We Swap Review – FREE Card, Smarphone App & Multiple Currencies

We Swap

FREE CARD PLUS NO CARD FEE

Initial Thoughts

Great customer support on a multi currency card that can be used anywhere in the world. You simply pick the currency for the trip and load it onto the card. Use the app to monitor your purchases, much safer than cash.
  • Free Card
  • No Monthly Fee
  • Multiple Currencies

Pros

  • Multi Currency
  • No Monthly Free
  • Free Card

Cons

  • Can Be Slow With Delivery

Overall Rating

Website: weswap.com
Country: United Kingdom
Support: tel: +4420 30536610 | Chat Support | Web Form
We Swap Reviews

uAccount – A Quick Review – What’s It Like?

Most of what we have written about on the site has been about pre paid debit cards. However there are people out there that are over 18 and most of the debit cards we have reviewed on this site, they aren’t eligible to apply for. Enter uAccount, in this uAccount review we will put it to the test and see if it’s all that.

uAccount

FREE CONTACTLESS CARD & FREE TO SETUP

Initial Thoughts

uAccount is an excellent addition to the basic bank account scene. It has all the features you could wish for. Contactless card, smartphone app and an exciting reward scheme.
  • FREE Setup
  • No Contract
  • FREE Card

Pros

  • uPoints - Earn 1 Point For Every £1 Spent
  • No Monthly Fees Option
  • FREE Contactless Card
  • FREE Sign Up
  • No Credit Checks
  • Cancel Anytie
  • No Contract

Cons

  • Over 18's Only

Overall Rating

Website: uaccount.uk
Support: email: via online form
uAccount Reviews

One of the primary reasons that people need a basic bank account is down to have bad credit. This used to be less of a problem than it used to the way technology has made basic bank accounts a lot more accessible.

The smartphone and tablet revolution has really helped this industry take off as there was a reluctance from the big banks to offer these kind of services, as they struggle to make money from them.

We’ve already seen how smartphones and debit cards can help teenagers manage their finances, so it’s interesting to see if the same technology can transform this area of the finance industry.

How To Get Started

It’s fairly easy to sign up, just hard over to the uAccount website and fill in a few details. It takes about five minutes to  complete and within a  fewof days, you will receive your contactless card in the post.

A couple of features to call out:

  • You won’t be credit checked
  • You can apply if you have bad credit
  • The card is FREE
  • The banking  app (Money Manager)  is FREE

What Are The Charges?

So whilst it is free to get started as with most things these days, there will be some charges for using the account. This can be done either in a Pay As You Go way or as a monthly fee.

Pay As You Go

If you elect for the pay as you go way you will be charged for using certain features of the card. They are as follows:

  • ATM Withdrawal Within The UK – £1 Per Transaction
  • ATM Withdrawal Outside Of The UK – £1 Plus 3% Fee
  • Dormancy fee – if the service isn’t used for 60 days then there is a £1 per month charge
  • Any standing orders or direct debit, incur a charge of £1 per transaction
  • Extra Accounts Cost £1 Per Month

£5 Per Month

If you decide to go for the £5 pay monthly option the charges are as follows:

  • £5 Per Month Administration Fee
  • ATM Withdrawal Within The UK – 50p Per Transaction
  • ATM Withdrawal Outside Of The UK – 50p Plus 3% Fee
  • 2 Extra Accounts Are Available Free Of Charge
  • Any standing orders or direct debit, incur a charge of 50p per transaction

£10 Per Month

If you decide to go for the £10 pay monthly option the charges are as follows:

  • £10 Per Month Per Month Administration Fee
  • ATM Withdrawal Within The UK Are Free
  • ATM Withdrawal Outside Of The UK – 3% Fee
  • 5 Extra Accounts Are Available Free Of Charge
  • Any standing orders or direct debit, don’t incur a charge

Once the account is open, it can be used like and other bank account, so things like paying your salary,  pension or benefits  into the account are possible.

 

 

Go Henry Review

I have been a user of Go Henry for a few years now, when I say me, I mean mainly my kids have used the service. The concept of the product is quite straight forward. You register on their website, they send you a debit card in the post, you load money onto the card via the app or website and your child uses the card to buy the things they need.

Go Henry

2 MONTHS FREE - PLUS FREE CARD

Initial Thoughts

Go Henry Card ticks so many boxes and there is a very good reason they are the market leader. It has all the features you could want and it's been essential in helping us educate our kids.
  • 2 Months FREE
  • FREE Debit Card
  • Market Leader

Pros

  • Parental Controls
  • Free Card
  • 2 Months For Free

Cons

  • Not The Cheapest Product

Overall Rating

Website: gohenry.co.uk
Country: United Kingdom
Support: tel: 0330 100 7676 | email: [email protected]
Go Henry Reviews

Pocket money has come a long way since I used to count the coppers each Saturday when I went to my Grandmas house. As I have been using the service for a number of years I thought I would create a simple website, to help share my experiences.

Hopefully you enjoy my Go Henry Review but of you feel like I have missed something out, then please feel free to comment below and I will add it into the review.

Basic Information

It’s an amazing tool that has helped us to educate our children about money, and how to be responsible with it. So much so that we thought we would put together a blog to help other parents and to share our experiences.

