How Mpesa and PayPal Work

One of the major mysteries that we currently witness in technology is how Mpesa and PayPal work. The two giant companies managed to link to provide easier movement of money to and fro. Initially it had to happen through banks that took days. This introduction was a major blow to Equity bank that dominated the industry.


How it works

With the aid of b2b platform, the two giant companies managed to get this working.

Withdrawing from PayPal to Mpesa

1. Have a PayPal account.

2. Go to and

click on log in (top right corner).

3. You will be prompted to log in and thereafter

agree to terms of using the service.

4. Add your M-Pesa phone number.

Topping up PayPal from  Mpesa

Log into your account at paypal- and click “Top Up”.

Enter the amount you would like to top up in

USD and click “Calculate” to get the equivalent

amount converted in Kenya Shillings. This is the

amount you need to transfer from M-PESA.

Go to your M-PESA menu and select “Lipa na M-

PESA” then the “Pay Bill” option.

Enter Business Number 800088.

Enter your phone number as the Account


Enter your M-PESA PIN and press “Send”.

Charges and costs of Mpesa/Paypal Transaction

Cost – You will be charged 4% conversion fee +

PayBill M-PESA charges will apply.

Top up time – It may take up to 2hours for the

money to reflect in your PayPal account.

Exchange rate – It will appear at the bottom of the

top up page.

Transaction limits – Ksh. 70,000 per transaction

and Ksh. 140,000 per day.

Benefits of Mpesa/Paypal

1. Cheaper than banks

2. Take less time: unlike banks that take days.

3. Safe.

4. Simpler to use and no untidy work of having to link credit cards for you to withdraw. In fact, linking cards has to take a few days while Mpesa is instant.


1. There is a maximum per transaction which is KSH 70000

2. There’s a daily limit.

3. Names don’t have to strictly match like in Mpesa case.

4. Mpesa has lower currency conversion rates.


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