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Can I send money with Zelle in Australia?

Direct, easy transfers in under five minutes with no third-party app required, but not available in Australia.

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The P2P payment platform Zelle is in a class of its own. It can transfer $1 or more into your recipient’s bank account – typically in minutes. Backed by many of the major US banks, Zelle could be your solution for nearly instantaneous transfers with no fees for you or your recipient. But if you're in Australia, you're out of luck.

Can I use Zelle in Australia?

Unfortunately, Zelle hasn't launched in Australia yet. If both your recipient and you have US bank accounts, you'll be able to use it anywhere in the world. But if not, you'll have to find another way.

If you want to send money within Australia, it's worth checking out Revolut and other digital wallets such as PayPal and Google Play. If you want to transfer money to another currency, you'll need an international money transfer service. Read our full guide to make sure you get the best deal possible.

What is Zelle?

Formerly called ClearXchange, Zelle is a new payment processing network developed with some of the largest American banks, including Bank of America, Chase, Capital One and USAA among them. Zelle prides itself on easily completing transfers instantly to other users. If your recipient isn’t a Zelle user and you're both in the US, you can send money using their email or phone number. Zelle will prompt them to visit their bank's app or download the Zelle app to receive their money.

Given the imagery on its site (avocado toast, anyone?), Zelle is obviously skewed towards the millennial crowd. Zelle is integrated into its partners’ websites and mobile banking apps, so you won’t need to download another one to use it – or encounter your money getting held up in a third-party account along the way.

How much can I send with Zelle?

This is where things get tricky: There's a lot of confusion (a possible Zelle theme) as to how much you can send with Zelle. In prior press releases, it listed up to 10 transfers totalling less than $2,500 every 24 hours and 30 transfers totalling less than $20,000 every month. For small business owners, those limits rose to $25,000 every 24 hours over a maximum of 10 transfers and $100,000 every month over 30 transfers.

Today, Zelle's site includes a vague note about contacting your bank or credit union to learn about their limits through the service. Otherwise, "your weekly limit is based off usage and experience with the service." Not sure where that leaves those of us who don't have experience with Zelle.

We've received so many of your updates about banks limiting your transfers to far, far less than any stated maximums, it sounds like there's a lot more tweaking going on as Zelle rolls out.

Details

Product nameZelle
Minimum transferVaries by bank
Maximum transferVaries by bank
Transfer methodsYour current mobile banking app or standalone app
Transfer optionsDirect transfers only, no scheduled transfers
Delivery speedIn minutes to banks in Zelle's network, 2–3 days for other banks
Banking partnerMany banks including Bank of America, Chase, Capital One and USAA
Available currenciesUSD only
Fees and exchange ratesNo fee
Customer service optionsPhone or through bank partners

Finder survey: How do Australians of different ages prefer to send a money transfer?

Response75+ yrs65-74 yrs55-64 yrs45-54 yrs35-44 yrs25-34 yrs18-24 yrs
I do not transfer money50%53.14%51.74%41.97%26.9%23.85%14.43%
Website20.69%19.43%19.19%23.32%15.74%19.72%14.43%
In person13.79%14.86%15.12%11.4%10.15%7.8%17.53%
App8.62%9.71%10.47%20.73%45.18%45.41%48.45%
Other6.9%1.71%1.16%0.46%
Over the phone1.14%2.33%2.59%2.03%2.75%5.15%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1110 Australians, December 2023

How much will I pay to send money with Zelle?

Similar to Venmo, you won’t pay a fee to send money through Zelle. However, when using the app on your smart device, you could pay fees associated with your carrier’s message and data rates.

What types of transfers does Zelle support?

Zelle supports transfers between bank accounts only – in US dollars and within the States. You’ll also need a debit card backed by Visa or Mastercard.

Which US banks are currently using Zelle?

  • Bank of America
  • Capital One
  • Chase
  • Citi
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • First Tech
  • FirstBank
  • Morgan Stanley
  • PNC
  • TD Bank
  • U.S. Bank
  • USAA
  • Wells Fargo
To come are these additional banks rolling out Zelle over the year:
  • Ally Bank
  • Bank of Hawaii
  • Bank of the West/BNP Paribas
  • BB&T Bank
  • BECU
  • BNY Mellon
  • Citizens Bank
  • Comerica Bank
  • ConnectOne Bank
  • Dollar Bank
  • Frederick County Bank
  • First National Bank
  • First Tennessee
  • Frost Bank
  • HomeStreet Bank
  • KeyBank
  • MB Financial Bank
  • M&T Bank
  • SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union
  • Star One Credit Union
  • SunTrust Bank

How do I send money through Zelle?

Zelle is available as a standalone P2P app that works a lot like Venmo. But unlike Venmo, to send money with Zelle, you and your recipient must be members of one of the Zelle partner banks.

Zelle also lives in your current bank’s app, offering a way to transfer money in four easy steps:
1. Set up your account. Log in to your current bank’s online system and register your email address or phone number to establish a connection with your bank account.
2. Send your payment. Choose your recipient, the amount you’re transferring and your funding account. Review your information and send.
3. Zelle notifies your recipient. Your recipient receives an email or text with instructions on how to receive the transfer. If your recipient is not registered with Zelle, they’ll be prompted with a one-time set-up.
4. Zelle deposits your money. Your transfer is deposited into your recipient’s bank account, typically in minutes.

You can also request money from friends or family, just like with Venmo.

How do I receive money with Zelle?

When another Zelle user sends you money, you’re notified at the email address or phone number that your sender used. If this email or number isn’t registered, simply register it to receive your funds.

What to look out for

Zelle is currently limited to bank transfers in US dollars within the United States. Like other payment processing services, it imposes some restrictions on the size and frequency of the transfers you can make.

