Current Visa Debit Card Review
One of the biggest challenges in raising kids is trying to help them learn how to manage money. The Current Visa Debit Card is making this a bit easier for parents. We’ll tell you how in our review.
- Parental controls
- Mobile app
- Schedule allowances
The Current Visa Debit Card can be one way to help kids learn how to manage money when plastic is involved. This Visa debit card is accepted almost anywhere and comes with robust parental controls. Here’s what you need to know.
Current offers debit cards and personal checking accounts for those who are interested in a simple product that allows them to work toward financial goals. Current is especially aimed at teens who are learning to manage money.
The debit card can be used by parents to easily pay an allowance, as well as help them monitor spending. Teens can use the Current debit card to make purchases, set savings goals, and learn good financial habits.
If you’re looking for a debit card that can help your teen learn about money management, the Current Visa Debit Card offers some helpful features:
- Send money instantly to family and friends: Transfers are easy and instant between you and your teens.
- Schedule allowance in advance: You can also schedule allowance so it arrives on a specified day.
- Direct Deposit: It’s possible for your teen to receive their paycheck directly to the card, as well as making it easy for you to send them money as needed.
- Mobile check deposit: Take images of checks and add them to the account.
- Savings goals: Teens can set saving goals and divert some of their money toward those goals. Additionally, Current offers round-ups so teens can boost their savings.
- Donation options: It’s also possible for teens to choose causes they care about and send money directly to charities.
- Parental controls: You have the ability to monitor your child’s spending, checking on the account 24/7. It’s also possible to set spending limits and block certain stores or categories.
Current has also launched a method of reimbursing teens immediately for gas station holds placed on their cards. That way, instead of seeing their account restricted, and losing access to the balance, teens can maintain access to their money.
With the Current Visa Debit Card, you don’t have to worry about a ton of fees. You pay an annual subscription fee of $36 per teen. You can activate a 30-day free trial, and if you decide to keep using the card, the entire fee is charged automatically each year going forward. The only other fees charged by Current are a $3.00 international ATM fee and a 3% international transaction fees.
There are also charges for replacement cards and paper statements, but, for the most part, the Current Visa Debit Card is remarkably reasonable when it comes to fees. There aren’t even fees for ATM withdrawals (although there might be a fee from the bank).
All you need to do in order to sign up is to enter your phone number and Current will text you a download link. Once you have that, you can connect your bank account. You’ll need your bank routing and account numbers, as well as identifying information. You need to provide your Social Security number and may be required to upload a copy of your driver’s license or passport.
Current is only available to U.S. residents right now. Once you have your bank connected and you’re ready to get started, you can add a teen, and a debit card will be sent to the address you provide.
Current prides itself in providing top-notch security. Your teen won’t have access to your banking information, even though you’ve connected your account. Additionally, each person connected to the card will have a separate login.
Current uses bank-level encryption and the card comes with an EMV chip to further protect the card’s information. It’s also possible to lock the card if you think it’s been lost or stolen. If you get the card back, you can unlock it. You also get access to Visa’s fraud liability protection.
Finally, you can set up the account to receive spending notifications so you can see what your teen is up to. It’s possible for you to set limits, and there are no overdrafts on the card–your teen can’t spend beyond what’s available on the card.
You can download Current’s app on iPhone or Android phone. The app is intuitive and easy to use. Teens can see what’s in their account, monitor their spending, and track progress toward their goals all from the app. This makes it easy for them to visualize their money, so they can learn how to make better financial decisions.
The app is also easy for parents to use. You can get the mobile support you need to stay on top of your teens, teach them lessons, and send money using the app.
To reach someone, you send a request via the contact form on the website or on the mobile app. You enter your details and someone will contact you. There is a help center with searchable topics. There you’ll find a number of helpful articles that might answer your questions without the need for you to send an email request.
Current also has a customer service hotline that anyone can call into.
Pros and Cons
- Parental controls. The biggest advantage of the Current Visa Debit Card is the way it allows kids to get a feel for managing money. The fact that you can monitor your child’s spending — and even block them from making purchases from specific stores — is a great advantage.
- Mobile app. It’s also a plus that the mobile app is so easy to use.
- Schedule allowances. Being able to send money to your teen immediately, or pre-schedule an allowance is a big convenience.
- Spending limits. You can set your own spending limits on your teen, and the card can be used anywhere that accepts Visa. Having that peace of mind is a big pro of this card.
- Account limitations. First of all, realize that this isn’t a complete bank replacement in some cases. You’ll run into the following limits with your current account: $500 maximum daily ATM withdrawal, $2,000 maximum daily purchases, $5,000 maximum transaction amount, $10,000 maximum combined balance on all cards. This can be problematic if you have multiple teens using different cards, or if you want to use the personal checking as well as order debit cards for your teens. Keep this in mind as you make your plans.
- Annual fee. Another downside is the annual fee of $36. While this is lower than some other debit cards, and while you don’t have to worry about some of the other fees commonly charged by prepaid debit cards, that’s still a con.
If your bank allows you to open a basic free account for your teen, that might be a better alternative than paying for a debit card. My own bank allows me to have a joint bank account with my teenage son, and he has his own debit card with no overdraft. I don’t have to pay any fees, and he can monitor his account using Mint, without seeing my banking details.
There are other debit cards aimed at teens, and they do come with some attractive features.
For example, the American Express Serve has an account fee at $6.95 per month. However, that fee can be waived by depositing $500 per month in the account. The American Express Serve also offers a cash-back option that can be attractive, but it has a higher monthly fee and charges fees for reloads.
If you want to compare other options, take a look at our list of Best Debit Cards for Your Teen. As far as debit cards for teens go, Current is a pretty solid choice, with good features for the low-fee experience.
The Current Visa Debit Card is a good choice for parents who can’t get a joint account with their teen, and who want a way to help their teen learn money management.
If you have only have one or two teens, it can be cost-efficient. However, if you have several teens, you might be better off with Akimbo, which allows you to set up an account with one-time fee per card and no ongoing annual or monthly fees. However, Akimbo charges fees for PIN transactions and balance inquiries, so things can add up.
If you want to monitor spending and work with your teen to help them manage their allowance and other income, the Current Visa Debit Card can be a great option.
The Current Visa Debit Card is a feature-rich card aimed at teens. With the parental controls and Visa branding, this card allows teens freedom and flexibility to spend under your watchful eye. With the low annual fee of $36, and few other fees to worry about, the Current Visa Debit Card can be a good value for the right family.