10 Best Debit Cards For Kids And Teens

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Debit cards for kids can be useful tools as you teach your children. When my oldest child turned 16, I wanted to make sure she knew how to make wise financial decisions.

I also wanted my daughter to get some real-life experience regarding using checking accounts and credit cards. So I got her her own debit card.

This review of debit cards for kids and teens can help you find a card that will teach your teen as well. Continue reading to learn more about which cards we reviewed.

Our Top Picks

COMPANYFEATURES
GreenlightNo minimum age or balance. Has chore management feature
BusyKidLow cost option, ability for other people to add money
FamZooTrack activity, free ATM and low minimums

Top Debit Cards for Kids

Check out the list below and see which of these debit cards will work best for helping you teach minors to manage money.

1. Greenlight

Greenlight is a debit card that is made for kids but managed by parents.

It has several great features:

  • No minimum age
  • No minimum balance
  • Free from overdraft fees
  • Available debit cards for up to five kids

It also has a chore management feature and an auto transfer of funds feature. Parents can even choose an auto feature that will pay their kids interest if they want.

You can try Greenlight out for a month; after that you’ll pay $4.99 per month for up to five kids. Check out Greenlight+ Invest if you want to use the card to help your child start investing.

Greenlight Logo

Pros

  • No minimum age requirement
  • Chore management feature
  • Kids can earn interest
  • No overdraft fees

Cons

  • $4.99 per month fee
  • Plans that offer investing cost more

Learn More: Greenlight Debit Card Review

Trustpilot: 4.3 out of 5

2. FamZoo Prepaid Mastercard

The FamZoo prepaid cards were set up for the sole purpose of helping kids learn good money management skills.

The company’s prepaid card offers the following features:

  • Free card reloads (when you direct deposit money – retailer reloads will cost you)
  • Free ATM visits
  • Monthly fees as low as $0.63 per month
  • No per-purchase fees

The FamZoo card can be opened for any age child – from preschool on up. However, kids under 13 will have “on-behalf” cards where the parent is the legal cardholder.

Kids age 13 and up (and their parents) will need to go through an easy verification process to be approved. And all FamZoo accounts must have at least one parent as an account cardholder.

All activity on the cards can be tracked digitally, meaning kids can see where they’re spending their money. And parents have access to each cardholder’s card activity at any time.

famzoo logo

Pros

  • Set up multiple accounts for saving, spending, giving, etc.
  • No minimum age requirement
  • Prepaid card accounts or IOU accounts
  • Chore charts available

Cons

  • Fees as high as $5.99 per month
  • Kids can modify chore lists at will

Apple Store Rating: 4.6 out of 5

Learn More: Famzoo Review

3. BusyKid Prepaid Visa Spend Card

BusyKid is a prepaid Visa spend card with a variety of features. Here’s how it works.

You use the BusyKid prepaid card to give your child money. Simply assign an amount to be put on the card every week.

You can also tie the money to completed chores with the BusyKid chore app.

When your kid wants to spend their money, they can use the prepaid card at stores as they choose. Bonus: the BusyKid chore app also allows your kid to give to charity and invest.

It costs $19.99 per year to get a family subscription to BusyKid. That includes one card. It’s an additional $7.99 for each extra card.

busykid logo

Pros

  • Customizable chore list
  • Cheaper than most other cards
  • Charitable giving option
  • Investing option

Cons

  • Additional annual charge to get cards additional kids
  • Limited list of charities to give to

Trustpilot: 3.8 out of 5

Learn more: BusyKid Review

4. GoHenry

GoHenry is a family banking tool that helps you teach your kids how to handle money. Here’s how it works:

You start by opening a bank account in your (the parent’s) name. The “parent” account is a control center for up to four “child” accounts.

You put money into the parent account by transferring it from your main bank account.

As the parent, you can transfer money into each child account as you wish. You can set up regular, automated transfers, or you can make random transfers.

This is a nice feature because you can use it to teach your kids the concept of “work equals pay”. For instance, you can transfer $5 into a child’s account when they complete a pay-worthy chore.

Each child gets a debit card to spend the money you’ve transferred into their account.

