Paypal. Ugh. Seriously has the interface changed in the last decade? I’m going with a resounding no. Yet it is still what haunts the internets like some creepy man giving out candies to small children. Oh and my dad and PA use it.
I’ve been raving to people lately and sending invites out for Venmo (which has been around since 2009). Venmo is a personal payments platform that is both mobile and web-based that is seriously easy to use. Ridiculously easy to use. Astoundingly easy to use. You catch my drift?
Let’s take a look at the steps that it took me to send money for cat food to my dad on Paypal.
Log in and then look around this jumbled ass UI to find where I send money from.
Enter an email address for the person to send money to. I find that this makes me feel nervous when I add new people because I’m sure I am putting the wrong email address.
Enter the amount. Select a currency.
The next one is always tricky. Which am I doing? Which will they be charged for? Paypal have made it more obvious these days, but there are too many damned options to stop and think about.
Write an optional note after reviewing this dumb page.
Then you are done. Except for the fact that because you have used your bank account the other party now needs to wait 3-4 business days to get their money. And even after that they need to go in and find where to cash out the money, select from the numerous confusing options and then, again, wait for the money to be delivered. I would estimate that a Paypal personal payment takes about 7 business days (if you are lucky) to be completed.
Oh and let’s not even talk about what it is like to register and get your bank and credit cards verified on Paypal. That ends up taking another 10+ days if you can figure out how to do it properly.
And then there is Venmo
I eat out – a lot. But I always feel like the world’s biggest asshole when at the end of a meal 6 people bust out a credit card and we all sit around trying to calculate how much goes on each one and then the poor waitress (am I supposed to call them that?) comes over and gets basically a 10 minute breakdown on which gets what. Ewww. Not cool.
But that problem is solved with Venmo. One person pays, everyone else pays the person back. Simple.
I actually did this from desktop, but there is a mobile app that is just as easy. I put in the amount, quick filter for my friend and I’m done.
And to cash out is just as easy and you get the money deposited in your bank account in 1 business day. Yes, all of my $0.76 cash will be available for me tomorrow.
There is a playful social element that allows you to see what your friends are sending and receiving which is totally unnecessary, but sometimes very entertaining. A good example is when people get drunk and then pay the person who bought the drinks that evening.
Fuck PayPal for personal payments. Set up your Venmo account, download the app and start sharing dinner bills with your friends.
Another note is that I haven’t yet tried Square payments. I’m sure it is as elegant and simple as Venmo (or more so), but I really have no reason to switch at this point.