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 a friend or family member? A money-sending app. The best money-sending apps make it fast and easy to get started reimbursing and receiving payments. Here are our picks for the best money-sending apps of 2021.

01
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Fast, Easy, & Everyone's Doing It: Venmo

Examples of the Venmo app
What We Like
  • Mobile first; primarily for smartphones.

  • 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. It belongs to PayPal, a company that's been spotting trends in personal finance for a long time, and it works well. The Venmo app is intuitive and features great security to protect your financial information.

For those who want something a little socially rewarding, Venmo lets users see, 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% of the amount transferred (with a $10 cap). There's also a Venmo debit card and credit card that allow you to earn rewards and interact easily with your Venmo balance.

Venmo also introduced the ability to create a business profile, allowing business owners and casual sellers to conduct business transactions with the app.

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02
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For Anyone Not Using Venmo: Square's Cash App

Cash App Activity, payment, and banking screens
What We Like
  • Simple, easy-to-use interface.

  • Includes other personal finance options, like stock trading and 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. Cash App is as easy to use as Venmo, and it offers additional discounts when you use the Cash App debit card to make purchases.

The other benefit of Cash App is that it's free to make transfers, even instant transfers, to other Cash App users. If you're moving money out of your account, the transaction costs you a 1.5% fee. Cash App also allows you to trade in stocks or Bitcoin in a secure way.

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03
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The App Backed By Your Bank: Zelle

Zelle App banking and transfer screens
What We Like
  • Easy to get started.

  • Can send money to others outside of Zelle.

  • No fees or time restrictions on transfers.

What We Don't Like
  • A connected banking account is required.

  • Transfers can be slower than other apps.

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 that integrates with your bank account.

If your bank is a Zelle partner, you can use it in your bank's mobile app. There's no need to download a separate app. If your bank isn't a Zelle partner, download the Zelle app to get started.

The good thing is you can use Zelle to send cash to others who don't have an account, as long as their bank is on board.

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04
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The Digital Wallet That's Been Around the Longest: PayPal

PayPal app balance, features, and money-sending screens
What We Like
  • Well-known name in internet-based personal finance.

  • Excellent security features.

  • More liberal spending limits than most services.

  • Buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency.

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, it's all grown up now and has added payment-sending capabilities via the PayPal: Mobile Cash app, which serves as both a money app and a mobile wallet.

With domestic and international capabilities, PayPal offers what you would expect from a long-standing name in online payments, including sending money, splitting bills, getting instant spend notifications, buying Bitcoin, and more.

Linked bank accounts and PayPal cash transactions are free, but you're charged a fee for using debit and credit cards, and it might be worth reading PayPal's fee schedule, as it can be confusing. Transfers also take a bit longer with PayPal.

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05
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A Better Way to Send Money Internationally: WorldRemit

WorldRemit app transfer screens
What We Like
  • International transactions to more than 150 countries worldwide.

  • 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 with international capabilities. One of the most appreciated features of WorldRemit is the speed with which transactions are processed.

Recipients can pick up their money from banks, receive it digitally, or have it delivered to their homes.

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 other apps.

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06
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A Money-Sending Mainstay: Western Union

Western Union app info and transfer screens
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's a fast, secure way to get money from one point to another. It's also one of the most flexible ways to send money. Use the app to send money from a credit or debit card, transfer money from your bank account, or take cash to a local agent to send it.

Your recipient can pick up their cash at a bank or a Western Union location, or receive it digitally.

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

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07
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Best for iPhone Users: Apple Cash

Apple Cash setup screens in Apple Pay
What We Like
  • 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. 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 is that it works only with other Apple users. You can't send money to anyone who isn't using an Apple device.

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Best for Android Users: Google Pay

Google Pay app payment and transfer screens
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
  • Can't 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 choice. It lets you send money to family and friends (in the U.S. and India only), pay bills, and even set up recurring payments. You can't 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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