View Poll Results: Which One would you choose for your teenager?
The Allow Card 4 50.00%
The Mpower Account 4 50.00%
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Old 01-18-2007, 04:50 PM   #1
madametj
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OT: Which would you choose for your teenager? (update)
While I was online today I came across something called an "Allow Card" (link below). Its a debit card designed especially for teens so that their parents can put their allowance directly on their debit card and not worry about credit card over-spending. As I read about it, I remembered the telling me about something very similar at my bank called "Mpower" (link below). My mom says that she's ok with me getting a debit card and I like both of these but I really can't decide.

Which one do you like the most? Even better, which one would you get for YOUR teenager?

-The Allow Card by MasterCard. Parents load money on to my card from their credit/debit or checking account. Financial lessons available on the website. ($20 registration fee) edit: this card has no risk of overdraft charges since it is not linked to any account.

-The Mpower Account by Visa. Debit card/checking account linked to my already-existing bank account. ($2 one-time membership fee)

Both seem like they would make a good choice. Help me out, pleeeease
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Old 01-18-2007, 04:54 PM   #2
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uuuh $2 vs $20? i would take the $2. Check them for monthly fees though and any traps that may only be buried in the fine print.
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Old 01-18-2007, 04:54 PM   #3
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Can't you just get a debit card through your own bank? I got a visa check card when I opened a bank account and I didn't have pay a fee or anything...I'd probably go with the MPower account, though, if that was the only choice.
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Old 01-18-2007, 04:56 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Chrissie
Can't you just get a debit card through your own bank? I got a visa check card when I opened a bank account and I didn't have pay a fee or anything...I'd probably go with the MPower account, though, if that was the only choice.
She's too young.

Hm. Visa is accepted more place, and it's through your bank. BUT if it's linked to your account, you could overdraw your account instead of just having it declined.

Is the MPower registration fee for the card, or the classes?
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:02 PM   #5
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The Allow Card charges additional fees:

Quote:
A one-time activation fee of $19.95 plus $3.95 shipping will cover the application process, identity verification, account set-up, card issuance and shipping.

A monthly access fee of $3.50 per account a small price to pay for 24-hour access, NO OVERDRAFT FEES and the convenience of providing teen with a secured allowance and the ability to learn lifelong lessons.
The MPOwer account is actually a checking account with a Visa logo debit card. BUT your credit union does not charge any monthly fees.
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:05 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by cawthraven
Originally Posted by Chrissie
Can't you just get a debit card through your own bank? I got a visa check card when I opened a bank account and I didn't have pay a fee or anything...I'd probably go with the MPower account, though, if that was the only choice.
She's too young.

Hm. Visa is accepted more place, and it's through your bank. BUT if it's linked to your account, you could overdraw your account instead of just having it declined.

Is the MPower registration fee for the card, or the classes?
I think you're talking about the $20 one, which is allow. The fee is for the card. The lessons are free on the website (at least i think they are...) for members only.
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:05 PM   #7
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To be honest I'm not sure. I've never even heard of these. I think the Allow Card makes more sense for a young teen because it is NOT tied to their bank account.. or so it seems based on what you wrote. It might be easier to learn to budget and save for a rainy day and not worry about blowing an entire bank account which is entirely possible with young teens.

And the difference between $2 and $20 is not that big a deal in the whole scheme of things. It's the card itself that's important in the long run.
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:11 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Compulsive
The Allow Card charges additional fees:

Quote:
A one-time activation fee of $19.95 plus $3.95 shipping will cover the application process, identity verification, account set-up, card issuance and shipping.

A monthly access fee of $3.50 per account a small price to pay for 24-hour access, NO OVERDRAFT FEES and the convenience of providing teen with a secured allowance and the ability to learn lifelong lessons.
AHA! i had a feeling they were hiding extra charges somewhere. I didn't even see the $20 fee on their website i read about it somewhere else!

I am reeally starting to lean towards the Mpower one. The bank is right down the street. All i have to do is ask my mom to upgrade my account for $2 and I'll be on my merry way. On the other hand, with the Allow Card its looking like $30+ in additional fees, an online registration and having to wait for the card to come in the mail. Plus Visa as cawtheraven said, Visa is accepted more than MasterCard.
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:14 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Jan in CA
To be honest I'm not sure. I've never even heard of these. I think the Allow Card makes more sense for a young teen because it is NOT tied to their bank account.. or so it seems based on what you wrote. It might be easier to learn to budget and save for a rainy day and not worry about blowing an entire bank account which is entirely possible with young teens.
Or in the case of my brother, older teams. He's 19 and has to have a line of credit on his account because he's overdrawn so many times.

I would do a LOT of research about both of these if I were you, because I've never heard of either of them.
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Old 01-18-2007, 05:15 PM   #10
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Quite frankly, I wouldn't allow either of those. I wouldn't want a teenager shopping online, which is the only reason I can see a teenager needing a debit card for (or just wanting to look 'cool' which is a stupid reason to get a debit card). Kids can go to a real brick & mortar store and use cash if they want to buy something. I just don't see the need for a debit card for children.
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