It’s a smartphone app, website and contactlass VISA debit card, that helps parents teach their children and teenagers how to manage their finances.

The cheque is now virtually unused and buying things with cash is on the decline. I wonder if our children will be the first generation to use electronic money systems, more than cash? The difficulty is that spending on plastic and microchips can easily lead to unmanageable amounts of debt.

This is where the debit card has really helped us as a family and why I wanted to write several Go Henry Reviews, as I believe they are helping to provide financial education to our children, in a fun and practical way.

As a parent of two children aged 10 and 12, I feel I have a responsibility to prepare them to manage their finances. GoHenry has a website with full reporting and a simple to use interface for setting up the parameters for each child.

I can easily set up controls and allowances and they can only spend what I permit them to spend. They can also earn extra pocket money, I simply add it to their account using my smartphone, at the click of a button.

If your child or teenager has a smartphone, tablet or iPod, then they can also access the smartphone app. The app contains a list of tasks or household jobs that they can perform to earn extra money.

The app also shows them instantly where they have spent their money and what they have left to spend.

How Much Does It Cost?

The great thing is that it’s free for two months. If you sign up through our website. Then it’s just £2.99 per month thereafter.

There are no other charges for using the card within the UK, free to transfer fund via the bank. To top up the card via a debit card incurs a 50p charge but the funds are available instantly.

Summary Of Charges

Nobody likes signing up to something and then finding out there are hidden costs and fees. After all we are dealing with a product here for handling your child or teenagers money.

Here is a summary of all the charges:

  • Initial Card Is Free
  • First 2 Months Free
  • £2.99 After 2 Months
  • £2 For Using A Cash Machine Abroad
  • 2.75% International Usage Fee
  • 50p To Load From A Debit Card

Other than the charges listed above everything else is covered in the monthly fee that they charge.

Hidden Charges

There is no overdraft facility with the card and therefore no overdraft fees. We have tested the cards and when you make a purchase your child or teenagers account instantly updates.

You can be confident that when your child or teenager uses the card, they cannot spend use it elsewhere if there are insufficient funds in their account.

All the charges below are fully published on their website so whilst they are not hidden, they can lead to additional charges over and above the £2.49 per month.

Pocket Money Apps

There are other pocket money apps that do a similar job, so it’s only fair when creating this site and writing all the reviews that I also take a look at other similar products.

I have found it to be the most feature rich, but there are cheaper alternatives if you don’t require all of the features.

Others Equivalent Services

There are other products that are similar  that you can try, I have also written about Pockit and Osper on my blog but here are some equivalents:

App Download

The Go Henry App is probably the easiest way to manage your account and what your child can and can’t use the card for. From the app you can set savings goals for your child and see the balance on the account. The card can also be blocked within the app as well as whether or not the card can be used online, at a cash machine or in shops.

The makers of the product also sends you an alert whenever your child or teenager makes an in-store purchase or withdraws money from a cash machine. If they lose their bank card, then at the click of a button the card can be blocked, either by you or your child/teen.

The following controls can also be put in place:

  • Weekly spend limits
  • Single Spend Limits
  • Cash Machine Limit
  • High Street Use
  • Cash Machine Use
  • Online Use

Go Henry Card Designs

Available On Google Play

I am an Apple iPhone user but if you are on Android like the Samsung phone then you can get the app from the Google play store and it has all the same features as the Apple iOS version.

I can’t really offer an opinion as to what the Google Play version is like as I have never used the app. If someone has used the Google Play version and they would like to write a review for me I am more than happy to publish it on the site.

Grandparents

A grandparent can get a card on behalf of a grandchild. It’s not necessary to be the legal guardian of a child. So long as the person who is applying for the card is over 18 years of age. They have also introduced a relative feature where a parent can send another relative a unique link.

If the relative clicks on the link and registers then they can send a gift and see what tasks your child has been set. This is a great way for the whole family to get involved and encourage your child. ​

As a security measure the link is only valid for a set period of time and then it expires.

What To Do With A Lost Card

The good thing about the blocking feature is that if your child is anything like mine they are forever misplacing things. The block can be put in place temporarily via the app and then if the card is genuinely lost, it can be reported and a replacement card sent out.

If the card is genuinely lost then you can call the Lost Card telephone number and get a replacement card sent out. To order a replacement card the ​number is 0330 100 7676, there is a fee for a replacement card which is £3.99.  The same is true if the card is damaged.

It’s an amazing tool that has helped us to educate our children about money, and how to be responsible with it. So much so that we thought we would put together a blog to help other parents and to share our experiences.

My goHenry Card Reviews

Before making my decision to sign up with the card I read numerous reviews but at the time struggled to find one that went in to enough detail. This was the main reason for building this website as I wanted to make sure that I shared the benefits of using the card as a parent. There are numerous reviews out there now so it’s less of an issue.

What I have learned over the past three years

Time flies by and when I first started to use the card my eldest son Isaac was 10. Now he is 13 and in the second year of high school.

We load his card with his bus fare and lunch money. He can decide to ride his bike to school instead and take sandwiches and therefore keep the money.

