Venmo App vs. Square Cash App: Which Is Better?

Find out which P2P money transfer app is best.

When you don’t have cash in your wallet to pay a friend back for a pizza, pay a vendor for services or send cash to a family member, you’ll need to figure out how to transfer money to someone. With today’s peer-to-peer payment services, you can pay anyone for almost anything with a simple app like Venmo or Square Cash — all with a few taps of your fingers.

And although many similarities exist between the two apps, there are some noteworthy differences. Take a look at details of Venmo versus Square Cash so you can better decide which P2P payment app is best.

Venmo Review: A Closer Look

Like the Square Cash app, the Venmo app allows you to request money from or send money to another person or business via the app, email or through the web. The app and signing up are free and, unless you use a credit card for your transactions, so is sending and receiving money. Use a credit card as the linked account, and a Venmo fee of 3 percent applies per transaction.

A main difference between the two P2P apps is that Venmo is somewhat of a social network, and many of the people who join say they use Venmo because their friends belong to the network. Venmo allows you to send fun messages and emojis with your payments and check out your friends’ activities. Although you can opt to show your payments in a public feed, you can also choose to keep your transactions private.

Square Cash Review: A Closer Look

Square Cash allows you send money with more anonymity than Venmo because you can choose to use $Cashtags when you send and receive money. Think of a $Cashtag as your unique screen name. Users with or without a Square Cash account can use your $Cashtag to pay you, and you can use it to pay others.

Plus, Square Cash also offers a business account option that lets customers pay for goods and services through Square Cash. It’s free for the business or seller to receive the payment, but customers pay a Square Cash fee of 2.75 percent per transaction.

Read: 12 Best Budget Apps to Help You Save Money

Square Cash vs. Venmo: Customer Service

Square Cash doesn’t offer a toll-free number or chat access as a way for customers to communicate. All Square Cash customer support inquiries are resolved over email, which might take several days or more. This could be a drawback if you have issues with a large transaction.

Unlike Square Cash, Venmo offers a phone number, 855-812-4430, for users to speak with live agents 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays. Users can also chat with support agents in the Venmo app or send an email through the Venmo help center.

In-Depth Review: How the Square Cash Mobile App Makes Payments Simple

Square Cash vs. Venmo: Transferring Funds to a Bank Account

Venmo transfers are free but not instant. When you transfer money on Venmo, the app will tell you the estimated arrival date, which is typically one business day, but might be sooner or later, depending on when you sent the transfer.

With Square Cash, transferring your money to your bank account is called “Cashing Out.” You can choose standard speed, which takes from one to three business days, and transfers are free. For instant transfers, funds are available immediately and you pay a fee of 1 percent of the total deposit amount.

Square Cash vs. Venmo: Sending and Receiving Limits

With both P2P payment systems, you have a limited amount of money you can pay and receive initially. Venmo limits the amount of money you can send and receive per week to $299.99. If you need to exceed this amount, the app will ask you to confirm your identity via your date of birth, ZIP code and the last four digits of your Social Security number before increasing your rolling weekly limit. Sending funds is limited to $2,999.99, and there’s a separate limit of $2,000 for authorized merchant payments and Venmo card transactions.

Square Cash will ask you to verify your name, date of birth, and the last four digits of your Social Security number if you send more than $250 in one week unless you’re sending a payment to a business using a designated Cash for Business account.

When receiving money, Square Cash will ask you to verify your identity if you receive more than $1,000 in 30 days unless you are using a Cash for Business account. Once your account is verified, however, there’s no limit on the amount you can receive.

Learn: How to Deposit Cash to an Online Bank Account

P2P Payments and Fraud Protection

Many people wonder about P2P payments and are asking “Is Square Cash safe?” or “Is Venmo Safe?”  Both Square Cash and Venmo use data encryption to protect users. Even more important, banking on mobile devices is more secure than online banking, according to information on the CNBC website.

You are your first line of defense, however, and you need to protect yourself from fraud. For example, Venmo advises users to accept payments only from friends or other people they trust. Venmo does not offer buyer protection, so if you buy something that’s counterfeit or never receive the items you paid for, you have no recourse.

Venmo vs. Square Cash: Which Money Sending App Is Best?

When you’re looking for a P2P money-sending app to occasionally pay a friend back for a pizza or concert ticket, either money transfer app will likely suffice. For a little social fun with your financial transactions, however, Venmo is your best bet. But if you’re a small business looking for one peer-to-peer app that will let you pay your friend for that pizza but also allow your customers to pay you for services, you might lean toward Square Cash, which is designed for that exact scenario.