Square Cash is the popular cash-transfer app from Square, the mobile payments company. The app — which can also be found online at Cash.me — is similar to Google Wallet, Venmo and PayPal: Square Cash lets you send cash directly and safely to other people via email or within the app using a linked debit or credit card.
You can find this free app — along with Square Cash reviews — in the iTunes store and on Google Play, the respective Apple and Android sources for finance apps. Like Venmo and similar payment apps, Square Cash lets you process a cash transfer to send cash directly to people using either a debit card or credit card.
Nearly a third of smartphone users will send money via a money transfer app at least every six months by the year 2020, according to eMarketer. As cash and checks give way to electronic funds transfers when friends send money to each other, Square Cash and its competitors let people use their ever-present smartphones to send money instantly.
Square Cash Features
Square Cash is a simple money transfer app that offers users four ways to send money:
- Square Cash App
- Cash.me website
Square Cash lets you send money instantly, but only to family and friends. If you want to use it for business, you must open a separate Square Cash business account.
How to Sign Up for Square Cash
Signing up for Square Cash is a fast and easy process.
Here’s how to sign up for the Square Cash app to start sending and receving money:
- Download the free app from the iTunes Store or Google Play.
- Open the app and enter your cell phone number or email address to request a confirmation code.
- When you get the code, enter it and choose a personal account.
- Next, follow the prompts to link the app to your bank account so you can send and receive money.
You must be at least 18 years old and live in the United States to use Square Cash. Note, however, that you cannot use the app in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and some other U.S. territories.
How to Use Square Cash to Send Money
Transferring money via Square Cash involves using a feature — in conjunction with the Cash.me website — called a Cashtag. To use Cashtag, you simply put a dollar sign in front of your selected tag and share it with people who want to send you money. For instance, if you chose the Cashtag “Jane,” they would go to Cash.me/$jane to send you money.
Square Cash has three other methods to send money. Here’s how to send money using Square Cash:
How to Send Money With the Square Cash App
- Enter an amount of $1 or more and choose “Pay.”
- Insert the recipient’s Cashtag, name or cell number.
- Include an optional note or description.
- Tap “Pay” in the top right-hand corner of the screen.
How to Send Money Using Siri
- Verify that your iPhone has the latest operating system.
- Go to settings.
- Select Siri, then App Support.
- Toggle on Cash and send a payment to anyone in your phone contact list.
Send Money Using iMessage
- Open iMessage and tap the Apps icon located over the keyboard.
- Select the amount you’d like to send and tap “Pay.”
- Choose whether or not you want to “gift wrap” the money transfer, which hides the amount from the recipient until he opens it.
- Select the card from which to make the money transfer.
- Add a comment, then send the funds.
To receive funds with Square Cash you have to add your bank account or debit card information when you download and set up the app. You can also add money to the app to make payments and you can cash out anytime by tapping the Cashout option once, then again to confirm the request.
If you’re a Snapchat user, Square Cash provides Snapcash, a way to make payments and receive money directly from the app. You have two options for sending money:
How to Send Money Using Snapcash
- Swipe right on a friend’s feed.
- Type in “$” and the amount you’d like to send and you’ll see a green Snapcash button.
- Tap the button, which will prompt you to accept the Terms of Service the first time you use it — you’ll also have to enter your enter debit card information the first time.
How to Sign Up for Square Cash in Snapchat Settings
- Go to your settings and tap “Snapcash.”
- Tap “Add Card” to link your debit card.
Square Cash Fees and Requirements
Unlike some money transfer companies like PayPal, Square Cash enables you to send money to people without their having to open an account. You won’t pay any Square Cash fees to send money with your debit card and you can cash out your funds to your bank whenever you want. You will pay some Square Cash fees: You’ll be charged 1 percent for same-day, instant deposits and 3 percent for payments from credit cards.
In addition, Square Cash personal accounts have sending and receiving limits. The initial limit for sending money is $250 per week. If you want to send more than that, verify your name, date of birth and Social Security number to get your limit raised to $2,500. The initial receiving limit is $1000 every 30 days — you can use the same verification process to have it raised to an unlimited amount.
Pros and Cons of Square Cash
Pros and cons come with even the best finance apps. Here are the ones associated with Square Cash:
- Cashtag: Square Cash reviewers often praise its convenience and the fact that recipients don’t have to give out their email addresses.
- Multiple methods of sending and receiving funds: Users can switch between their phones, computers and even Snapchat to quickly send money.
- No Square Cash fees: Other than for credit card transactions, you don’t pay for personal money transfers.
- Rewards: If you get someone to sign up for Square Cash, you and your friend will get a bonus if he sends $50 through the app within the first 14 days.
- Customer service: Square Cash offers live customer service via phone. You can call 855-700-6000 Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. PST.
- You have to pay to use a credit card: The 3 percent fee for using a credit card could put a dent in your earnings if you have a rewards credit card.
- You can’t use it outside the U.S.: Many people like to send and receive money when they’re outside the U.S., which is impossible with Square Cash. If you’re in the military and stationed abroad or working internationally this could be a real drawback.
- You can’t mix accounts: If you like to mix your business and personal transactions, this might not be the app for you because Square Cash requires you to set up separate accounts.
Is Square Cash Safe?
Square Cash provides users with email, text and push notifications regarding account activity and has anti-fraud measures in place to protect against unauthorized charges. Encrypted data and options like CVV entry add an additional layer of protection.
How Square Cash Stacks up to Competitors
Square Cash vs. Venmo
Venmo has more features than Square Cash, including the ability to link certain apps and make payments to them through your Venmo account. The app makes record-keeping easy by tracking your purchase history, a feature also offered by Square Cash, and even has a social aspect that lets you share your latest transactions with friends via a feed. If you just want to send payments to friends, however, you’ll appreciate Square Cash’s streamlined approach.
Square Cash vs. Google Wallet
Google Wallet doesn’t require recipients to have an account to receive money. Unlike Square Cash, Google Wallet allows customers to send you money if you’re running a sole proprietorship business. You get access to debit card payments immediately through Google Wallet, but bank transfers can take up to three days.
Square Cash vs. PayPal
PayPal offers a simple, domestic and international money transfer method via email and has a large number of partner websites that accept payment through the service. It lets you link your bank account, credit card or debit card and you can send and receive money through its website and app. Unlike Square Cash, however, PayPal imposes fees on both debit and credit card transactions for personal transfers.
Square Cash vs. Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger is free for Facebook users, but it requires using a debit card there is no support for credit cards or linked bank accounts. Like Square Cash, its use is limited to personal transactions.
Square Cash Synopsis
Although Square Cash is a simple money transfer app that’s limited to personal transactions. If you’re looking for something basic this is a good choice. It partners with Snapchat and features the easy-to-use Cashtag system.
If you’re seeking a straightforward app that will enable you to exchange money with your friends, Square Cash has you covered. In addition, if you like it and recruit someone to sign up, the referral bonus for each of you is a nice plus.
Next Up: What is Chase Quickpay with Zelle?
Morgan Quinn contributed to the reporting for this article.