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7 Best Payment Apps of 2023

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Payment apps make it easy to make purchases, send money to friends and family, pay rent or split expenses like restaurant bills and tips with a group. And because these apps make sending money so seamless, many people seem to prefer digital payments to more traditional methods.

Venmo may be one of the most popular peer-to-peer payment platforms, but it isn’t the only option. In fact, there are more ways to send money now than ever before. Here’s a look at the seven best payment apps of 2023.

7 Best Payment Apps: A Detailed Look

Each of the following payment apps has excellent user experiences and features that help you send money and make payments online. Here’s a comparison of their compatibility, pay limits and fees so you can decide which one’s best for you.

1. Cash App

Cash App allows you to send and receive money via $Cashtag, phone number or QR code.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
You can download Cash App for iOS from the App Store or Android from Google Play. You can send up to $250 every 7 days and receive up to $1,000 during any 30-day period. However, limit increases are possible for verified accounts. Cash App doesn’t charge any fees for most payments and transactions, except ATM withdrawals. In addition, Instant Deposits are also subject to a 0.5% to 1.75% fee in exchange for instant delivery.

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Learn more about how to use Cash App.

2. Google Pay

Google Pay is Google’s digital wallet and payment system. You can send money to individuals or even groups to split expenses, but you can’t send peer-to-peer payments from your credit card — only your bank account, debit card or your Google Pay balance.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
You can use Google Pay on both Android and iOS. Verified accounts can send up to $5,000 during a seven-day period. Unverified accounts can only send up to $500, with a total lifetime limit of $5,000. Google doesn’t charge any fees to send or receive money with Google Pay. However, there’s a fee of 1.5% if you transfer out to a debit card.

3. PayPal

PayPal’s app lets you send or receive money directly to and from friends and family. But if you’re planning to use your credit card to send money, be prepared for high fees.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
You can download PayPal for Android or iOS. If your account is not verified, you can send a one-time payment of $4,000. If your account is verified, you can send up to $60,000 in a single transaction. There are other limits for instant transfers to debit cards. There are no fees for sending money from your PayPal balance or bank accounts. However, there’s a 2.90% fee plus a fixed fee for sending money via credit card.

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4. Western Union

Western Union lets you send money to friends and family in more than 200 countries worldwide.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
The app is available for Android and iOS. The maximum send amount is $500 per day per card account. Fees depend on the transaction type, amount, currency, country of origin and recipient country.

5. Xoom

Xoom is a user-friendly payment app offered by PayPal that lets you send money to friends and family, whether in the U.S. or abroad.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
Xoom is available for both Android and iOS. It depends on what country you are sending money from, what country you are sending money to and your account level. You can increase your limits by providing more account verification. Initial limits are $2,999 every 24 hours. There may be fees depending on the transaction type, payment method, currency, country of origin and recipient country.

6. Zelle

Zelle is a U.S.-based payments service integrated with hundreds of bank and credit union mobile apps around the country.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
Zelle works with hundreds of banks and credit unions around the country. Pay limits depend on your bank. If your bank doesn’t support Zelle, you can send up to $500 per week. Zelle doesn’t charge any fees to send or receive money.

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7. Venmo

Venmo is a payment app that lets you send payments and split expenses with a group. You can also send payments to businesses with the app.

Compatibility Pay Limits Fees
Venmo is available for Android and iOS. Unverified accounts can send up to $299.99 per week. Verified accounts can send up to $60,000 per week. Venmo doesn’t charge a fee for sending or receiving money via balance, bank or debit card. However, there’s a 3% fee for sending money via credit card.

Pros and Cons of the 7 Best Payment Apps of 2023

The aforementioned seven apps all have advantages and disadvantages. Here’s an overview of the best ways to send money, including the pros and cons of each.

Payment App Pros Cons
Cash App You can access banking services via Cash App, including paychecks, tax returns and early access to direct deposits. Cash App has low initial pay limits before verifying your account.
Google Pay You can earn rewards when using Google Pay to activate special offers from businesses. Initially, there are low pay limits before verifying your account.
PayPal You can set up a special PayPal.Me link to share with friends for them to pay you. The app offers very high pay limits for verified accounts. There are high fees for sending money from credit cards. The fee structure is confusing.
Western Union You can send cash digitally directly to the recipient or send it to an agent for cash pickup. You can even track your transfer and get notified when it is delivered. The app has low pay limits for sending money online. Fees are high.
Xoom The service offers a money-back guarantee to give you peace of mind that only your designated recipient will receive your money. The international fee structure can be unclear and confusing.
Zelle You don’t need to download a separate app or create a new account to use Zelle. Instead, just log in to your supported banking app, pick who you want to pay and send the money. Each bank sets its own pay limits with Zelle.
Venmo Venmo offers high weekly pay limits. You must be physically located in the U.S. to use Venmo.

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Next, consider some of these questions you might ask before choosing your payment app.

Key Questions To Ask Yourself

The payment apps listed above have many of the same features. Which one’s best for you comes down to how you want to use it. Here are some questions to ask yourself as you evaluate the options:

Consider the Following:

  • Do you need to send money internationally?
  • Do you need to send large amounts of money?
  • Do you want a separate app and account login?
  • Will you make purchases, or are you just planning on sending money?

Once you’ve answered these questions, the right payment app for you will probably become apparent.

Cynthia Measom, Gabrielle Olya and Daria Uhlig contributed to the reporting for this article.

Information is accurate as of Jan. 6, 2023.