The Two Minute Review
GoHenry is an awesome idea that’s well executed. This children’s prepaid card feels exciting to use and, while it has loads of tools and features, still remains pretty simple to use. This comes at a price though – £2.99 a month plus 50p every time you top up the account.
- 🙂 Fun and educational service and app.
- 🔒 Lots of parental control.
- 🌎 Commission free use of the card abroad.
- 🪙 Loaded with features like chores, gift links and “split the bill”.
- 💳 Customisable card.
- 💸 Monthly fees can add up if you have more than one child or are regularly depositing onto the card.
- 😡 Users have complained it is difficult to cancel the subscription fee.
- 💸 Money isn’t FSCS protected.
Ranked #19 of 25 personal current accounts in the UK.
What The Experts Say
“An excellent product and I like the fact that you can sign up for a free trial.”
“Overall, the best thing about using GoHenry was allowing Flea to see that blowing your allowance in 5 minutes on Amazon isn’t a great plan.”
What Users Say
GoHenry has a Trustpilot rating of 4.1 but here at The Grade we like to dig a bit further.
When you exclude reviews the company has itself invited and look just at organic reviews, the average score is actually 1.84. In terms of organic Trustpilot rating this means GoHenry is number 10 out of the 25 personal banks/current accounts we review.
At the last check, Smart Money People had collected 17,177 reviews which gave GoHenry an average score of 4.9 out of 5.
GoHenry in a Nutshell?
GoHenry is a prepaid debit card and for children (aged 6-18) and parents. It is designed to develop financial good sense in children in a controlled and safe way.
It was launched in 2011 by a group of parents who were keen to educate their children on how to use their money. Since then it’s grown to over 2 million users in the UK and US. They have raised over 13 million pounds through crowdfunding meaning that lots of their customers actually have stakes in the business.
Through the app, parents can monitor the spending of their children. As the card is prepaid and daily/weekly limits can be set on the account, the risk of financial mishaps can be limited.
How Do You Open A GoHenry App?
You can do this online or through their app. The app provides a free demo account so you can play around with either the parent or child version to see if it’s something you might be interested in.
The signup process only takes a couple of minutes. It will then take about a week for your child’s card to be delivered to you.
Once you receive the cards, you’ll need to log into the website or app to activate your parent account and the cards themselves. You’ll need to make a minimum deposit of £5 to start using the accounts. At this point you’ll be able to set your children’s spending limits, weekly allowance and tasks.
What Does GoHenry Offer?
You have a number of features through the parenting app such as:
- Full control over the card. You can set spending limits and block/unblock the card if you wish. You can also see all the transactions that are being made. You can also get notifications whenever the card is used or declined.
- Assign tasks with monetary rewards. These can be one-off or recurring tasks and can be used to make pocket money a reward rather than a right.
- Regular payments. You can choose to top up the prepaid card from your own account at regular intervals automatically.
- Instant money transfers. So you can get money to your kids if they are ever in urgent need.
- Giftlinks. Relatives and friends can be sent links to easily deposit money straight to your child’s card.
Through the child app you have similarly the ability to see a breakdown of payments and any task or chores set and also:
- The ability for children to set up savings goals within the app.
- In-app educational money videos for children.
- The ability to money into a saving pot to save up for something.
- Split the bill feature. This allows teenagers to split a payment several ways between themselves and their friends.
Other cool features include:
- Cool customised designs. You can control the design and name of the prepaid debit card.
- Integration with Apple Pay – but not Google Pay!
What Are The Costs?
GoHenry is awesome – but the main downside is the cost. There is usually a 30-day free trial but after that you are charged £2.99 a month per child which is taken from the parents’ linked bank account. You can also do one free transfer into the account each month after which each transfer is charged 50p.
A customisable card will also cost you £4.99.
ATM withdrawals are free.
Also, it should be noted GoHenry doesn’t pay interest on balances.
Is My Money Safe?
GoHenry isn’t a bank and isn’t protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). This would protect deposits up to £85,000.
However, GoHenry is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and holds your funds in a segregated Natwest account. This means in the unlikely event GoHenry went bust, your fund should be able to be returned to you from Natwest. This would probably not be as quick a process as with the FSCS.
Overall we’d advise keeping limited funds (maximum a hundred pounds) in your GoHenry account.
Can You Use It Abroad?
Yes, and it’s not too extortionate like lots of other banks! There are no fees applied for doing this and Visa’s exchange rate will be used without any commission added (which is not too far away from the genuine mid-market exchange rate). This is really cool.
We spend hours reading user comments to see what feedback people are giving. Here are some positive and critical comments that stood out to us:
I love this and so do my kids
You would be surprised how much a few pound here and there adds up. I didn’t realise till I added it up.
I gave my kids a weekly budget which was for thing they wanted, they always have everything they need. They could add to this by doing house work but the budget always went out the window (my fault) and I ended up spending so much more over the week.
Now they are in control of their own pocket money. The chores earn them extra pennies which can all be set up on the app. Different chores for different children and you can set the amount of pay for each chore. When chores are done they can be ticked off on the app. You can then either set to have this added to their regular pocket money amount or transfer as and when you want.
Loading your parent account is easy/instant and I like that you can transfer money back from the child account to the parent account.
If there is no money left then that’s it. Teaches them to budget and saves me a lot of money in the process. Card says No as my daughter put it.
They can also save for something that is maybe a bit more expensive.
App is so easy to use and your kids have their own log in so can check the remaining money themselves plus see what chores need doing to earn extra pennies.
Yes there is a monthly charge but so worth it and its clear what the charge is.
Great kids money awareness card
This has been a brilliant way to teach our kids the value of money: How and where to earn and spend it, keeping a check on their balance and what happens if you don’t complete your tasks.
The App is available on each of the parent & childs devices, login secured, and parental controls dictate how much and where your child can spend the money they’ve got. We use the Task function to reward help around the house and teach the kids ‘task and reward’ i.e. we go to work to earn the money that we spend on our debit cards and ATM machines: no task, no pocket money this week.
Other great features are quick transfers with a short note, card blocking, money transfers between the kids and our favourite the instant statement notification: when we’re in town and separate to shop it’s possible to see where and how much your child has spent within moments.
Only issue has been not receiving the reward for referring a friend.
Overall, highly recommend.
This app is good. But not as good as it could be. They have very slow updates on the app but the spend notifications rapidly go to your phone so its very weird that you have to open the app a few times in order to even see that you made transactions or added more money into the account. Sort of annoying but I’m sure thats easily fixable on their end.
The fees are too much.
How Does It Compare Against The Competition – Can I do Better?
GoHenry is ranked #15 of 25 personal current accounts in the UK (click to see full list).
Are there better current accounts on the market? We’re calling out the following accounts as excellent:
Chase has brought to the UK the kind of rewarding banking you normally only see in the states. We're hoping it starts a revolution on this side of the Atlantic. The digital experience is also first class and there is 24/7 customer support.
Remember to check out the Chase website for all the terms and conditions.
Currently if you switch to Nationwide they will give you £200, plus an interest free overdraft (credit check required). You can also get 5% interest on balances up to £1,500 for 12 months.
You need to set up 2 Direct Debits within 60 days. Check full conditions on the Nationwide site.