How can a parent teach their kid about finances and the value of money? Some parents give kids an allowance or a way to earn money by doing chores. However, this doesn’t mean they’ll learn the value of money, or how to manage money. Give them a Greenlight debit card in addition to chores and things change.
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What is Greenlight
Greenlight is basically a reloadable prepaid debit card that’s funded by parents. Parents link the debit card to their existing checking account, and transfer money to it.
A Greenlight debit card not only helps parents teach kiddos about money management, but it’s also a way for parents to reward or pay kids for doing chores, getting good grades, birthday gifts and more
Why should kids get a debit card? Since kids learn best by doing and experiencing things rather than watching, the best way a kid or teen to learn avoid the pitfalls of credit card debt and finances is to start with managing their own money.
A debit card is a fantastic tool for kids to learn about finances because they learn to spend only what you have. As opposed to being an 18 year old who gets their first credit card and spends money you don’t have. This is why I absolutely love the idea of Greenlight debit card for kids.
Enter Greenlight Sweepstakes – Win $1000
Finances, debit or credit card management and investment aren’t taught in schools. And budgeting, which is a crucial part of financial stability, is taught very briefly in schools. So the job of teaching kids finances are left to parents.
According to an article from Lending Tree about the average credit card debt in 2021, Americans owe “$807 billion across almost 506 million card accounts“. Credit cards can be a money pit if not used right.
Greenlight is a valuable personal finance tool that educates kids about investing, saving money, cash back, rewards and spending (depending on the plan chosen however).
How does Greenlight work?
Greenlight works by giving parents the ability to give kids a reloadable prepaid debit card instead of cash.
Rather than giving kids or teens cash for chores or an allowance for example, parents instead load the Greenlight debit card.
The Greenlight debit card is just like an adult’s debit card, and can be used by kids to buy food, games, clothes etc.
One of the advantages to using Greenlight is that the child gets to control their money, creating a sense of maturity, independence and responsibility.
However, as a parent, you have full control of how much they spend and where. The Greenlight app allows the parent to track expenses approve or deny purchases and determine where money can be spent.
There’s no kid age restriction to use Greenlight. Kids age 13 year and younger can get a Greenlight debit card
Greenlight debit card Reviews
I always look to see what reviewers say about something I’m considering. Reviews from the Google Playstore shows Greenlight app has been downloaded over 1 million times. As of the writing of this post, its been reviewed by over 14,000 people, and has a great rating of 4.2. Knowing that you can’t please everyone, this is a pretty good rating.
Though the reviews show the app is great, most complains relate to app glitches, and having multiple kids to manage within the app. It seems that the main search to fix issues is to reach Greenlight customer service because that’s the only way some glitches can be fixed ( [email protected]).
Personally, they’ve been very responsive to my questions. I’ve reached out to support a couple of times. The last time I reached out I got a call back from an agent and a follow up email. Maybe they’re tweaking the customer service department.
Greenlight Free for 1 month
If you want to try Greenlight debit card but you’re not sure if you’d like it, they have a 30 day free trial. No commitment and you can cancel anytime.
Use the Greenlight trial period as an opportunity to see how useful the debit card is for you and what your kiddo or teen gets out of it.
I recommend to try it free and if you wish later order a custom debit card. No need to order fast shipping. Additionally, I suggest you don’t tell your kid the debit card is coming (like I did). It took about 5 business days to get it, and every day waiting for it was an impatient ordeal for my kiddo.
$10 Free Bonus
If you decide to keep Greenlight debit card after the trial period, a $10 bonus deposit is added to you account when you sign up with this link. No code needed.
- Parents have control over where and how much spending
- Parents receive instant transaction and balance alerts
- App lets you use rewards in exchange for chores or good grades
- Automatic transfers
- Kids & teens don’t have to carry cash or borrow your credit card.
- Its not cheap.
- App can be glitchy
- Most complains state customer service can be slow to response
- Learning curve on parents end
Is Greenlight worth it?
Greenlight is more than just a debit card that parents control. It also helps kids learn the value of saving money and the concept of cash back earnings. These are key aspects that help consumers pay less for things we need or want.
With Greenlight debit card kids are learning to save and manage money at a young age, and getting ahead of their peers with financial saviness.
By financial saviness I mean saving outside of the traditional savings account, which typically pay peanuts on investment.
Today, savvy consumers also save with cash back and rewards programs.
Additionally, kids also get to learn about a card’s rewards program as a tool for saving money. Greenlight Savings Reward program pays 1%
Parents who sign up for the Greenlight Max plan earn 2%.
Greenlight Plan & Fees
Greenlight has 3 plans. Greenlight, Greenlight + Invest, and Greenlight Max.
- Greenlight – $4.99/month
- Greenlight + Invest – $7.98/month
- Greenlight Max – $9.98/month
There’s also an additional $10 fee to get a custom debit card. The Greenlight custom debit card is basically your kid’s photo on their debit card. This is a nice feature to have if you have multiple kids using Greenlight however.
There’s also additional fees for expedited shipping. Talis Tip: Opt for the regular 7 – 10 business day shipping to avoid fees.
All the plans give full parental controls, core financial tools, educational tools. With the Invest plan, Greenlight has the option to invest in stocks with an investment platform.
For parents enrolled in the Greenlight Max plan kids earn 1% cash back on purchases made with their card.
Greenlight max has all the above plus identity theft protection, cellphone protection and purchase protection. Additionally, customer service is readily available, as it also comes with priority customer support. The Greenlight Max credit card is black, giving it the “top tier look” debit card.
Starting with the basic plan, kids get introduced to key financial vocabulary and concepts that will come in handy as they get older and become financially smart young adults.
Greenlight $30 Referral Bonus
New Greenlight app users can get $30 promo code referral for a friend that signs up. Everyone that signs up gets Greenlight free for 30 days as well as $10 after the free trial There’s no “Greenlight referral code” to share. Instead there is a Greenlight friend referral link. Sign up with this link to get started.
After signup be on the look of for contests and other deals
Greenlight Cash Gifts
As kids get older they prefer cash gifts instead of toys. Birthday coming up? Just share your child’s gifting link with your friends and family.
Greenlight limits cash gifts to $100 however. The person gifting can also choose where the child can spend the money or if they want the cash to go to their savings account. The ‘gifter’ can even choose if the cash is to spend it at a select store.
Select store to use Greenlight include PS4, Starbucks, Steam, Amazon to name a few.
The cash gift can be sent via text, email or print. To add the cash gift to your kid’s Greenlight account simply add the redemption code to the Greenlight account.
Overall I find Greenlight debit card really teaches kids the value of money by giving them hands-on experience with managing money. When paired with doing chores or school grades as an incentive, Greenlight can be an excellent financial educational tool that takes the headache out of getting kids to do their chores.
No matter what you decide about Greenlight, my advice is to not wait until kids turn 18yrs old to give them a credit card. That’s a recipe for debt disaster as you can see by today’s high credit card debt statistics.
Teaching kids the value of money at a young age is priceless. Try Greenlight Free for a month. There are no contracts. If you don’t like it, simply cancel.
Hope this helps you be a savvy saving family, TaLisSome graphics made with Canva.
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