Quoted from paulywalnuts23:
Not if you use Paypal with a major credit card.. If paypal won't refund you then you can go to your credit card and get them to refund you.
Are you sure about this? Most credit card companies you have 30 days after your statement to file a complaint. After that they aren't going to help you get your money back. For deposits that are paid months or years in advance I doubt they will or could do anything.
The reason is the credit card company doesn't pay you back, they take the money from the merchant and then send it to you. They aren't about to lose money on a transaction (they actually charge the merchant an extra fee for disputes). There's a finite time period for you to make a dispute and then your just out of luck because the transaction is completed/expired/settled whatever word you want to use.
Merchants can't even send a refund to a card 60 days after the purchase. The transaction is closed then so they can't just 'refund' the card, they would have to send you a check or some other form of refund.
I strongly agree that deposits are a risky proposition. Using a credit card or paypal is usually in violation of the merchants agreement. Almost all credit card processing requires the merchant to ship the product in a certain time period (paypal does most of the back end processing now that they have bought the largest processing businesses over the past few years).