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Resources > Financial Literacy > Apple Pay for Kids—Everything You Need To Know

Apple Pay for Kids—Everything You Need To Know

Allowing your children financial freedom can help them develop strong money management skills early since they’ll be responsible for their spending and saving habits. However, giving them an allowance in cash can lead to irresponsible spending as you’d have less control over how and where your child decides to spend money. 

Luckily, most retailers nowadays take debit and credit cards, so setting your child up with a card of their own is a good way to let them make their purchases while still being able to track their spending. Alternatively, services like Apple Pay for kids offer these benefits without the commitment and risks that come with using a regular credit/debit card

In this article, we’ll show you how to set up Apple Pay for a child and provide additional tips on helping your child build a solid financial footing early.

What Is Apple Cash for Kids?

Apple Cash is a digital card stored in your Apple Wallet that you can use to send and receive money through iMessage and shop online, in stores, or in apps that accept Apple Pay. You can also set up the Apple Cash Family feature to give your child money that they can spend with their own Apple Cash card. When adding money to the Apple Cash card, you can either transfer funds directly from a bank account or use peer-to-peer payments.

One of the requirements for using Apple Cash Family is to enable Family Sharing on your Apple device so you can add children and other family members to your family group. You can only do this via your Mac, iPhone, or iPad if you’re the adult designated as the family organizer.

After you’re done setting up Family Sharing, your whole family can share app purchases, iCloud+ storage plans, and an Apple One subscription. Plus, you can:

  • Monitor your child’s spending habits
  • Manage their device using the Screen Time feature
  • Limit who your child can send money to
  • Receive notifications when they make transactions
  • Lock their account

The Apple Cash card works like any other card stored in Apple Wallet, but instead of charging your debit or credit card through Apple Pay, the Apple Cash card deducts money from the balance you put on it beforehand. This is especially useful for kids and teenagers who don’t have a debit/credit account yet.

How To Set Up Apple Pay for My Child

Apple Pay is only used to make payments, but you can connect it to Apple Cash, which allows you to send your child money safely and manage their spending habits. This will also let your child use their Apple Cash account to make purchases at retailers that accept Apple Pay. To get started, you must first create an Apple Cash account for yourself and use the same Apple ID you used to set up Family Sharing. Here are some of the requirements you must fulfill:

  • At least one member of your family group must be younger than 18
  • You must own Apple devices compatible with the latest version of iOS
  • You must sign in to iCloud on each member’s device using their Apple ID
  • Two-factor authentication must be turned on for each Apple ID
  • The region on each device needs to be set to the U.S.

Steps To Set Up Apple Cash

Here’s a step-by-step guide for getting started with Apple Cash:

  1. Open the Settings app on your Apple device
  2. Scroll down and choose the Wallet & Apple Pay option
  3. Turn on Apple Cash by tapping the button next to it
  4. Tap Apple Cash under Payment Cards
  5. Select Continue and follow the instructions on your screen

Once you turn on Apple Cash on one device, you can also use it on other devices where you’re signed in with your Apple ID.

Steps To Set Up Apple Cash for Kids

After you’ve added your children and family members to the Family Sharing group and created your Apple Cash account, you can set up Apple Cash for your child. Here are the steps to take: 

  1. Open the Settings app again
  2. Tap your name at the top of the screen and select Family Sharing
  3. Tap on Apple Cash and choose the name of the child you want to set up Apple Cash for
  4. Finish setting up your child’s account by tapping Set Up Apple Cash
  5. Follow the instructions on the screen

You may be asked to verify your identity by producing a valid ID card, Social Security number (SSN), or another identification document to finalize your child’s Apple Cash account setup.

