Is Venmo as awesome as everyone says it is? What you need to know
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How do I use Venmo to transfer money?

Venmo is highly rated on the App Store and Google Play — and for good reason.

If you haven’t yet heard of Venmo, you certainly must have heard of PayPal. Think of Venmo as PayPal’s mobile-friendly cousin. Its approach speaks to something we all have faced: the annoyance of splitting a restaurant bill five different ways, the stress of borrowing money from a friend and never having the cash to pay them back, splitting rent and utility bills — the list goes on and on.

Instead of reaching for the calculator app to figure out how much to pay your friends, you can simply Venmo who you owe instantly. An app that’s both practical and easy to use, Venmo stands out as a convenient methods to send and receive money electronically.

How do I request and send money through Venmo?

1. Create a Venmo account. Sign up with your email address and credit or debit card information. Add your bank account info if you want to deposit the money you receive. Note that you may pay a transaction fee when using your credit card.

2. Request a transfer. Once you’ve created your account, request or send money by clicking pen and paper icon at upper right.

step 2 venmo money transfer

3. Enter your Venmo recipient or sender. Use the person’s Venmo user name to send or request money, adding the transfer amount. Name your transaction with as fun or serious a memo as you’d like — or use Venmo’s bitmoji shorthand for your transaction.

step 3 venmo money transfer

4. Tap Pay or Request to complete your transaction.

What happens when someone sends me money?

You’ll receive notification from Venmo each time a user sends you money. Unlike other payment apps, the money you’re sent doesn’t go directly into your bank account. Rather, it stays linked to your Venmo account until you choose to transfer it. You can transfer all of your balance or only a portion of it.

venmo transfer to bank money transfer

A feature that sets Venmo apart from other peer-to-peer payment systems is its social media component. Once you’re sent money, it shows up on your friends’ feeds, where they can see your transactions — but not the amounts.

Is Venmo safe?

Venmo encrypts your personal information and transactions details. However, whereas Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council gives Square Cash, Google Wallet and other money transfer apps high ratings for standards security, Venmo is considered only “PCI compliant.”

What is PCI compliance?

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council keeps track of companies that meet its strenuous security standards for development, enhancement, storage, dissemination and implementation for data protection. It determines the overall security of businesses that process payments online.

Like most companies, Venmo keeps the magnitude of its user base private, so its lack of a standards rating could mean that it processes fewer than 6 million credit card transactions per year. It’s possible: Venmo’s additional fee for credit card payments all but encourages users to pay through a debit account instead. But it’s worth considering safety, given the security breaches faced by Venmo over the years.

Pros

  • Widely popular service. Chances are that your friends are already using Venmo, making it even easier to transfer money.
  • Social media platform. Venmo’s more fun to use than other services and even includes a feed of transactions to your friends.

Cons

  • Steep credit card fee. Unlike when you use a debit card, a credit card incurs an additional 3% fee for each transaction.
  • US only. Venmo’s services are limited to users in the US.
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