Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our content.

Bankaroo review

Last updated:  

Kids can manage their personal finances with this virtual bank account.

Bankaroo was designed by an 11-year-old to keep track of how he was spending his allowance and other monetary gifts. Bankaroo isn’t a real virtual bank account. Rather it simulates a bank account so that parents have a safe place to teach their kids about saving and spending before they’re ready for a real debit card or bank account.

$0 per month

Fee

N/A

APY

$0

Minimum deposit to open

Details

APYN/A
Fee$0 per month
Minimum deposit to open$0
ATMsNo access to ATMs

Expert review

Heather Petty

Review by


Heather Petty is a writer at Finder specializing in banking, investments and insurance. She's a self-proclaimed word nerd who worked as a technical writer and editor for the casino systems industry and is an internationally published young adult mystery author. Heather earned a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Nevada, Reno.

Expert review

Bankaroo is best for kids who aren’t ready for a real bank account. The account gives parents and teachers the ability to teach kids financial management skills without using real funds. The account also provides insights into how their kids are likely to spend and save their money if they did have a real bank account.

But if your child is ready to graduate to a real bank account, consider opening a kids’ prepaid debit card like Greenlight that allows your child to track and manage real money.

How much does it cost to use Bankaroo?

Bankaroo has three different plans:
PlanBest forCost
Bankaroo OnlineDesigned for kids learning the basics of managing money.
  • Free
Bankaroo PlusDesigned for kids ready to learn how to manage separate checking, savings and charity accounts.
  • $4.99 — one-time fee
Bankaroo for SchoolsDesigned for teachers to use in their classrooms. It includes a teacher portal and mobile app for kids.
  • Free to set up the first classroom of up to 40 students.
  • $10 a month to add additional classrooms.
  • Annual subscriptions and licenses are available when you contact Bankaroo.

How do I open a Bankaroo account?

Download the app or sign up through the website in four simple steps:

  1. Go to the provider’s site and follow the steps to apply.
  2. From the Bankaroo website, select Sign up for Free.
  3. Enter your full name, email and password.
  4. Select Sign Up.

What are the benefits of a Bankaroo account?

Bankaroo helps kids use their math skills to learn about money. Other perks include:
  • Printable bank card. Bankaroo can email you a bank card with a QR code to print out for your child. But it’s not a real bank card: It only serves to bring up your child’s Bankaroo account.
  • Encourage savings. Add interest or even match your child’s savings to help them reach their goals faster and teach them the benefits of long-term savings.
  • Finance tracker. Your child will need to manually input their allowance amount and what they want to use their money for, so that they can track their money.
  • Set savings goals. Your child can set a savings goal and win in-app badges for meeting those goals. For example, if they want to save up for a game, they can set that goal and subtract funds from their account to go toward their goals until they meet them.

What should I look out for?

Bankaroo continues to update the app, but keep the following in mind before you download:
  • Not a real bank account. You can’t add real money to the account or link an existing account to track and manage your kid’s spending and savings.
  • No automations. Everything you do through Bankaroo is manual. It doesn’t connect to a real bank account, so it works more like a budgeting spreadsheet that you manually have to adjust and track.
  • Updates are slow. Customers have complained about how slow the company is to address bugs and glitches in the app. The version history supports that, with updates a full year apart.
  • Online only. Very few account features work offline, which means you’ll need reliable access to use the app.

If you want an account that allows your child to manage real money, consider a prepaid debit card for kids. These accounts give you the ability to add real money to your kids debit card account and include features like chore tracking.

Compare Bankaroo with other checking accounts

Name Product APY Minimum deposit to open ATMs Out-of-network ATM fee
Chime Spending account
Finder Rating: 4.7 / 5: ★★★★★
Chime Spending account
N/A
$0
38,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide
$2.50
Get rid of fees with this mobile-first bank offering consumer-friendly accounts. Chime can also help you save easily and access your paycheck faster.
Chase Total Checking
Finder Rating: 2.8 / 5: ★★★★★
Chase Total Checking
N/A
$0
Access to 16,000 ATMs and more than 4,700 branches nationwide
$2.50
Get a $200 bonus when you open a new Chase Total Checking account and set up direct deposit within 60 days of opening your account. Chase's simplest checking account is easy to use and gives you access to 16,000 ATMs and more than 4,700. Available online nationwide except in Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico.
HSBC Premier Checking
Finder Rating: 2.7 / 5: ★★★★★
HSBC Premier Checking
0.01%
$1
Free to use at all ATMs in the US
$0
Get a 3% cash bonus, up to $600 (max. $100 per month) during first six months after account opening. Must open HSBC Premier checking account through offer page by September 30, 2020, and set up qualifying direct deposits into the new account. Conditions apply. Deposit products are offered in the US by HSBC Bank USA, N.A. Member FDIC.
BBVA Online Checking
Finder Rating: 4.2 / 5: ★★★★★
BBVA Online Checking
N/A
$25
No ATM fees nationwide at more than 64,000 AllPoint, participating 7-Eleven and BBVA USA ATMs
$3
A full-service account with convenient, surcharge-free access to two massive ATM networks.
Axos Bank Essential Checking
Finder Rating: 5 / 5: ★★★★★
Axos Bank Essential Checking
N/A
$0
ATM fees reimbursed at any ATM nationwide
No fees. Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

Is Bankaroo safe for my child to use?

Bankaroo doesn’t manage real money, so you won’t need to worry about losing your money. The app has security protocols in place to make sure your child is safe.
You aren’t required to use your child’s real name or email address in the app. Also, all of the information is stored on a secure, encrypted server and only you control who has access to your child’s account.

How do I get Bankaroo Plus?

You’ll need to activate a Bankaroo account and then upgrade to Bankaroo Plus through the app.

How do I add an account for my child?

Once your account is active, use the following steps to add a kids’ account:

  1. Type your child’s name, username and password.
  2. Select an avatar from those shown or take a photo to personalize one.
  3. Select a color for the child’s banner.
  4. Determine the account parameters by selecting a currency, setting an initial balance, and choosing whether your child can go into a negative balance or if they can add funds to their own account.
  5. Option settings include:
    • Set allowance. Choose a start date and a dollar amount to automatically add money to their account weekly, bi-weekly or monthly.
    • Match savings. Enter the amount that you want to match per $1 saved.
    • Interest. Enter the interest rate and if you want it to apply to their savings, their account balance or both.
  6. Click Add to open the account.
  7. Download the app on your child’s tablet or smartphone, or have them log in to the account on the Bankaroo website to get started.

Requirements

There’s no age requirement for Bankaroo, but you’ll need the following to access the application:

  • An Internet-accessible tablet, smartphone or computer
  • A valid email address to sign up for a Bankaroo account

How old does my child have to be to start using Bankaroo?

While there are no age requirements, Bankaroo is best for kids who have basic reading skills. Most Bankaroo users are between the ages of 5 and 14 years old.

How can I contact Bankaroo customer service?

You can contact customer service by emailing support@bankaroo.com or using the contact form on the website.

Frequently asked questions

Ask an expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our finder.com Terms of Use and Privacy and Cookies Policy.
Go to site