Inside content area, use arrow keys or tab to access content

Choosing a bank account for your child

Children can usually open a current account from around the age of 11. Operating a bank account helps children get used to the world of money, understand how interest works and appreciate the importance of budgeting.

When the child is under 16 years old, a parent or guardian are generally required to be with them to open the account or to apply for additional services and features.

To help children understand more about money, read our articles on how to educate children about money, and advice on how to use pocket money to help children learn about saving and spending.

Features and benefits of youth current accounts

Debit and cash cards

A youth current account may come with a contactless debit card to makes purchases online or in stores.

It may come with a cash card, allowing children to withdraw money from cashpoints. At age 16+, accounts usually offer higher cash withdrawal sums geared to older teenagers.

Most banks need parental consent to issue cards to under 16s and allow access to internet banking and mobile apps. This may be reassuring if your children are unlikely to limit their spending.

More than just a cheque book

Certain banks let young account holders set up payments. A few will even issue a cheque book. Mobile banking apps will allow them to check their balance or pending transactions and get zero balance warnings on the go.

Unlike adult current account, youth accounts don’t offer arranged overdrafts. This means that your child can only spend the money that is in their account.

Remember from the age of 18, youth accounts are typically transferred with the balance to an adult current account, unless otherwise instructed.

Earning interest

Using a child current or savings account is likely to give your child experience of earning interest. They will learn the importance of saving, as they won’t have access to credit.

If you want to learn more about our current accounts for 11-17 year olds, take a look at our Youth and Student Accounts.

But what about savings accounts?

Using a savings account can allow young people to save and earn interest separate to their current account.

Our instant access Child Saver is a variable interest account that can be opened by an adult to save for a child aged 15 or under.

Alternatively, you can open a Junior Cash ISA to make long-term, tax-free savings for a child under 18, accessible when they are 18.

Read our article for more information on child savings and investment options.