The 8 Best Money-Sending Apps of 2021

Send money, make payments, and receive cash with these apps

What's the best way to split a check or send money to friend or family member? A money-sending app, of course. And the best money-sending apps make it fast and easy to get started and to send and receive money; these are the best available.

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Fast, Easy, & Everyone's Doing It: Venmo

Screenshots from the Venmo app.
What We Like
  • Mobile first; primarily for smartphones.

  • Can be used to send money to friends, family, and some businesses.

  • Free to send money with a linked debit card.

What We Don't Like
  • Can only send money to other Venmo users.

Venmo is one of the most popular money-sending apps available. The app belongs to PayPal, a company that's long been able to spot trends in personal finance, and it works as well as you would expect it to work. It's intuitive and features great security to protect your financial information.

For those who wants something a little socially rewarding, Venmo offers that too, allowing users to share and interact with others purchases (though you can make your payments private if you prefer). Transfer fees are also very affordable: debit card and bank transfers are free, credit card transfers are 3% of the balance, while instant transfers from your Venmo account to your bank account cost 1.5% of the amount transferred.

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For Anyone Not Using Venmo: Square's Cash App

Screenshots from Cash App.
What We Like
  • Simple, easy to use interface.

  • Includes other personal finance options like stock trading & Bitcoin trades or conversions.

  • Available debit card also has money-saving offers.

What We Don't Like
  • Not as socially oriented as Venmo.

  • Can only send payments to other Cash App users.

Almost everyone who isn't using Venmo is using Cash App, and some people use both. That's because Cash App is just as easy to use as Venmo, and it offers some additional discounts when you use the Cash App debit card to make purchases.

The other big benefit of Cash App is that it's free to make transfers, even instant transfers. And Cash App also allows you to trade in stocks or Bitcoin in a very secure way.

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The App Backed By Your Bank: Zelle

Screenshots from the Zelle app.
What We Like
  • Easy to get started using.

  • Can send money to others outside of Zelle.

  • No fees or time restrictions on transfers.

What We Don't Like
  • Connected banking account required.

  • Transfers can be slower than other apps.

  • Can't add people front your contacts, you must know their mobile number.

It's no secret that the banking industry is a bit behind the times when it comes to electronically managing finances, and cash-sending is no different. That's where Zelle comes in to help these institutions keep up with modern times. It's a simple to use app but it does require a bank account to use. The good thing is you can use Zelle to send cash to others that don't have a Zelle account, it just takes a little longer for them to get it.

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The Digital Wallet That's Been Around the Longest: PayPal

Screenshots from the PayPal app.
What We Like
  • Well-known name in internet-based personal finance.

  • Excellent security features.

  • More liberal spending limits than most services.

  • International transaction capabilities.

What We Don't Like
  • Charges for debit transfers.

  • Charges for currency conversions.

PayPal has been around since 1998. Originally a payment provider for eBay, PayPal is all grown up now and has added payment-sending capabilities. With both domestic and international capabilities, PayPal offers what you would expect in from a long-standing name in online payments. Linked bank accounts and PayPal cash transactions are free, but you'll be charged a $2.95 fee for the use of debit and credit cards. Transfers also take a bit longer with PayPal.

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A Better Way to Send Money Internationally: WorldRemit

Screenshots from the WorldRemit app.
What We Like
  • International transactions in 150 countries.

  • Dozens of currencies to choose from.

  • Fast, secure, and easy to use.

What We Don't Like
  • Fees vary by location and currency.

  • Limited features.

If you send a lot of money to international destinations, WorldRemit is your first, best choice. There are no minimums for how much you can send, and the fees, while unpredictable, tend to be lower than with other apps that have international capabilities. One of the most appreciated features of WorldRemit is the speed with which transactions are processed.

WorldRemit claims transfers can be made as quickly as text messages are delivered. For that speed, however, you give up some of the fancier features that come with the other apps.

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A Money-Sending Mainstay: Western Union

Screenshots of the Western Union App.
What We Like
  • Simple touch and scanning features make sending money easy.

  • Provides tracking number to keep up with your money.

  • Payment methods include card, cash, and bank account.

What We Don't Like
  • Fees are higher than some apps.

  • Some transfers can take several days to complete.

Western Union has long been a leading name in money transfers. With hundreds of thousands of locations in hundreds of countries around the globe, it is a fast, secure way to get money from one point to another. It's also one of the most flexible ways to send money. You can use the app the send it from a credit or debit card, transfer money from your bank account, or even take cash to a local agent to send it.

However, you'll likely pay higher fees to use the Western Union service, even through the app. But you'll be paying for the peace of mind that comes along with having the ability to track your money all the way from send to receipt.

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Best for iPhone Users: Apple Cash

Screenshots from the Apple Cash app.
What We Like
  • Can send money through messages, no additional app needed.

  • Tied to your Apple Pay account.

  • Works with iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and using Siri.

What We Don't Like
  • Account security checks could delay funds availability.

  • Users must be 18 years old or have Apple Cash set up by the family organizer.

  • Only Apple users can use Apple Cash.

If you use Apple Pay, then Apple Cash is a no-thought-required option for sending and receiving payments on your iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch. Sending money to someone is as easy as sending a text message. And there's nothing to download to your device because Apple Pay is already installed and Apple Cash is part of that app.

The main drawback to Apple Cash, however, is that it only works with other Apple users. You cannot send money to anyone who isn't using an Apple device.


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Best for Android Users: Google Pay

Screenshots from the Google Pay app.
What We Like
  • Use a phone number or email address to send money.

  • Instant transfer of funds to debit cards.

  • 100% Coverage for verified, unauthorized transactions.

What We Don't Like
  • Cannot use with credit cards or prepaid cards.

  • Not compatible with some banks.

If you're an Android user, Google Pay would seem to be a natural. The Google Pay app allows you to send money to family and friends (in the US only), pay bills, and even set up recurring payments. You cannot, however, send money internationally, and some banks won't allow you to add your credit or debit card to Google Pay to draw upon.

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