Hopefully this is helping to teach him to be responsible with his money, if there are ways you can save, then it’s a good thing.

It has worked that well we will probably do the same with our younger son Jonathan.​

What My Kids Like – Card Designs

An addition that they added quite recently was the ability to customise the card.  The original card design was a little boring, so the fact that the card can now be customised adds a little bit of personality.

A new card design can be ordered through the app should you wish to update your existing card. There is a one off cost of £4.99 for the new card but there are some amazing designs to chose from. Your child can easily inject their personality into their card which makes it a lot more fun for them.​

There are animal designs to choose from, this include a pug, kitten, monkey, hamster, horse, emu to name just a few. Should your child be more sports orientated they can choose a basketball or football design.

Card Designs

There are also funky patterns if your child has a creative personality or just the ability to have a plain card in there favourite colour.

It’s a welcomed addition and nice to see the company making their product more appealing.

How Does It Work?

How does it work you may ask, quite easily. There is a smartphone app, a website, parental controls and a contactless debit card. You simple load funds in to you child’s app and they are free to use the card however they want, so long as how it works complies with the parental rules that you put in place.

Is It A Bank Account?

When you start a blog about a subject you tend to get asked a few questions about the product. I am more that happy to help where I can so please feel free to email me.

I have been asked several times is it a bank account? Although not technically a bank account, it is pretty much like a bank account because it offers all the same functionality and when it comes to children’s banking, they actually offer more. Which is why when you do a search for goHenry bank account reviews you will see lots of comparisons between the two.

One thing that is worth mentioning though is that your money deposited isn’t covered by the FSA Compensation Scheme.

This is a government backed scheme whereby up to £85,000 of your money is covered should something happen to the bank or building society.

As the makers of the product aren’t a bank they deposit all your money into a NatWest account. This is covered by the FSA, so should NatWest go bump the money is covered. Should the creators go bump under the terms of being a VISA operator, it means that your money is protected by NatWest bank and they would return the funds.

So from a security point of view it’s as secure as any other financial product on the market.

Other Options

There are other options that we have tried out and tested which we have also included in the blog. Hopefully or Go Henry or Osper blog post will be of some use to you.

To summarise Osper always seems to be catching up to but they are gaining ground quickly and it’s a reasonable alternative.

Card Charges & Cost

In addition to the monthly fee there are a number of additional charge for using the account. I have summarised these in to a table for you. They are very similar to the charges that your bank would issue.

Overall I don’t think that the additional charges are unreasonable and are mainly there because of the fees banks charge for international transactions.

The only fee that will effect you if you are based in the UK is the Debit Card loading fee which is currently 50p. This can easily be avoided by topping up your account by bank transfer.

If you think that the prices that Go Henry charge then we have listed some other options for you to take a look at.

These are as follows, Osper, Pockit and Nimbl.

Referral & Refer A Friend Scheme

If you sign up via our website we have an amazing offer of two months for free. If you sign up via their website they offer you a month for free, so it’s worth getting the additional month for free as this will give you the chance to try it out properly before deciding whether or not it’s for you. 

To get started simply click the link below:

It doesn’t  cost anything to get started and you can always cancel should you decide it isn’t for you.

Parent Account Login

It has a parent account login for the app. This enables you as the parent to login and configure the different options. As a parent you can set the spending limits on each child’s account and configure where the card can be used.

Parent Account

Daily Tasks

As the parent you can also create daily tasks that your child can complete to earn more pocket money.

Tasks List

Conclusion

There are cheaper alternative products on the market if you’d like to read more about these then take a look at Osper, Pockit or Nimbl.

The biggest thing I have discovered when taking a look at the competing products, is that they either lack the features of Go Henry or they contain charges for things like withdrawing money from a cash machine.

These hidden charges aren’t ideal really and could lead to your child losing a large proportion of their spending money in fees. For this reason I give Go Henry a 5 star marking and give it a thumbs up. You can trial it for 2 months for free, this gives you the opportunity to explore the product and see if it’s the right fit for your family.

DISCLAIMER – THIS IS AN INDEPENDENT WEBSITE WITH NO OFFICIAL CONNECTION WITH THE CREATORS OF THE APP.

Student Debt In The UK

Student debt is at an alarming high. Statistics have shown that in 2017 currently in the UK the average amount of debt for each of the graduates is £32,220. Some of the UKs graduates will be in a lifetime of debt, as they will never earn enough to pay it off.

The biggest source of the debt comes from the tuition fees and the interest that gets charged on the loans. Some the tuition fees are as high as £9000 a year. Factor in the interest charged on these loans and you will quickly seen how the amount quickly adds up.

Originally the idea was that the debt doesn’t have to be repaid until you start earning a set amount. Also the debt would be written off by the time you reach the age of 30.

In the end students have to now settle that this is no longer the case and so therefore they are left to repay the whole debt, some will be for the rest of their lives.Many student suffer even more when after starting their course, they decide to make a switch, this affects both the fees and their living expenses.

For some students they don’t get a job immediately so they don’t have to start repaying and sometimes they do get a job but they have to wait a while before they start paying back the loan, so therefore while they are not able to do so, their interest is rising.

