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Take my money paizo... if you can


Paizo General Discussion

Sczarni

I've often bought products on paizo.com but I'm done. For me, living in the Netherlands, having a creditcard is not something everybody has.

Every time I want to buy a book, pfs scenario or anything else, really, I have to buy a temporary creditcard with an online retailer for a separate amount. This means I spend $30 on something that costs $27, leaving me with 3 floating bucks that I can hardly spend on anything due to the high transaction costs.

Is there any knowledge that I'm unaware of that makes you decide not to use banking systems like Ideal or Paypal to make purchasing items from your website? I'd love to buy more of your products online, but you're making it hard for me!

Love,

Carla


2 people marked this as a favorite.

d20pfsrd.com's online store takes PayPal, I believe.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Unfortunately, PayPal has restrictions about preorders and processing time that don't align well with many of our business processes. We would only be able to use it for a subset of products and order types, and we've decided that that would confuse more people than it helped.

We're currently investigating the possibility of transitioning to another banking system that might make it easier for us to accept additional payment methods, but this is a big issue that has to be handled with care and diligence, so I wouldn't expect to see any changes on that front terribly soon.

One thing you could do regarding the "3 floating bucks" issue would be to use your $30 card to buy a $30 paizo.com gift certificate for yourself—after your $27 purchase, you'd have the remaining $3 floating in the form of paizo.com store credit, which is easy to use on your next purchase.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

Looks like this is specific for the Netherlands, where iDeal is the most common form of online payment. Not sure if that would be easier to implement as a payment option for Paizo than PayPal though.


Not to knock Paizo but to add a bit of perspective here, PayPal has been around since 1998 while Paizo was founded (if I am correct) in 2002. In the 15 years since then, Paizo has been unable (Mr. Wertz provided the reasons above but it still has been 15 years) to offer PayPal as a method of payment, even though by 2002 PayPal was already a globally accepted and trusted method of payment (that year it was purchased by E-Bay).

Honestly, I have been using Paizo less and less in the last couple of years to purchase non-paizo but PFRPG-compatible products, choosing instead DrivethruRPG, Open Gaming, and the websites of the 3rd party publishers because they do have PayPal as an option.

While the option Mr. Wertz describes above is possible, it is also a few more steps in the purchasing process than it should be. Plus it pretty much makes the user agree to spending more just to get a gift card they would *need* to obtain (if they don't have a credit card) to make their original purchase. In the example above, if the product costs $27, the user may not want to spend the remaining $3 if the purchase is in fact a gift purchase for someone else.

Just my 2-cents.

CB

Sczarni

Thanks for the answers guys, I has provided some clarity.

A $30 gift certificate would not be ideal either, since the transaction cost would make a $30 gift something along the lines of $32...

I guess I'll wait for the new banking system! Untill then, the pfsrd20 website seems adequate.

Shadow Lodge

can you pay a friend in the US with paypal and then have them buy you the gift certificate?

Sczarni

BigNorseWolf wrote:

can you pay a friend in the US with paypal and then have them buy you the gift certificate?

I could, but the point I'm trying to make is not about being able to order, but the hoops I have to go through to do so. It's stifling, really.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Weird, I live in a backwards country where polar bears walk the streets and people still ride horse carts instead of cars for living (Poland) but my non-credit debit/payment cards work with about every online store out there, including Paizo. And my bank is the Dutch ING :)

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Maybe the people you should complain to is PayPal. It is their restrictions that keep Paizo from using them as an accepted payment method...

EDIT: edited for language choice.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Or maybe the restrictions are in place to protect consumers from predatory practices of shady retailers (not saying Paizo is such a retailer, they have been great with customer service overall, but the Internet is a big marketplace)?

Secondly, asking a global organization to change its restrictions for a marketplace of billions because a small handful of companies (in comparison) are unable to meet the requirements (for whatever may be the reason - it varies by company/industry)? That is not a reasonable request by any stretch of the imagination.

Bottom-line, we understand Paizo is currently unable to offer PayPal at this time and certainly not for the foreseeable future. As Mr. Wertz pointed out, it's not an easy endeavor to accomplish for Paizo. I get that, I am not complaining about that, and neither is the original poster now that she is aware of their position on the issue. It is just that it is lamentable that the company has taken this long so far. And maybe they will never offer PayPal (or other similar service) as a payment method. That's fine, it's their choice, just as consumers have their choice of how and where they will spend their money.

Thank you for being civil about this issue. :)

CB


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I have no knowledge of how PayPal works or how to run a business. But Vic offered some further detail not too long ago.

The issue with PayPal.

I have no idea what the details of PayPal's terms of service are nor if that information remains true. I just wanted to share the link.

Dark Archive

Carla the Profane wrote:

I've often bought products on paizo.com but I'm done. For me, living in the Netherlands, having a creditcard is not something everybody has.

Every time I want to buy a book, pfs scenario or anything else, really, I have to buy a temporary creditcard with an online retailer for a separate amount. This means I spend $30 on something that costs $27, leaving me with 3 floating bucks that I can hardly spend on anything due to the high transaction costs.

