Home Comparison Venmo vs Cash App

Venmo vs Cash App

Due to their positioning in the financial services market, Venmo and Cash App are often pitted against one another as rival peer-to-peer mobile payment platforms. Both have been competing for their market share in the US, and Cash App also launched UK services in 2018. In this comparison we will weigh up the strengths and weaknesses of each company, as we identify which one offers the best fees, exchange rates and transfer speeds.

Updated: 01/10/2021
Read time: 9 minutes
Compare Rates
 
   
Spain
EUR
GBP
£

Venmo and Cash App are peer-to-peer (P2P) money transfer companies which function primarily as mobile applications. Both companies were founded in the United States; Venmo in 2009 and Cash App in 2013. 

Venmo launched four years before Cash App, so the company has had more time to fine-tune the functionality of their product. Venmo is the more straightforward app of the two, designed to do one thing (online payments) and do it well. Developers of the app have focused on building a socially-driven payments platform to send and receive money with peers. The company was acquired by PayPal in 2013 and has grown exponentially since then.

Cash App is a worthy competitor, however, and the app has received praise for its versatility. The mobile payments platform is available to users in the US and UK, and has been developed by financial services group Square Inc. Quirky features such as buying and selling stocks, cryptocurrency and bitcoin, and direct deposits of checks separates this app from its  competitor. Cash App customers can also connect their account to Google and Apple Pay, a function currently not offered by Venmo. 

In this article we will consider which app is the better option for those making money transfers.

Find out how Venmo fares against its parent company in the Venmo vs PayPal comparison here

Which brand has lower fees?

In this section we will identify the fee structure and overall cost of using Venmo and Cash App for money transfers. 

Venmo

Venmo is free to set up and there are no monthly fees. Beyond these factors, the following fee structures apply: 

  • Transfers paid for by credit cards incur 3% flat fee
  • Seller transaction fees amount to 1.9% when funds are received to a Venmo business account 
  • Depositing payroll or government-issued checks will incur 1% fee (non-payroll and non-government checks incur 5% fee)
  • As of August 2nd 2021, customers will be charged 1.5% for transferring money from their Venmo account to their debit card or bank account 
  • Instant Venmo transfers incur 1% flat fee, minimum payment of $0.25
  • Zero fees for transfers funded by Venmo balance
  • Zero fees for transfers funded by bank transfers, debit cards or prepaid card
  • Merchant purchases are also fee-free, even when paid for by credit card

Additional fees apply to the sale and purchase of cryptocurrencies, see here for more info

Cash App

Cash App refers to themselves as a fee-free service, but other fees may still apply. Doing your research and understanding free money transfers is invaluable when managing expectations of overseas remittances. These include: 

  • A fee of 3% of the transfer is charged to customers funding the transfer with a credit card
  • Customers who request an Instant Transfer, withdrawing money from their balance, will incur a 1.5% charge for this instant service

✅ Verdict: Cash App appears to be the lower-fee service

Venmo’s fee structure is more complex and therefore customers are more likely to be stung by various different fees when using this service, than they are with Cash App.

Which brand offers better exchange rates?

Ordinarily, we use this section to identify who performs better in terms of foreign exchange rates. However, considering both Venmo and Cash App deal primarily with domestic money transfers, this section will be relatively brief. 

Venmo

Venmo can only be used to send or receive US Dollars. Exchange rates are not applicable.

Cash App

Cash App is now available in the UK as well as the US. To accommodate customers who may request money from friends overseas in either country, Cash App will convert payments from USD to GBP (or vice versa) based on the mid-market exchange rate at the time.

✅ Verdict: Cash App has the upper hand

As Venmo does not facilitate international money transfers, the brand does not offer exchange rates of any kind. For this reason, Cash App has to take the win for this section, because they accommodate payment requests in both USD and GBP, using the mid-market rate to offer customers the best value for their money. 