Because of this many have decided not to attend because they are able to see from their family members and friends what they are going through with repaying these loans.

Just to more insult to injury that Universities are continuously raising the prices of their fees.Anxiety of not being able to pay these tuition fees are affecting students and causing many not to place their real focus on learning. The students are actually pleading to the government to reconsider the fees but it seems to no avail. You would think that the Government would be doing all they can to see what they can do to eliminate these issues however studies show that the government believes that this is the correct thing to be doing!

Does the government know there is also a future generation that is coming from this same generation who will be tied up in debt forever?When we look at these issues then we all can agree that grants are way better than these student loans that were said to be in place to help but is rather causing more bad than good. Now, one also has to blame the students that cause more debt on themselves that what could be avoided.

Like the ones who have to change courses because they recognise in the middle of the course that this was something that they didn’t want to do or they do not like it.

Before starting the course do your research before you actually go ahead and start the course. For the Parents who just listen to what their children say they want to do and not go through the necessary steps to ensure that this was the right course for them.

Knowing that the fees are so high you also have to learn to budget to ensure that you are able to make the payments and its always wise to save ahead, so there are financial companies that gives you the opportunity to save for the child, until he or she is a certain age then the money will become accessible to them.

In getting this money which you have saved, an interest is accumulated on it over a period of time so therefore you have something starting off with.

The amount saved should even cover a whole year or two of their university education. Another piece of advice for student is to apply for Student Aid and get a job to help finance these tuitions fees. Working and studying can be hard but once time is managed properly then it will work for the greater good. Get as many scholarships as you can. Remember that you will never have to pay a scholarship back. There are hundreds available to you from different sources and utilise them as best as possible.

The more you are awarded the less you’ll have to pay in student loan and even if they are small, every little bit counts.Become an intern. Many internships are voluntary but you also have those that comes with a salary. Now while you are doing this, you are not just earning an income but you are also building up experience. By gaining experience you will give yourself a better chance of getting a job once you graduate.Avoid getting a credit card as much as possible. Credit card companies tend to target University students because of course they believe you can easily pay your tuition and pay them back. Remember, if you are not on time with these payment, you are only tying yourselves more in debt more than you could ever imagine.

Always write down your expenses because budgeting is very essential and being able to pay bills on time. Being organised is always the way to go and one will find that it makes life so easy. Write down every bill, money spent and all you have spent daily, weekly and monthly. Expenses paid on food, clothes and hanging out. When everything is visible then you can be aware of the extra you have to spend.Its recommended that you buy your own food. Avoid going out for dining, buy your own groceries and prepare your own meals. Not only is this healthier but it cost way less.Get your text books used.

Books are a very huge part of university expenses whether you believe it or not. There are a wide variety of places that you can purchase used text book from, one of those places are online on amazon.co.uk or ebay. ​

Most book stores have a used section where textbooks can cost way less than the original price. Because they are used, automatically the prices have to be reduced. Make good use of this as much as you can.Another great and probably one of the most important advise is for parents to start early when it comes to helping your child learn how to budget. If you read our Go Henry Review blog post, you can find out about a debit card and smartphone app that can help you to build financial confidence with your child.

Being better with money, can only help you child when they start their University course.

Nimbl Card Reviews

I am a big fan of Go Henry which is why I started this blog but other similar products have emerged since I started the site which offer similar functionality. You can check out my Osper Review here but I have written a Nimbl Card Review to see how it compares against the others.

Overall Rating SIGN UP

Go Henry

2 MONTHS FREE - PLUS FREE CARD

Go Henry Card ticks so many boxes and there is a very good reason they are the market leader. It has all the features you could want and it's been essential in helping us educate our kids.

  • 2 Months FREE
  • FREE Debit Card
  • Market Leader

I am a big fan of these types of products and in 2016 it was reported that 77% of all sales where made on cards rather than cash. So we are seeing a downward trend in cash being used to make purchases.

So whilst giving your child pocket money in the form of cash is a good way of teaching them to manage their money, is it time to switch to electronic money so they can learn to tackle the challenges these money systems bring?

Go Henry vs Nimbl

I have put together a Go Henry vs Nimbl comparison chart so that you can easily see the difference between the two.

Go Henry

Nimbl

Price Per Month£2.49£10 Per Year
Free Trial2 MONTHS3 MONTHS
Withdrawal FeeFREE0.49p Per Withdrawal*
Card Usage FeeFREEFREE
Dormancy FeeFREE99p per month
Overseas Withdrawal£1.50 Per Withdrawal
Echange Rate Fee2.95%
Card Cancellation Fee£5.00 per card
Replacing Lost, Stolen or Damaged Card£5.00 per card

 

The first cash withdrawal on the Nimbl card is free.

The Card Design

Nimble Card

I really like the design of the Nimbl Card it’s bright and vibrant and stands out but doesn’t look too childish either. They don’t offer the ability to design your own card or customise it in anyway. I am not sure if it’s needed for now as they only launched the product in 2016, so I am guessing there are other features that need adding first.

The Signup Process

Signing up for the card is really easy, you visit their website nimbl.com and fill in basic details like your name, address phone number and the name of your children that will be using the card.

