Financial basics for kids

Six tips on how to save money as a teen

4 min read

Financial basics for kids

Six tips on how to save money as a teen

4 min read

It's not easy saving for your first important purchase, especially when cashflow is tight. Check out our tips to help you save money as a teenager, whether you're dreaming about upgrading your phone or getting to the next big gig.

1. Create a teenager budget to keep track of where you spend your money

A budget may sound a little scary. But keeping track of your money can be as simple as writing down everything (yes, everything!) that you spend money on over a week or a month. Most of us tend to spend more money on the weekends, so you may find this is a useful place to start.

Once you have an idea of where your money goes, setting limits and targets is the next step. If you have a Suncorp Bank everyday account, you can download the Suncorp Bank App and try Dollar Tracker. This is a free and simple service that will sort your spending into 14 different categories such as clothing, entertainment or food.

2. Supercharge your savings

It doesn't matter if you want to keep up with the latest tech or buy a car, start with a goal and break it into small parts that can add up over time. Here are some ways you may be able to supercharge your savings:

  • Replace any regular spending with a cheaper option, such as bringing your lunch to school or work instead of buying it every day.
  • Consider odd jobs that friends or family may need help with, like lawn mowing, babysitting or dog walking. Before taking on any jobs, be sure to chat with your parent or caregiver first.
  • Love fashion? A trip to your local op shop is the perfect way to get your style fix without breaking the bank.

Feeling good about something is the key to maintaining it. It's the same with saving. Personalise your account names to remind you of the great experiences you're saving for or keep photos of your goals nearby to stay motivated. Visualising your goals may help you to avoid any impulse spending.

3. Find a bank account that’s right for you

Finding the right bank and type of account is an important step in building good money habits. With any Suncorp Bank everyday account, kids and teens from 11-17 can:

  • Enjoy no monthly account keeping fees.
  • Manage their money on the go with the Suncorp Bank App and Internet Banking.
  • Receive a debit card (from age 11-15 you’ll receive an eftpos Debit Card, and from 16 up you’ll receive a Visa Debit card.)


Explore Suncorp Bank's everyday accounts for teens

When it comes to earning interest on your savings, check out Suncorp Bank’s Kids Savings Account. You can earn bonus interest when you deposit at least $20 into the account each month and make no more than one withdrawal each month. Find out how easy it is to be rewarded for regular saving.


Discover Suncorp Bank's kids savings account

4. Make the most of student discounts

A student ID often gives you access to discounts – think cheaper movie tickets and public transport. Many businesses and services will let you know they provide student discounts but if you're curious about what's on offer, or you need more information, it doesn't hurt to ask or do a bit of Googling.

Whether or not you're not currently enrolled as a student, if you're eligible for payments or services provided by the government, the Department of Human Services can help you research what monetary benefits might be available to you as a young person. As an example, Centrelink's low-income Health Care Card allows you to take advantage of discounted community services in the same way a student ID does.

5. Consider getting a part-time job

Part-time work is a rite of passage for many young Australians. If you're a student, you may be able to find regular part-time work in administration, hospitality or retail, or, if these fields sit outside of your interests, you could investigate an area that is and see who's hiring.

Generating your own income is the perfect way to help boost your savings, plus knowing how long it's taken you to earn $50 might be enough to curb any compulsive spending (making you think about whether you really need those new sneakers).

6. Sell your unwanted stuff

It doesn't take much to accumulate stuff you no longer need or use. The good news is that you can very quickly turn unwanted items into extra money by selling them. You might choose to use an app, the web, or set up a good old-fashioned garage sale – it doesn't matter – you may be better off having the cash (to deposit straight into your savings account, of course), and knowing that your old books are being read rather than taking up space on your shelf. Don't forget to ask a trusted adult for help if you need it.

Saving money can be fun, and it's an important part of growing up. The boring (but important) benefit of saving now is that it could help develop your ability to manage your money, which can make it more likely you'll have savings when you're older.

Published 30 March 2023

Related links and products

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Savings calculator

This information is intended to be of a general nature only and any advice has been prepared without taking into account any person's particular objectives, financial situation or needs. You should make your own enquiries, consider whether advice is appropriate for you and read the relevant Product Information Document and Terms & Conditions before making any decisions about whether to acquire a product.

Deposit products issued by Suncorp-Metway Ltd ABN 66 010 831 722 (“Suncorp Bank”). Terms and fees apply. Read the relevant Product Information Document and Terms & Conditions before making any decisions about this product. Any advice does not take into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.