Alternatives to Venmo for International Transfers

If you are an existing Venmo user and wanted to use their services to send money overseas, check out our guide to suitable Venmo Alternatives. Another useful PayPal-owned company that specialises in cross-border payments is Xoom; a platform that facilitates transfers to over 150 countries around the world.

Which brand covers more locations?

Some money transfer companies support payments to every continent on the planet, while others are country-specific. 

Venmo

It is not possible to send or receive international money transfers with Venmo. The app serves as a domestic P2P digital wallet that is only available to US customers.

Cash App

The United States and United Kingdom are the only destinations supported by Cash App: USD – GBP / GBP – USD transfers only.

✅ Verdict: Cash App wins by one

Both brands were originally designed to serve US-based customers only, but since Cash App extended its network to serve UK customers it now has the advantage of an additional market. 

Which is faster?

The transfer speed of an international payment can be the deciding factor for some customers who are looking to move funds from A to B quickly. 

Venmo

Transfers between Venmo users’ accounts are instant. Bank transfers sent or received with Venmo take 1 to 3 business days.

Cash App

Much like Venmmo, transfers sent from one Cash App account to another are instant. Transfers sent or received to a bank account will take between 1 – 3 business days.

✅ Verdict: It’s a tie

It appears that both Venmo and Cash App offer the same transfer speeds.

Which brand offers the best transfer & payment options?

In this section we will look at the different ways Venmo and Cash App facilitate money transfers.

Venmo

The following transfer options are available with Venmo:: 

  • Standard bank transfer: send money to an eligible bank account, for free, takes 1 – 3 business days
  • Instant transfer: send money to eligible bank accounts or Visa/Mastercard debit cards, within 30 minutes, subject to a 1.5% fee
  • Direct Deposit: a feature that allows eligible users to deposit some or all of their paycheck to their Venmo account electronically, this can take 1 – 2 business days 

The following payment options are available with Venmo: 

  • Credit or debit card
  • Bank account
  • Venmo balance
Cash App

The following transfer options are available with Cash App:

  • Standard deposits: send money to an eligible bank account, for free, takes 1 – 3 business days
  • Instant deposits: send money to a bank account or debit card instantly, subject to a 1.5% fee (minimum fee of $0.25)

The following payment options are available with Cash App:

  • Credit or debit card
  • Bank account
  • Google Pay
  • Apple Pay
  • Cash App balance

✅ Verdict: Venmo takes the gold

Although Cash App has more payment options available, Venmo has fine-tuned their transfer options making it quick and easy to send money to peers. 

What do users have to say about each brand?

As both brands function solely as a money transfer app we are reviewing the feedback posted online by iOS and Android users.

Venmo

At the time of writing (Aug 2021) Venmo was the #2 Finance mobile application in the App Store, with an amazing rating of 4.9 out of 5. Out of the 12.2 million reviews, the vast majority of users had awarded Venmo 5 stars, praising Venmo for its user-friendly design, convenient services and instant payments.

Over on the Google Play Store, Venmo has been given 4.3 out of 5. Although there are positive comments about how user-friendly the app is, it seems Venmo is generally less popular with Android users. Common negative feedback referencing processing issues, duplicate transactions and unreliable accessibility.

Cash App

Cash App has been rated  #1 by users, topping the App Store’s list of Finance applications and stealing the first place spot from Venmo. Despite this, Cash App reviews add up to 4.7 out of 5 stars, from 2 million online ratings. Feedback includes praise for quick payments, straightforward user interface and great features, but comments about poor customer service appears to be holding Cash App back from 5 star status.

Similar criticism can be found over on the Google Play Store, where Cash App has been awarded a good rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars. It seems customer support needs to be improved in order to attract more positive user feedback.

✅ Verdict: It’s a tie

After evaluating the feedback of copious user reviews, it would appear both apps have room for improvement. Although Cash App is currently the number one Finance app on the App Store, it ranks lower on the Google Play Store and it seems both continuously see-saw for the top spot in terms of user feedback.

What brand offers better ease of use, accessibility, transparency & security

Here we will look at the overall user experience by examining how easy, accessible, transparent and secure both brands are.

