Paypal is simple. Totally safe, just watchout for bogus emails about needing to update your shit / changes with your account need to be made etc. Paypal will NEVER email asking you for your account information. If something changes with your account, go to www.paypal.com
, login with your normal info and they will prompt you with whatever is going on.
I dont think you NEED a cc to signup (but you may), whenever I send money it goes directly from my bank account, but then again I signed up a long time ago, iirc you can use a cc too if you choose. There are different payment options, when you send money u just pick where you want the funds to come from weather it be paypal account balance, checking account, credit card......whatever.