Zelle won’t be as helpful if your bank doesn’t yet work with it. If your friends or family use these remaining holdout banks, you’ll need to manually enter their banking information or use Zelle's standalone app. Transfers to banks outside of Zelle's network can take one to three days, rather than a few minutes.

We're also hearing firsthand accounts about low maximums that aren't always advertised and other blips that could be a result of a quick rollout – or worse. We'll continue to update our review as we hear more.

Benefits and drawbacks

Benefits

  • Backed by many banks. Because it’s integrated into your bank’s app, you won’t need to download another one.
  • Instant transfers. When you use Zelle's bank-integrated service, it processes direct bank-to-bank transfers in minutes.
  • No fees. Send money to other Zelle users for free.

Drawbacks

  • Requires a bank account with Zelle-supported banks. The fastest transfers are between Zelle-supported banks. Otherwise, you must use Zelle's third-party app – and wait up to three days.
  • Murky maximums. Despite initial PR announcements of high $2,500 maximums, readers don't seem to be able to send this much. You'll need to confirm with your bank how much – and how little – you're able to send with Zelle.
  • US only. Zelle sends transfers in US dollars to US bank accounts only.

How safe is Zelle?

Because Zelle's integrated into your existing bank’s website or app, if you’re satisfied with your current bank’s security and encryption, that same protection is extended to cover Zelle transactions. Zelle's standalone app is backed by Early Warning Systems, a risk-management company that uses mobile identity authentication and advanced monitoring to ensure that your money is secure.

Our firsthand experience with Zelle

One Wednesday night, I realised I needed to send money to someone quickly. I was looking for a same-day domestic money transfer service, and Kelly recommended Zelle as a bank-to-bank option.

First, I confirmed that my recipient and I both have bank accounts with Zelle's partner banks, Wells Fargo and Capital One.

Then I sent $5 through my Wells Fargo mobile app to make sure she'd get the money right away. She refreshed her bank account balance summary on her tablet and saw my funds in her account.

I went ahead and transferred the full amount right after. Happy with the convenient service, I've used Zelle twice since then, and it's now my default method for quick transfers.

Aliyyah, Publisher

Bottom line

Zelle's taking off with transfers among users who expect funds within minutes. But not without snags that include hung-up transfers and customer reps who appear unwilling to untangle the problem.

While you won't be able to use Zelle in Australia, check out some other alternatives for domestic transfers and international ones.

How does Zelle compare to other providers?

1 - 23 of 23
Name Product Filter Values Fastest Transfer Speed Fees (Pay by Bank Transfer)
TorFX
24 hours
$0
TorFX sends money overseas in 40+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
Xe Large Transfers
24 hours
$0
Xe has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
OFX
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 50+ currencies.
Send Payments
24 hours
$0

Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
Revolut
Within minutes
$0
Sign up and get a AUD$15 top-up. For new customers only. T&Cs apply.
Send money with great rates and low fees in 30+ currencies.
Xe Money Transfers
Within minutes
$0
Xe has fast transfers with low fees and a range of foreign currency tools.
Instarem
Within minutes
From 0%
50% off first transaction fee from any country in APAC (outside India).
Minimum transfer of $250 and max transfer of $500,000
Wise (TransferWise)
Within minutes
From 0.43%
Wise uses the mid-market rate and transparent fees to help you send money in 50+ currencies.
TorFX
24 hours
$0
TorFX sends money overseas in 40+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
Remitly
Within minutes
From $0
Remitly has quick, affordable transfers around the world, with both express and economy options.
Rocket Remit
Within minutes
From $0 to $5
Send money instantly to friends and family in over 45 countries using just your mobile number.
MoneyGram
Within minutes
From $1.99
MoneyGram has fast cash pick-up transfers to more than 350,000 agent locations worldwide.
SingX
Within minutes
From 0.5%
SingX offers the real exchange rate every time you make a transfer and can help you send money across the world.
CurrencyFair
Within minutes
€3
CurrencyFair has bank-beating exchange rates and fast transfer times on 15+ popular currencies.
OFX
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 50+ currencies.
Send Payments
Send Payments
24 hours
$0
Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
MasterRemit
Within minutes
From $0
Get your 1st and 2nd money transfer for free with promo codes FIRSTFREE and MASTERFINDER!.
Send money in minutes at competitive exchange rates to the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.
Western Union
Within minutes
From $0
Western Union sends money online to friends and family in 200+ countries around the world.
Qantas Business Money
Within minutes
$0
Earn up to 100,000 bonus Qantas Points on your first currency conversion by 31 July 2024. Conversion limits and T&Cs apply.
Set up accounts in 11 different currencies and get rewarded for global business payments by earning Qantas Points.
TorFX Business Transfers
24 hours
$0
TorFX guarantees to match any competitor's exchange rate. Conditions apply.
TorFX sends money overseas in 30+ currencies, with competitive rates for transfer amounts over $2,000.
OFX Business Transfers
24 hours
$0
OFX has no maximum limit transfers, with competitive exchange rates for 45+ currencies.
WorldFirst
24 hours
From $0
Open bank accounts in Australia, the UK, US, Canada, Japan and Europe. Send and receive funds with zero fees for large sums, including same-currency supplier payments.
Send business
24 hours
$0

Send provides fee-free transfers via its 24/7 multi-currency payments platform with real-time quotes.
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Frequently asked questions about Zelle

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Written by

Kelly Waggoner

Kelly Waggoner is a senior editor at Finder. She's worked with publishers, magazines and nonprofits throughout New York City, including ghostwriting a how-to on copyediting for the Dummies series. Between projects, she toys with words, flips through style guides and fantasizes about the serial comma's world domination. See full profile

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