PayPal accepts coins and paper currency at Coinstar kiosks

The partnership allows PayPal customers to use Coinstar kiosks to deposit and withdraw cash

A PayPal alliance with Coinstar is being expanded to some parts of the U.S., allowing customers to deposit, withdraw and transfer funds to PayPal accounts through Coinstar kiosks.

After a trial which started in 2011 in the Dallas metropolitan area, the program is being extended this month to Texas, Northern California and Ohio, with more outlets to be added during the year. Customers can add coins and paper currency to their PayPal account through the kiosks, and also withdraw cash from their accounts, Coinstar said.

The rollout is part of PayPal's bid to play a role in brick-and-mortar retail in addition to its significant presence in online payments. The payments processor said it had lined up 23 national retailers last year that would accept payments using PayPal in their stores. Customers can make payments using a PayPal payment card that is accepted at participating stores, or by using their mobile number and a PIN (personal identification number).

The PayPal enabled Coinstar kiosk is another example of how the payment processor is bringing convenience and security to consumers "not just online but everywhere in today's multi-channel shopping environment," wrote Dan Schatt, head of financial innovations at PayPal, in a blog post.

Coinstar runs a network of self-service coin-counting kiosks in the U.S., Canada, and some parts of Europe.

Customers can add up to US$500 using coins and paper money to a PayPal account each calendar month, while withdrawals are limited to $500 in a calendar month and $200 per day, Coinstar said. Coinstar's coin-counting fee of 9.8 percent applies when coins are added to a PayPal account. For adding paper money, a $3 fee applies for transactions up to $300 and a $6 fee for transactions over that amount. Each withdrawal incurs a $3 fee, and the user is issued a voucher to be redeemed in store.

Coinstar and PayPal have reported strong interest in the new service. The companies conducted a test of the new service in Dallas last year, and found that 40 percent of kiosk users who used the PayPal feature went back to use PayPal on a Coinstar kiosk an average of two times a month.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

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