When is it Too Young to Get Started with a Kids Debit Card?

When is it Too Young to Get Started with a Kids Debit Card?

According to Cambridge University behavioral researchers, parents can start teaching their kids about money from as young as 3 years old. As kids get older, they can build on these money skills to understand personal finance and smart ways to manage money. But at what age should you consider a debit card for kids? Many parents worry younger children aren’t prepared to handle the responsibility of a card, but want practical ways to build kids' money skills. When is it too early to get a kids debit card, and how do you decide your child is ready?

How old does my child need to be to get a kids debit card?

You can open a debit card for kids as young as 6 years old. Parents should look for a kids debit card that offers parental controls, card protection, and ways to monitor spending. These features help ensure your money and information stay safe as kids practice smart money decisions. A kids debit card can offer the opportunity to learn and let your child make mistakes while minimizing risk to your money.

When is it too early to get a kids debit card?

A Consumer Financial Protection Bureau report found kids can begin learning financial literacy as early as preschool. Start building the money skills your child needs to prepare them for a kids debit card from an early age. Continue building foundational skills with a card in stages, such as:

  • Personal accountability. Taking care of toys is great practice for taking good care of a kids debit card. 
  • Value of money. Help kids understand the value of money and how much things cost.
  • How cards work. Teach kids cards are not “free money.” Explain how funds are added and subtracted from an account.

Benefits of starting early with a kids debit card

While parents may worry about their child’s spending and the potential loss of a card, there are countless benefits to getting started with a kids debit card sooner rather than later. A card is an engaging way for kids to practice earning, budgeting, and spending their own money wisely. Use a kids debit card with parental controls as a way for kids to practice managing money early and build the skills they’ll use for life. 


GoHenry kids can build their financial education with Money Missions designed to teach kids money lessons as they grow. Check Missions Level 1 for younger children 6-11 years old and Level 2 for tweens aged 12-14.

Build financial independence 

Introducing your child to money lessons in stages is a great way to encourage financial independence. Parents can use the same approach with a kids debit card, helping kids learn good money habits as they practice. Start with basics and use tools like a kids debit card to grow your child’s money skills and confidence over time.


Use GoHenry’s debit card for kids and the fun, in-app education suite of Money Missions to teach kids how to make wise money choices early.

Written by Kristin Yarbrough Published Jun 12, 2022 ● 3 min. read