Finder makes money from featured partners, but editorial opinions are our own. Advertiser disclosure

The best debit cards for kids and teens in September 2023

Explore kids' debit cards that balance child-friendly financial literacy tools and strong parental controls.

The best kids’ debit card aims to teach your child how to manage their money. When searching for a card, you have three options: a prepaid debit card or a debit card attached to a checking or digital account. Child-friendly prepaid cards typically charge a monthly fee for access to fun chores and allowance features, often with no age requirement.

Cards that come with a kids’ checking account are free, though they’re usually for teens ages 13 or older — and financial literacy tools are limited. If you want a combination of the two, look at cards attached to digital accounts, which offer both low fees and money management tools.

Our top picks

Best all-around kids account

Finder Award


Go to site
on Greenlight's secure site

  • Spend, save & invest
  • Chores & allowance tools
  • Spending controls & limits
  • Instantly send money to your child
  • Up to 5% savings rewards
  • FDIC insured

Best for savings rounds-ups

Current teen banking

Go to site
on Current's secure site

  • Automatic savings round-ups
  • $0 monthly fee
  • Parent Current account required
  • Spending limits and parent notifications
  • Instant transfers to your teen
  • FDIC insured

Best for financial literacy


Go to site
on Gohenry's secure site

  • Instantly send money to your child
  • Automates allowance
  • Optional parent-paid interest on savings
  • Spending controls & limits
  • FDIC insured

Quick view of the best cards

Best for kids

Best for teens

The best kids’ debit cards

The best cards for kids come with a suite of features for chores, allowances, savings and more. They prioritize teaching kids about finances while they use real money and tools. But each card is different in the types of tools it offers, so choose one with features that fit your family’s lifestyle.

1. Best overall for kids


Finder Rating: 4.6 / 5 ★★★★★

Get the first 30 days for free.
Go to site
on Greenlight's secure site
Read review
Greenlight is the best kids' debit card overall because it offers a suite of features and a kid-friendly design that competitors can't beat. It kicks off with a 1% to 5% savings reward that depends on your plan and it's up to $5,000. Parents can limit spending by category or store. And its financial literacy game teaches kids and teens practical money skills, including how to invest, which your kid can test-drive on higher-tier plans. The app also comes with safety features, depending on your plan. Its Max plan offers purchase protections, while its Infinity plan includes an SOS button and car crash detection, helping the whole family stay safe and keep track of everyone's whereabouts.

2. Best for financial literacy


Finder Rating: 4.3 / 5 ★★★★★

Get an extended 2-month free trial of the GoHenry kids' debit card and app when you sign up with Finder's exclusive code: AFUSS171.
Go to site
on Gohenry's secure site
Read review
The GoHenry debit card wins best for financial literacy because its interactive games help teach kids about healthy money management. Its bite-sized mini-lessons are leveled for kids aged 6 to 18, with banking basics for younger children and more advanced topics for teens. They'll complete money 'missions' and earn virtual badges as they expand their financial skills, including how to budget, spend wisely and invest. Other perks include daily, weekly and monthly spending limits and overdraft protection, which automatically declines your child's purchases when they exceed their balance. Plus, there's currently a two-month free trial when you sign up with Finder's exclusive code: AFUSS171.

3. Best for families with multiple kids


Finder Rating: 4.6 / 5 ★★★★★

When you refer a friend to BusyKid, you and your friend get $20 when they sign up and keep their account activated for 30 days.
Go to site
on BusyKid's secure site
Read review
BusyKid is best for families with multiple kids because it overflows with features, from investing and savings tools to chores and allowance management for the entire family. You'll pay about $4 per month for up to five kids on the account, which is slightly less expensive than what you'll pay with other competitors that offer similar features.

4. Best for granular parental controls

Chase First Banking

Finder Rating: 4.3 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Chase's secure site
Read review
The Chase First Banking account wins for extensive controls that allow parents to monitor where and how much their child can spend on their debit card. For example, you can limit the amount your kid can spend at restaurants and set a limit on general purchases. You can also track their purchases with account alerts and cap how much your kid can withdraw at ATMs. Plus, the Chase mobile app includes chores and allowance features allowing your kid to earn money, which you can transfer straight from your Chase checking account.

