My twin daughters turn 11 this month and are very much in the “tween” stage of life. Too old for “little kid stuff”, but still not mature enough for some of the freedoms and privileges of older teens. Recently, I’ve seen a lot of growth in the area of financial management and I’d like to nurture this important life skill. It used to be that whenever the girls received money (as birthday gifts, etc.), they’d INSTANTLY spend it. ALL of it. Like it was burning a hole in their pocket.
We’ve had some serious financial conversations and the girls each have their own 529 college savings account. They’ve learned when they receive money to save some, spend some, and give (donate) some, and the difference between shorter-term savings versus longer-term savings.
Given these recent developments, I think it might be a good time to dip our toes into the use of kid-friendly debit cards. I looked at a couple and wanted to share my own list of comparisons and what I have decided to go with in the end:
Comparing GoHenry vs Greelight
|Monthly Fee||$4.99 for 1 child;|
$9.98 for up to 4 kids
|$4.99 for up to 5 kids (Core)|
$9.98 for up to 5 kids (Max)
$14.98 up to 5 kids (Infinity)
|Options for Investing||No||Yes, with Max or Infinity plans|
|Money Transfers||Yes - instant from parent account||Yes - instant form parent account, and possible direct deposit from child's job|
|Budget Breakdown||Yes - gives report on spending history||Yes - gives report on spending history|
|Parent Oversight||Yes - parents decide where and how much kids can spend||Yes - parents choose where kids spend and set up spending limits|
|Cash Rewards||No||1% on savings (Core);|
1% cash back; 2% savings (Max);
1% cash back; 5% savings (Infinity)
|Customizable Card||Custom Card available for $4.99||Custom Card available for $9.99|
|Card protection||No||Yes, for Max and Infinity plans|
There are a lot of similar features, but the big differences are that Greenlight offers more options (cash back and savings rewards, in addition to investing options). The other big thing, for me, is that Greenlight offers card protection on its Max and Infinity plans.
In the end, I decided to sign up with Greenlight’s Max plan. I get my first month free, and then it will be $9.98/month after that. I am hoping this app can grow with my kids, so they can learn more about saving and wisely spending (and even investing!) while they are young and still in my care. I love that I can track all their transactions and set limits on how much they can spend and where.
If anyone else is interested in trying the app, I have a code where you can earn $30 when you sign up.
Has anyone else used a similar app to help manage kid-friendly debit cards? What were your thoughts or experiences?
Hi, I’m Ashley! Arizonan on paper, Texan at heart. Lover of running, blogging, and all things cheeeeese. Late 30’s, married mother of two, working as a professor at a major university in the southwest. Trying to finally (finally!) pay off that ridiculous 6-digit student loan debt!