What Is Starling Kite? 📖
Startling Kite is designed for kids aged between 6-16. It creates a space within your own bank account to give you greater control and visibility on child spending. You can transfer money onto your child’s Kite card within moments and use it to encourage responsible spending. Startling Kite is designed to teach children the value of money and the consequences of bad financial decisions.
How Does Starling Kite work? 👨🏫
Starling is one of many new digital banks that have sprung up during the last few years. It launched its new Kite debit card for kids in Autumn 2020. You can only set up a Kite account for your child if you already have a current or joint account with Starling. Kids can spend with their Kite cards once you have topped up their prepaid account. The service enables parents to see where money is being spent, and it comes with a range of parental controls.
You can set up a Kite account by opening up your Startling mobile app and heading to ‘Spaces’. You then need to tap on ‘New Space’ before selecting ‘Child Space’. You’ll then be able to apply for a Kite card and will be able to set controls. You can also set up a separate PIN. You need to activate the card in the app once you receive it. Expect the card to drop through your letterbox within around five days.
Key features of Starling Kite ⚙️
You’ll be notified every time a transaction is carried out. The notification will include details on how much money was spent and who the merchant was. Daily spending limits can be set, and you can block your child from spending money online or withdrawing cash if you wish. Blocking withdrawals can be helpful as it can prevent your child from spending money in the wrong places. Nonetheless, many merchants are already blocked. These include pubs and nightclubs alongside gambling venues and sites. Your child won’t be able to go overdrawn. All the can spend is money you have already put on their card.
How much does Starling Kite cost? 💷
Each card costs £2 per month. You won’t be charged for topping the card up or withdrawing money. You can top up the card as many times as you like, but the balance cannot go over £5,000.
The Starling Kite App 📱
Children don’t get access to their own app at the time of writing. This means you will need to tell them what their balance is. You can manage their account via your own Starling banking app. Starling say a kids’ app is on its way.
Is Starling Kite Safe and Secure? 🔒
Starling Kite makes it very difficult for kids to spend money on things you don’t approve of. You can stop cash withdrawals as well as online purchases, with various age-inappropriate merchants having been blocked. As you remain the primary account holder, any cash you add to your child’s account will be covered by FSCS protection. Starling is a fully-licenced bank.
Advantages of Starling Kite 👍
- Starling Kite offers various benefits to parents who are keen to teach their kids great money management skills.
- Many parents love the way it blocks unsuitable, inappropriate purchases.
- £2 per month is a reasonable rate for this service, though the costs can add up considerably if you have multiple children to cater for.
- Another big draw is being able to top up the card without being charged, and there are many useful parental controls to take advantage of.
- The ability to top up your child’s card instantly is also a big benefit, especially in emergencies when they are stranded away from home.
Disadvantages of Starling Kite 👎
- It could be argued that the service doesn’t do anything not already offered by many of the other child-friendly banking services on the market.
- You’ll also need to be a Starling customer yourself if your child is to use this service.
Starling Kite may not have the most exciting or distinctive features, but it remains a reliable and efficient option for those who want to maintain control of child spending. Many users are looking forward to the forthcoming app, which should clear up a lot of confusion for young customers.
Costs are in line with most kids’ debit cards on the market. One big drawback is that you need to be a Starlight customer yourself before you can provide your child with a Kite card. Many services on the market don’t require you to be an existing banking customer or become one. The service is much more likely to appeal to your kids once the app has been launched. This will also spare them the embarrassment of declined transactions.
The company is also proud of its environmental credentials, being a paperless bank which mainly depends on renewable energy. It describes itself as a “greener bank for a greener generation”. Parents can use the tools in their app to educate their kids about money and the benefits of saving. Another big advantage of these services is that the consequences of losing the cards are much less devastating than misplacing cash. If the card is lost or stolen, it can be deactivated right away. If you’re already a Starlight customer, there could be big advantages to obtaining a Kite card.