5. Best for parental savings boosts

Till Financial

Finder Rating: 4.6 / 5 ★★★★★

Till Financial is a free debit card that comes with both a physical and virtual card. It stands out against the competition because it gives parents plenty of ways to contribute to the account. Choose from three methods to boost your kid's savings: weekly recurring contributions, a percentage match on each deposit your kid makes or an interest payment on your kid's savings goal balance at the end of each month. You can also easily share access with other family members so that everyone can contribute.

6. Best for security


Finder Rating: 4.5 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Mazoola's secure site
Read review
The Mazoola is the best card when it comes to security and your kids' privacy. The app is COPPA-certified in association with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act and it's GDPR-compliant, which means it follows strict requirements on how it collects and processes your data. For example, Mazoola will never ask for more information than it needs, and it promises never to share your kid's information without your consent. You'll also get strong parental controls that let you control where and how much your kid spends. And as a virtual card, you won't have to worry about managing or misplacing a physical debit card.

The best debit cards for teens

The best cards prepare teens for future bank accounts and teach them how to manage money independently. Many teen debit cards and apps keep features simple, offering fewer chore features and focusing more on savings, building credit or direct deposits. You’ll even find accounts with a focus on teen investing, giving you joint access to oversee and give permission for trades. See which debit cards prepare your teen most for what’s to come.

1. Best overall for teens


Finder Rating: 4.4 / 5 ★★★★★

Use code FINDER5 on your savings to earn 5% without direct deposit for 3 months.
Go to site
on Step's secure site
Read review
Step is our pick for the best card for teens. It has no monthly fee, gives teens access to ATMs and comes with a dashboard for parents. As a secured card it gives teens a jump start on their credit history by reporting their transaction history to the three major credit bureaus as a positive payment history. But unlike most credit cards, it prevents teens from making purchases beyond their balance, so you don't have to worry about your teen getting hit with overdraft fees. The card is also a rewards card, so they can earn cash back at participating merchants and there's a 5% annual savings reward that's tied to your teen's Savings goals, which is compounded and paid into their savings each month. Plus, their Step card is protected under Visa's zero-liability policy, meaning they're not responsible for charges they didn't authorize.

2. Best for ATM access

Axos Bank First Checking

Finder Rating: 3.5 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Axos Bank's secure site
Read review
Axos Bank First Checking easily wins for ATM access. Your teen can withdraw cash for free at any of Axos Bank's 91,000 in-network ATMs or Allpoint's 55,000 ATMs distributed across the US. And if they still find themselves at an out-of-network ATM, Axos Bank won't charge a fee, and it'll refund up to $12 in domestic third-party ATM fees per month. Plus, there are no monthly maintenance or overdraft fees, and your teen earns 0.1% APY on their entire account balance.

3. Best for savings rounds-ups

Current teen banking

Finder Rating: 4.8 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Current's secure site
Read review
The Current Teen Debit Card is best for savings because it includes an automatic feature that rounds up purchases to the nearest dollar and adds it to your teen's savings, helping them reach their goals even faster every time they make a purchase. Plus, they can organize their money by creating different savings goals. Another standout perk is that the chores feature it comes with can teach your teens to negotiate by letting them propose a different amount of compensation for certain chores.

4. Best for investing

Fidelity Youth Account

Go to site
on Fidelity's secure site
The Fidelity Youth Account is best for teens interested in investing. It's a teen-owned brokerage account that comes with a prepaid debit card. There are no monthly fees, ATM fees or account minimums, and your teen can invest in stocks, ETFs and mutual funds without training wheels and with as little as $1. Parents can view all investment activity, but unlike other kids' accounts like Greenlight, which give you the power to approve trades, Fidelity doesn't allow you to approve or prevent transactions. And while this account comes with a measly 0.01% APY, there are no fees or minimums to worry about.

5. Best for Cash App users

Cash App

Finder Rating: 4.7 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Cash App's secure site
This card and account is best for teens aged 13 to 17 years old who have a parent who uses Cash App. There are no monthly fees, no overdraft fees or balance requirements. To start, adults will need to become a sponsor of the teen. Teens can send peer-to-peer transactions, design and get their own Cash Card, receive direct deposits and use investing features with their parent's permission. Sponsors can track activity in the app, enable or disable specific features, and set custom limits. Teens are restricted from using their card on certain purchases, like hotels, bars, cigar stores, or the lottery. However, there's a $2.50 ATM withdrawal fee. ATM withdrawals are free at some MoneyPass ATMs if the teen sets up direct deposit for at least $300 per month, and they'd also get one out-of-network ATM withdrawal fee reimbursement. Once teens turn 18, they have the option to convert their account into a full-access Cash App account.