It’s really easy to do and there is nothing complex about it. There is noting to pay up front and the card is free to use for 3 months.

The App For Tablet

One of the common features that these prepaid debit card companies that are aimed at kids all seem to offer is an app.

It makes sense really and like the others Nimbl offers a dedicated app for both Android and Apple iOS devices. The Apple version of the app can be downloaded from here and the Android version of the app can be downloaded from here.

In terms of using the app it’s really straight forward. Just login using the email address and password that you setup when you created the account.

When topping up the card for the first time you have to do it via the website. So you will need to use the browser on your mobile phone or visit the website on your computer to make the initial deposit.

Once you have registered your card for the first time you can then top up via the mobile app.

You administer the card via the website as well as the app if you go to the website on your mobile or tablet.

If you decide to go down the app route, there is no charge for the app and it is really simple to use.

nimbl app

All these services work in the same way, the parent makes a deposit and then decides to distribute the funds to  each child.

Everything is clearly laid out and it’s straight forward to use. There is an option to add a photo of your child and one of yourself as the parent if you wish to customise the app.

Pocket Money Options

You can transfer funds from your parent account to the child account via a “Quick Transfer” or setup a weekly or monthly pocket money amount.

This is done by clicking on the name of your child and configuring the amount of pocket money you would like that child to have and how often you would like them to get it.

nimbl pocket money

There is a statement view so you can easily see what has been spent and where it has been spent.

Again pretty much all of what can be done on the app can be done on the website.

Partental Controls

The parental controls can be configured on each child’s card are are really easy to set up.

Nimbl Spending Controls

The options available are:

  • Allow Cash Withdrawals
  • Control Where The Card Can Be Used (Online or Offline)
  • Set A Daily Limit
  • Set A Monthly Limit
  • Set A Weekly Limit

This functionality is what sets cards like this ahead of the main high street banks. As none of the high street banks offer this functionality.

It may be just a matter of time before they do but I can’t see it happening anytime soon.

Nimbl Card Reviews Conclusion

I like the simplicity of the card which probably make it more appearing to older children. Go Henry allows you to create tasks that a child can complete in order to earn more pocket money

What I am not a fan of however is the number of charges the card has. Trying to educate your child about finances is tricky enough, without explaining to them the small print charges.

The most problematic one I can see is the charge for cash withdrawals. On that basis I would possibly just disable the ability to withdraw cash on the card.

Bank Accounts for Kids

There are different options when it comes to getting a bank account for your kids. It’s tempting to go to the main stream high street banks but they tend to only offer only limited accounts.

There has been an emergence of Smartphone Apps recently that are linked to a pre paid debit card. In many cases we have found this to be a better option. As they tend to come with a contactless card it’s a good way to get your child used to managing electronic money systems.

There are different options when it comes to getting a bank account for your kids. It’s tempting to go to the main stream high street banks but they tend to only offer only limited accounts.

There has been an emergence of Smartphone Apps recently that are linked to a pre paid debit card. In many cases we have found this to be a better option. As they tend to come with a contactless card so it’s a good way to get your child used to managing electronic money systems.

Cash Is King…. For Now

Cash is still the primary way that most people pay for things but year on year it’s in decline. Prepaid debit cards like Go Henry, Osper and the like allow your child to withdraw from UK cash machines.

This is great news as it’s not an either or option when it comes to making a decision between choosing a bank account for your kid and a smartphone app.

For me it’s getting your child in to the habit of checking their finances on a daily and weekly basis. Learning to manage a budget and whether or not you are paying in cash or on card, it’s the discipline that comes with it that it the key.

The Difficulty With Card Purchases

Part of the struggle when you pay for everything on a card is that it’s hard to know when you have overspent. The good things about apps like Go Henry and Osper are that you can’t overspend on the card.

If your child has a smartphone they can have access to the app and then keep track of their spending.

Best Credit Card for Students

While college students need credit cards for various reasons, the most important reason is to built and reinforce a positive credit history. If handled in an improper manner, a credit card can have a negative impact and can lead to an overwhelming burden of debt.

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Go Henry
2 Months FREE
FREE Debit Card
Market Leader
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2 Months FREE
FREE Debit Card
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Pockit
No Monthly Fees
No Contract
3 Additional Cards Per Account
Only
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uAccount
FREE Setup
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FREE Card
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£0

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£0

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As a student, it is necessary to choose a credit card that is easy to manage. Furthermore, you should restrain yourself from overspending and always ensure your balances are settled in time. The best credit cards for students in the market offer minimal fees, yet come with student-friendly benefits that will also help you to build a positive credit history.

 

Useful Credit Card Tips For Students

Most of the cards that we review on this website are prepaid, so whilst they can be used wherever there is a Mastercard or VISA sign. You cannot get into debt with these cards.

However, should you require a credit card which does allow you to run up debt, then here are some useful tips for you.

Credit card companies offer many products and each comes with unique features. As a student, you should choose a card that is easy to manage. This will help you to have fewer conditions to adhere to, and you will easily avoid expensive mistakes.

