Halifax

Halifax child account review

A handy guide to children's current accounts and savings accounts offered by Halifax, to help you pick the right one for you and your family.

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As a well-established traditional bank, Halifax generally offers a comprehensive range of finance and banking products. Accounts for children and young people are no exception, and there’s a decent number to choose from.

In this guide we look at their features and functionalities, to help you figure out whether Halifax makes a good choice for your kid’s first experience with banking.

Compare bank accounts Halifax

Name Product Interest (AER) Minimum eligibility age Maximum eligibility age Daily cash machine limit Representative example Link
Smart Spending Account - Age 11-15
Halifax
0%
11 Years
15 Years
£500
More Info
Halifax
0.5%
11 Years
17 Years
£500
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More Info
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What type of child accounts does Halifax offer?

Halifax has one current account for kids and teens aged 11 to 17. It’s a pretty solid product for day-to-day spending: It has no monthly fee, can be managed from the app, includes a debit card that can be linked to Apple Pay and Google Pay, and even pays a small interest on your balance.

Its main catch is that you can’t open one until your child turns 11. If you want to start earlier than that, you might want to look at prepaid cards for children instead, which are available to children as young as six and usually come with some kind of parental control features. You can compare them on this page.

If it’s a savings account you are after, Halifax lets you choose between three options, which are all meant for an adult looking to save for the benefit of a child:

  • A standard easy-access savings account. You can open one for a child aged 15 or under, and it allows you to withdraw the money anytime.
  • A regular saver. You can pay in a certain amount every month for a year. The interest rate is very competitive but withdrawals are not allowed.
  • A junior cash ISA. Halifax is one of the few banks offering this type of account, which guarantees that the interest it accrues is tax-free. It belongs to the child and money can only be withdrawn when they turn 18. We’ve explained a bit more about how they work and the rare cases in which they might be worth it on this page.

You don’t need to be the child’s parent or guardian to open an easy-access or a monthly saver savings account for them, but you will need their permission. You can only open a junior cash ISA for a child you have parental responsibility for.

How to open a child account with Halifax

Halifax allows you to open all savings accounts for kids online. The only exception is if you are looking to open a junior ISA for a kid who does not live at the same address as you, in which case you will need to visit a branch.

As for the current account, you will need to do it in person. You can start online if the child is 13 or older, but then you will need to visit a branch to complete the application. For children up to 15, Halifax will require both their own ID and a proof of identity and address of the parent or guardian. If you are 16 or 17, you can apply for yourself and you will need to bring your own ID and proof of address.

How much does opening a child account with Halifax cost?

It’s free, and there are no monthly fees. For the current account, card payments and cash withdrawals are also fee-free, both in the UK and in the EU, which is pretty rare for a traditional bank. It means that the child or teenager can use their card to make payments in Europe without being charged any extra fees.

That’s not the case for the rest of the world though, so foreign transaction fees are still something to be aware of when travelling overseas.

Is opening a child account with HSBC safe?

Halifax is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and deposits are protected by the FSCS. So a child account is pretty much as safe as an account for adults from that point of view.

Overdrafts are not available for under 18s, so you don’t need to worry about debt. Halifax does not offer any special parental controls on its current account, so giving your kid the debit card equals trusting them with the money in the account. Cash withdrawal limits are not especially low either (£500).

Pros and cons of using Halifax for a child account

Pros

  • Competitive interest rates on savings accounts, and different options to choose among.
  • The current account is almost entirely fee-free, including for transactions made in Europe but outside the UK.
  • Children can manage the account via phone, online or on the app.
  • Children’s savings accounts can be opened online.
  • Children can pay with their phone thanks to Apple Pay and Google Pay.

Cons

  • No account options for kids under 11, and no savings accounts meant for the kid to use.
  • Little parental control options.
  • For the monthly saver account, withdrawals are not permitted until the account expires one year later.

Alternatives to children’s bank accounts

If a child’s bank account does not sound like the right idea, then there are other options available.

  • Prepaid cards
    As a parent you can purchase a prepaid card for your child. These are aimed for children aged 6 to 18. Parents can top up their child’s balance via an app, control where they shop and also can teach them about good money habits.
    Learn more about children’s prepaid cards

Verdict

Halifax’s accounts for kids and teenagers have a few features that make them stand out. Savings accounts offer competitive rates, are easy and quick to open online, and you can choose between different options that suit different needs. The current account is pretty standard, but has everything you need, and the lack of fee on euro transactions can be a deal breaker if, say, your family likes its Spanish holidays.

You can’t get an account for under 11s, although that’s not unusual for a traditional bank. Finally, there’s no savings account that is meant to be used by the kid themselves and linked to their current account, something you might find yourself wishing for if you are trying to teach your kid about money and saving habits.

Get started by visiting Halifax’s website and applying for an account. If you have read this review and decided that these accounts are not the right choice, you can also discover other bank accounts for children and the option of prepaid cards for kids.

Frequently asked questions

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