Mazoola was launched in February of 2021 by REGO Payment Architectures, a family-oriented software company that opened its virtual doors in 2008. This card is entirely digital and it empowers both kids and parents with options—specifically, it gives parents a lot of ways they can step in to help their children make sound financial decisions and kids several ways to earn and spend money.
The Mazoola virtual debit card makes a lot of claims: it claims to make money management fun and it claims to be one of the most safe and secure family banking products out there. But are these claims supported? Find out what we’ve identified as the advantages and disadvantages of Mazoola over competitors with similar products and whether this is a good choice for your family.
[Related: See how Mazoola ranks in our guide to the best debit cards for kids and teens in 2021.]
Who is It For
Average age: Children under the age of 18.
Good candidate: Young users that are new to money management but familiar with technology.
Mazoola doesn’t outline age restrictions in its terms and markets itself as a product for families with kids of all ages.
With that said, we think that kids within the 10 to 18 range would probably be the best fit for the Mazoola virtual debit card, as there needs to be a strong understanding of how to use technology in place in order to be successful with this fully-digital financial tool. But if you’re the parent of a tech savvy kid that’s younger than 10, Mazoola may still work for you. The app is technically rated for users 4 years old and up.
The Mazoola app is both COPPA and GDPR compliant. COPPA, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, sets privacy restrictions for children under 13, so parents of young kids can feel safe in the knowledge that their kids’ personal information will be rigidly protected.
Features and Benefits
Parents are the primary account holders of Mazoola accounts and kids are not permitted to sign up for an account on their own. When parents open an account and add their kids, their kids become sub account holders and have limited access and controls.
As sub account holders, Mazoola users are restricted in terms of how they get their money as well as where and how they can spend it. They have freedom to spend and save their money with supervision.
💰 Earn: One of the ways Mazoola users can get more money in their account is by completing chores and earning a recurring allowance. They may also receive account bonuses and one-time transfers from their parents or friends.
💸 Spend: The Mazoola virtual debit card be used online and in-person at most establishments that accept Mastercard. Merchants must accept MazoolaPay for in-person shopping.
Shortly after Mazoola hit the market, MazoolaPay, an online payment platform that facilitates transactions between Mazoola users and merchants and allows for peer-to-peer transfers within the Mazoola customer base. MazoolaPay works through the Mazoola app, so it is also COPPA compliant and fully secured.
Because this is a virtual debit card, users do not have cash access. They cannot use their Mazoola cards at ATMs or ask for cashback at retail locations.
There is a daily limit of $3,000 imposed for all total transactions. Users may not send more than $1,000 in any single peer-to-peer transaction or over the course of 30 days. They may also not receive more than $1,000 via transfers within 30 days.
Save: If a Mazoola user decides to save their money rather than spend it, they can set savings goals for themselves to stay on track. If they’re lucky, their parents may send them bonuses for achieving these goals. After a goal has been reached, users can move this money onto their card to use it to purchase whatever they were saving for.
Money saved in a Mazoola account does not earn interest at this time.
To fund an account, parents can either link an external bank and transfer funds from here into their Mazoola family wallet or make a deposit using a credit or debit card. It is generally not possible to make cash deposits, electronic check deposits, or set up direct deposit to fund an account (more funding options may be available to some users—please see “Potential Drawbacks” for more information).
Currently, there is a total transaction limit of $3,000 when funding an account via ACH bank transfers and a $3,000 limit when funding an account via credit or debit card transactions. As of now, there are no limits on the amount of times a parent may fund their child’s account in a given day, but this may change as Mazoola gets more users.
Withdrawals from an account are possible via ACH transfer and debit card transaction only.
Parents can make both one-time transfers and recurring transfers into their child’s account. Many Mazoola parents schedule recurring transfers to pay their children allowance for chores and use one-time transfers to award bonuses for good behavior and positive growth.
Parents can choose whether they’d like to allow their child to use their Mazoola virtual debit card in stores, online, or both. Parents can also decide to require approval before a transaction is allowed to go through.
They can additionally select certain stores or merchants they would like to restrict and enforce spending limits. If needed, a parent can turn their child’s card off and on.
Mazoola parents can have notifications sent to their phone whenever their child uses their card, when their child uses their card to make purchases over a certain amount, and for other activity alerts.
If somehow an account balance becomes negative, either because funds are insufficient to pay fees or for another reason, Mazoola reserves the right to close the account after 60 days.
