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Getting your child a debit card is a great way to teach them about money management at a young age, but choosing the best debit card for kids can be an arduous task. There are several key features you may want to consider. Making sure you get low fees and access to parental controls for reloading funds and monitoring spending activity is crucial.
When shopping for a card, you have two options: a prepaid debit card or a traditional debit card linked to a checking account. It is essential to understand the difference before getting a debit card for your kid.
Best Debit Cards for Kids and Teens
There are plenty of cards to choose from when considering options for kids or teens. Keep reading to learn more about the best debit cards you can get for your child.
1. Greenlight Debit Card
The Greenlight debit card is one of the most popular debit cards for kids, and it can help teach them how to spend money, save and invest. The card offers parental controls and sends you notifications every time your kid uses the card. Plus, it doesn’t have any minimum or maximum age requirements.
Greenlight lets you create chore lists that your child can work on to earn money. You can also set weekly or monthly allowance deposits if you prefer to give your children a set amount.
There are three different plans you can choose from — subscriptions start at $4.99 per month for Greenlight without investing. Greenlight + Invest and Greenlight Max, which includes a number of extra benefits, are $7.98 per month and $9.98 per month, respectively. Memberships include debit cards for up to five kids.
Depending on the plan, users can earn 1% cash back on purchases and up to 2% interest per year.
2. FamZoo Prepaid Card
The FamZoo app and prepaid card give your children the opportunity to learn how to manage money. You can load the cards anytime, albeit for a fee of up to $4.95 for instant options like cash or digital wallet transfers, and track all the activity on the cards digitally. You can also set up payments for chores, create automatic allowances and pay your kids interest on their savings.
With FamZoo, both the kids and parents can monitor spending through a shared dashboard. It’s open for kids of all ages and offers a free one-month trial. Once the trial expires, the subscription starts at $5.99 per month, but you can save up to $2.49 per month by paying in advance.
3. GoHenry Debit Card
The GoHenry debit card is designed for kids ages six to 18, but it’s best for parents who want to teach their children smart money management skills. The GoHenry app lets you take control by loading your child’s card and setting spending rules.
You can also set tasks for your child to complete to earn allowances and other perks. Whenever your kid spends, you get real-time notifications. Additionally, you can decide where they get to use the card. Furthermore, kids can spend and withdraw money overseas for free, split checks with friends and donate to Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
In-app “money missions” teach kids money skills that meet the K-12 Personal Finance Education National Standards.
GoHenry has a free one-month trial. After that, an account costs $3.99 per month per child.
4. Copper Banking Debit Card
Copper Banking debit cards are perfect for helping kids age 13 and up learn financial literacy. The app offers interactive quizzes on money management, spending habits and saving. With Copper, your teen can access financial tools and other resources they need to make intelligent financial decisions.
As their parent, you can set up automatic money transfers and track their spending in real time. Teens can use the Copper debit card online and in person anywhere that accepts Mastercard.
Copper doesn’t charge monthly fees, overdraft fees or ATM fees and has no minimum balance requirement. Banking services are provided through Evolve Bank & Trust.
5. BusyKid Visa Prepaid Spend Card
BusyKid Visa Prepaid Spend debit card is the best choice for parents looking for an app that goes beyond good money habits. The BusyKid app uses a chore-based system where your kids can earn real money for completing chores. They can also learn to save, spend, donate and invest any earned allowances.
The BusyPay QR code makes it easy for family and friends to send your child cash gifts.
BusyKid costs $3.99 per month or $38.99 per year for up to five cards.
6. Jassby Virtual Debit Card
The Jassby Virtual Debit Card for kids stands apart since it has no monthly fee and a very user-friendly app. This card is best for families with multiple kids since parents take complete control in managing spending through Jassby’s Family Finances app. You can also assign your children chores and activities that can earn them money.
The app is designed for kids ages eight to 17. Physical debit cards are available for $5 each.
With Jassby, your child can also make contactless payments and earn rewards.
Jelli is a no-fee, no-minimum account that helps teens age 14 and up budget their money. In addition to earning cash back on qualified purchases with their JelliCard, your kids can set up JelliJars to automatically divide deposits between spending and saving categories they define. Your family can share JelliJars to send payments to each other.
Because the Jelli account is a bank account, not just a spending card, funds are FDIC insured, and you get zero-liability coverage from Visa.
8. Mazoola Virtual Debit Card
Mazoola is a mobile wallet and virtual debit card with no fees. It offers basic features such as automatic allowances and the ability to set savings goals, make peer-to-peer payments and set chores.
The Mazoola app makes it easy for you to track your kids’ spending and set spending limits, and it’s compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.
9. Till Debit Card
Till Financial offers a family banking platform specifically designed to help kids become savvy spenders. It offers parents several ways to contribute to the account and share access with other family members. Parents can also set conditions for spending and repayment by creating an agreement in the app.
Till does not charge any fees.
10. Chase First Banking
Chase First Banking is a debit card intended for ages six to 17. To open an account, you need to be a Chase customer. With Chase First Banking, your kids can learn how to spend, save and earn with a mobile app and their very own card.
As a parent, you can monitor and control your child’s spending and help them build good money habits. You can also assign chores, manage allowances and set up multiple saving goals.
Chase First Banking has no monthly service fee, and there’s no charge to withdraw money from Chase ATMs.
11. Alliant Credit Union Teen Checking
Alliant’s free checking account for teens is geared to kids ages 13 to 17. The checking account offers one of the best debit cards for helping kids to learn responsible financial habits without overspending. It limits transactions to $100 in ATM withdrawals and $300 in purchases per day, and you can set up alerts to track your teen’s transactions.
The account is jointly owned by the parent, who must be an Alliant Credit Union member, and the teen. Teens can earn a relatively high interest with easy eligibility criteria like opting in to e-statements and receiving one electronic deposit per month, and there are no monthly fees or account minimums.
Alliant offers over 80,000 fee-free ATMs and up to $20 per month in ATM rebates.
12. Capital One Money Teen Checking
Money Teen Checking is Capital One’s free account for kids ages 8 and older and their parent or guardian joint account holder. It comes with a debit card and a mobile app to help your children learn about money management.
Kids can earn interest on checking account balances. They can also access their money at any of more than 70,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide. There are no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements with this account.
Parents can link the Money account to any bank account, including accounts at banks other than Capital One.
13. Current Visa Debit Card
Current offers a banking option designed for families. The app provides total parental control while still giving your teen the freedom to spend, save and manage money. With Current, your teen can make purchases, set savings goals, transfer money and even donate to charity.
There’s no minimum balance requirement or subscription fee.
14. Step Visa Card
Step banking for teens includes a Step Visa Card with no fees or interest charges. Although there’s no minimum age to open an account with a parent or guardian sponsor, Step is geared toward older teens who want to establish credit — positive account activity gets reported to all three credit bureaus.
Teens and adults will be able to use the app to buy, sell, hold and transfer cryptocurrency and earn cryptocurrency rewards. The feature isn’t yet available, but you and your teen can join a waitlist.
Choosing the best debit card for kids can be overwhelming, but the above list is a great place to start your search. Depending on your needs and those of your kids, your choice may vary from another person’s. When shopping for a debit card for your child, decide on the features you want — such as no monthly fees or minimum balance for the associated checking account — to help you find the best option for you and your family.
Daria Uhlig contributed to the reporting for this article.
Information is accurate as of June 13, 2022.
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