Payment solutions haven’t just been evolving for small businesses, it is also evolving for domestic and global payments. Customer and personal remittance has been an industry that’s undergoing vast accessibility improvements, with one-click transactions, better tracking, and bill splitting features
Below is a list of the 10 easiest apps to pay friends on, whether it be a next-door neighbor or a friend on the other side of the world.
Venmo is a great all-around choice for paying friends due to its versatile app and simple design. An important feature here is its bill splitting potential, in which both payments are requests for payments that can be made. Adding recipients is easy, and entering the transaction amount with a description is concise.
The bill can be scanned with the smartphone camera in which users then select which was theirs. Payments are made immediately and your friends can be added to the contact list via a QR code.
2. Cash App
The Cash App is an easy-to-use app that links to bank accounts via a debit card. From here, users can opt-in for a digital wallet, and payments to friends can be made within minutes. Like Venmo, this is only for domestic transactions, and fees do not apply (besides the credit card usage).
The app is similar to Venmo, though there are fewer social features. Maximum transfers are $7,500, and a USP of this app is that you can buy and sell Bitcoin.
3. Google Pay
Google Pay must be included because it’s so widely used and accessible. Anyone with an Android phone or tablet likely has Google Pay, and it integrates seamlessly into the Google ecosystem (i.e. Gmail). Google Pay is free, meaning sending money to friends is free, and it’s exceedingly easy to use. In fact, it can even work with NFC. Some foreign transactions can also be made, but payments do take longer than some of the other apps.
Zelle is a domestic-only payment app that delivers payments to friends for free and within minutes. Zelle is also integrated into many of the traditional banks too, unlike Venmo and Cash App. However, this is a downside, because the user then must access Zelle through the bank account, and only one designated bank account can be used.
5. Wise (formerly TransferWise)
Wise is a gigantic unicorn company that was created in 2010, London. Being one of the most recognizable faces in the Remittance app world, you can be assured the app is both safe and used by many of your friends. Whilst there are domestic wire transfer fees, sending to a contact who also has Wise is free. Furthermore, sending abroad to a different currency is often a cheap fixed cost of 0.5%, though this can depend on the currency pairing. Wise is incredibly useful due to its multi-currency wallet design with many currencies to choose from.
While being a costly choice when exchanging money or business payments, domestic transfers to friends are free without any charge. This is a good option because you can be sure your friend is likely to have a PayPal account, though you will likely have to wait a day for the transfer to complete. PayPal is prone to freezing accounts, but it is one of the safest apps you can use in terms of security and encryption.
Splitwise is a relatively simple app that is just designed to send money between friends. However, there is a feature of lending and borrowing money to friends, helping them keep track. Despite the app being limited, this is actually one of the best apps for college students, or anywhere where there’s money being lent back and forth constantly. The Pro version can also account for currency conversion, receipt scanning, itemization, and visualize the data.
Revolut is a remittance app that focuses on both business and personal use of international transfers. This may be a good choice if you’re looking for a business or international remittance, but also want to send money to friends, as multiple currency wallets can be used. Payments are fast, usually free (even currency conversion is often free), and the app can also let you purchase stocks, crypto, and has a vast array of features.
N26 is a successful German neobank. This is slightly different from the other apps, given that it’s a fully-fledged current account with a debit card, but it’s worth bringing to the table because it’s easier to use than most traditional banks. Saving spaces can be made, transfers to friends are fast, free, and easy. On the Standard, free account, you will have a virtual debit card, mobile payments, NFC payments, and free worldwide payments. The speed at which you can open the app and send funds is faster than most high street banks.
Given that we have covered our fair share of splitting-the-bill apps, let’s take a look at something a little more heavy-duty. OFX is an FX specialist that focuses on large transfers. In fact, $100 is the minimum transfer, which is no good for ad-hoc transfers, but it’s where you will find some of the lowest margins for large international transfers.
With a high user rating for the app, this is an accessible way to access powerful remittance, hedging, and a dedicated dealer for specialist advice. With over 55 currencies, it’s likely you can send any of your friends’ money at a low cost.
There is a growing industry of apps designated for international payments since this is an area that banks are particularly failing on. Because the banks are still charging exorbitant fees and slow overseas transfers, most of the apps above that rely on bank integration don’t bother offering international remittance (excluding the apps explicitly stated otherwise). Wise, OFX, Revolut, and so on are setting a new precedent that banks and money transfer apps will have to catch up with – one-tap overseas transfers at the interbank rate (or close to it) with minimal fees and minimal hassle.