posted: Feb. 28, 2011 @ 6:49p
I'm not sure if this was the forums I saw a thread regarding Venmo, but I'm pretty sure it is. Anyways a few (or couple depending on how you use few) weeks ago I sold a few things to a buddy of mines, and he asked if we could do it through Venmo since he wanted to try it out. I thought, no big deal the transaction wasn't large so I made an account through an invite he sent.
It was pretty cool, simple to use, etc. It's basically like a Twitter account you can send money through via the context of the message sent such as "$xxx.xx for product/lunch/etc".
So he was able to send the money with relative ease. Now here's the difficult part, instead of allowing me to withdraw my money after I set up my bank account with them the canceled my withdraw after two days in to the "process", then asked me to provide some sort of identification via email. The ID request wasn't a problem, and I sent them the necessary info. Afterwards, I requested for a reason of suspension and they directed away from the question and then told me they would need the other person's identification. Again, no problem I can understand why they want to make sure. However, they still refused to answer my question in regards to why our accounts drew red flags by simply ignoring my question.
I sent my buddy an e-mail and yes he did confirm that he got the request for verification e-mail. He forwarded me the email he sent and the email he received. Everything looks to be in order and both of us should have satisfied everything they were asking for. So instead of allowing me to withdraw my money, the entire balance way returned to my buddy's credit card without any reason other than their personal suspicion. This process took close to two weeks for them to just return my buddy's money, even though we've given them info they wanted to confirm legitimacy.
In short, we did a transaction over Venmo and instead of allowing me to withdraw the money that was sent to me, they charge back my account and return the funds to my friend. Instead of telling me why our the transaction was deemed suspicious day one and just returning the money over a course of a few days it took them two+ weeks. In addition, they still have not validated what drew suspicion on the transaction.
I spent a few days considering what may have drawn the suspicion to the transaction, and I suppose the sender and the recipient were from different states. Maybe, we were too new to the system to make a transaction over $100. Who knows, they obviously don't either given their reply.
In the end the service is complete crap, and I have to give my buddy a call and just do the transaction all over again through Paypal and pay the fee since he's left California already.
Realistically, I would only use this mediocre service with questionable legal practices to send maybe $5-$10...an amount that you don't have to make a big deal about. Aside from that I really don't know if I can call this thing a scam, as it seems to work with other people. However, this is much worst than Paypal if you're dealing with a little more than a few dollars. They base their company on "trust", and yet they don't even "trust" the transaction made through their services.
It's really a shame, but fortunately there are alternatives to this like AmazonPayment for those who want to make payments via text.