VersusZelle vs Venmo: which payment app is better for your needs?

Zelle vs Venmo: which payment app is better for your needs?

It’s common for friends and family to split a bill with you by sending a mobile payment, and it’s also common to send a mobile payment to someone who bought you something you couldn’t buy yourself. A lot of these payments are sent through Zelle and Venmo. Both are peer-to-peer payment apps that let you send money quickly and for free by looking up a friend’s email address or mobile phone number, entering an amount, and hitting send.

Zelle is a great tool if you, your family, and your friends all have bank accounts that work with the app. With Zelle, you can move money from one bank account to another for free and in minutes. Zelle doesn’t have a holding account for the money transfers. Instead, the money goes directly into your or the recipient’s bank account. Even if your bank doesn’t take part in Zelle, you can still use it to move smaller amounts of money.

Venmo is more of an electronic wallet that works like PayPal. You can move your money to other accounts, spend it, or add more money to your Venmo balance. There are fees for some of the transactions. Both Venmo and Zelle make it simple to send and receive money, but they go about it in different ways. It is free to transfer money between linked bank accounts using the Zelle service, but there is no money in your Zelle account itself.

Zelle vs Venmo Comparison Table

OwnershipOwned and operated by major U.S. banksOwned by PayPal
AvailabilityAvailable in the U.S.Available in the U.S.
Supported PlatformsMobile apps and some banking appsMobile apps and website
Transfer SpeedInstant transfers within participating banksInstant transfers within the Venmo network
Transaction FeesTypically free for usersFree for standard transactions, fees for certain features
Bank IntegrationIntegrated with participating banks’ appsOffers the option to link bank accounts
SecurityUtilizes bank-level security measuresOffers security features like PIN and fingerprint authentication
Social FeaturesFocuses on person-to-person transfersIncludes social features, such as public transactions and comments
Payment LimitationsVaries depending on the participating banksLimited payment limits for new users
Payment RequestCan request money from contactsCan request money from contacts or split bills with friends
International TransfersPrimarily focuses on domestic transfersLimited international transfer capability
Official linkVisit WebsiteVisit Website

Zelle vs Venmo Easy to Use

Zelle vs Venmo

To use Zelle, you will need a smart phone. Zelle works with almost all of the big US banks, but each one shows Zelle’s features in a different way. It’s easy to use and you can find it in your banking app by choosing “Send Money with Zelle.” The users can then choose to “send or receive.”

Users who are sending a message for the first time will be asked to choose from recent recipients and phone contacts. You can add new contacts by putting in their email address or phone number. Venmo ensures user-friendly and fun navigation. Users can scroll through a list of their contacts who are also connected to the service when they choose “Pay or Request.” Venmo users can see who other people are sending money to because it looks like a social media feed. When sending and receiving money, you can also add GIFs, emojis, and messages. You can easily find a contact by typing their name, Venmo username, phone number, or email address.

Zelle vs Venmo Security

The comparison chart shows that both Zelle and Venmo have built-in security features that make sending money safe. Zelle’s team keeps an eye on transactions and uses authentication to protect your banking information. Venmo also keeps an eye on transactions to catch fraud and encrypts your personal information to keep it safe. Both services are safe, but Venmo might be a little safer because you can add a PIN and turn on multifactor authentication in the app.

Zelle vs Venmo Availability and accessibility

Zelle vs Venmo

Your bank needs to give you permission to use Zelle’s payment network. Zelle puts money right into the bank account of the person you’re sending it to. You can set up notifications to get alerts. Concerning how open the company is, the terms of their “send money” service have been looked at closely. Due to how fast and easy it is to use, some customers have pointed out that they can’t get their money back if they send it to the wrong person. Customers of Venmo will be asked to make a profile and link their “payment method.” Venmo accepts credit cards as a way to pay, but there is a 3% fee for sending money this way.

When you get money through Venmo, it doesn’t go straight into your bank account like it does with Zelle. Instead, the money stays in your Venmo account until you transfer it to your bank account. You can transfer money right away, but it will cost you 1%. If you choose the free transfer, the money will be in your bank account in 1–3 days.

Zelle: Pros and Cons


  • Instant transfers within participating banks.
  • Typically free for users.
  • Integrated with participating banks’ apps for convenient access.
  • Utilizes bank-level security measures.
  • Availability and support from major U.S. banks.


  • Limited availability outside of the U.S.
  • Transaction limits and availability depend on participating banks.
  • Lacks social features compared to Venmo.
  • May require separate app downloads or access through banking apps.

Venmo: Pros and Cons


  • Instant transfers within the Venmo network.
  • Free for standard transactions.
  • Offers social features like public transactions and comments.
  • Allows payment requests and bill splitting with friends.
  • User-friendly interface and broad availability.


  • Limited availability outside of the U.S.
  • Limited international transfer capability.
  • Transaction fees for certain features.
  • Limited payment limits for new users.
  • Owned by PayPal, which may raise concerns for privacy-conscious users.

Which one should you consider?

The money is held by Zelle and Venmo. Zelle isn’t very useful because it can only move money between bank accounts. On the other hand, you can get money sent to your Venmo account, which you can then withdraw, transfer, or even add to if you need more.


What is safer Zelle or Venmo?

Zelle sends and receives money directly between FDIC-insured bank accounts, so you know that the money you send or receive is safe up to $250,000. If you like to leave money in your Venmo account so that you can send it easily, and the service gets hacked, you could lose that money.

Is Zelle better than Venmo?

Zelle and Venmo are both quick and safe ways to send and receive money online. If you want a place to store money, Venmo is a better choice. Zelle might be the app for you if you want to send money quickly and cheaply.

Amy Hinckley
Amy Hinckley
The Dell Inspiron 15 that her father purchased from QVC sparked the beginning of her interest in technology. At Bollyinside, Amy Hinckley is in charge of content editing and reviewing products. Amy's interests outside of working include going for bike rides, playing video games, and watching football when she's not at her laptop.
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