2 min article

Buying as a guest

You can shop on eBay even if you haven't registered for an account. However, there are some restrictions. Find out when and how you can buy on eBay as a guest.

Buying as an eBay guest is easy, but you miss out on some of the benefits of eBay membership – for example, you won't be able to use My eBay to keep track of your activity, or make money by selling any unwanted items.

How does buying as a guest on eBay work?

You can buy without an eBay account when:

  • The item costs less than £750
  • The item can be purchased using Buy it now. If you want to bid on an auction or send a Best Offer to a seller, you'll need an eBay account
  • You pay for the item using PayPal or a credit card. Don't worry, your credit card information won't be shared with the seller

To buy as a guest, select Buy it now, then select Continue as a guest. You'll have to fill in your postage address, email address, and payment information. For most transactions, you'll have to use PayPal or a credit or debit card.

To register as an eBay member after you buy an item, simply select Create an eBay account from the order details page. Your Guest purchases will still be managed separately, but all future member purchases can be conveniently managed within My eBay.

Tracking an order as a guest

If your seller is using a tracked delivery service and has uploaded the tracking number, you can still easily track your order, even when you've bought as a guest. Here's how:

  1. If you're signed in to eBay, sign out to return to ‘guest’ status to avoid error messages.
  2. Find your eBay guest order confirmation email, with the subject line starting 'Guest Order'.
  3. Select View order details.
  4. Select the tracking number.
  5. You'll see a delivery status bar with a delivery company, tracking number and the item's current location.

How do guest returns work?

You can open a return request through the order confirmation email you received. To start a return:

  1. Find the email with the subject line starting 'Guest Order'.
  2. Select View order details.
  3. Enter your email address and the access code from your order confirmation.
  4. Choose Return item.
  5. Select your reason.
  6. Confirm by choosing Request return.

If you can't find your eBay guest order confirmation email, contact us and we'll be happy to help.

Registering an eBay account

It's easy to purchase an item as a guest, but you don't get all the benefits of being a member. If you register for a full account, you can:

  • Access full order details
  • Bid on auction-style listings
  • Leave Feedback
  • View member-to-member messages in My eBay
  • Use My eBay to manage and track orders
  • Access eBay community resources, such as Discussion Boards, Groups, and Answer Centre Forums

Learn more about eBay accounts.

In many cases, you can buy on eBay without an account if the item is selling for less than £750, and it's offered with Buy it now. If you want to bid on an auction item, you'll have to have an eBay account.

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