Is there any knowledge that I'm unaware of that makes you decide not to use banking systems like Ideal or Paypal to make purchasing items from your website? I'd love to buy more of your products online, but you're making it hard for me!

Love,

Carla

I'm Dutch, I've lived in the Netherlands my entire life, I have 2 bank accounts at Dutch banks and I have a creditcard. Really, it's not that hard. Just go online and order a credit card at your bank.

Then you could also fund Kickstarters and such.

Unless you're living beyond your means, maybe. If that's the case the wisest thing you could do would be to pay off your debts before you order anything from Paizo.

Also, to anybody who's traveling to the Netherlands, I'm really really sorry.
You should look for the ATMs that say ABN-AMRO though. And if you want to ride the train you'd better bring change... (You could also order a ticket online though, so that might also work.)

Dark Archive

Gorbacz wrote:
Weird, I live in a backwards country where polar bears walk the streets and people still ride horse carts instead of cars for living (Poland) but my non-credit debit/payment cards work with about every online store out there, including Paizo. And my bank is the Dutch ING :)

Yes, but we've got a thing for Maestro Cards, when really, we need Mastercards. I don't know what it says on your card, but that seems to be the whole issue.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Hawkmoon269 wrote:

I have no knowledge of how PayPal works or how to run a business. But Vic offered some further detail not too long ago.

The issue with PayPal.

I have no idea what the details of PayPal's terms of service are nor if that information remains true. I just wanted to share the link.

To the best of my knowledge, what I said in that post is still accurate. (Also, I left "anything you put into your sidecart" out of the list of things that wouldn't align with PayPal's requirements. And there may be a few other categories; I wasn't trying to be exhaustive.)

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

the David wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Weird, I live in a backwards country where polar bears walk the streets and people still ride horse carts instead of cars for living (Poland) but my non-credit debit/payment cards work with about every online store out there, including Paizo. And my bank is the Dutch ING :)
Yes, but we've got a thing for Maestro Cards, when really, we need Mastercards. I don't know what it says on your card, but that seems to be the whole issue.

I believe that some Maestro Cards from some banks in some countries can be used in places that accept MasterCards. You could check with your bank... or you could just try it and see.


the David wrote:
Also, to anybody who's traveling to the Netherlands, I'm really really sorry.

Not sure why you are apologizing here about that - I have been to The Netherlands (well, specifically Amsterdam) and I had a lot of memorable adventures and experiences there. Most folks I met there were extremely friendly and enjoyed exchanging stories with foreigners. I found it beautiful, from the architecture designs to the canals, and from the museums to the gardens. It was an absolute blast.

Mind you, that was roughly 8 years ago for me. I would like to visit it again. :)

Anyways, enough of the derailing the thread.

Cheers!

CB


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
Hawkmoon269 wrote:

I have no knowledge of how PayPal works or how to run a business. But Vic offered some further detail not too long ago.

The issue with PayPal.

I have no idea what the details of PayPal's terms of service are nor if that information remains true. I just wanted to share the link.

To the best of my knowledge, what I said in that post is still accurate. (Also, I left "anything you put into your sidecart" out of the list of things that wouldn't align with PayPal's requirements. And there may be a few other categories; I wasn't trying to be exhaustive.)

Hi Vic.

I've always been curious why paypal's "You can't charge for anything unless you guarantee to ship it within x days" policy conflicts with Paizo's processes - since you don't actually charge until it's ready to ship anyway. Is it because of the way authorisations work or something?

It seems to me that if my paypal account got pinged a dollar and subsequently refunded twenty four hours later and then charged again six month later when my preorder ships then there wouldn't be any breach of either company's policies. Presumably I'm missing a piece of the puzzle.

I realise I'm not owed an explanation, but if it's something quick and easy (or you felt like going into inordinate detail about financial regulations) it would satisfy my curiosity..

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:


It seems to me that if my paypal account got pinged a dollar and subsequently refunded twenty four hours later and then charged again six month later when my preorder ships then there wouldn't be any breach of either company's policies. Presumably I'm missing a piece of the puzzle.

Transaction fees, maybe.

PayPal's gonna want to get paid for all that transactin', yo.

-Skeld

Dark Archive

Canadian Bakka wrote:
the David wrote:
Also, to anybody who's traveling to the Netherlands, I'm really really sorry.

Not sure why you are apologizing here about that - I have been to The Netherlands (well, specifically Amsterdam) and I had a lot of memorable adventures and experiences there. Most folks I met there were extremely friendly and enjoyed exchanging stories with foreigners. I found it beautiful, from the architecture designs to the canals, and from the museums to the gardens. It was an absolute blast.

Mind you, that was roughly 8 years ago for me. I would like to visit it again. :)

Anyways, enough of the derailing the thread.

Cheers!

CB

As a couchsurfing host, the creditcard problem has cost me at least some precious time and headaches.


Ah, I see. I didn't use couchsurf. My cousin used to host in Brazil so I know of the headaches you speak of. :(

CB

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Steve Geddes wrote:
Is it because of the way authorisations work or something?