Steps To Set Up an Allowance for Kids

Apple Cash also lets you set up a recurring allowance that your child can spend when using Apple Pay for kids. Here are the steps to enable this feature:

  1. Open the Wallet app on your Apple device and tap your Apple Cash card
  2. Tap the More button and then choose Apple Cash Family
  3. Under the Recurring Payments option, tap Set Up For and choose the name of the child you want to give recurring allowance to
  4. Pick the amount of each payment and the date you want payments to start and determine their frequency

You can also add a memo to identify the purpose of each payment, which is a great way to reward your child for doing chores or odd jobs and make sure they know exactly what they’re rewarded for.

Can a 16-Year-Old Use Apple Pay?

Yes, children aged 16 can use Apple Pay if they have a supported debit or credit card. However, if your child has no credit or a debit card, they can only use Apple Pay through the Apple Cash Family feature as long as they’re younger than 18.

When they turn 18, they can take ownership of their own Apple Cash account, in which case you’ll no longer be able to see their payment activity.

How To Help Your Child Establish a Strong Financial Foundation With Credit Building

While Apple Cash can help improve your child’s financial literacy by letting them keep records of their spending, it still doesn’t provide them with full financial freedom. Your child will only experience what it’s like to manage their own finances once they obtain a credit card—this will give them full control over their spending habits and allow them to obtain loans for bigger purchases like a house or vehicle.

Parents often try to help their children build credit by adding them to their credit cards since the CARD Act of 2009 prohibits issuing credit cards to anyone under 21. However, this approach comes with a huge problem—once you remove your child from your card, their credit history is lost.

The best way to overcome this limitation and help your child start their credit building journey early is to subscribe to a service like FreeKick. This platform allows your child to start building credit with your help as early as the age of 13.

FreeKick—The Best Solution for Credit Building and ID Protection

Provided by Austin Capital Bank, FreeKick is a combination of a deposit account and a subscription service that offers parent-sponsored credit building and identity protection services for your whole family. The credit building feature helps minors and young adults between the ages of 13 and 25 build credit with their parent’s help. Meanwhile, the identity monitoring and protection feature helps you protect your whole family from identity theft, and it covers up to two adult parents and six children.

Start Building Credit Early With FreeKick

An early start at credit building can help your child establish a good credit score and ensure a strong financial foundation. In fact, a strong credit profile can help your child save over $200,000 over their lifetime as they’ll be able to get financial breaks like better loan terms.

FreeKick offers parent-sponsored credit building for children as young as 13 to ensure your child has a timely start at building financial security. Here’s how to begin:

  1. Create an Account—Visit FreeKick.bank and choose a plan that best fits your needs and budget
  2. Set It and Forget It—Once the account is activated, your child’s credit will automatically start building over the next 12-month period
  3. Keep Growing—When the initial 12 months pass, you can either close the account and get your full deposit back or renew it and keep building your child’s credit

Keep Your Family’s Identities Protected With FreeKick

While it’s important to help your child build a credit history, keeping their credit profile safe from fraud is just as important since alarming statistics reveal that a child’s identity is being stolen every 30 seconds.

To help keep your whole family protected from identity theft, FreeKick provides a comprehensive set of ID theft security features for minors and adults. Here’s what the service includes:

Services for Adult Children and ParentsServices for Minor Children
Credit profile monitoring
SSN monitoring
Dark web monitoring for personal information
Up to $1 million identity theft insurance
Full-service white-glove concierge credit restoration
Lost wallet protection
Court records monitoring
Change of address monitoring
Non-credit (Payday) loan monitoring
Free FICO® Score monthly
FICO® Score factors
Experian credit report monthly
Credit profile monitoring
SSN monitoring
Dark web monitoring for children’s personal information
Up to $1 million identity theft insurance
Full-service white-glove concierge credit restoration
Sex offender monitoring—based on sponsor parent’s address

FreeKick Pricing

FreeKick offers affordable plans for any family’s needs and budget. Both pricing options include deposits that are FDIC-insured up to $250,000. Find the details in the table below:

FDIC-Insured Deposit AmountPlan Fee
$3,000$0 (Free)
No deposit$149/year

Assist your child in establishing a strong credit profile and protect your whole family from identity theft—sign up for FreeKick today.