Transportation accounts for 4.6 percent of teen spending
Ride-sharing providing more teens with the freedom that a car used to represent

American teens benefit from a lot of free transportation, including school buses, rides from their parents, riding their bike and walking. But getting around still manages to capture 4.6 percent of all teen spending. Ride-sharing services combined to capture 84 percent of teen spending on taxi services. Teenagers must by 18 years-old to use some ride-sharing services, while others use drivers with specialized insurance that allows them to drive younger passengers. The figures represent aggregate spending of Current debit card customers during October, 2017. Current provides a debit card and companion smartphone app for teens (and parents) that makes managing money easier for families.

The costs of car ownership still put a big dent in teenage wallets. Gasoline and parking accounts for 78.5 percent of teenage spending on transportation, compared to 16.9 percent for taxi services, and 4.6 percent for public transportation.

“The adoption of ride sharing services by teens may surprise some adults, but is consistent with a generation that relies on their smartphones to accomplish everyday tasks,” said Stuart Sopp, CEO and founder of Current. “By switching to these on-demand services, older teens are shifting their disposable income away from transportation and into experiences and retail goods.”

In November Current introduced a feature that allows teens to set and see progress towards a savings goal. At 9 percent, saving for a car was the third most popular goal, below saving for a rainy day (23%) and holiday gifting (13%), and just ahead of video games (8%), clothes (7%) and travel (6%).