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Using Prepaid Cards To Tame Your Kid’s Spending

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Cassidy Stewart

It’s a mother’s dream: a simple financial tool that teaches your kids how to make smarter decisions with their money, and saves you money, too. For Cassidy Stewart of Las Vegas, that tool is a prepaid card.

Stewart loads the allowances of her 16-year old daughter and 10-year old son onto prepaid cards she obtained through USAA. Then it’s up to her kids to decide how to spend their money and to make sure it lasts throughout the month.

In addition to knowing her kids are learning good budgeting skills, she’s able to keep her budget in check. “It saves me tons of money because instead of handing them $20 bills every time we go somewhere, they have to use their own money,” she explains.

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Check Your Credit For FreeStewart pays for her children’s basics, like school clothing. But if they want to go to the movies or the mall with friends, her kids know they’ll have to foot the bill themselves. “It teaches them responsibility,” she says.

She first tried using a prepaid card with her daughter and it worked so well she got one for her son. It’s working great for him, too. “He’s making better decisions,” she explains. “He thinks about how much he wants something and if he can afford it.”

It’s even resulted in unexpected generosity from her daughter. “She’s taken me to the movies (with her own money),” she says.

I met Stewart at the recent Women’s Money Conference in Las Vegas. She told me she’s an avid learner when it comes to finding better ways to manage her money. She hopes to pass along as much financial wisdom as possible to her children. Smiling, she says, “I always try to learn and (then) teach my children.” It sounds like they are off to a great start.

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