Kardashian Debit Kard – Ripoff or Teen Teaching Tool?

by Khaleef Crumbley on November 16, 2010

in Banking,Credit Cards,Debt Management,Personal Finance

Kardashian kard

Christine wrote an article the other day talking about the Kardashian Kard. Apparently Kim Kardashian and her sisters decided to come out with a pre-paid debit card. I don’t know much about Kim Kardashian (I couldn’t even tell you her sisters’ names), except that she is pretty and popular.

When I first heard that they were releasing a pre-paid debit card, I hoped it was a good idea. I figured that they could use their popularity to teach people (especially teens and young adults) about personal finance.

The Kardashian Kard’s Pricing

Initial Purchase Options:

  • 6 Month Payment Option (save $2.70) – $59.95
  • 12 Month Payment Option (save $10.40) – $99.95

These options include the following charges:

  • One-Time Card Purchase – $9.95
  • Card Arrives Loaded with $5 – $5.00
  • Monthly Fee – $7.95/month

So, when you first purchase this card, you can either buy a 6-month package or a 12-month package. Then after that initial period, you must pay $7.95 each month! This means that in the first two years of owning the card, you will have to pay at least $195.35. Keep it for 3 years and you’ll be out almost $300 in fees!!!

I don’t know about you, but I’m not about to pay $300 to buy a pre-paid card!

The Kardashian Kard’s Teaching Promise

There are some things about this card that could make it a good teaching tool for a young person with no credit:

  • No Credit Check
  • No Overdraft Fees
  • It’s pre-paid, so there is an automatic limit set on the card (basically, whatever you deposit)
  • No Minimum Balance
  • Monitor your teen’s spending via text messages from the bank

Having a or pre-paid debit card can be a great option for teaching someone how to manage their finances. They deposit $200 (for example) into a bank account, and then use the debit card like a credit card until the account is empty.

Wait, that sounds an awful lot like a checking account to me! If you want to train your teen to manage money, have them help you create a budget, or get them a FREE checking account with a debit card. You can even have them help you set up your debt snowball!

The Kardashian Kard’s Hidden Fees

I think the best lesson that you can teach with this card is to examine everything intensely before agreeing to anything! If the $100/year price tag doesn’t scare you, maybe the fees will:

There are fees for the following:

  • ATM withdrawals
  • ATM Inquiries
  • ATM Declines
  • Point of Sale Declines
  • Transfers to or from an external bank account
  • Transfers to another Kardashian Kard
  • Adding Money to Your Account
  • Canceling Your Account (when requesting a refund by check)
  • Calling Customer Service
  • Paying a Bill
  • Replacing Your Kardashian Kard ($25!!!)

Yes, you have to pay a fee for everything except looking at the card! Maybe that’s why the sisters put their face on the card rather than a boring logo.

KNS Financial’s Verdict on The Kardashian Kard

If your kid runs up to you asking for a Kardashian Kard, just go through all these negatives with them and teach them to evaluate options! Doing so can help them to avoid a lifetime of bad habits!

I think it would be a great idea to get your kid a checking account and work with them as they manage it. They may have a moment where they incur a fee due to their lack of self-control; but it will then give you a chance to work with them and help them avoid the same mistakes that most of us didn’t!

If these fees weren’t included with this card, then I probably wouldn’t have a problem recommending it. Maybe Kim Kardashian will help to spur more financial conversations between kids and their parents; or maybe this is just more proof that we have passed the point of no return when it comes to celebrity worship!

Either way, I cannot recommend this card to any responsible person!

Reader Questions:

  1. What are some ways that you are working to teach your kids about personal finance?
  2. Will you buy this card for yourself or your kid?
  3. What do you think about all of these fees?

© 2010 – 2011, Khaleef Crumbley. All rights reserved.

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 KaseyS

I wonder if you can get Kim Kardashian personal checks anywhere?
Of course, it would have to come with a matching leather checkbook cover.

Maybe someday they’ll replace Ulysses S. Grant on the $50 with Kim’s lovely mug.


