Debit Card Solutions for Tweens and Teens

Show me the plastic! Parents discuss safe ways for Teens and Tweens to carry money.


Original Poster:

Would love to find a good debit card solution for our family, in particular for my 15-year old daughter. Neither she nor we parents want to deal with cash. She doesn't want to carry it around, we don't want to dole it out, but she needs to have money for day-to-day, for safety, and more. Anyone out there having a good experience with an easy, replenishable debit card? What bank? Ideally I would like to be able to use my phone app to transfer from my bank account to her card in real time.




Get a reloadable giftcard:

“I think you are talking about 2 different things. A debit card is like writing a check; the cash is instantly withdrawn from your checking account at the point of sale. I’m not sure they are the best thing for a teen as if the card is lost or stolen a person can do a good amount of a damage to your checking account before you realize its gone. also, Also, it doesn’t give you as much control over vetting purchases and controlling their spending. It sounds like what you want is essentially a re-fillable gift card (maybe more secure) that your daughter can use to carry around $100 or so and that she refills at your discretion. I would check with your bank or existing credit card company and see what they can offer.”


Find a bank that offers debits cards for teens:

“I have seen signs up at TD Bank that talk about special debit cards for teens. I assume you could probably load money onto it from your checking account (of course, I am also assuming you would have to have an account with TD Bank to do this).

“I needed to get my daughter a debit card before she went on a summer program, and I was happy with the one they offered at Chase, where I have my checking account. She has a no-fee card, and I see what’s going on with it and very easily move money into it on the website where I see my own accounts.”


About credit card functionality:

“Whatever you do - make sure it's got a VISA/MasterCard logo so it can be used at a point of sale and not just for withdrawing cash.”

“Just talk to your bank. They all have high school checking accounts that are free and come with a debit card. Link the accounts so you can manage the account from ATM or app. Whatever you do - make sure it DOES NOT HAVE a VISA/MasterCard logo on it. A pin-based card will prevent unauthorized users from draining your account if the card is lost or stolen and still can be used at a point of sale and not just for withdrawing cash.”


PSP Member recommended providers:


TD Bank



Further Reading from Park Slope Parents:

13 tips to protect your credit card

How do we teach kids about Money?

Allowance: Show ‘em the Money