Debit Cards for Kids: Six Great Advantages

girl holding her kids debit card towards the camera with pink background

Long before computers and the Internet, kids received a cash allowance for helping out with chores around the house. Though household chores still exist, cash is becoming a scarce commodity. Debit cards and digital payment systems have eliminated the need to always have cash on hand. And this is making it increasingly difficult to educate children about healthy financial habits. Fortunately, apps offering children’s debit card accounts are helping solve this dilemma.

On average, kids today receive about $40 a month in cash allowances. But increasingly, kids’ debit cards are replacing cash as a preferred means to compensate children for helping out at home. Perhaps the thought of debit cards for kids triggers images of excessive spending by your teen. But in reality, children’s debit card accounts not only deter this unwanted behavior but have several benefits. Before you decide that kids’ debit cards are too risky, check out these six advantages they offer.

Advantage #1 – Provides a Consistent Structure for Digital Allowance

Several “piggy bank” apps and children’s debit card accounts enable parents to dispense a digital allowance on a regular basis. In essence, this is no different than receiving $10 in cash each week, albeit with a great deal more convenience. After all, how often do parents have cash on hand in today’s world? Via a children’s debit card, money can be deposited into an account on a routine and consistent basis. Such a structure is ideal when showing kids what it’s like to have a steady paycheck. This experience lies at the heart of good budgeting, and it’s one way that kids’ debit cards are beneficial.

Advantage #2 – Teaches Financial Responsibility and Accountability

 

Kids’ debit cards not only provide consistent allowances for children, but they also assign ownership. Despite your access and control of a children’s debit card account, kids ultimately use it for purchases. Therefore, once the funds are depleted, your child has no one else to blame but themselves. Over time, this teaches children both financial responsibility and accountability for their purchases, and, ultimately, financial balance.

Advantage #3 – Teaches the Value of Money and Intangible Items

Just like a cash allowance, kids’ debit cards can also teach children the value of money. But because children’s debit card accounts are electronic in nature, these insights extend to other areas. For example, using kids’ debit cards online for purchases provides the chance to learn the monetary value of less tangible items. This might apply to digital subscriptions, virtual games, or streamed video content. Understandably, this is a lesson that might take much longer to learn with only a cash allowance.

Advantage #4 – Makes “Losing Money” More Difficult

Children have many distractions, and they are still developing. So, it’s not surprising that they can be a little forgetful and careless in keeping track of something. While this is a concern for many things, losing cash is exceptionally painful for everyone. However, kids’ debit cards eliminate this possibility since it represents digital access to currency. If the debit card is lost, it can be easily frozen and replaced. And while fraud is possible, most children’s debit card accounts have fraud protection services in place. Therefore, this can save parents and kids alike a great deal of stress.

Advantage #5 – Encourages and Provides a Way for Saving

Once the lessons of financial responsibility and accountability are learned, saving behaviors often develop. Reportedly, less than one percent of children save money from their allowance today. But with children’s debit card accounts, kids learn to save for priority items they want. Many children’s debit card apps enhance this by providing spending information and requiring spending confirmations before purchases are made. Thus, kids’ debit cards can help encourage saving while providing a way to do so.

Advantage #6 – Offers Opportunities for Financial Discussions

Children often see their parents insert a chip or swipe their debit card for various purchases. To a young observer, this can obfuscate the link between actual money and purchase. At the same time, the dwindling amount of cash that parents have on hand reduces opportunities for financial education. One important benefit of children’s debit card accounts—maybe even the most important benefit—is the opportunity for parents and kids to have financial conversations. By far, these discussions can have the most positive impact on improving financial responsibility in children.


Kids’ Debit Cards – Something Worth Considering

As highlighted, children’s debit card accounts can provide an array of advantages. If you are trying to teach your child about financial concepts, kids’ debit cards might be a strategy to consider. These approaches certainly align much better with today’s world and offer notable benefits when compared to cash allowances.

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Ellen Madden studied Communications and Women & Gender Studies at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina. She is navigating motherhood while working and celebrating life in Tampa, FL where she grew up. Ellen is a food lover and is learning the art of writing as she goes along.

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