Other features of the GoHenry debit card include:

  • The ability to set single and weekly spending limits
  • Choose where the card can be used (ex. at ATMs, online or in-store)
  • Block and unblock cards with the touch of a button
  • Receive real-time notification of purchases/expenditures

You can try GoHenry for 30 days for free. After that, it costs just $3.99 per month per child. And you can cancel your membership anytime.

gohenry logo

Pros

  • Customizable chores feature
  • Earn, save, spend, and give options
  • Easy-to-use parental controls
  • Real-time spending notifications

Cons

  • Monthly fee for each child
  • Minimum age requirement

Trustpilot: 4 out of 5

Learn more: GoHenry Review

5. Current Account For Teens

Current was founded with the goal of making banking affordable for everyone.

When you open a Current account for yourself, you can also open Current Teen Accounts for your teens.

Teen account features include:

  • $0 account minimum balance
  • Purchase in person or online with the Current debit card
  • $36 annual fee
  • Add to your savings pod by transferring or using roundups from purchases

As a parent, you get total control features over your teen’s spending too. You get notifications for all purchases and you can set spending limits for your teen.

You can also block certain merchants, automate allowance payments or transfer money manually from your Current account.

And you can tie allowance to a chores list as well. Also, multiple family members can add money to your teen’s Current account.

Note that your teen does need to have one of three forms of photo IDs to get a Current Teen account: A valid and unexpired drivers license, a valid and unexpired passport or passport card, or a valid and unexpired permanent resident card.

current bank logo

Pros

  • Variety of parental controls
  • Chore management feature
  • Autopay for allowance is available

Cons

  • No joint accounts allowed
  • Must have specified photo ID type

Trustpilot: 4.2 out of 5

Learn More: Current Bank Review

6. American Express Serve

The American Express Serve card has three card options. Which one works best for you depends on your teen’s usage and spending habits. We’ll outline the features and fees of all three here.

American Express Serve Pay As You Go

The American Express Serve Pay As You Go card is Amex’s most popular prepaid debt card.

Here’s a list of the features that come with the card:

  • Free Early Direct Deposit. This feature that allows you to receive availability to Direct Deposit funds up to two full days earlier
  • Free online bill pay
  • $2.25 ATM fee
  • Cash reload prices of up to $3.95 per load (price varies by retailer)
  • $1 transaction fee

American Express Serve Free Reloads

The American Express Serve Free Reloads card is best for those who add frequent reloads onto their card.

Here are some of the other features of this card:

  • A monthly fee of $6.95 (no fee in TX, VT or NY)
  • Free online bill pay
  • Fee-free ATM withdrawals (At Money Pass ATMs)
  • Free reloads

If you find your teen is needing to reload their card with money often, this might be the best choice for you.

American Express Serve Cash Back

The American Express Serve Cash Back card is likely most beneficial for bigger spenders.

Here are some of this card’s features:

  • A monthly fee of $7.95
  • Free online bill pay
  • Free ATM withdrawals (at Money Pass ATMs)
  • Cash reload prices of up to $3.95 per load (price varies by retailer)
  • Unlimited cash back of 1% on all purchases

So, depending on what the spending habits are of your kid, you have three American Express cards to choose from.

serve logo

Pros

  • Three card options to choose from
  • Not necessarily geared toward kids
  • Cash back on purchases available

Cons

  • Reloads can come with a fee
  • Other fees besides monthly fee may apply

Consumers Affairs: 3.5 out of 5

7. TD Go Prepaid Visa

The TD Go Prepaid Visa is a product of TD Bank. TD Bank uses the Visa Buxx prepaid card for teens.

Here are some of the features of the TD Go prepaid debit card:

  • $0 monthly service fee
  • $0 purchase fee
  • Free ATM usage in-network
  • $1 for card reloads
  • $2.50 per month for inactivity (after 12 months with no transactions)

This is a very affordable option for teens and parents alike. Parents can also set up email notification to keep abreast of card balances and expenditures.

td bank logo

Pros

  • Real time spend tracking
  • No monthly fee
  • Free in-network ATM usage

Cons

  • Reload fee for each reload
  • Monthly inactivity fee after 12 months of inactivity

Truspilot: No ratings yet

8. Movo Virtual Prepaid Card

Movo helps keep online purchases your teen makes safe by creating a pass-through account number for online transactions.

You can also request a physical Movo prepaid card your child can use locally. There are no fees for the Movo card. However, you will get charged if the card is inactive for more than 90 days.

