Home Forums Event Espresso Premium Using PayPal, transaction shows incomplete but is actually completed

Using PayPal, transaction shows incomplete but is actually completed

Posted: July 2, 2014 at 11:20 am

Chris Fuller

July 2, 2014 at 11:20 am

In am running WordPress 3.9.1 with Event Espresso When we go to purchase tickets, everything seems to work fine but the transaction comes back incomplete. Paypay, however, completes the transaction and a confirmation email is sent to the user. I am using the simplified transaction template as described in other posts. If I refresh the thank you page (which is the one showing incomplete), it shows up as complete. Obviously this is a bad experience for the customer.

On the backend, the transaction shows as complete. There are entries in both espresso_log and Paypal.ipn_results but they do not appear to show errors.


  • Support Staff

July 3, 2014 at 10:55 am

Hi Chris,

Sidney made a few tweaks to make it so it sets the attendee payment status to “Pending” when the PayPal “Instant” Payment Notification doesn’t make it back in time before the thank you page loads. A summary of the code changes he added follows:

Chris Fuller

July 3, 2014 at 2:10 pm

I just did a test with a live payment and it still comes back Incomplete. Refreshing the page, everything shows up. The behavior is the same as before, no change.


  • Support Staff

July 3, 2014 at 2:37 pm

Hi Chris,

While Sidney is looking into, can you log into your PayPal account, look under Website Payment Preferences, and check to make sure that Payment Data Transfer option is disabled? It will look like the setting in this screenshot.

Sidney Harrell

July 3, 2014 at 3:22 pm

I found the error. The old method for building the return url left out the attendee id, so the message to the thank you page was not working.
To be clear, here is what is should do now.
If the user gets back to your site before the IPN message, they will see “Pending” as their payment status. You may want to add some text for your users so that they will take this as everything went through OK, but the payment hasn’t cleared PayPal yet. When the IPN message does get there, their payment status will update to “Completed”.
If the IPN message gets to the site before the user, they will see their payment status as “Completed”.

Chris Fuller

July 7, 2014 at 12:22 pm

I am still seeing incomplete when I get the thank you. Screen shot at

Doesn’t look like much has changed…

Sidney Harrell

July 7, 2014 at 2:48 pm

Did you check to make sure the PDT is turned off in the account you are using?

Chris Fuller

July 7, 2014 at 4:13 pm

Turning off the PDT did make it set to Pending. Sorry I know that was mentioned before but I missed it. While this is more of a work around than a solution, I can proceed with it as is. Thank you for your help.


  • Support Staff

July 7, 2014 at 4:31 pm

May I ask why you think this is more of a work around than a solution?

Sidney Harrell

July 8, 2014 at 9:47 am

We could set it to Completed based on the information that comes with the customer back to the site, but then a payment could be falsified. This solution provides a compromise. If the customer gets back to your site before Paypal sends it’s IPN message, then they have an indication that the payment is going through, while the change from Pending to Completed cannot be falsified.
Is the payment status changing to “Completed” when you reload the page (after the IPN message gets there) ?

The support post ‘Using PayPal, transaction shows incomplete but is actually completed’ is closed to new replies.

Have a question about this support post? Create a new support post in our support forums and include a link to this existing support post so we can help you.

Support forum for Event Espresso 3 and Event Espresso 4.
Documentation for EE3 and EE4
Documentation for Event Espresso 3

Documentation for Event Espresso 4

Status: closed

Updated by  Sidney Harrell 5 years, 4 months ago ago

Topic Tags


This topic is: not resolved
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!