Zelle – A Faster Built-In Alternative to Square and Venmo

Zelle is an app to send money to family and friends you know directly from your banking app, instantly and free.



Why should you use Zelle?

  • Built-In to your banking app, nothing to download or signup for.
  • Send money instantly from your bank to theirs.
  • Completely free, no costs at all.

What are the downsides?

  • Not all banks support Zelle (most major banks do).
  • Sender’s full name is disclosed to the recipient.

Zelle does have an app that works with your debit card if your bank is not supported. I have not had the ability to test this due to all my banks supporting Zelle. Only use this if your banking app does not support Zelle:



So why is Zelle able to provide instant, free service unlike competitors (Venmo and Square); who charge a fee for instant transfers? The short answer, Zelle is owned by the banks.

Competitors are separate businesses from banks and need to make money also. If they allowed you to instantly transfer the funds, they would not be able to hold on to the funds and earn interest on it like banks do. This is why you must wait at least one day or pay a 1% fee to instantly receive the funds.

During that one day the funds are sitting in the competitors accounts, banks are not making money on those funds. Zelle is owned by the banks and offers free instant transfers to combat the competitors. By not transferring the funds to the competitors for a day the banks continue to earn the interest on the funds.

Getting Started

First check to see if your banking app supports Zelle.


If so, you should fine more info how to Enroll your mobile number or e-mail address to receive Zelle payments. Enrollment lets you choose your pay from account and pay to addresses. The recipients for which you wish to send money too must also Enroll with Zelle.

Once both parties are enrolled with Zelle and you have their confirmed phone number or e-mail address, you should be able to send them money instantly from your phone app or banking website.

For more information, visit Zelle at https://www.zellepay.com/

One Reply to “Zelle – A Faster Built-In Alternative to Square and Venmo”

  1. My bank just started supporting/working with Zelle, and it’s been more useful than I thought. Splitting checks, going in together on gift-buying, etc. It seems like some type of service like this is now inevitable, but there are also multiple options out there.

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