Once you get a credit card, you may get tempted to spend higher amounts than you would without one. Using the credit card sparingly helps to minimize the temptation. Even if the company offers to increase your limit, do not accept the offer unless you can settle the statement balance each month. Only use the card for emergencies, to pay for hotel charges, taxicabs and other services that are necessary.

If the card is kept safely, you can avoid making losses through identity theft. Before making any payment online, you need to verify the security level of the website. Additionally, monitor your credit history through ordering the freely available annual credit report. In case of any unusual activity, you are advised to report the case immediately.

Limiting yourself to a single card helps you to develop the habit of receiving and paying your bills on time. Choose a general Visa or Master Card for a departure store card, since these cards are applicable anywhere. Once you prove a good track record of settling payments responsibly, you can now apply for an additional card.

Although this may not sound like the best ideas, it is advisable to close the account if you are certain you will not get enough money to pay the credit card balance. If you know you will not be responsible with the card, simply close the account to avoid ruining your credit score. A credit default will damage your credit score faster than closing the account can do.

Minimum payments are just a small percentage of what you owe and this can be tempting if you are running low on cash. It is vital to remember that any balance you carry over accrues interest and will definitely cost more in the long run.

Over-the-limit fees are costly and can prove daunting to eliminate. Due to the way billing cycles are organised, you might think you are settling your balance below the limit, but finance fees will take it back. The best decision is to maintain your charges within 10 to 30 percent of your credit limit.

Roostermoney Review

RoosterMoney, formally known as Roosterbank, is a useful piggy bank website allowing children to learn the values of saving pocket money, gifts and allowances towards goals and targets. Parents can set up roostermoney.com accounts for their kids and teach children the benefits of wise money management and the importance of setting up regular savings plans to achieve targets. Each of the pocket money apps that we have reviewed on this website, all have their own unique angle and RoosterMoney is different from Go Henry, Osper and Pockit. In this RoosterMoney review we take a look at the differences.

The RoosterMoney Dashboard is easy and interactive, allowing children to quickly learn how to allocate their savings to goals so they can buy the items and products they really want with their own saved money. You can access most facilities on the RoosterBank Dashboard, however, your child will have all the responsibilities for allocating money to all the goals and savings plans that are set up on the system.

The Details

The RoosterBank service was set up in the UK in the year 2012 and designed by parents and children to provide a great savings and money management too, with a variety of useful options. Kids cannot set up their own account with RoosterBank, it’s up to parents to sign up for the service, however, once the account is active the child can be added. You can add more than one child to an active account and each child has access to a dedicated RoosterMoney dashboard, with a host of features. RoosterMoney gives kids ideas and advice on what to do with their savings and a variety of interactive games options and challenges are also targeted towards waking up their financial instincts.

RoosterMoney is only available to children and families resident in the United Kingdom and the site provides secure access for members. From Spring 2016 the site is allowing access for other family members, so it will be possible for you to add grandparents and another parent to the site. This way adding “Boosts” to increase your child’s savings will become much more simple and allow your child to reach savings goals more quickly. There are a number of reasons to add Boosts to your child’s savings, these are listed in the Boost Edit Reasons screen option. Setting up pocket money allowances and changing the allocated amount of money is easy to amend via the Settings page of your RoosterBank Dashboard. Strapped for cash parents are sure to appreciate the fact that RoosterMoney savings are virtual money, therefore, it’s not necessary to make physical cash deposits into bank or savings accounts for your child. As the virtual piggy bank monies are accumulated, your child gets to see just how much cash is being held for him/her. If you are and about and your child wishes to spend some of his/her savings, it’s simple to change the virtual totals in the RoosterMoney account by using “Remove” to create a one off debit from the running total.

Goals and The Safe

The Goals options on RoosterBank is a way to create savings goals. Parents or kids can set up goals and kids allocate a portion of savings towards them. Children are allowed a maximum of six goals at any time and this valuable option really does teach kids the value of money and how savings accumulate into larger sums over a matter of time. Parents can edit and delete goals from the interactive Dashboard, however, it’s important for the child to allocate the relevant sums of money. Once target goals have been achieved, it’s just a case of arranging to buy the item for which your child has saved monies. RoosterBank may offer purchase options at some point in future, however, this is not a capability on the site at this moment.

The Safe is another way for your child to allocate savings, this is a default account which can be combined with real savings accounts to give cash savings that earn interest. It’s easy to edit The Safe and amend the total savings, so when you transfer cash into their savings accounts you can take The Safe back down to zero balance, however, your child is the only person with the abilities to add sums of money to the total balance. Of course, parents with password access to their child’s RoosterBank Dashboard can easily add money to The Safe, but it does take away some of the responsibilities that you should be giving to your children.

Bank Statements

Just like any normal bank account, the RoosterBank service provides regular statements giving details of all piggybank savings. The statements are concise and list sources of money so it’s easy to check on who has credited cash to your child and the relevant dates. The simple Statement layout allows your child to pick up financial management in full, giving details of all debits and credits and sums allocated to the different Goals on the account.

Setting up RoosterMoney

Setting up a RoosterBank account for any child is simply a matter of downloading the app from Apple or the Google Play Store. Once the app has been downloaded, just follow all the on screen prompts and your child will soon be taking his/her first steps towards financial independence.