6. Best for APY

Alliant Credit Union Free Teen Checking

Finder Rating: 4.3 / 5 ★★★★★

The Alliant Credit Union Free Teen Checking account is best for earning interest. The accounts get $20 in out-of-network ATM fees each month, and balances earn a commendable 0.25% APY if teens opt out of paper statements and receive at least one electronic deposit each month. Plus, you won't have to worry about your teen spending thousands of dollars because the account is limited to $500 in ATM withdrawals and $500 in daily pin-based purchases. But if you don't qualify for membership, you may need to make a one-time $5 donation to the nonprofit Foster Care to Success to qualify.

Methodology: How we choose the best cards

Finder’s banking editors research and compare more than 35 cards for kids. We rate kids’ debit cards using slightly different criteria to account for differences between spending accounts and prepaid cards. We narrow down our list to accounts that meet the following factors:

    • Monthly fee
      • $0 for checking accounts
      • $4.99 or less for prepaid cards
    • Age requirements
      • At least 6 years old for kids’ cards
      • At least 13 years old for teen cards
      • Remains open after kids turn 18 year old or converts into a free checking account
    • Features
      • A large ATM network or no ATM fees for checking accounts
      • Chore and allowance features for prepaid cards
      • Strong parental controls with spending limits, alerts or overdraft protection
    • Availability
      • No strict membership requirements
      • Ability to open the account online

Kids’ cards that didn’t make the cut

Although you might find these popular kids’ cards on other sites, they didn’t make the cut on our list because they don’t offer comprehensive features or unique educational tools for kids.

CardWhy it didn’t make our best list
GoalsetterThis account teaches financial literacy with quizzes, lets parents reward kids with $1 for each question they answer correctly and comes with an investing feature. Ultimately, it didn’t top other kids’ accounts that also offer similar features.
JelliJelli lets teens separate their money into different budget categories and doesn’t charge a monthly fee. But it comes with other pesky fees like $2 for withdrawing from domestic ATMs and $3.50 for international ATMs.
KachingaThis card offers chore and allowance features and helps kids track their spending and savings, but it comes with basic features compared to other kids’ cards.
Navy Federal GO Prepaid CardGet up to five prepaid cards to hand out to different family members or use for different budget categories, managed by the GO Prepaid app. But it lacks chore and automated allowance features, and parents have to be Navy Federal members to use it.
PurewristThis unique bracelet is essentially a digital wallet that lets your kid use contactless payments and receive money via transfers. But it’s not specifically designed for kids and doesn’t come with chore or savings tools.
Verizon Family Money Kids Debit CardThe card comes with the same savings goals and chore tracking that you’ll find with most cards. But you’ll pay a high $5.99 monthly fee after the 30-day trial, and it can take three to five business days for the money to show up when you load funds onto the card.
JassbyWhile we love that Jassby lets kids earn reward points through its financial literacy program that they can redeem in its in-app marketplace at retailers like Starbucks and Nintendo, its monthly fee didn’t offer enough features to justify it. Plus, other kids’ debit cards like Greenlight and GoHenry also offer a strong financial literacy program.
FamZooWhile we like that FamZoo is unique to other kids and teen debit cards because it supports mock loans and family billing, its monthly fee and lack of parental spending controls bumped it from our list.
CopperCopper was a close runner-up for investing because kids and teens can invest in a pre-built portfolio. But the award ultimately went to Fidelity because of Copper‘s monthly fee.
Capital One MoneyCapital One Money has excellent ATM access like Axos Bank First Checking but was edged out because Axos Bank offers a monthly ATM rebate on top of its extensive ATM networks.

What is a kids’ debit card?

They’re debit cards designed for kids between six and 17 and as a way to help parents teach their children how to manage their money early. But kids will need a parent’s help to get one since they can’t open a bank account on their own until they’re 18. These debit cards allow kids to save and spend money online or at a store, and many offer resources to help teach kids how money works through financial quizzes, chores and allowances.

