Amex Declined Venmo: Complete Reasons Explained

Updated On: is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

Venmo is a third-party service that allows Visa, Mastercard, or Amex users to transfer money from their bank accounts/cards directly to another's bank account/card.

In order to complete a transaction, there need to be two verified accounts. In 2014, it was announced that Apple would have access to this system, which eventually led to the release of Apple Pay and its mobile payments service.

Recently, I was notified that my account would be deactivated (no more transactions allowed) and there was no option to appeal or dispute this decision; it seemed like an irreversible end for Venmo transactions.

A little panicked, I contacted Venmo support. After a brief wait, I was told that an American Express debit card was not allowed on the platform. This statement confused me; I'd never had Amex but rather a Visa issued by (American) National Bank of Arizona.

I immediately went to my profile and found out this information. According to my profile page, until July 2014, my account was listed as having an Amex card.

Because of this, all of my recent transactions had been declined with a generic error message that stated the transaction could not be completed "at this time."

What is Venmo?

In short, Venmo is a service from PayPal that allows you to make payments quickly and easily. Although it's completely free to use, the company also offers a debit card that you can purchase in order to receive funds faster after each transaction is made.

In addition to buying products and services online, Venmo is great for splitting the costs of a meal with friends or family members. It's also possible to use Venmo for business and commercial transactions (just like PayPal).

What is Amex?

American Express is a multinational financial services corporation, headquartered in Three World Financial Center in New York City. American Express was founded as an express mail business in 1850. In 1854 it established its first banking operation on Wall Street under the name of "Hull & Field."

In 1865, Alexander Turney Stewart bought the company and renamed it "American Express." From 1874 to 1975, "American Express" was a banking company. It wasn't until the beginning of World War I that American Express started its own traveler's cheque business.

Amex is known for credit cards with high-interest rates and strict rules about maintaining good credit history in order to use them; this is where Venmo comes into play.

From the beginning of 2013-2015, Amex did allow a direct transaction to Venmo through their website and even processed some transactions (with a 3% processing fee).

However, they reversed this policy sometime in 2015, which left users who had linked their American Express accounts vulnerable. These users were unpleasantly surprised when they discovered that their transactions would be declined with no warning.

Reason For Amex Declines Venmo

Amex is known for its high-interest rates and strict rules about maintaining good credit history in order to use its cards. However, Venmo users who linked their American Express accounts weren't aware that Amex would eventually decline transactions made with the usual processing methods.

There are some possible explanations as to why Amex decided to decline Venmo transactions.

1) The first reason could be that Amex was not informed of the direct transaction with its card on Venmo. The company might have wanted to stay out of the loop until it had more information about this third-party service provider. Even though there were no agreements in place, some financial institutions did allow direct transactions, which could have led to a conflict of interest: Amex didn't want competition from Venmo.

2) Another explanation is that Amex might have been unhappy with the quality of the merchant service. Maybe there wasn't enough system control in place to make sure all transactions were successful and this made Amex feel uneasy about continuing direct transactions.

3) Amex might have been concerned about security breaches and data breaches as well, which means it could have had safety concerns about the risks associated with direct transactions on Venmo.

4) One of the most reasonable explanations is that Amex wanted to protect its brand name. Since many people use this service to purchase items, Amex thought it would be best to prevent this until Venmo could prove that its transactions were safe and secure.

5) Yet another reason why Amex might have declined Venmo is simply because of slow customer service and a lack of communication. If the company didn't know there was a demand for this service, then they wouldn't have offered it. This means that Amex might have been concerned about the lack of telephone support, which would have led to unhappy customers.

6) Another reason might be because Amex thought Venmo was a competitor and didn't want direct transactions between these two companies. In addition, the bank might not have had enough information on this third-party payment method to make a decision about whether or not it wanted to work with them.

7) Another possible explanation is that Amex might have not seen any potential for growth in Venmo. If there wasn't even enough support for the service, then the bank wouldn't have had much reason to go through all of the trouble of working on a partnership.

8) Another explanation is that Amex didn't understand the nature of these transactions and wanted to prevent direct transactions until it had more information about them. This would make it easier for the company to protect itself against any unnecessary risks or liabilities (for example, chargebacks).