Of course it’s possible to save money at home in a similar manner to the way RoosterMoney operate their system, piggybanks, jars and tins are useful for saving coins or notes, while setting up spreadsheets or graphs detailing goals is always a possibility. There’s no need to bother going to the trouble with RoosterMoney, however, this interactive financial service for kids is a great resource, allowing your children to learn how to handle their pocket money and birthday or Christmas cash gifts in a responsible manner. The benefits of not physically handing cash over until required will be pleasing for any parent and kids will find their savings goals a challenge they will want to meet. Interactive games and the possibility of joining the RoosterMoney community make the site as much fun as possible, while teaching all the rewards that come with adopting a prudent financial attitude.

To sign up to RoosterMoney click here

Pockit Prepaid Mastercard Review

In this Pockit Prepaid Mastercard Review, we take a look at some unique features that this card has to offer. Much like Go Henry and Osper it is also suitable for teenagers.

Pockit

ONLY 99p PER CARD

Initial Thoughts

One of the things that we like about Pockit is that it comes with a really low quarterly fee. You simply sign up for 99p and within a couple of days the card arrives in the post.
  • No Monthly Fees
  • No Contract
  • 3 Additional Cards Per Account

Pros

  • 10% Cash Back On Purchases
  • No Monthly Fees
  • 99p Quarterly Fee
  • 99p Sign-up
  • 3 Additional Cards Per Account
  • No Credit Checks
  • Free Card Transactions
  • No Cancellation Fee
  • No Contract

Cons

  • No Parental Features

Overall Rating

Website: pockit.com
Country: United Kingdom
Support: tel: 020 3322 9170 | email: via online form
Pockit Reviews

Pockit Credit Card? No Actually, Pockit Debit Card

Although Pockit carries the MasterCard logo it is tempting to think that the card is a credit card, when in fact it is a prepaid MasterCard and online account. The difference between a credit card and a prepaid MasterCard, is that you cannot go into debt.

Another good thing about a prepaid card is that you aren’t credit checked, so if you have a poor credit rating and need to be able to make payments online, then this is the perfect card for you.

With Pockit the main card holder has to be over 18. However, additional cards can be given to teenagers who are 13 upwards. This makes it an option for parents who are wanting to give their children some financial freedom, and to try and teach them how to use electronic money systems wisely.

If you have children or teenagers who are away from home, you can give them one of these cards and then deposit on their behalf.

Although you have to be 18 to sign up for a Pockit card, additional card holders only have to be 13 years upwards.

Card Fees

There are other cards similar to this that I have reviewed. However the creators of Pockit decided to opt for a low cost model where you get charged for doing certain things with the card, plus a 99p quarterly maintenance fee.

Here is a list of the charges for using the Pockit card​

It’s always free to

  • Spend with your Pockit card online or on the high street
  • Deposit money online by debit card
  • Deposit your money by bank transfer
  • Cancel your card

It’s 99p to

  • Get your Pockit card
  • Deposit money at PayPoint
  • Withdraw cash from UK ATM’s
  • Add additional cardholders
  • Get a replacement card

Overall I think the charges are reasonable and quite simple to follow. If you intend to withdraw cash then you face a 99p charge. Use it to pay for something and there is no charge.

When it comes to putting money onto the card, deposit from your bank or by using your debit card and its free. Use a PayPoint machine and there is a 99p charge.

If you are planning on giving the card to a teenager it possibly makes the card less useful for younger teens, and more appropriate for older teens. They will need to grasp an understanding of what they will and won’t be charged for.

I suppose as a parent you will be responsible for depositing onto the card, it’s possibly best to tell your teenaged son or daughter, not to use the card for cash withdrawals. This will help them avoid any unnecessary charges.

What about those fees?

All in all these fees are reasonable, use the card to pay for things, deposit using your debit card or by bank transfer, and there are no ongoing fees for using the card.

Cashback On Purchase

One of the great things about Pockit is that they offer cash back of up to 10%, simply from buying from certain retailers, using your Pockit card.

This is a great feature and very similar to the likes of Quidco and Top Cashback. If you aren’t familiar with Quidco and Top Cashback, then it’s a site that if you buy from your favourite online retailer through them, then you get back a percentage of the sale back in the form of cashback. The cashback is paid into a nominated bank account.

I have been a long time Quidco and Top Cashback and managed to earn of £3000 in cash back over the years. Given that I know how good Quidco and Top Cashback is, I like the thought of being able to use Pockit to do similar things.

The great thing about Pockit cashback, is that I don’t have to remember to go to another website first to earn my cash back. I just have to remember to pay using my Pockit credit card.

