Venmo alternatives picked by Monito

Venmo to GCash: Why It Doesn't Work, and How To Save Money With Alternatives

Byron Mühlberg, writer at
Nov 8, 2023
Affiliate disclosure

If you're a Venmo user, you probably know that it's one of the best ways to send and receive money right from your smartphone. But if you've tried using it to send money home to the Philippines, you'll probably not have found a clear way of doing so.

This is because, sadly, Venmo doesn't work for sending money to GCash and doesn't work in the Philippines at all. If you want to transfer your money to GCash in the Philippines, you'll need to pick a Venmo money transfer alternative to GCash in the Philippines instead, such as Remitly.

In this short guide, we look at why Venmo doesn't work in the Philippines in the first place. Then, we'll delve into the best Venmo alternatives for sending money to GCash in the Philippines to help you make the best money transfer choices.

Venmo doesn't work in the Philippines. Find alternatives:

Does Venmo Work With GCash?

As we saw above, Venmo is unavailable in the Philippines and therefore cannot be used to send money to GCash.

To use the Venmo app in the first place (let alone send and receive money via online banking), both the sender and the recipient must have US bank accounts. And while you can use Venmo in the Philippines if you're an American in that country, you won't be able to transfer money via Venmo to either a Philippines-based bank account or to someone's GCash account.

Venmo Alternatives for Transfers to GCash in the Philippines

The good news is that if you're a Venmo user who'd like to send money abroad, you'll have plenty of options to choose from to send your money overseas instead. In summary, here are the main three:

  1. Transfer via a digital provider: Many money transfer providers offer low fees to GCash in the Philippines, as well as fast transfers and a great user experience to suit your needs. The best are Wise for bank transfers and Remitly or Small World for cash pick-ups. However, pricing and exchange rates vary constantly, so compare providers on Monito to find the best deal every time.
  2. Using PayPal as the middle man: You can link your Venmo account to your PayPal account and then your GCash account to your PayPal one. However, this process is rather convoluted and costs a bomb in hidden exchange rate fees from PayPal.
  3. Send an international bank wire: US banks such as Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Citibank, and others charge very high fees and poor exchange rates because they transfer over SWIFT. We therefore don't recommend them for transferring money abroad for most people. You can learn more about bank charges for international transfers here.

We go over all of these options in detail below:

Method 1: Use a Digital Provider

Digital international transfer providers are online platforms that have become popular in recent years as a low-cost, savvy, and safe way to send money across borders. If you're a Venmo user, we think switching over to a digital provider is a natural choice for a number of reasons:

  • Savviness: The user-friendly, seamless experience is usually slick and similar to Venmo in terms of accessibility and convenience.
  • Cost: They're (by far) the cheapest way to send money to GCash in the Philippines, usually costing between 0.5% and 3% in total fees.
  • Speed: Money usually arrives overseas in a matter of hours or, at most, around one to two days, depending on the provider.

To learn more about digital providers and how they differ from banks, take a look at our bank vs digital provider comparison.

Ultimately, the best digital provider for you will depend on factors such as 1) which country you're sending to, 2) how much you're sending, and 3) how your recipient will receive their funds. According to millions of searches on Monito's real-time comparison engine, here are the three best digital providers for transfers from the US to bank accounts abroad:


A world leader in low-cost international cash pickup transfers, Remitly often offers the cheapest and one of the fastest money transfers to GCash in the Philippines from the United States. It's trusted by millions of users around the world and has a great reputation.

Panda Remit

Panda Remit is a new and fast-growing Chinese money transfer service that's a good option for sending money to GCash in the Philippines. It offers fast, affordable transfers from your US bank account to GCash.

Method 2: Use PayPal

Another option for sending money to GCash in the Philippines from Venmo is to link both accounts to your PayPal account and use PayPal as a go-between. In principle, it's quite straightforward:

  1. Link your Venmo account to PayPal (you can do this from your Venmo app),
  2. Transfer money from Venmo to PayPal,
  3. Transfer money from PayPal to GCash (see our how-to guide).

In general, we don't recommend this method for two reasons:

  • It can take rather long, especially if you don't already have a PayPal account.
  • PayPal will convert the funds transfer from US dollars to Philippine pesos at an exorbitant exchange rate, usually around 4%. That's far worse than the rate you'd get with one of the providers we mentioned above, like Remitly, whose rates are usually below 1% for USD-PHP transfers.

Method 3: Use Your Bank

The final (and generally the worst) alternative to using Venmo for Philippines-bound transfers is to use your bank or PayPal.

Not only is using your bank or PayPal slower and less convenient to transfer abroad, but going this route also comes with high hidden fees, as both your bank and PayPal will typically give you a poor exchange rate on top of the standard service fees for transfers to GCash in the Philippines.

For example, our research revealed that sending $1,000 from the US to a Eurozone country with Wells Fargo would cost $30 in service fees and $50 in exchange rate margin fees. Together, these fees amount to around 8% of the amount transferred, which is about ten times more than the cheapest available service compared on Monito's comparison engine for the same transfer. And given PayPal's similarly high exchange rate margins, the story isn't very different with them either.

Compare leading digital providers:

FAQ About Using Venmo to GCash in the Philippines

Popular Money Transfer Comparisons on Monito

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You’re probably all too familiar with the often outrageous cost of sending money abroad. After facing this frustration themselves back in 2013, co-founders François, Laurent, and Pascal launched a real-time comparison engine to compare the best money transfer services across the globe. Today, Monito’s award-winning comparisons, reviews, and guides are trusted by around 8 million people each year and our recommendations are backed by millions of pricing data points and dozens of expert tests — all allowing you to make the savviest decisions with confidence.

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