Teaching kids the theory of good money management is all well and good, but there's nothing like some practical experience to drive the lesson home. A prepaid debit card can provide pre-teens and teens valuable lessons in financial responsibility while encouraging greater independence. Choose the right option, and not only will you get a card, but you'll also get tools that can teach your kid how to budget, save, and spend wisely. Prepaid cards are a safe and easy alternative to dolling out your kid's allowance in cash - some options will even let you drip feed the allowance into their account depending on how many of their chores they complete. Here's our pick of the 10 best prepaid debit cards for kids.
10. Current Prepaid Card
You'll need to hold a Current checking account yourself before your kid can apply for a card, but considering the perks of the teen account, it's well worth opening an account for that purpose, if nothing else. Key benefits include a $0 annual fee, the option to top up the card in person or online with a Current debit card, and a ton of parental control features such as spending notifications, store-specific spending blocks, automated allowance payments, and spending limits.
9. Movo Prepaid Card
The Movo Prepaid card is a no-fee option that uses a pass-through account number for online transactions to keep any purchase your kid makes perfectly safe. In addition to a virtual card, there's a physical card that can be used for store purchases and ATM visits. The card can be topped up from Paypal or Direct Deposit. There are no monthly fees, but it's worth remembering that a fee will apply if the card isn't used at least once every 90 days.
8. Jaspy Prepaid Card
Jaspy combines a money management app with a virtual debit card to teach kids financial literacy while also giving them access to some great rewards and discounts that will help them save and earn on over 2000 products from popular retailers like Apple, Nintendo, and Starbucks. The account is available to all ages from pre-school up. No maintenance fees apply.
7. Capital One Money Prepaid Card
While most banks will only offer kid-friendly accounts to those whose parents are already customers, Capital One is the exception. The account is open to all kids from the age of 8 years and over, regardless of where their parent's bank. There are no monthly charges, no foreign transaction fees, a decent interest rate, and enough safeguards for you to keep your kid's spending habits in check.
6. Chase First Banking Prepaid Card
Chase First Banking offers services to kids aged 6 to 17 years old. Each checking account comes with a debit card along with handy features that let parents set allowance amounts and allocate a certain payment to each completed chore. As the account is powered by Greenlight, you can expect some of the same kid-friendly features you'd get on the Greenlight pre-paid card and app, albeit without the monthly fee. The only stipulation is that kids who want to bank with Chase will need a parent who already does - if you haven't already got a Chase account, it's worth considering a free checking account like Chase Total Checking to get your kid's foot in the door.
5. GoHenry Prepaid Card
Described by Finder as one of the best cards on the market for interactive financial learning for kids aged 6 to 18, the GoHenry debit card is a great option for tweens and teens alike. Kids get to choose their own card design, while parents can rest easy in the knowledge that each card comes with a safety block to automatically decline any purchases that exceed the available balance, as well as a 30 day free trial period.
4. Cooper Prepaid Card
If you're looking for a card for teens rather than younger kids, the Cooper debit card makes an excellent choice. In comparison to cards aimed at the pre-teen market, the card offers teens greater control, along with access to financial management and educational tools that can help encourage good spending habits. There are also instructional videos that provide excellent advice to parents on how to nurture financial literacy in their kids. The card is open to children aged 13 years and over. No maintenance fees apply.
3. FamZoo Prepaid Card
As wellkeptwallet.com notes, the Famzoo prepaid card was set up with the simple aim of teaching kids financial literacy. It achieves its aim with a set of features that include free ATM withdrawals, free card reloads, an easy verification process, inbuilt chore and allowance features, spending trackers, and parental controls. The card is open to all ages from preschool and up. Monthly fees start at just $0.63 per month.
2. BusyKid Prepaid Card
As creditdonkey.com points out, BusyKid is a great option for parents of younger kids. Combining a pre-paid card with a chores app, the card comes with an affordable price tag of just $3.99 per month, as well as the option for parents to set automated allowances and assign payments for each chore. If you're keen to teach your kid the value of money, it's an excellent choice. The card is available in a choice of 10 appealing designs. As BusyKid is a tech company rather than a bank, all deposits are held by FDIC-insured Stride Bank, N.A. for peace of mind.
1. Greenlight Prepaid Card
Named one of the best prepaid cards for kids by verywellfamily.com, the Greenlight card comes with a very impressive list of features, including a free trial for users to test out the (incredibly easy to use) app before committing, inbuilt allowance and chore features that let parents decide how much money to allocate to each chore, and the option for parents to set store specific spending blocks. Teens will also get a valuable crash course in money management through spending alerts, balance trackers, and other handy features. Maintenance fees start at just $4.99 per month for the basic family plan, increasing to $9.99 for the all-singing, all-dancing Greenlight Max plan.
Written by Allen Lee
Read more posts by Allen Lee