If your kids live at home and are not receiving an allowance and roughly half do not you may be missing out on a great way to teach them how to manage money. Handing them $10 every time they leave the house teaches them nothing other than that they will always be cared for. It's a terrible lesson. Why not use your refund to teach them a thing or two about budgets? Open a checking account at your local bank, and add a sub account with a unique ATM card for each child. Deposit your refund check there and arrange to have money automatically transferred from your account to the kids' sub accounts each week. Total needed to fund two kids at $25 a week for one year: $2,600. Tell your kids to go to the ATM when they need money, and let them know that when the money is gone it's gone. You won't have to think about allowance or shelling out cash for another year and, you'll teach the kids something about budgeting in the process. Be sure to ask the bank about fees and minimum balances; some may be prohibitively expensive. For example, you don't want to get dinged $2 for every transfer of what might be only $10 or so. And you do not want to allow over drafting on the sub accounts. By shopping around you should be able to find a set up that fits your needs.