If you have an online store or would like to create one, you have probably wondered which method is best to receive payments from your customers. Should you use a bank account with CBU or a virtual account with CVU? What do CVU and CBU mean? What are their advantages and disadvantages?
In this post, we’ll explain everything you need to know about the Uniform Banking Code (CBU) and the Uniform Virtual Key (CVU), two tools that allow you to perform financial transactions securely and efficiently.
What is CVU?
CVU stands for “Clave Virtual Uniforme” in Spanish and is a unique and unrepeatable code that identifies a non-bank based virtual account. This type of account is offered by virtual wallets, prepaid cards, fintechs, and other payment service providers (PSPs).
With a virtual account, you can send and receive money, pay for services and taxes, shop online, and access financial benefits without having a traditional bank account. A CVU has 22 digits and is comprised of the following:
- The first 8 digits are the identification number of the PSP issuing the virtual account.
- The next 14 digits represent the virtual account number assigned to the user.
A CVU account allows people who do not have a bank account to participate in the formal financial system and access financial services in an easier, faster, and cheaper way.
What is CBU?
CBU stands for “Clave Bancaria Uniforme” in Spanish and is a unique and unrepeatable code that identifies a bank account. These accounts are offered by traditional banks and digital banks.
With a bank account, you can send and receive money, deposit, and withdraw cash, pay utilities and taxes, shop online and access financial products such as loans, investments, and credit cards. The CBU has 22 digits and is comprised of the following:
- The first 8 digits correspond to the identifying bank number and the branch where the bank account was opened.
- The next 14 digits correspond to the bank account number assigned to the user.
The CBU was created in 1999 by the BCRA to facilitate electronic money transfers between bank accounts.
Differences between CBU and account number
Although sometimes confused, the CBU and an account number are not the same thing. The account number is an internal data of the bank branch that only identifies the account within that bank.
On the other hand, the CBU is external data that identifies the account at the national level and contains additional information such as the bank, branch, and verification digits. The CBU is necessary to make electronic transfers and payments, while the account number is only used to operate within the same bank.
Differences between CVU and CBU
The main difference between a CBU and CVU is that the latter corresponds to a non-bank virtual account, while the former corresponds to a physical bank account.
This implies that the CVU and CBU have different issuers, requirements, costs, and benefits. Here are some of the most important differences:
- To obtain a CVU, you just need to download an application from a PSP, register with your ID, and verify your identity. To obtain a CBU, you need to open a bank account, which may involve submitting more documentation, signing a contract, and paying fees or maintenance.
- With a CVU you can make immediate and free transfers between virtual accounts and bank accounts. With a CBU you can make transfers between bank accounts, but there may be a cost or delay depending on the type of transfer.
- With a CVU you can access financial benefits such as discounts, promotions, cashback, investments, and credits offered by the PSP. With a CBU, you can access financial products such as loans, investments, and credit cards offered by the bank, but they may have additional requirements, interest, and fees.
- You can pay services and taxes with a CVU from the PSP application, without the need to print bills or go to a physical location. You can pay services and taxes from home banking or via automatic debit with a CBU, but there may be an additional cost or a limit of operations.
- With a CVU you can shop at online merchants that accept the PSP as a payment method, or generate a QR code to pay at brick and mortar locations. With a CBU, you can shop at online merchants that accept bank transfers or credit or debit cards associated with your account.
How to choose between a CVU and CBU?
As you have seen, CVU and CBU have their advantages and disadvantages, and the choice will depend on your needs, preferences, and financial habits. Some aspects that you can take into account are:
- If you want to have an account without paying commissions, bureaucratic procedures, and having to go to a bank branch, a CVU is for you.
- If you want to have an account that allows you to access more traditional and consolidated financial products, such as loans, investments and credit cards, you should have a CBU.
- If you want to have an account that offers you more options and flexibility to pay and get paid in different ways, a CVU is for you.
- If you want to have an account that gives you more security and backing against possible problems or claims, you should have a CBU.
You can also have both accounts and use them at your convenience, since it is possible to transfer from a CBU to a CVU and vice versa. This will allow you to take advantage of each type of account and have more control over your money.
These two tools are very important for e-commerce, as they allow you to receive your customers’ money safely and efficiently. And there is nothing better than to count on PayRetailers, the leading payment platform in Latin America.
With PayRetailers you can accept and make payments with more than 250 local and international methods, including CVU, CBU, cash, cards, QR codes, and e-wallets.
You will be able to expand your business in twelve countries in the region, with a single integration, contract, and settlement. PayRetailers is your ideal partner to grow your business in Latin America. Don’t wait any longer and join us!