal Addresses. It will say something like ‘Home Confirmed’ if your address is confirmed

melina buchanan's picture
melina buchanan on December 4, 2007 - 19:52 Permalink

i want to comferm my address i have no idea how …. ive never had a prob before now i cant buy i need a confermed address why :(

Jasper Janssen's picture
Jasper Janssen on April 24, 2011 - 00:28 Permalink

The thing is, alternate confirmation is only available for US addresses, *not* for international, and even with a credit card confirmation doesn’t always work — outside the US, credit card companies often do not provide a billing address go/no-go confirmation.

Anonym's picture
Anonym on May 18, 2011 - 04:29 Permalink

My address is indicated as home confirmed under my profile. However my latest transaction showed my address as unconfirmed! And paypal has not yet responded to my email queries.