2 Khaleef Crumbley

I would laugh, but sadly I can see things like this happening very soon. If this is successful, I’m sure they will try to branch out into more banking services.


3 Dave@50plusfinance

There are more downsides to this card than upsides. For me just the fees are enough to pass on this card. I agree that a checking account with a debit card is more instructional than this debit card. This card is a good example to use to teach your child because it will show you how to do everything wrong.
The only good thing about this card is the picture.


4 Khaleef Crumbley

I agree! I hope that parents can use this to point out to their kids what they need to watch out for when they receive offers like this!


5 Kristen Simmons

Umm.. who would pay those fees for the right to carry them around on your card? Unreal. I have a bichon (who would have thought!) on my Discover Card and it was free!


6 Khaleef Crumbley

I had to look up what a bichon was (could have just looked at your gravatar)! Yeah, I can’t believe that people will pay this much for something that they can get for free.


7 John Armstrong

I couldn’t agree more with you. The card can serve as a lesson to teach how to evaluate a credit card.



8 Khaleef Crumbley

Yeah, I hope that people use this to teach their kids how to evaluate offers.


9 Money Funk

Great post and thank you for the mention. A reader cued me on the charges – CRAZY! And if you get it… no, you will not be any closer to mimicking the Kardashians or being a celeb. I agree with you on getting a teen a checking account with a debt card and teaching them to budget! Lot less fees and a much better way to learn about financial responsibility.


10 Khaleef Crumbley

Yeah, I wasn’t really opposed to it at first until I read about all these fees! It’s insane.


11 Danielle Coleman

Ok, this is scary! Russel Simmons came out with the Rush Card a few years ago. You would often see the commercial for it late evenings on channels teens and young adults would usually tune into. I assumed that he was doing the same, trying to educate teens and help out people who can’t or don’t want to get a bank account. Getting the card alone was long and involved mailing a copy of your license if I remember correctly. That alone scared me off so I didn’t finish the process to get it. I didn’t even look into the fees but I’m assuming similar to this card they are ridiculous. I wouldn’t recommend anyone getting the card or cards like it.


12 Khaleef Crumbley

I can’t believe that these people are so big that they can come out with debit cards! I’m glad you didn’t get a rush card!


13 Tim

This sounds like a total rip off to me!

Many banks offer their customer’s children access to special “kids accounts”. These accounts are basically saving accounts with a debt card/ATM. They cost nothing to join and offer all the benefits of a Kim Kardashian card.

Of course, the banks are hoping to develop life-long customers as the kids grow up (which isn’t a bad thing), but in the mean-time its a great way to teach kids how to use money without having to worry that your kids are going to get themselves (i.e YOU) in a financial mess.


14 Khaleef Crumbley

Very true! What’s so crazy about this is that all these things already exist. We just don’t have Kim K’s face on them!

Maybe she should just do commercials for Capital One or something!


15 Credi Cards Canada

Yes, it sounds a lot like a checking account. But it would be harder to put those ladies on a check than on a “kard”. What I do notice is that they seem to be wearing a lot more clothing on the “kard” than in most of their photo shoots. Perhaps they learned a lesson from Katy Perry getting booted from Sesame Street for almost wearing something.


16 Khaleef Crumbley

Yeah, I think they have enough against them with this move, and they don’t want to invite more scrutiny!


17 Everyday Tips

I would rather give my kid a checking account and donate the sum of all their fees to charity. The Khardasians were just some spoiled kids born into money- why should they be role models to anyone? If anything, they exemplify everything I dislike about American pop culture, so doing anything that will contribute money to their empire is the last thing I would want to do. Hopefully this card with fizzle out quickly.

For my kids, they grocery shop with me (sometimes) and help me make grocery lists by looking at sales and coupons. They love to see how much we save each week. I need to do a better job teaching my kids at a macro level though.


18 Khaleef Crumbley

Yeah, I didn’t want to go into that part, but the way that people worship these celebrities is pretty disgusting!

I love that your kids help you with shopping and preparing the list. That will definitely stick with them. I guess it already has since your son turned down the DVR!


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