Pocket money has always been a "thing", but times have changed. While most of us used to be happy with a couple of coins, now kids are getting more and more ambitious about what they think they deserve.
Our firstborn was definitely spoilt and we used to bring him on a weekly trip to the toy shop, often after swimming. The problem was we didn’t give him a set budget each week and so while one week he might pick out something small, other weeks he’d be determined to get a toy that would be more suited as a birthday present. Eventually, we decided enough was enough and I started asking around what other people did.
While there’s no right or wrong answer, one rule I liked and that we’ve stuck to is that you give the same amount as your child’s age, so as my eldest is eight we give him eight euro each week. Bear in mind, that our youngest is only two so we’re only putting our hands in our pocket for one child. If you have a few kids that are older you may choose a different game plan altogether.
The other point is that because our eldest has built up a lot of quality toys over the years, we won’t be taking our toddler on a weekend spending spree any time soon as he has so many hand-me-downs. Fortunately, he doesn’t know what he’s missing out on as he’s never even set foot in Smyths, partly because of lockdown. Pocket money won’t be kicking off for him for a long time!
At the beginning, we used to give my son coins every week that he’d pop into his money box. Then, as he got older, he liked to put them in his wallet ready to spend. As society is getting more and more cash-less, I’ve started tallying up what he’s saved on my phone, so he just checks in with me how much he has.
As with everything else nowadays, there are Apps available such as Revolut Junior that do the hard work for you. Children can receive money electronically from their parents, check their balance and transactions and look at saving options. One thing to check is how much you’re charged to use their services as some apps require you to have a monthly subscription. You don’t want their hard-earned money to start disappearing on admin fees!
We certainly don’t have a foolproof plan in place and have been known to cave when it comes to getting something more expensive that he doesn’t currently have enough money for. We simply give him an advance and make sure he knows that it will be another few weeks until he’ll get any more money. I guess it’s kind of like spending the majority of your paycheck at the beginning of the month when you were young and carefree. He does learn a valuable lesson though because it’s a long, long wait before he can start browsing again!