Can you find room in your skinny jeans for Justin Bieber?
It’s totally true, Beliebers: The Adorable One just signed on to promote a new SpendSmart prepaid debit card. Then again, if you’re one of the Biebs’ 30 million Twitter followers and 48 million Facebook buds, you already know that.
I know! A Biebs card! Never say never, right?
The new chit is brought to you, quite appropriately, by BillMyParents, which offers plastic on training wheels to teach teens how to spend responsibly.
Trust me, that whole “responsibility” business is a definite parent magnet, lol. They’ll love having the ability to snoop (they call it “manage”) your account, even from last year’s smartphones. Instant alerts keep them totally up to date on your balance, and if they don’t like what they see — maybe like a $175 ding to see JB at the Amway Center in Orlando — they can lock up your Biebs card via text.
So unfair. You should never have taught them to text.
There’s a lot of other parent code on the BillMyParents site about teachable moments and face-to-face monthly money conversations and blah blah blah, which I think just gives parents false hopes. Detention, maybe. Face-to-face money conversations? As if.
Still, you do have to keep an eye on your Biebs card (like that’s hard!) if you want to avoid the hidden fees and the dreaded mom text. They include a $3.95 monthly fee, $2.95 per load from a credit or debit card (75 cents from a bank account), $1.50 per ATM withdrawal, $3 inactivity fee after 90 days and $7.95 to replace it.
It’s a good thing JB jumped on the prepaid train. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is looking into unregulated prepaid cards, possibly to bring them under the same consumer safeguards as credit and debit cards.
According to the press release, the Biebs plans to promote his plastic with some videos about handling money, which I’m pretty sure he’s an expert at by now.
But the biggest buzz of all concerns the so-called “unique experiences” you can win as a Biebs cardholder. Are we talking backstage pass here? Video shoot? Hanging with JB and Usher?
Even if it’s a face-to-face-money conversation, you gotta admit: You’d totally do that 🙂