Hey there! Peer-to-peer payment apps have become ingrained in how we pay each other and purchase things digitally. And Venmo stands out as one of the most popular.
One of my favorite Venmo features that I rely on daily is the Venmo Balance. This handy pool of money stored in the app lets me easily pay friends back, split bills, and make quick purchases without fumbling for cash or cards.
In 2022 alone, Venmo processed over $257 billion in payment volume from its over 90 million user accounts. With growth like that, chances are you have some contacts who use Venmo too.
In this detailed walkthrough, I‘ll explain step-by-step how you can pay other Venmo users from your Balance. I‘ll also cover how to use it in other apps, get the Venmo debit card, add funds, and optimize this payment method.
Let‘s get started!
How To Pay Another Venmo User With Your Balance
Paying your Venmo contacts is a breeze directly through the app. Just follow these simple steps:
Step 1: Log Into The Venmo App
First, launch the Venmo app on your phone. When the login screen pops up, enter your username, email, or phone number.
Then enter your password. If you have Face ID or Touch ID enabled, you can log in instantly with your fingerprint or face scan too.
Log into your Venmo account via username, email, phone or Instant Login
Once logged in, you‘ll see Venmo‘s main homepage with your feed showing recent payments.
Step 2: Check If Venmo Balance Is Enabled
Before paying with your Venmo Balance, you first need to make sure the feature is actually enabled.
Tap the profile icon in the top right corner of the screen, then go to Settings > Payment Methods. Scroll down to see if “Venmo Balance” is listed at the top of your available payment methods.
Navigate to Settings > Payment Methods to check
If you don‘t see Venmo Balance as an option, you‘ll need to complete Venmo‘s identity verification process first.
Venmo introduced its identity verification system in 2021 as a way to reduce misuse and scams on its platform.
Once your identity is verified by providing info like your SSN, date of birth, and linking bank account, then the Venmo Balance feature unlocks. Approximately 94% of active Venmo accounts are verified as of late 2022.
Step 3: Tap Pay or Request
With your account verified, you‘re ready to pay someone. From Venmo‘s main homepage, tap the big blue button at the bottom that says "Pay" or "Request".
Tap Pay or Request to initiate sending funds
Tapping Pay will let you send money to someone else from your Venmo Balance. Tapping Request will invoice or charge someone from their own Venmo account.
Step 4: Search For A Recipient
After tapping Pay, a new screen pops up where you can enter the recipient.
In the To: field at the top, start typing their Venmo username, phone number, or email address associated with their account. As you type, suggested contacts will show up from which you can select the right person.
Search for the recipient‘s username, phone or email
Or you can tap the contacts icon to pick someone from your connected friends list on Venmo.
Make sure the recipient has an active Venmo account before going further. If the person isn‘t on Venmo yet, you can invite them to sign up before sending them money.
Step 5: Enter The Payment Amount
On the next screen, tap in the $0.00 amount field and enter how much you want to pay this person. Venmo will bring up a numpad to enter the dollars and cents.
Type in the payment amount on the numpad
Below the amount, tap in the "What‘s it for?" field and enter a short note about what this payment is for.
For example, you can put something like "Lunch last Thursday", "Electricity bill" or "Paying you back". This helps the recipient understand the context.
💡Pro Tip: Venmo payments have a default privacy setting of "public" meaning anyone can see it in your feed. If desired, tap the privacy dropdown and change to "private" before paying so only you and the recipient can see the note and amount.
Step 6: Tap Pay
Once everything looks good, tap the big blue Pay button at the bottom to send this payment.
Tap Pay to send money from your Balance
If your Venmo Balance contains enough funds to cover the amount, it will automatically be paid from your Balance rather than any linked cards or bank account. That‘s it!
You‘ll see the completed payment in your feed with the note and privacy setting selected. The recipient will get notified instantly that you paid them via Venmo.
Paying With Venmo Balance In Other Apps
In addition to paying your personal contacts, you can use your Venmo Balance to make quick purchases within many popular apps and websites that support Venmo Pay.
As of December 2022, Venmo is accepted as a payment method within over 2 million apps, websites, and brick-and-mortar stores across the U.S.
Some of the top apps where I frequently use my Venmo Balance include:
- Uber Eats
Here‘s how easy it is to checkout with your Venmo Balance:
Step 1: Download The App
First, download whichever app you want that lists Venmo as a payment option. You can browse Venmo‘s app directory to find apps in categories like food, shopping, entertainment and more.
I‘ll use the Uber Eats app for this example.
Download apps like Uber Eats that accept Venmo payments
Step 2: Add Items To Your Cart
Browse the app and add items to your cart just like normal.
Pick out what food or products you want to buy, add them to your cart, and proceed to checkout when ready.
Add desired items to your cart before checkout
Step 3: Select Venmo At Checkout
When you go to checkout, look for the option to pay with Venmo.
On Uber Eats, they have a dedicated Venmo button right on the payment method screen:
Choose to pay with Venmo at checkout
If prompted to log in, enter your Venmo credentials to link your account.
Step 4: Authorize The App
The first time paying in a new app with your Venmo Balance, you‘ll need to authorize that app to charge your Venmo account.
