Hey, I’ve got a great idea—let’s give tweens and teenagers their own credit cards! Oh wait, I actually think that’s a terrible plan, but the Kardashian sisters are all about it. They’ve even lent their name to the new Kardashian Prepaid MasterCards. Which will be available for kids as young as 13.
So what’s the deal? Parents put money on their kids’ cards and then the kidlets get to spend, spend, spend. Mobile Resource, the company making the cards, claim that this is great for parents because they can see how their kids spend the money. “Teens do not spend their money as their parents think they do,” a rep for the company said. “And, drugs are a huge problem in this country. I give my son a small amount of cash and track his spending on his card.”
Yeah, I’m going to go ahead and call BS on that. Will these cards keep teens from buying drugs, alcohol, porn and other things they’re not supposed to? Please. I think what this is more about is roping in customers while they’re young. Get them primed to choose MasterCard. Get them used to money in a plastic form now and they’ll be even more lubricated to spend up a storm when they turn 18 and get a card that isn’t a prepaid model. Putting blingy celebrities like the Kardashians on the card—who are known for their shopaholic tendencies—makes it even worse.
With as much credit card debt as our generation has racked up, I find this a pretty scary move. What do you think?