Apps and bank accounts to split bills with friends
Discover the apps and accounts that let you easily split bills, send payments and request funds.
Payments, especially between friends, are always a little awkward. You might get stuck splitting a dinner equally when you only had an entree and water, or maybe you have who one friend who always forgets to pay you back. Well, there is a range of bill-splitting apps and accounts that are designed to smooth this whole process and make payments between friends, groups or anyone else a lot easier. Here is a guide to what's available and how to pick the right option for you.
Compare apps to split bills and payments with friends
There is a range of options to send money to other banks, request money you're owed or split a bill between a group. You can also use some of these apps to manage ongoing expenses such as between housemates or sports teams. Here is a rundown of these options, what type of app or account they are and what purpose they are best suited for:
|App||Type||How it works||Suited to||More|
|Xinja||Prepaid card and app||Split bills and request money.||Xinja review|
|Splitwise||App||Create groups to track ongoing or one-off expenses.||iTunes download|
|Easyshare||App||Pay bills, rent and split expenses between housemates.||iTunes download|
|Beem It||App||Instantly transfer to and receive money from any bank account.||Beem It review|
|Splitr||App||Split bills between groups, request money and track when you've received payment.||iTunes download|
|Revolut||Digital bank||Send payments to friends and request money.||Revolut review|
|Pelikin||Digital bank||Split bills in any currency and request money.||Pelikin review|
What types of payments can I split?
You can choose to split any of the payments that you would normally transfer to someone using their BSB and account number. These can include:
- Rent payments
- Household expenses
- Restaurant or bar bills
- Ongoing group or team expenses
- Hotel bookings, taxis or other travel expenses
How to compare apps and accounts that let you split payments
There are a few different apps and accounts available, so here is what to keep in mind when comparing your options to find the right one for you:
- What type of account is it? Some of the accounts listed above are apps with bill-splitting functionality whereas others are transaction accounts or prepaid cards. So, if you want a transaction account that allows you to split bills then this may be the right option for you. Or, if you don't want to switch transaction accounts or open an additional transaction account, an app with bill-splitting functionality may be a better option to consider.
- What type of bills will you be splitting? Do you want to be able to manage expenses with your housemates or the same group of people, or are you looking for an easy way to split everyday payments? Think about why you're looking for this type of functionality and then be sure to choose an option that supports it.
- Who can you split payments with? Some apps require everyone involved in the payment to sign up to the app, while others can send money to and request payments from people if they do not have the app installed. Check what restrictions apply.
- How fast are the payments made? Many of these accounts let you make instant payments but for others the transfer time can be up to two days.
- Compatible devices. Make sure the app or account you have chosen is able to be downloaded on your smartphone, that is, either Android or iOS.
Are bill-splitting apps safe?
Generally, yes, but it's best if you check the safety and security features of any bill-splitting app or account you sign up to. In the case of digital banks, you can be sure of bank-level security when making payments. If an app also comes with a prepaid or debit card then you can check the product disclosure statement to see who is issuing the card and which company will be responsible if your money is lost.
If the app is just that, an app, you can usually find information regarding security on the provider's website. This information may include where your information is stored and how secure it is and who to contact if there are security issues with your account.
How to sign up for a bill-splitting app or account
The sign-up process will differ greatly between providers and also between account types. If you are signing up for a bill-splitting app you may just need to add a card to the account. With some apps, you might also need to confirm your identity using your driver's licence, passport or Medicare card. If you sign up for a digital bank account with bill-splitting functionality, you will need to confirm who you are using identity documents as well as personal information.
Ask an Expert