Authorize the app to charge your Venmo Balance
The app will clearly state the authorization amount being requested. Make sure it matches your cart total before approving.
Step 5: Place Your Order!
Once authorized, complete your purchase!
The payment will process instantly using the money in your Venmo Balance. You‘ll receive confirmation on both Uber Eats and Venmo that the order is complete.
That‘s the beauty of paying with your Venmo Balance – it makes checkout fast, easy, and secure without constantly grabbing your wallet or entering card details.
You can manage merchants authorized to charge your Venmo account anytime under Settings > Authorized Merchants in the app. Simply de-authorize if you no longer wish to use Venmo for payment with a specific merchant.
Getting The Venmo Debit Card
Venmo also offers a free debit card that offers yet another way to spend the funds in your Venmo Balance conveniently.
The Venmo debit card acts as a backup payment source linked to your Venmo Balance. It automatically reloads your balance from a connected bank account as needed when making purchases.
Here‘s how to get one:
Step 1: Open Cards In Venmo
In the Venmo app, tap the Credit Cards icon along the bottom. This opens the payment cards section.
Open the Credit Cards section
Step 2: Select The Venmo Debit Card
Next, choose the "Venmo Debit Card" option to order one.
Choose the Venmo Debit Card
Tap "Learn more" if you want to view fees, limits and terms for the card.
Step 3: Customize And Order
On the order page, select your preferred card color. Venmo offers a few different bright colors to choose from.
You can also opt-in to automatically reloading your balance by turning on the "Automatically reload my balance" switch. This links your Venmo account to a bank account of your choice that will transfer funds when your Venmo Balance runs low.
Once everything looks good, submit your debit card order. Venmo will provide an estimated delivery timeline for when your physical card will arrive by mail.
Step 4: Activate The Card
When your Venmo debit card comes in the mail, you‘ll need to activate it before use within the Venmo app.
Under Credit Cards, tap on your Venmo Debit Card and follow the prompts to activate it through the app.
Once activated, you can immediately start using your Venmo debit card to spend your Venmo Balance anywhere that accepts payments with Mastercard®. Any tap-and-pay enabled POS terminals will work too.
It‘s great for dipping into your Venmo money when you don‘t have another card on you or enough physical cash on hand.
Adding Funds To Your Venmo Balance
As you use your Venmo Balance for payments and purchases, you‘ll need to add more funds periodically to keep it topped up.
Here are some easy ways to get more money into your Venmo Balance:
Instant Bank Transfer
Link an external bank account or debit card within Venmo, then transfer funds instantly right to your Balance.
Just tap your profile icon > Manage Balance > Add Money to initiate an instant deposit from the linked account.
💡Pro Tip: Use a debit card for fastest transfers. Bank account transfers take up to 1 business day but are deposit-only.
Venmo Debit Card
When signed up for the Venmo debit card, enabling auto-reload will automatically transfer money from your linked bank account into your Balance whenever your funds run low.
External Bank Transfer
Connect an external bank account through your account and routing number. You can then move funds from that bank into your Balance. Takes 1-3 business days.
Generate a barcode in Venmo and bring it to retailers like CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid or Walmart to deposit physical cash. Add up to $3,000 this way.
Any money friends or contacts send to you through Venmo payments will also add to your Balance. Request money owed or remind friends to pay you back on Venmo.
Key Things To Know About Venmo Balance
While using your Venmo Balance is super convenient, there are a few limitations and risks to be aware of:
U.S. only – The Venmo Balance can only be used for payments within the U.S. It does not work for international transactions.
Weekly limits – Your maximum balance and weekly sending limits depend on verification status. Unverified users can only hold a balance of up to $2,999 and send $299.99 per week.
No protections – Venmo Balance transactions don‘t come with the same protections as credit card purchases. No cashback either. Be careful when paying unfamiliar people or merchants.
Non-reversible – If money is sent to the wrong user by accident, Venmo does not guarantee you will get it back. Transfer carefully.
Can‘t cash out – Your Venmo Balance cannot be transferred back to your bank like a PayPal balance. The money must be spent or transferred elsewhere.
Scams – There are risks of phishing links and scams from strangers. Only use Venmo with people and merchants you know and trust. Enable privacy settings.
The key is using your Venmo Balance mindfully with trusted recipients. Review transactions before sending and report unauthorized charges immediately.
Let‘s Review The Venmo Balance
We‘ve covered a ton of ground here! To quickly recap:
- Your Venmo Balance is a pool of money stored within Venmo that can be used for payments and purchases
- Pay friends, contacts, and merchants with it by sending money or charging at checkout
- Reload your Balance anytime by depositing funds from cards or bank accounts
- Get the Venmo debit card to spend Balance money anywhere Mastercard is accepted
- Keep your account secure by enabling privacy controls and verifying your identity
With over 90 million users on Venmo sending $257 billion annually, chances are you know people already on the platform.
Put your Venmo Balance to use for easy splitting of costs, paying friends back quickly, or checkout without physical cards. Just be mindful of Venmo‘s limitations compared to credit card or bank transfers.
Hope this guide gives you a great starting point for maximizing Venmo Balance as a payment option! Let me know if you have any other questions.