You can fund the card from your checking account, from PayPal, or via Direct Deposit.

movo logo

Pros

  • No monthly fee
  • No reload fee (in most cases)
  • Simple to use
  • Fund from your bank account, PayPal, or Direct Deposit

Cons

  • No chore app
  • Inactive fee applies after 90 days of inactivity

Trustpilot: 2.6 out of 5

9. Capital One MONEY Card

Capital One’s MONEY account is a checking account created especially for teens. And it comes with a debit card to help your teen learn how to live within a budget.

Here are some of the features of Capital One’s MONEY account:

  • No monthly fee charged to this account
  • Zero minimum balance for the account
  • No monthly charge to have a debit card
  • Fee free ATM usage at participating ATM locations
  • .10% interest rate paid on all checking account balances

The great thing about this checking account and coordinating debit card is that it gives teens freedom.

However, it also gives you as their parent the same access to their checking account that they have.

This way you can monitor transactions and account balances so you can help your teen learn healthy money management skills.

capital one logo

Pros

  • No monthly fees
  • No minimum balance
  • Parents don’t need a separate Capital One account

Cons

  • Minimum age requirement of 8
  • Must open Teen Money checking account

Trustpilot: 1.3 out of 5

10. Akimbo Prepaid Mastercard

The Akimbo Prepaid Mastercard lets you create a prepaid account for nearly any purpose.

You can use it for your grocery budget, your entertainment budget, or your kid’s allowance budget.

Here are some of the features of the Akimbo prepaid debit card:

  • No fees for purchase transactions
  • $0.99 fee for purchases requiring PIN usage
  • ATM cash withdrawal fee $1.98
  • $5.95 cash reload fee

There are some great benefits to the Akimbo prepaid card but you may find the others more beneficial and cost effective.

Pros

  • Simple-to-use prepaid card
  • Text alerts after every transaction
  • Up to five separate accounts available

Cons

  • Fees for cash withdrawal and PIN purchases
  • No chore feature
  • High reload fee

Trustpilot: 1.9 out of 5

Now that we’ve talked about some of the best prepaid cards and debit cards, here is some more useful information.

Let’s talk a bit about why you might want to consider getting a prepaid or debit card for your teen.

Why Should I Consider a Prepaid Card or Debit Card for My Child?

You might be wondering why you should consider getting a prepaid card or debit card for your minor child.

While we at Well Kept Wallet don’t advocate carrying monthly credit card balances, we do believe it’s important to help your child learn to navigate the world of credit and spending.

A prepaid card can help him or her to do just that. When your child has a prepaid card or a debit card, they can spend money electronically.

Like it or not, the electronic world of financial management is here to stay.

And that electronic spending world does have its benefits, especially for parents whose kids are learning about money.  

Prepaid cards and debit cards can help your child learn about money while helping you keep an eye on their spending.

Electronic money management helps people see where every dime they earn goes each month. And that knowledge can be a valuable tool in the world of adult money management.

They Help Put Limits on Spending

One nice thing about these types of debit cards for kids is that they allow you to impose a spending limit for your child.

An unrestrained budget in the hands of a teen can give them the illusion that money will always be there.

However, with prepaid cards you can make a rule that you’ll put X dollars in your child’s account each month.

This spending limit will help them to learn to live in real life where one’s money supply isn’t endless.

It will help them learn that they need to make choices about how they spend their money. If their monthly cash allowance runs dry, they can learn what happens when money runs out before month’s end.

They Give You a Birdseye View

Adding to that, prepaid cards and debit cards let you see every one of your child’s purchases. This benefit makes way for conversations about value-based spending.

Simply put, value-based spending means spending your money on the things that matter most to you.

As your child sees their spending habits at a glance, they can learn to identify important vs. non-important purchases. For instance, they might decide that a trip to the movies with friends is a value-based spending choice.

Conversely, they might decide that daily trips to the fast food drive thru are not important.

As they (and you) get that birdseye view of monthly spending choices, they’ll learn an important truth.

They’ll learn that they need to decide which spending choices help them make the most out of life. They’ll also learn that some spending choices simply waste their money.

This type of financial management training can help your child develop wise money management habits in adulthood.

Prepaid debit and credit cards may not be for every child, but they can do wonders for one’s financial education. Consider prepaid cards and other financial education tools as you raise your young ones.

Prepare them for a life of financial responsibility and security made by their own hands – with some help from you.

Summary

Helping your kids learn good money management skills is a must in today’s world. When they learn to properly manage cash through the use of prepaid cards and debit cards, life becomes easier.