9) Lastly, Amex might have been worried that Venmo would be used to conduct illegal activities. With more information on this service, Amex could figure out whether or not it wanted to get involved with something that might tarnish its reputation.

It's clear that some of these reasons are simply assumptions based on past experiences with the company and the culture surrounding it. However, there might be other factors that Amex kept under wraps and out of the public eye.     

What can you do if your Venmo payment is declined by Amex?

You can try to contact the bank directly. If you have any problems with this, then you might want to consider getting a grip on your spending habits cutting back on expenses or trying to come up with a payment plan for your purchases.

In the long run, you'll be better off using another credit card that doesn't decline these transactions. You might even want to consider getting the MasterCard version of Venmo's debit card so you can use it everywhere and know that there won't be any problems.

Keep in mind that you're not alone: other people have faced declines as well, and they managed to do something about it.

How is the customer support service of Amex?

It's mainly considered to be subpar because many customers are unhappy with the service they receive. People have complained about how difficult it is to get in touch with Amex representatives and how long they actually have to wait for them to read their messages or calls.

For any customer who doesn't have the time to call, Amex does offer an email address, but it might take a while before you receive a response.

Overall, customers are not satisfied with this aspect of Amex's service. Many customers have reported that their personal experience with Amex has been good, but it appears that the entire company works in a similar way to most financial institutions: they're not very transparent, and they try to save money wherever possible. In other words, don't expect anything special from Amex or any of its representatives!

In contrast, the company's customer support service is not worth your time. If you're not satisfied with this aspect of Amex's service, then consider looking for a new card that offers a better experience.

How is the customer support service of Venmo?

As someone who has worked in the customer service industry for years, I can attest to the fact that Venmo's representatives are far more competent than Amex's.

First of all, their support line is open 24 hours a day (except on holidays), and you don't have to pay anything to call. What's more, they also provide a live chat system and an email account that you can use for whatever reason and whenever necessary.

Finally, their representatives are very good at communicating with customers and answering their questions in a normal amount of time (that is, minutes or hours rather than days).

Their team also offers a lot more information on their website so you can learn more about Venmo's services and various aspects of the company.

Is Amex safe?

Yes, Amex is safe! The company has been around for a long time and it's well-known for providing excellent security measures. In fact, there are many rating agencies that rank financial institutions according to their level of commitment to safety.

For example, AM Best is one of the most popular rating agencies out there. For quite some time now, AM Best has given Amex the highest rating possible.

It doesn't matter that they declined your Venmo payment. You shouldn't let this stop you from using their services because most of the things listed here are practically irrelevant to your overall experience with them. All in all, Amex is considered to be a safe company.

How is the security of Venmo?

Venmo's security is definitely not as good as Amex's. This might be a problem if you're concerned about your personal information or finances, but it probably won't affect your day-to-day life that much unless you use Venmo for business purposes. In other words, most people should be fine with Venmo's security features.

The main area of concern is that they store all personal data in plain text files which are easily accessible to anyone who has access to your computer or smartphone.

It's also worth mentioning that you can't use their services unless you have an account with them, and this account requires your email address, date of birth, and phone number.

All in all, Venmo isn't as secure as Amex. If you're concerned about your security, then it might be better to switch to a different company for the sake of peace of mind.


To conclude, Amex is faced with many problems that cause customers to be dissatisfied with the company. It's true that they offer excellent security measures and it's also true that many of their representatives are good people who genuinely want to help you. But no matter how good their security may be, it doesn't make up for their lack of transparency and poor customer support service.

On the other hand, Venmo has its problems as well. Their security measures are notably lacking and they store your personal data in easily accessible files on your computer or smartphone. But if you only use it for personal purposes, then this shouldn't be much of a problem! So even though their deposits might be declined by Amex, there's no need to worry because most people don't keep large amounts of money on their Venmo account.

Michael Restiano

I lead product content strategy for SaltMoney. Additionally, I’m helping our broader team of 4 evolve into a mature content strategy practice with the right documentation and processes to deliver quality work. Prior to Instacart, I was a content strategy lead at Uber Eats and Facebook. Before that, I was a content strategist at SapientNitro, helping major Fortune 500 brands create better, more useful digital content.

Leave a Reply