Yes. There are several ways their authorization requirements don't work well for us.

PayPal only guarantees the availability of a customer's funds during a 3-day "Honor Period" after the authorization. If all of the items in the order are in stock in our warehouse, and it's not the week we're doing a subscription run, that's usually going to be fine... although even in this best case, if somebody were to place an order on Friday evening after we've closed up for the weekend, the Honor Period would actually end at midnight on Sunday, and there is zero chance that we'd have shipped the order. If we exceeded the Honor Period, and the funds were no longer available, we'd learn of the failure when we tried to ship the package. At that point, we'd notify the customers, and they're probably not going to be terribly happy. (This sort of thing does occasionally happen now, most commonly when somebody goes over their credit limit between the time they order and the time we ship, but it would become more common with PayPal.)

Also, unlike credit cards, where unsettled authorizations close automatically after a few days, PayPal leaves the authorization open for 29 days. And even though they won't guarantee that those funds are available to *us* between day 4 and day 29, they are apparently unavailable to the *customer* during that time. So we'd get a lot of complaints from customers that we're holding their money too long, even though we wouldn't actually have that money! All items that we have to order from our distributor, as well as some preorders, backorders, and subscription and sidecart orders would fall in this window. Also, orders placed as we're gearing up a sub run—or, as explained before, just on a Friday evening—will likely also fall into in this category.

Other preorders, backorders, and subscription and sidecart orders would fall beyond the 29-day window, which would mean that the authorization would automatically close (in some situations, we could close it early ourselves), and we'd have to get a new one. However, they really don't want this to happen: if they determine that you're creating too many authorizations that are closed without being used, they will cancel your merchant account. (I seem to remember they will also cancel your account if they decide that you're not settling enough auths inside the Honor Period, but I'm not 100% certain of that.)

The bottom line is that they really want you to ship within 3 days, and have ensured that it's painful if you don't, yet we have a lot of situations where we just can't do that.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Thanks very much, Vic. I appreciate the insight.


3 days? Huh. That is certainly a burdensome obstacle for a subscription run. I wonder if other online retailers for subscribers (for things like magazines or even pre-ordering beauty products) offers PayPal as a payment option, and if they do, how did they get around the 3-days restriction?

That also makes me wonder how Kickstarter does it, for that matter. In many cases, the "seller" ships their product(s) several months later. *scratches head in confusion*

I certainly appreciate knowing where the primary difficulty is for Paizo. It's not a fun position at all.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Part of it is that paizo don't charge when you preorder - if they did that then there wouldn't be any authorisation (and paizo would get your money for weeks). PayPal have rules about that too (although my limited understanding is that these would be navigable as they are willing to be flexible with legitimate businesses).

However, I believe that raises issues with some credit card providers terms of service (not to mention the headaches for paizo CS when people change their mind and/or complain that they paid for something months ago).

As an aside, with kickstarter it's not an issue since you're not contracting for the goods as a typical preorder (despite what many users think) but are rather backing the project. (Obviously, a consequence of the project coming to fruition is that you'll get your rewards - but it's still explicitly spelled out as not being a preorder).


Good points, Steve. I know that in Canada, Indigo Books & Music (a national chain of retail bookstores) does not charge customers either for ordering online until their order ships from the warehouse to the shipping address, even for pre-orders. That being said, I honestly don't know if they do accept payment options like PayPal though. I think they don't (and the 3-days period would explain why).

So for Kickstarter, the consumer's money is treated more like an investment, I see. That does make sense. Thanks for the clarification, Steve.

CB

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Visa regulations (and probably all the other cards) only allow e-commerce vendors (other than "Travel & Entertainment" vendors—primarily hotels, car rental services, and airlines) to charge in full in advance of fulfillment if the customer is purchasing "custom merchandise or services, recreational services, or activities related to tourism and travel." Apart from that, anybody charging in full without immediately shipping the order is violating their rules. (Vendors may charge partial prepayments, though.)

When you back a Kickstarter, you're not purchasing goods or making an investment, you're just funding a project.


OK, got it. :)

CB


Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:
As an aside, with kickstarter it's not an issue since you're not contracting for the goods as a typical preorder (despite what many users think) but are rather backing the project. (Obviously, a consequence of the project coming to fruition is that you'll get your rewards - but it's still explicitly spelled out as not being a preorder).

Getting your order rewards isn't a consequence of the project coming to fruition; it's a potential consequence of the project coming to fruition. I've backed at least one project that got funded, but couldn't deliver.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Don't they have debit cards in the Netherlands? I also live in a country where credit cards aren't as common as in the US -- in fact I was close to 30 by the time of my first credit card -- but most online stores have been happy to take my debit card just as if it had been a credit card.

Liberty's Edge

That was my thought as well!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber, Campaign Setting, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Some flat cards do indeed have issues with online payments - mainly the Visa Electron and Mastercard Maestro cards. I thought they got phased out - I don't think there's any bank in Poland which hands them out - but perhaps, the Nether Lands are strange like that. Apart from being lands of nether and eating French fries with mayo, that is.

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