Mazoola Virtual Debit Card Cost
Fees: $9.99 monthly subscription fee, $0.11 fund loading fee, no fee for overdraft, no fee for peer-to-peer transfers, 1% fee on purchases, no fee for low balance, no monthly maintenance fee
Mazoola does not charge per-child fees, but it does charge a somewhat high subscription fee and a purchase fee of 1%.
Mazoola hides all of its fees well within its Terms and Conditions. In fact, other sites call this account free because Mazoola is not forthcoming about any of the fees it charges. Keep this red flag in mind moving forward and make sure you read over the fee schedule carefully if you sign up.
There may be other undisclosed fees associated with having a Mazoola account.
Mazoola Features VS Competitors
Something we like about Mazoola is that it gives parents a lot of control over their child’s account. They can set their preferences to limit their kids’ spending and get notified whenever their child is using their card.
Mazoola also offers users more layers of protection from fraud and other security threats than other similar products.
Another positive feature with Mazoola that you rarely find with competing products is the lack of age restrictions. With the Mazoola account even young users with no prior experience managing money are welcome.
One of the things you may find challenging if you get a Mazoola account for your family is tracking down information about the product. Potential users will have difficulty finding information on the website about fees, account limits, and other important details.
Mazoola also hides its fees, which is never a good sign. We’re not sure if this is just because the product is new, but Mazoola needs to do a better job at letting consumers know what to expect, or this account will not be able to compete with other kids’ debit products.
Another downside is simply that Mazoola is too new to really know what to expect. While this is not typically an automatic penalty against a product, Mazoola hasn’t done a great job of making information accessible for interested users and there aren’t a lot of reviews available to help fill in the gaps.
Funding options are also limited. Mazoola allows for only ACH transfers and credit/debit card transactions, but it would be great to see at least direct deposit capabilities as well. According to the fine print in the Terms and Conditions, Mazoola may enable direct deposit for your account or allow mobile check deposits, but it is not clear how you go about acquiring these abilities or who is eligible.
There are very few user reviews available for the apps or the product as a whole. This company is still growing its customer base and the people that are using Mazoola don’t seem eager to review it. We assess overall consumer sentiment using reviews on the app.
You can contact customer support for questions related to the Mazoola app by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (844) 210-4789. For questions related to banking, you can email help@Synapsefi.com or call (415) 688-2943. Customer service hours are from 9 to 5pm EST Monday through Friday.
The app itself has a pretty standard look, comparable to most other kids’ financial app like Greenlight, GoHenry, and Jassby (also a virtual debit card). Its straightforward functionality and minimalistic design will make it easy for you and your kids to take advantage of all features available.
In the App Store, the Mazoola app has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars with only 20 reviews. On Google Play, it has a rating of 4 out of 5 stars. Just keep in mind, the Android version of this app dropped after the Apple version, so there are only five reviews at this time. Most positive reviews say that the app’s simple design is easy to navigate, and most negative reviews say that the app is prone to crashing.
Is it Safe
The Mazoola Mastercard virtual debit card is issued by Evolve Bank & Trust, an institution that is FDIC insured up to the federally allowed limit of $250,000.
Mastercard’s Zero Liability Protection extends to this debit card as well. This means that Mazoola users will not be held responsible for transactions they did not authorize. Mazoola monitors all accounts for fraudulent activity.
Also, as mentioned, the Mazoola app is COPPA compliant, and it’s actually the only family finance app on the market as of June of 2021 that can say this. This rule sets strict requirements on merchants with regard to what personal information they are allowed to collect from users under the age of 13 and how they are able to use it, and requires them to disclose this information.
Finally, parents of Mazoola users can pick and choose which merchants or merchant categories to restrict to keep their children safe.
How to Sign Up
To sign up for Mazoola, both a parent and the children they intend to open accounts for must download the Mazoola app. After providing the necessary personal information, the parent can link a bank account or card to fund their account and add their child as a user. This is also a good time to set spending limits, schedule recurring transfers, etc.
There is no minimum opening deposit required to open this account or average daily balance required to keep it open or avoid fees. Deposits may take between one and five days to process to an account.
It’s not yet realistic to say for sure that Mazoola has high rates of customer satisfaction or delivers an excellent experience, but Mazoola has a lot of strong features on paper. It is one of the safest kids’ debit cards we’ve seen, and it gives families plenty of choices.
Although funding and transaction restrictions for this account may be inconvenient and we’re disappointed by the lack of transparency with regard to charges, Mazoola isn’t a bad product for cautious parents. Mazoola puts safety first and puts parents in the driver’s seat. If this sounds like what you’re looking for, take a chance on Mazoola (and be sure to leave a review for others that might be curious). Just be on the lookout for sneaky fees.