There have been quite a few questions in Member community about Zelle and we want to make sure all your questions and concerns are addressed. I sat down with Kiyanna Garland to give a few more details about USAA and Zelle. Kiyanna Joined USAA in 2004, and works in the Bank Money Movement team as a Product Management Director. She is the Experience Owner for Person to Person (P2P) transactions.



Why Zelle and what are the advantages?

Zelleis the new way to send and receive money quickly, safely, and securely between almost any U.S. bank account within minutes using a mobile number or email address. The experience of Send Money with Zelle℠ is available within the USAA mobile banking app.


How do I set it up?

Here is a step by step with photos, but members must also:

  • Be 18 years of age
  • Complete a one-time enrollment
  • Have a valid email address or mobile number that has not been previously registered in the Zelle network
  • Have a USAA FSB checking or savings account that is at least 10 days old

When should I use Zelle?

Zelle can be used for the everyday experiences such as paying friends or family for your share of the dinner bill or to send funds for birthday gifts.


When should I use transfer funds (and where do I find it)?

You should use Transfer Funds when moving money between bank accounts you own, USAA and non-USAA. To do this, tap “Transfer” from the tab bar in USAA mobile app, located at the bottom of the screen on iOS devices and at the top of the screen on Android devices


If you are like member Pittsburgh75 who is not receiving notifications, please do the following:

  • Ensure that text messaging short codes are enabled for your mobile phone.  The short code is 698722.
  • If you are on Sprint or T-Mobile, you will need to call your carrier and enable short code messaging for USAA one time codes to be received.
  • You will need to check delivery preference settings in the USAA app to ensure text message delivery is on for messages sent by USAA.


I just started using Zelle, where is my money?

It is important that your senders know which email address or mobile number you have enrolled with. Money must be sent to a registered email address or mobile number.  If you get a notification from Zelle/ClearXchange that someone has sent you money, you must register the email address or mobile number that the notification was sent to. It is also important to note that when you register, it may take between 1 and 3 business days to receive your first payment.


We encourage you to share your feedback and experience here in community like member “Navy EOD” who has used Zelle successfully to send money!


Still have questions? Please post in the comments.


Helpful Inks:

FAQ Sending Money with Zelle

Send Money with Zelle

Money Transfer How To


About the Blogger: Briana Hartzell is a Navy spouse, mother to two beautiful girls (3 years and 1 year), a former full time USAA employee and a graduate of Texas A&M University. Briana writes at Being Briana, a blog focused on the joys that military life and parenthood can bring.


Zelle and the Zelle related marks and logos are property of Early Warning Services, LLC Fees may apply for non-USAA customers. Mobile carrier fees may also apply Funds transfer applies to U.S. accounts only.

EN2_GEN5300_Zelle_Setup: At this time, USAA members may only send to and receive from financial institutions in the Zelle network

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My experience using Zelle was a complete failure. I lost $175 trying to transfer it to someone who uses a different bank. No one can tell me where my money is. I followed the instructions the best I could. The recipient said she couldn't access the funds. There was no way for me to cancel the transaction. This was early August. The money never bounced back to me. I have contacted Zelle and USAA mulptiple times, have spent multiple hours and experienced many headaches trying to find my money, but I have been unable to get my money back. There is someone working on my case but she is often out of the office and she is very difficult to get ahold of. I wish my case could be transfered to someone else. I just want my money back. Image if I had tried to transfer a larger sum like my rent? There are major bugs in this system and extreme risks to USAA users and it is my impression that USAA is unable to acknowledge or address these problems. I would greatly welcome a phone call from someone higher up at USAA who works on Zelle issues or the Zelle user experience. I want my money back but I also want to prevent any other customers from going through what I have experienced.

USAA Social Service
USAA Service
USAA Service

embellydance, I totally understand how frustrating this is. I was able to locate who you have been in contact with and have reached out to our subject matter experts to take another look at what happened with your transfer. Once we have additional information for you, we will be in contact with you. -Marisa

TravelSmart Woman

I absolutely HATE Zelle. It was so much easier before!


I have tried to send money twice--it gets deducted from my account, but the other person (also a USAA member) does not receive it. Apparently Zelle doesn't work with T-Mobile or Sprint. And not all banks are in the Zelle system.


How can you have been so short-sighted? 


How can I get my money back?


Do not bother to write and tell me you "understand" how frustrating this is. Or to be patient. This is a complete disaster. Fix it. NOW!

USAA Social Service
USAA Service
USAA Service

TravelSmart Woman - I'm sorry for any frustration you may have experienced. I'd like to look into this for you. Please allow me a few minutes to review your transfer. I'll post a message in the secure message center on the USAA website once my research has been completed. Thanks again for reaching out - Tricia

dislike change
Occasional Visitor

I use Zelle once a week to send money to my sister (also a USAA member) and while I've never had money dissappear like some of the others on here I always have trouble getting a transfer done.  I have to click on the send money with Zelle buttom at least 2 dozen times until I finally don't get an error message about it being unable to initiate a transaction.  I miss the old reliable way to send money to another USAA member, I don't care if I could use Zelle to send money to anyone else who has a bank account somewhere else, who then also must sign up for Zelle and it's a gamble if they will even receive their money.  Can you just bring me back the send money to other USAA members, you can keep the unreliable Zelle for anyone else who wants to use it but I absolutely hate having to use it.

USAA Social Service
USAA Service
USAA Service

dislike change, I understand that you wish for us to return to the old standard of the Send Money feature. I will share your comments regarding this matter with our banking team. Feedback is important to help us identify areas of improvement. Thank you for taking the time to post. - Ben

Prestigious Contributor
At least have the ability to send money to other usaa members via the transfer. Zelle works and then it doesn’t
Occasional Visitor

My usage experience with Zelle for USAA accounts has been a good one, with one exception.  The daily limit of $1,000 is too low.  Other banks have Zelle daily limits as high as $2,500.  I want to use it to pay my rent each month.  This seems to me to be a very common use case to consider for serving the USAA customer.  The problem is my rent is more than $1,000!  A recent study done by Time Money shows that this is true for over half of America (median is $1,234 for a one bedroom apartment).  For this target market and use case, USAA delivers “customer delight” for less than half of customers.  Whatever the rationale went in to the current limit, please know that, what otherwise would be a very delightful experience for me is made bad because I have to split a regular payment into two parts, each on different days.  And I am reminded of this annoyance monthly.


i suggest raising the daily limit to $1,500 - at least you would serve more than half of customers wishing to pay rent each month!

Robert Z
New Member

A quick Google search shows the following banks offer recurring Zelle payments through their banking app as of December 2018:  Bank of America, Navy Federal Credit Union, Ally Financial Bank, BB&T, Wells Fargo, and PNC Bank, but not USAA.  Like the commenter above noted Zelle is commonly used to make monthly rent payments.  When will the USAA add the feature to allow for Zelle recurring payments on the banking app?   Thanks. 

USAA Social Service
USAA Service
USAA Service

@Robert Z, we currently do not know when recurring transfers will be available. I will be happy to forward feedback to our leadership team. Thank you. - Rhonda