Little millennium girl texting on her mobile phone.

Cash vs PayPal: Which is Better?

tommaso79 /

Cash and PayPal have become very popular since their debut. The Cash app has 44 million users as of 2021 and PayPal has 429 million users at the end of Q1 2022. Consumers are increasingly looking for the best payment app on the market, but which one is better overall?

Cash vs PayPal Contrast Features

Despite some overlaps, Cash and PayPal differ in notable features of payments, shares, encryption, customer service, and fees.

However, the main differences are that PayPal has more international availability, while the Cash App limits its services to the US, and the UK Cash App Investing does not charge trading fees, but PayPal has a detailed fee schedule for buying and selling cryptocurrency .


cash app

Cash app users make instant payments for free. The simple entry of an email, phone number, or “dollar cash card” allows the recipient to arrive within minutes. Cash app users can also make contactless payments with stores that use Square by scanning a QR code.

US users can request or make payments with UK account holders without an application fee. However, users should expect the current mid-market exchange rate to apply at the time of payment.


PayPal users can send and receive money quickly and securely without application fees for US transactions. However, users can expect to see card fees when paying by debit, credit, PayPal credit card, or cash card transaction in the US.

PayPal uses Xoom for international money exchanges, allowing account holders to make payments to over 100 countries.

Stocks and Cryptocurrencies

cash app

Cash App customers can invest in stocks and cryptocurrencies, where transactions can start with less than $1 with partial purchases, and users can set up automatic purchases.

The Cash app provides regular insights, statistics and charting data so that users can make informed investment decisions. While some apps only allow orders to buy and sell digital assets, Cash app users can transfer crypto to and from separate digital wallets.


PayPal account holders can buy, sell or transfer certain cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. Currently, only some US users have the capabilities to transfer crypto to another PayPal account or external wallet, but PayPal is working to increase transfer eligibility in the future.

Customer service

cash app

Cash app has a few channels for customer support:

  • Inside the app: Select the profile icon, click “Support” and start a conversation.
  • phone: Available by calling 1-800-969-1940 Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST.
  • us mail: Cash App, 1455 Market Street Suite 600, San Francisco, CA 94103.
  • Social media platforms: Active on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, Facebook, Reddit and Twitch.


PayPal has several ways users can find the help they’re looking for:

  • Help Center: Find answers to frequently asked questions on the PayPal website.
  • chat bot: Sign in to an account, go to “Contact Customer Service”, and click “Send us a message” to start a conversation via PayPal Assistant.
  • PayPal Community Help Forum: Members can help others with basic and non-immediate questions and problems.
  • decision center: Sign in to an account to report and resolve transaction or account issues.
  • phone: Available at 1-888-221-1161, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. PT Monday through Saturday. PayPal Credit: 1-844-373-4961, Monday-Friday 5AM-8PM PST and Saturday-Sunday 6AM-6PM PST. Account holders outside the United States can call 1-402-935-2050.


cash app

Users can make free standard bank deposits from the Cash App, but it may take one to three business days to finish the transfer. Debit cards are eligible for instant deposit of $0.25 minimum with 0.50% to 1.75% fee applied.

Investment services do not come with a fee when opening an account. There is also no minimum balance requirement and commission-free trading.

Cash App Cards can be used at all ATMs with fees ranging from $2.00 to $2.50. However, those who have received at least $300 in eligible direct deposits can be compensated for three ATM withdrawal fees every 31 days, up to a maximum of $7.00. Any other withdrawals during those 31 days will incur a $2.00 fee.


There are no purchase fees with PayPal unless a currency exchange rate occurs. While PayPal users will not see fees when holding cryptocurrency in accounts, other fees apply when buying and selling crypto orders. Users can refer to the PayPal website for more information regarding international transaction fees.

There are no fees for sending money locally and non-commercially from a PayPal account, bank account, or when using American Express Sendâ„¢ for in-person transactions. If account holders use a card to make payments, a 2.90% fee will apply plus a flat fee for each currency received.

International personal transactions from PayPal balance, bank accounts, credit cards, and American Express Sendâ„¢ come with a 5.00% fee of no less than $0.99 and no more than $4.99. Additional currency exchange rate fees also apply, depending on the type of transaction.

There are no fees when withdrawing from local bank accounts, but instant withdrawals come with a fee of 1.75% of the amount transferred, which also applies to card withdrawals. The minimum fee is $0.25 and the maximum is $25.00.


cash app

The Cash app uses the same encryption and fraud detection software as parent company Block – formerly known as Square. Servers are secure regardless of location or internet connection, and the Cash app is PCI Data Security Level 1 compliant.


PayPal uses two-factor authentication for logins, which include a user’s password and a one-time PIN for each login. Security features include fraud monitoring, detection technology, and email payment confirmation. Finally, PayPal uses Transport Layer Security to protect users no matter where they are located or what connection they use, encrypting all data.

PayPal has buyer and seller protection policies, which help reduce chargebacks and protect sales for sellers as well as protect buyers in the event of purchase disputes. The platform has a set of resources for users to educate themselves on scams, security and fraud.

Take the final

Both Cash App and PayPal are useful financial payment technologies with unique advantages. PayPal offers a more comprehensive experience, which makes it the best option for most people. However, those looking for instant payments and investment may find the Cash app more convenient.


Here are answers to common questions when comparing Cash App and PayPal services.

  • Is the Cash app as secure as PayPal?
    • Like PayPal, Cash encrypts data and uses fraud detection software to protect its customers. Despite this, Cash App fell victim to an attack that breached the data of millions of customers using its investing features in December 2021. Thankfully, the Cash App used a forensic company to investigate and remedy the situation.
  • What are the disadvantages of Cash App?
    • The main drawback is that users incur ATM fees when using credit and debit cards Cash App.
  • Can the Cash app be trusted?
    • yes. The Cash app works within the Block, which puts security and consumer protection at the forefront of users’ priorities. But, even with these measures in place, users should beware of scams and attempted security breaches.
  • Is Cash App owned by PayPal?
    • No, the Cash app is not owned by PayPal. The Cash app is owned by Block, formerly known as Square.

Information is accurate as of August 1, 2022.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create accurate, unbiased, and up-to-date content. We validate every statistic, quote, and fact using reliable primary resources to make sure the information we provide is correct. You can learn more about GOBankingRates’ processes and standards in our editorial policy.

About the author

David is a qualified financial advisor in the Republic of Ireland. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Entrepreneurship, as well as more than five years of investment experience.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.