Venmo
  • Accessibility: when receiving money via Venmo, the funds are not automatically deposited into your bank account. Instead, the money remains in the Venmo account unless you make a bank transfer.
  • Ease of use: The Venmo app employs fun, user-friendly navigation and has been rated highly by users. It is easy to find contacts by searching their username or contact details, scanning their unique QR code or syncing your contacts. Venmo’s social media style feed allows users to see who others are sending and receiving payments to and from. 
  • Security: Advanced data encryption is employed by Venmo, and personal data is stored in separate, secure servers to ensure the protection of all financial information. There is also the option to enhance security of the app by adding a PIN code and enabling two-factor authentication.
  • Transparency: Venmo, and its parent company PayPal, has come under fire for unexplained account closures and freezes. This has resulted in digital rights organisations demanding more transparency and clearer user guidelines
Cash App
  • Accessibility: the company does not require customers to connect a bank account in order to register with Cash App, which means it is easy to send and receive money using your balance, although it costs $2 to withdraw funds from ATMs using the Cash Card
  • Ease of use: Cash App’s simple display and straightforward user interface makes it an easy app to use for peer-to-peer transactions: whether you are splitting bills or divvying up your monthly share of the rent 
  • Security: Cash App is not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp (FDIC) in the US which makes their banking features limited as funds are not covered by the same regulations as other competitors. When it comes to protecting and insuring personal data, however, Cash App uses state of the art encryption and fraud detection technology to ensure customer details are secure. Two-factor authentication is also used across the app
  • Transparency: Cash App is very clear about its core functions:  sending money, receiving money, investing and acting as a digital wallet.

✅ Verdict: Cash App takes the win

When it comes to the safety and security of both apps, they are on par with one another in terms of protecting customers’ information, but users must still exercise basic personal security. Cash App packs more of a punch when it comes to overall accessibility, transparency and ease of use, due to its straightforward and dedicated payments platform.

Additional features

Here we will run through extra features which benefit Venmo and Cash App users, looking specifically at any innovative fintech services that enhance the customer experience.

Venmo
  • Customers can buy sell and hold four types of cryptocurrency: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash
  • Offers social media functions including emojis and online status updates 
  • Venmo makes it easy to split bills
  • Debit card users are offered cash back incentives and there is a points-based reward system for credit card users
Cash App
  • Supports international transfers between US and UK users 
  • Cash App customers are able to buy, sell, send and receive stocks and Bitcoin; available to US customers only
  • Supports Google Pay and Apple Pay
  • Discounts at popular coffee shops, restaurants and other merchants are part of the app’s Boosts scheme
  • Customers can make direct deposits of paychecks and tax refund checks

✅ Verdict: Cash App has more features

While Venmo offers a quirkier user experience, Cash App offers heightened functionality such as additional payment methods, check depositing, international payments to the US and UK, and discounts at multiple outlets around the United States. 

Bottom line – who is better?

At first look, these apps appear to be similar, the variety of payment services closely aligned. However, upon closer inspection, Venmo and Cash App approach money transfers quite differently. 

While Cash App is more user friendly and accessible than high street banks, the time it takes to process a domestic transfer is about the same. Cash App’s business model focuses solely on the process of sending and receiving money, and does it well. However, for users looking for a fun, social media-style experience, Venmo would be the better choice. 

Unfortunately, if you’re living outside of the US or UK, neither Cash App or Venmo services can support your remittance needs. Instead, we would recommend other money transfer companies with greater global reach, such as Wise, PaySend or WorldRemit. Use our search engine tool to browse all the available options, and have a read of our other company comparisons to learn more about each service provider. 

Related content

April Summers

April is a journalist and full-time content writer for MoneyTransfers.com. Over the last decade she has written for a number of different online and print publications. Having lived overseas in Canada and Vietnam, April hopes to see more of the world as soon as possible, with Japan at the top of her travel list. As a former expat, April has first-hand experience of managing finances from overseas. She enjoys writing about forex trends and the future of banking.

Companies
All Services