Types of kids’ debit cards

There are three types of debit cards to choose from: A prepaid debit card, a teen checking account or a debit card attached to a digital account. If you’re not sure which one to choose, here’s some guidance that may help you make the best choice for your family:

Account typeMonthly feeAgeWhat is itWho it’s best forExamples of cards
Prepaid debit card$4 to $10/monthUsually available for any ageMany fintechs partner with banks to offer prepaid debit cards with powerful features, including chore management and allowance payments.Parents who want more control over how their child manages money and an app packed with financial literacy tools.
  • Greenlight
  • FamZoo
  • BusyKid
Teen checking accounts$013 to 17 years oldOffered by credit unions and banks, this is a joint checking account with the parent or guardian as a co-owner. There are usually fewer financial tools compared to prepaid debit cards.Teens who have a basic understanding of how to manage their money.
  • Chase First Banking
  • Alliant Credit Union Free Teen Checking
  • Capital One Money
Digital account$0+Usually available for any ageFintech and bank partnerships offer digital accounts that operate similarly to a checking account but with robust features and strong digital banking tools.Parents who want a free account with tools that help kids learn basic financial literacy skills.
  • Copper
  • Mazoola
  • Step

Pros and cons of kids’ cards

Here are several advantages and limitations of getting your kid a debit card:


  • Parental controls. Keep track of your child’s spending online and cap the daily limit as you see fit.
  • Teaches money management. Budgeting and allocating funds are crucial money skills that kids can practice before jumping into an adult bank account.
  • Develops responsibility. With chores and allowance features, you can teach your child how money works, how to be responsible and appreciate the value of every dollar they earn.
  • Encourages savings and giving. Utilize savings and charity buckets to emphasize the importance of helping others and delaying gratification to achieve a savings goal.
  • Restricts large purchases. Accounts for children generally have much lower spending limits than adult accounts to prevent your kid from going on a shopping rampage.


  • Not good for large purchases. Accounts for children have much lower debit card spending limits than adult accounts.
  • Cash reload fees. A few cards for kids, like FamZoo, charge a fee for loading cash onto the card. If you or your kid want to fund your card with cash frequently, look for an account like Till that doesn’t charge this fee.
  • Doesn’t build credit. Compared to adding your teen as an authorized user to your credit card, most debit and prepaid cards won’t help your teen build credit. But accounts like Step Banking, which leverages secured loans, can help teens establish it.
  • Might encourage spending. While learning how to budget, spending wisely and thoughtfully saving are all part of the learning process, arming a kid with a debit card may encourage them to spend. It’s a good idea to utilize parental controls to monitor and potentially limit spending as needed.

Are debit cards for kids safe?

Yes, debit cards for kids are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). That means the US government guarantees the money in your account. Most kids’ cards also come with parental controls to help prevent overspending and purchases at non-kid-friendly merchants.

They also offer real-time notifications for purchases and allow parents to set spending limits or store restrictions. A debit card also won’t impact your teen’s credit history as its not reported to credit bureaus. Instead, it helps kids learn how to budget, save and spend responsibly.

How they protect kids

Kid debit cards help develop healthy money habits with a parental safety net. Here are five ways they keep parents in control and safeguard kids’ hard-earned cash.

      1. Lock/unlock cards. Most kids’ cards have security features that allow you to lock and unlock the card if it goes missing.
      2. Extra protections. Some cards, like the Greenlight Max debit card, offer extra security features such as identity theft, cell phone and purchasing protection.
      3. Attached to spend accounts. Kids’ prepaid cards have separate spending and savings buckets to keep your funds separate. So if your child’s card is stolen, they’ll only have access to the funds in the spending account.
      4. Virtual cards. Kids’ debit cards like Till Financial have optional virtual, contactless cards. These cards have no monthly fee and are a good option for parents who don’t want to worry about their kid losing a physical card.
      5. Fraud protection. If your child’s debit card gets lost or stolen and is then used by someone else, most card issuers will reverse any transactions you can prove are fraudulent.

How to compare kids’ cards and accounts

To help you find the best account for your family, here are some considerations to keep in mind:

