Checking account for children – useful or too early?

Do you still belong to the generation that received pocket money from their parents in cash? Or do you now only manage almost everything via smartphone app? The British fintech company Revolut is now offering a checking account for children and young people between the ages of 6 and 17. Digital pocket money, what do you think?

We have already reported here on Revolut’s offering and the associated banking app. Now the financial company is following suit and wants to get its customers used to digital payment at an early age. To go with this, it is offering an account for children.

This is actually a logical decision. Young people are coming into contact with the digital world at an increasingly early age. Having their own smartphone is standard for many young people as early as fifth grade. As a result, many young people now also manage most things in life digitally and via app.

Study: young people like to pay digitally

But are six-year-olds already capable of handling money that they no longer hold in their hands, but which is invisibly deposited in a checking account? A recent Allensbach study commissioned by the Initiative Deutsche Zahlungssysteme e.V. on payment in Germany at least suggests a trend. According to the study, 53 percent of 16- to 59-year-olds love to pay by card and/or smartphone. Only 24 percent of people over 60 also find it advantageous.

“Due to the Corona pandemic, we are currently experiencing that people of all age groups prefer to pay by card or smartphone for reasons of hygiene protection,” confirms Wiebke Schwarze, press officer at the German Savings Banks and Giro Association, the study results.

Wiebke Schwarze thinks that an account for children, such as those offered by the savings banks, is a good way to teach children how to handle money in a modern way. “In the end, however, it is up to the parents to decide individually whether they want to pay their children pocket money into their own checking account at an early age,” adds the press spokeswoman.

Knee-deep in overdraft excluded

Ultimately, it makes no difference whether children spend their last penny or empty their bank account. In both cases, the child learns that if he or she wants to have nice toys, then the pocket money should not be constantly spent on other things, whether cash or digital. In that case, the only thing that helps is saving.

“Savings banks offer accounts for children that grow with them. These include a savings account through to a checking account, which then includes an account card and can be linked to the Sparkasse app,” reports Wiebke Schwarze. “They work just as simply as a wallet. When the account is empty, no more purchases can be made. You can’t slip into the red.” In addition, the parents are still a kind of administrator and can, for example, determine up to what amount their child may withdraw money or whether this should be possible at the ATM or only in the branch.

Of course, such safeguards are also offered by the current account for children and teenagers of the British Internet bank Revolut. Parents can also set all the limits, such as the maximum amount of money that can be withdrawn per day. In the event of unusual transactions, parents automatically receive an e-mail so that they are always aware of everything their child is doing with their digital pocket money.

Going overboard therefore doesn’t work with the digital wallet either. If the child should have more difficulties with its own account nevertheless, parents can block the access immediately.

Account for children- Conclusion

A checking account offer like the one from Revolut can make sense for your children if you want to introduce your offspring to the digital world at an early age anyway. This can also help children learn how to handle money. After all, whether there is no more money in the account or in the wallet, the experience for the child is both disappointing and instructive at the same time.

If you think your children are not yet mature enough for an account when it comes to money, then you should continue to use analog pocket money for the time being. You and your children may consider the digital option at a later date.

Sources

  • Allensbach study(accessed December 17, 2021).