Many people don’t carry cash these days, creating a huge problem for those wanting to make payments for friends and family members.
You and your friends are out for a lunch at a local Asian restaurant. After the lunch, your friend paid all the bills for you, but you also realized he didn’t take credit cards.
Or, perhaps you’re the one to chip in all the cash for the bill. To ask for the payback, you’ll have to remind your friend later. But will you remember?
According to a study conducted by PayPal, these “forgotten” debts between two friends can create strain relationships and awkwardness.
Luckily for you, there are a handful of apps and payment services to solve this problem.
Sadly, it’s still not clear which payment service works the best to meet life’s varying demands, and which ones are safe when using them.
So let’s go through the top 6 payment app options:
When people have to buy online, most often think of using PayPal.
There’s a reason behind its popularity: almost every website has a PayPal payment option as a backup.
Also, it can also act as an independent payment gateway as they also accept credit card (and debit card) payments directly, too.
And, if you have a balance in your PayPal wallet, you can quickly and easily buy items online without having to access your credit card details at all.
PayPal Express API seamlessly integrates with all the major platforms, too.
The standard transaction fee is 2.9% + $0.30, but international transactions fee is 3.9%.
With ClearXChange, you can send money to almost anyone with a US bank account.
And, you can access their service directly from their website (clearXchange.com) or use their mobile banking apps.
Surprisingly, ClearXchange doesn’t transfer the money for you. Instead, they provide the information their member banks require to complete the transaction.
That means, you only need to log in to the ClearXchange’s website (or mobile banking app) and enter the email address or mobile number of a person you want to send money to.
The best part of using ClearXchange is that it doesn’t cost you a thing, and is as comfortable as paying your bills.
The only downside of this payment system is that the recipient needs to have a US bank account.
So, it might not be a good idea if you want to send an amount to a friend or a family member living outside the US.
LevelUp has a high rating on App Store, and up to 14,000 businesses have used it as their mobile payment of choice.
LevelUp is 100% PCI compliant, meaning your credit card information is stored in a safe and secure environment.
Encryptions technology encrypts each transaction, and LevelUp sends all your financial data to BrainTree, which is a reliable and trusted PayPal service, for secure storage.
The data stored in the QR codes used to complete transactions go through a ‘triple token system,’ changing three times during transaction processing.
You can add extra layers of protection by PIN locking your account, which can quickly be done under the Settings section.
And, if someone hacks into your account, or you lose your phone, you can also perform an Instant Code Reset to de-authenticate your previous code. LevelUp will generate a new system for you, and even log out your of all your devices.
If you have friends or family member in the US and want to send payments to them, you can send them cash easily and quickly with Venmo.
You only require providing the email address or phone number of the recipient.
The recipient needs to create a Venmo account to receive your payment.
And, Facebook and phone contacts syncing ability has made it even easier and faster to find your friends to send payments to.
And, it’s free too.
There are no fees to send money using your Venmo balance, debit card, bank account, or prepaid card. Venmo only charges a standard 3% fee for a transaction made through credit card.
And, to protect unauthorized transactions, you’re personal (and financial) data is encrypted and stored securely on their servers.
In addition to all these apps, Facebook is also making everything easier to send money to your friends and ask them for any cash you owe you.
P2P payments feature arrived in the US two years ago.
With this feature, now anyone with a Facebook account can send and request payment in a chat on Facebook Messenger.
It is convenient. You don’t have to share your bank details with other people. You don’t have to save your bank details on different apps. You don’t even have to carry the transfer through a separate app.
To send money to your family or friends, you only have to open a Facebook messenger with your friend, and top on the blue+ icon, and choose the green Payments icon.
After this, you’ll be asked to create your payment account (only happens for the first time) and then specify the amount you want to send.
Once you’ve done this, you only need to hit the Pay button and add your debit card details.
Paying via Messenger is also secure. All debit card transactions are encrypted, and bank level protection mechanisms provide top-notch protection.
You can add your debit card (or bank account) on Google Wallet, and it will let you send and receive money.
To keep it secure, Google has built specific features in the app, such as the ability to send out timeout PIN and an industry-standard level of data encryption.
Setting a timeout PIN is easy, too. You have to go to the app’s nav menu bar (on the top left), and then tap on the “Settings” option, and choose “Security,” and then click on the “Auto-Lock” system.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll be asked to enter your PIN and select a timeout duration.
In case if you lose your phone, you can stop anyone from accessing Google Wallet by visiting this URL: myaccount.google.com.
Likewise, if you lose the Wallet Card, you can also lock it with the app.