      1. Fees. While most kids’ debit cards are notorious for monthly fees ranging from $4 to $10, there are plenty of free debit cards to choose from.
      2. Parental controls. Most cards send you notifications every time your child spends and let you lock their debit card if necessary. A few, like Greenlight and GoHenry, go beyond this to let you control how much your child spends at certain stores or with specific spending categories like online shopping.
      3. Financial education features. Many cards, like Greenlight and GoHenry, include interactive tools like quizzes, videos, games and short articles to help your child learn responsible spending and saving.
      4. Interest. Prepaid cards for kids rarely offer a way for your child to earn interest. Instead, they offer a way for parents to pay interest to their children. On the other hand, teen checking accounts, like Capital One Money, let your kid earn interest through the bank.
      5. Reloading options. Consider how you’ll move money to your kid’s card — e.g., direct deposit, cash deposits, bank transfers, and so on — and choose a card that supports these methods. Some prepaid cards — such as Greenlight — allow for instant transfers to your teen’s card. Otherwise, transfers could take two to five days.
      6. Daily transaction limits. Make sure your child is aware of their card’s daily withdrawal and purchase limits — especially if they’re traveling.
      7. Allowances and chores. Nearly all kids’ debit cards let you automate allowances as weekly, biweekly or monthly payments. They also typically offer a chore feature, giving your kids a chore list that they can complete to earn money.

Compare kids’ card fees and features

Debit cardMonthly feeAssign choresFinancial quizzesInterest or BonusParental Controls
Greenlight$4.99YesNoUp to 5% savings boostYes
BusyKid$4 ­— billed annually at $48, or $49.74 with debit or credit card fundingYesNoNoYes
Current teen banking$0YesNoNoYes
Axos Bank First Checking$0NoNo0.1% APYNo
Chase First Banking$0YesNoNoYes
Mazoola$0 for 12 months, then $4.95/month after thatYesNoNoYes
Alliant Credit Union Free Teen Checking$0NoNo0.25%No
Till Financial$0YesNoNoYes
Fidelity Youth Account$0NoNo0.01% APYNo

How old do you have to be to get a card?

To get a debit card, minors will need a parent or legal guardian who is at least 18 years old. Although there are exceptions, most prepaid cards don’t have age requirements and checking accounts require kids to be at least 13 years old.

How to sign up

You can open most debit cards for kids online. But you’ll need to open a kids’ checking account as a joint account between a minor and an adult. When signing up for a kids’ debit card, the application will ask for the primary accountholder’s information as well as a few details about the child:

      1. Parent’s government-issued ID
      2. Parent’s Social Security card
      3. Child’s birth certificate

How much should I deposit in my kids’ account?

It’s up to you, as most kids’ debit cards don’t have opening deposit requirements. However, there are deposit limits to watch out for. For instance, FamZoo allows your child to keep up to $5,000 in the account, and the maximum deposit amount a day is $2,500. Check the fees and limitations attached to your kid’s debit card before you deposit money.

Alternatives for your kids or teens

If you’re not set on a comprehensive debit card for your child, here are some other options to consider, depending on their age:

      1. Kids’ savings accounts. Help your child get a jump start on their future with a kids’ savings account. Most offer competitive APYs and low fees and minimum deposits. They’re a great option for any age.
      2. Custodial accounts. Uniform Gift to Minors Act (UGMA) and Uniform Transfer to Minor Act (UTMA) accounts like Acorns Early are a type of investment account that holds the funds for your kids until they become adults.
      3. Credit cards. You could add your child to your credit card as an authorized user. This could help them build their credit and learn financial responsibility, but beware of the risks that come.
      4. Educational savings accounts. A 529 savings plan is a good option if you want an account that can help cover college expenses, such as tuition and room costs.
      5. Cash. Your kid can start storing cash in savings jars and classic piggy banks as they start their savings journey.

What’s next for kids’ debit cards?

Kids’ debit cards are becoming increasingly popular, with more accounts emerging. Currently, we’re seeing more accounts considering investment opportunities in not only cash but also cryptocurrencies. Three examples of these include:

      • Strive Piggy Bank. This physical, $149 piggy bank syncs with cryptocurrency wallets and features an interactive screen that displays your kid’s balance in both Bitcoin and USD. The piggy bank is powered by an app that lets you give your child crypto as a gift or for completing chores. Strive plans to support multiple crypto wallets in the future, but it will only support Coinbase at launch. Pre-order one now for free shipping worldwide.
      • KidCoin. This blockchain-based digital wallet is designed to help families manage their finances. It can hold traditional currency and cryptocurrency, and it’s slated to include connected debit cards for parents and kids. It will offer allowance management and account monitoring features. Your kids can also earn micro-rewards for saving money.
      • Step. This kids’ bank account and card allow teens to open a stock or crypto investment account. Kids younger than 18 will need a parent’s permission to get started, then they can start investing in fractional shares of stocks, ETFs and crypto with as little as $1. Step offers crypto investing through its partner Zero Hash, which supports major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Go to site