For many parents the question is not whether to get a banking card for their child, but which one to choose. Hopefully, this article will help you with that tough decision
There are plenty of reasons parents give their kids a separate banking card. It combines both financial empowerment and parental control. Besides, it’s safer and more convenient than cash.
Greenlight Kids Debit Card
The Greenlight Kids banking solution has no user age limitations. Like any other Mastercard product, the card is accepted practically everywhere except for the places and businesses considered inappropriate for children (gambling, dating services, etc). If you travel abroad, the child can also spend their own money without foreign exchange fees. Families can choose among a few pricing plans ($5-10 a month), with Greenlight Max or Greenlight + Invest plans giving access to the investing platform designed specifically for children. The trade incurs no commission fees but requires parental approval for every transaction. All Greenlight plans offer debit cards for up to five kids. The dedicated app allows children, not only to track their balances, but also to complete chore lists in exchange for allowance money, set savings goals, make charitable donations, and learn how today’s choices affect tomorrow’s possibilities.
BusyKid Visa Prepaid Spend Debit Card
This card is aimed at kids aged 5-16. The card is used along with the BusyKid app, which costs the whole family $20 a year. One card is included in the pricing plan, however, the issuance and maintenance of each additional kid’s card is worth $8 per year. Within the app, parents can choose chores to pay for and set regular allowance payouts. The app has a long pre-set list of chores applicable to different ages with suggested payments. Besides, you can supplement this list with your own ideas. There is a price attached to every chore, but parents can also reward kids for outstanding performance with an additional bonus. The payday is scheduled on Fridays by default unless you want to change the settings. Children can use their money to invest in real-life shares of major companies or donate a percentage to charities. Every transaction must be approved by a grown-up user.
Rooster Card from RoosterMoney
At the time, this card is available only for UK citizens, though the company is open to new regional possibilities. The debit card works similar to other kids’ prepaid products, but the app stands out among the crowd of kids’ budgeting options. To begin with, it encourages good behaviour and chore performance even without the monetary incentive. For younger kids, you can award stars for everything you consider worthy of praise (from eating vegetables to tidying their rooms). These stars can be later exchanged for fun weekend activities. With older children (5+), you can start tracking where their allowance goes. Children can set goals to save for, and divide their allowance into Spend, Save and Give pots. Basic virtual features are free to use. With a RoosterPLUS subscription (£15 per year), you can also set an interest rate on your child’s Save pot and include regular spending categories like Netflix subscriptions. Allowances can be tied to chores as well. The annual price for using one Rooster Card is £25, additional cards cost £20 a year.
The card can be used from 6 to 16 years, with older children (16-17) able to transfer to the teen account. It costs £2 a month (£24 annually). Parents can set daily, weekly or monthly spending limits as well as restrict spending to bricks-and-mortar shops, online or cash machines. All Kite cards are automatically blocked for transactions made at gambling or betting merchants. ATM withdrawals, transactions abroad, and top-ups are free of charge. The only drawback at this time is the absence of a separate kid-friendly app which is soon-to-come.
For a monthly price of £3 (UK) or $4 (US), GoHenry offers a Visa card and app with flexible parental controls and great budgeting tools. For $5 / £5 you can customise the card with unique designs or choose a new biodegradable Eco Card. By the way, GoHenry plants a tree in partnership with Eden Reforestation Projects to celebrate the first time every Eco Card is used. The pricing plans differ a little depending on a region. For instance, in the UK only one top-up per calendar month is free of charge. Additional loads cost 50p. For US users, adding money to your parent account and transferring money to your child’s card don’t incur any costs. Cash top-ups are not supported so you have to use debit cards or bank transfers. ATM withdrawals are also not free in the US – $1.5, while the UK citizens don’t pay for cash withdrawals. Some limitations on the account balance and spending limits are applicable though.
This debit card offers privileges of teen banking for youths aged 13+. The flat payment is $36 annually for every teen linked to a parental Current account. There are no additional fees for using or funding the card except when travelling internationally or withdrawing cash at out-of-network ATMs. You can set up weekly lists of payable chores for your kids to complete, being able to reduce their payment amount or withhold it altogether if they don’t do everything on their list. Although the payment date is preset, you may choose to pay early if needed. Recurring allowance transfers may be scheduled daily, weekly, bi-weekly or monthly. Kids’ budgeting tools include Savings and Giving Pods with a possibility of automatic roundups. Parental control features are spending limits to both daily ATM use and daily purchases, restrictions on spending categories or specific merchants.
Copper Banking Teen Debit Card
With a Copper debit card, you can link Google Pay and Apple Pay as well as apps like Cash App, PayPal and Venmo directly to your card. Currently, there is no monthly fee for users. Moreover, teens can even earn $3 for referrals. The app and Copper’s website are full of helpful financial education tips and articles called “cheat codes” ranging from managing debt to investing strategies. There are also powerful resources for parents on teaching kids about money. Cash can be deposited to your Copper account via the Green Dot network, although retailers do charge a fee for that. Thus, parents and teens both have the option to set up direct deposit. Parents can transfer funds into their Copper wallet from a bank account or debit card. Transfers from a linked bank account are free, but take a few business days. Transfers from a linked debit card are instant, but there is a small fee. You can also auto load funds into your Copper Parent wallet whenever your balance falls below an indicated level. Certain account limits apply at this time.
Mazoola Virtual Debit Card
Mazoola is a free virtual Mastercard debit card for kids. The service is provided by REGO Payment Architectures, Inc. You can assign chores and pay allowances automatically, set savings goals and spend money anywhere contactless payments are accepted. Users over 13 may access the Apple Pay feature. Besides purchases, kids can also make P2P payments to family and friends. Parents can also choose personalised financial literacy guidance and tools to help teach kids how to manage money responsibly. This digital wallet is developed with the help of COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy and Protection Act) and GDPR compliant payment technology. The wallet is subdivided into cash, savings and investing accounts. No physical card is attached.
Capital One Money Teen
This checking account from one of the top 10 American banks is fee-free and has no minimum balance requirements. With separate logins, teens and parents have different features available in their joint account. Kids can earn interest on their checking account balance, withdraw at 70,000+ fee-free ATMs nationwide, and complete financial goals. Parents control their every transaction and add rewards for good money management if they wish. To be accurate, not only teens but younger kids (8+) can use the debit card. Even those parents who aren’t Capital One customers can link their banking accounts to Money Teen. The connected app is highly rated by users, whereas the account itself is one of GOBankingRates’ Best Checking Accounts of 2020.
Chase First Banking
Chase First Banking is applicable to children ages 6-17. It has no monthly service fee. Some additional fees are applicable while using the card. Those are connected with non-Chase ATMs and foreign exchange. You must be an existing Chase checking customer to open the account though. Up to five Chase First Checking accounts can be linked to the parent’s/guardian’s account. Parents can set limits on purchases and accept/decline kids’ money requests, schedule recurring allowance and reward kids for chores.