Below is a list of websites where you can earn cash back simply by using your Pockit card when you make a purchase.​

RetailerCashback Amount
JD Sports2% Cashback
Blue Inc7% Cashback
B&Q5% Cashback
New Look7% Cashback
Carpet Right8% Cashback
Halfords6% Cashback
Yours7% Cashback
M&S6% Cashback
18604% Cashback
Officers Club7% Cashback
ToysRUs6% Cashback
Virgin Experience Days8% Cashback
Bella Italia8% Cashback
Belgoo8% Cashback
Red Spotted Hanky2% Cashback
Cafe Rouge8% Cashback
BabiesRUs6% Cashback
H.Samuel10% Cashback
Earnest Jones10% Cashback
Greenwoods4% Cashback
Theatre Tokens4% Cashback
Leslie Davies10% Cashback
Mansize4% Cashback
Drink Supermarket6% Cashback
Storey Carpets8% Cashback

 

What I am liking about the cashback options that Pockit provide, is that is it a different way of approaching what seems to be a common issue. There is clearly a market for child and teen friendly debit cards.

Go Henry has an in depth thorough approach, with parental controls, to do lists and savings goals.

Osper takes a similar but more simplified approach than Go Henry does and Pockit has the cashback and a small quarterly maintenance fee of 99p

Choices in abundance

Go Henry, Osper and Pockit are all coming up with creative ways of providing electronic money systems, that children and teens can use.

Closing Thoughts

Overall I am enjoying using my Pockit Card. I have a login for my online account so I can keep track of what I spend. I am managing to keep the charges to virtually zero, by not using the card to withdraw cash, and depositing using my debit card or bank transfer.

I have also got another card for my oldest son. He is enjoying the financial freedom the Pockit card brings him. I have the added benefit of knowing that he can’t spend more than what is on the card.

Whilst the cashback is better than nothing, I would like to see more retailers being added. Other than two or three on the list above, there aren’t many that I would normally use.

 

Debit Card for Teens

There is some debate as to whether a debit card for teens is appropriate. It seems like the concept divides opinion somewhat. In this blog post I take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of plastic money and whether or not it’s suitable for a teenager to have a debit card. I also take a look at the alternatives.

2015 saw the launch of Apple Pay. Love Apple products or hate Apple products. The love hate relationship that people seem to have with this company, is not massively relevant to this blog post.

The only reason I mention it, is that when the worlds most profitable technology company does something, as someone who works in technology and blogs about technology, I tend to sit up and take notice.​

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If you don’t know what Apple Pay is, then allow me to take a few moments to explain. Apply Pay allows you to link your credit to debit card to your phone. Then wirelessly, or  contactless to use the proper term, I can pay for goods and services using my phone and my fingerprint.

​This is a massive step in the technology world. The smartphone has already took the place of the music player for most people. The late Steve Jobs, one of the founders of Apple cited in his autobiography, that one of the main reasons for the iPhone, was that the mobile phone could kill the iPod.

At the time, the iPod (Apple’s digital music player) was their number one seller. At the time it was generating the company most of its profits. I suppose to be innovative in business, you not only have to know what will grow your company, but potentially what can destroy your company.

Most consumers have replaced the iPod with the iPhone for playing music. Looking around most public places, the smartphone is the number one way people interact with one another.

Also over 60% of Google searches now come from mobile devices. So it seems that the mobile platform has replaced the PC for how people consume content on the internet.

​The Phone to replace cash?

So if we have replaced how we play music with a smartphone, how we consume internet content, how we email and interact with one another. It seems like the smartphone is more and more at the centre of our lives.

Apple Pay demonstrates and the last decade teaches us, that the smartphone has it’s eye on replacing cash.

We are a long way off yet though! Currently Apple Pay has a £30 limit but as I explained in my previous blog post, lots of smaller transactions can add up to a large amount, leaving you in financial hardship.

The retailer we are wanting to pay, must also have a contactless credit card machine, to accept ​Apple Pay. This is possibly another reason why it may take a long time for this concept to become more main stream.

So cash is here to stay, certainly for now. Let’s be honest, it will probably always be with us.

The problem our teens face

I had a relatively happy childhood. My teenage years were overall enjoyable. However, I am not sure I would want to be a teenager in a modern, always connected, always in contact world.

My oldest child has been asking for a smartphone since he was 8, so far I have managed to resist. Mainly on the grounds that he doesn’t have any practical use for a smartphone.

However, high school beckons next year and so the pressure to have something that “everyone else has”. Will no doubt begin.​

A phone also has the benefit that as a parent, I can keep in contact with my child. Especially as they enter a stage in their life where they want to explore more than the back garden or the street that we live on.

So given a world where a child can have a smartphone and pocket money from such a young age. We are seeing an emergence of companies like Go Henry and Osper, combine the two.

I get that for some parents, this is taking it too far. For many parents who’s children are aged between 8-18, (Go Henry and Osper’s target market), they were victims of a crash in the economy caused by debt.  Why on earth would we subject our children to such an horrendous thing!

My point is that whilst an economic cash does leave a sour taste in your mouth. Especially if you lost your job or home because of it. If lessons are to be learnt, they need to be learnt from a younger age.​

Despite the crash, you can still obtain a credit card at the age of 18. Without any proof of income! As a parent, I have took the decision to try and help my children, that when they get to 18, to understand the dangers of uncontrolled spending. That when they are legally responsible and I cannot prevent them, they have learned enough self control to not spend more than they earn.

My preteen has a credit card!

No quite the truth or that shocking. He does’t have a credit card, he has a prepaid debit card, that is linked to a smartphone app, that I control. He also has the ability to withdraw cash and be old fashioned.

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