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There are a number of ways that you can raise money for charity – run a marathon, take part in a sponsored bike ride or even grow a moustache. But if you use a popular donation site to collect sponsors, make sure that you get as much out of it as you can.

Want to know how to boost charity donations and the best fundraising sites to use? We take you through your options.

Online donations

Before we take you through which sites offer you the best return on a donation, let’s first make sure you know exactly how an online donation works.

If a friend offers to donate £5 to your charity, this doesn’t necessarily mean that £5 will go directly to your charity of your choice. Depending on the website you use and whether the person that donates has ticked the Gift Aid box it can be more or less than this amount.

Not sure what Gift Aid is? This is something all UK taxpayers have the option to give back when they make online donations. Ticking the box allows charities to get your tax back from HMRC and increase the donation by 25% or more. For example, if you donate £10, the charity will receive at least £12.50.

All the charity needs to process this is your name, address and a declaration that you’re a UK taxpayer.

Donation websites

The site that you use can have an impact on the overall amount donated. This is because some sites charge add-ons like the following.

Admin fees: certain sites will charge charities administration fees for processing your donation. This can range from 3.5 to 5 per cent for each donation which can make a big difference to the overall amount donated.

Card charges: some sites can charge a fee for using a particular credit or debit card.

VAT: certain sites must pay a VAT charge and this will be taken from donations. This won’t apply to sites that are a registered charity as they will benefit from tax relief.

Looking to give the maximum amount of cash to charity? Here’s a rundown of popular websites and the charges they apply. These figures* are based on the donation of £10 with Gift Aid when using a debit card.

Donate to UK charities Amount given to charity Transaction fees/VAT Charges to charity Number of charities available











Charity Choice


£0.25 (donors can choose to pay this fee)



Virgin Money Giving



£120 (one off)


Every Click





Just Giving



£15 (monthly)


Be aware that the sites that give you the most value for your donation might not necessarily have your favourite charity registered.

Looking for ideas on how to raise money for charity this year? Check out our UK charity calendar for 2016/17.

*Information correct at time of writing - 10/05/16

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