And when they use the other financial management tips shared here, they’ve got tools to make money management fun.

25 thoughts on “10 Best Debit Cards For Kids And Teens”

  1. In looking at the 5 Best Prepaid Cards for Kids list above, you show Capital One as paying 25% interest on checking account balances. I wish this was true, but I think you’re just missing the decimal point in front of the 2. You might want to fix that. Thanks.

    Reply
  2. Also, check out the Greenlight Prepaid Card for kids. It’s a tool families use to teach their kids to be financially smart. The product is much more than a debit card for spending as it teaches kids about saving, earning, how interest works, and more.

    Reply
  3. I’m looking at the Capital One card, item number four. I have to ask if there’s a transaction fee for debit purchases. I’m thinking about this card for my grandson who has Xbox fees and purchases. He does not track his spending well. So, to get it under control, a monthly allowance might work well. But, I need to know if there’ll be a fee for those transactions.

    Reply
    • Under the Account Disclosures, I found a section that says there are no fees at this time. However, an ATM owner may charge a fee for use of the ATM if money is withdrawn from one. However, that should be made known to the debit card holder before the transaction is completed. I hope that helps. If you have further questions, I urge you to follow the link and find the Account Disclosures as it details most everything about this type of account.

      Reply
  4. American Express Serve is not a card I would recommend to anyone!
    I was hacked, all my money was stolen and they did not replace it.
    I was not federally insured like other institutions.
    Lost $1500.00.
    They were very unremorseful about the whole thing and I had to contact them to find out they would not honor my request to reimburse my funds even though I could prove it was a hack and that I did not authorize the transaction.

    Reply
    • I am sorry to hear that happened to you! That’s a horrible experience and I would definitely try to research if there is another way that you could get your money reimbursed! Best of luck!

      Reply
    • I have been a Serve card holder since 2011/12, it’s the only account I use for my tax refunds & other pertinent transactions because of Amex’s SECURITY & customer service. It’s safer than brick & mortar. The $1 a month pays itself when it’s not on the card. It’s always been free to load at CVS & Wal-Mart. My only issue is that so many merchants don’t accept it, which only stands to add to the security. My kids & my mother have had subholder accounts for years never had one problem. I can’t say what happened, definitely not saying it’s not true, but in order for them to deny you the replacement of your funds, they had to find negligence on your part. I’ve never heard if a HACKED Amex, they do not play about customer security.

      Reply
  5. Why do you have to provide a social security number to apply for a prepaid card for a minor? This seems risky, what with all the hacking going on today in the electronic world.

    Reply
    • It’s needed for identification to prove who you are. Some banks allow you to use an alternative method such as a passport number, etc, but you’re going to need an SSN number to prove your identity, even for a minor.

      Reply
  6. Its about time someone is taking intrest in kids needing to know about money spending/ investing and saving money. I know when I was in school that was something we never really learned about and what I wouldn’t give to go back an learn more cause we did the same; put ourselves in debit and had to scrabble out of the whole and now were dead set on making sure our kids have the knowledge not to do what we did, and know how to do it right. Cause they have seen how hard it has been trying to fix things and things we have went without to try an fix it.
    So great appreciation to you for putting it out there where parents an kids can find the knowledge they need for this world today.

    Reply
  7. My children now, 28, 19 & 16 have always had Amex Serve, at 13 I made each them additional card holders on Capital One, I can lock/unlock as I see fit. They have Postal Credit Union, with cards, Delta Credit Union & Wisely, which we never used much. Online they can use CashApp and we move money easily. I worry about Square security and merchants are starting to deny the card because of fraud, so we CashOut and link/unlink vital debit cards as we go along. I advocate for the Credit Union accounts they are secure & you become a Shareholder for $5 oftentimes. They have several fee free options in addition to rewards for saving. They educate your children about money in a kid-friendly format. Google CU accounts for kids. My apologies for high-jacking the article. I like to pass on useful information. Also, everyone reading this should follow the rule of paying with credit and teaching your family the same when using debit because your signature offers benefits from the card providers that you don’t get using debit (i.e. purchase insurance) debit only helps the merchant avoid fees and safety from fraudulent purchasers. My financial advisors say ALWAYS use credit, simply keep your monthly usage between .27 – .30%. Use their money whenever possible. Keep yours put away.

    Reply

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