The Science Museum have bought out a range of fun and educational toys which range in price from around £4 to around £40. My nephew is five and quite advanced for his age and he absolutely loves this sort of thing, he'd seen the cash point for sale in the shops and asked for it for his birthday. I found it for sale on the internet including postage for around £19. Check out amazon.com I found it very reasonable and delivery was quick!
When he unwrapped it and saw it he was so excited we had to sit and play on it straight away. It has almost been 10 months since than and it is still one of his favorite toys and has no damage or deterioration throughout time. The bottom of the cash point is a drawer where all the money sits. To get the money into the drawer you put it through a slot in the top. Now here's the clever bit, as the money goes through the slot the LCD screen displays what you have put into the cash point, and therefore adds up a total of what you have in there at any given point. The cash register is not 100% accurate and I have seen it call 2p's £1s, so the total can end up very wrong. Luckily my nephew has little money value yet, so he doesn't get too disappointed when there is less money in there than he thought but that is something to watch out for.
The LCD screen has buttons around it which make it interactive and you can press to withdraw money and an amount and then it pops open the drawer for you to take money out of. There is also a card slot which you have to put a card in with a chip in and pretend it is your bank card. Any card can be used, so it is a good idea to keep an old CANCELLED credit card around, but nothing any body could copy or use fraudulently if they got their hands on it.
You can also programme in saving targets, like tell it this month I want to save £20 and then it counts the money in and takes it off your target. Therefore you can use it as a toy or as a more serious device. Either way it is good for children to get to grips with ideas about money and how to save.
A good fun sturdy toy, good value, with some educational impact!
This ATM machine is undoubtedly very good if like me you often find people (pinching) borrowing your money from your for some reason well known stash. Although i do think £30 is a bit much for something that really is quite fragile in my opinion, don't forget this is a novelty product that merely counts your coins and takes in your notes. I got mine from argos in a sale and was reasonably pleased paying £20 for it.
There are however a couple of problems i have with this product firstly being the fact that it only runs on batterys meaning when it runs out you have to empty the whole thing to reenter all of your money and info such as the time which does get a bit trivial after the second time, when you start thinking it accepted a coin twice or you entered the wrong number for a note, which then entails you to withdraw the number you thought you pt in only then to do the same thing again. Secondly sometimes if its a bit full the notes just get snarled up sometimes leading to in my case the ripping of note, wasting your notes.
This was bought for my younger daughter (9) as a present, but was so cool her older sister (11) was desperate for one too. So we now have two. The girls love having their own cash point cards and pin numbers, which you have to use to use the ATM, just like the real thing. One of the best things is the fact it encourages saving, we noticed the girls were much more likely to save their pocket money as they could see the running total. The ATM automatically knows what coins you put in, but when you add notes you have to tell it what denomination it is (adding a note is quite cool just press the deposit button and put the edge of the note in the note slot and the machine draws it in automatically). When you want to withdraw money you do have to remember to enter how much you are withdrawing to keep your balance right. If you forget the pin number there is a handy reset button on the bottom, just in case.
I came across this when it was left by the book people at work. The price was £10 and at first I thought it would be perfect for my neice to use to save money.
Once I bought one and took it home I decided I was going to open it up and have a closer look. It is battery powered and is in the shape of a cash machine. It is small and plastic so not the type of thing you'd want to keep your life savings in but good for all that loose change in your purse or wallet.
You deposit money in two ways - for coins you push them in at the top and it will tell you how much you've put in so don't try putting two coins in at once as it won't work. Then theres the part for the notes, you press the deposit button and old the note in the little slit. The machine will then pull the note through, as it is unable to tell you how much the not is worth it will ask you to type in the amount on the keypad.
Once you have money in here you can check the balance whenever you want by pressing the balance button.
If you decided to withdraw some money you just press the withdraw button then the orange open button will light up. When you press this the door will spring open and your money is lying here. Don't take too long to take the money out as it will start beeping very loudly at you. It will also need you to type in the amount you have just taken out to ensure the balance is correct.
The cash machine is pin protected. You have a plastic credit card that you put into the slot and to withdraw money you will need to type in your 4 digit pin. The downfall with this is if you leave card in all the time you don't have to enter pin everytime you withdraw money.
There's a pin change button so you can change it to a number you'll remember. Again if you leave the card in and have already inputed the pin number once you don't need to input it again to change the pin.
I actually decided to keep this for myself because I found it was a good way of keeping track on how much I'd put in without having to count it all up. It's definately a money box for big kids as well as small kids. and I thought the price was absolutely excellent.
I have had this for over a year now and never had to change the batteries in it. So I couldn't tell you if it will keep track of the money in it when the time does come to change the batteries.
Last year I saw the mini bank in the Argos catalogue and really wanted it. I am terrible at saving up money. I noticed that my partner and my mum could easily save £20-£50 a month with spare coppers and silver coins (1p-20p). I would easily give up due to a lack of motivation. I noticed this novelty item and thought it may help me save up. I was correct as for two of the months the batteries went flat and I couldn't get into my money until I could be bothered to buy some more.
At only 23cm tall, 17cm wide and 13 cm deep the mini ATM is a great addition to any shelf/desk. The mini ATM comes complete with a 'bank card' to insert into the card slot, a four digit pin number can be assigned to the card and used to withdraw money. The mini ATM looks and sounds very realistic with the correct buttons and money sounds. When pressing the buttons it sounds like a real ATM. I like the light above the mini ATM as it looks like the lights positioned at the top of a real ATM. It also helps me see the buttons in the dark.
USING THE ATM
I was most impressed wit the 'coin recognition' facility. When inserting a coin the ATM makes a realistic coin dropping sound and display the value of the coin, e.g. 1p, 2p. The ATM also accepts notes but the value of these do need to be typed in.
Saving is very easy as you can set a target...I currently have a target of £100 as I am saving for Christmas. You can change the target at any point and can check how much you owe. After a trip to the shops I put all my loose change into the mini ATM and I can monitor my balance at regular intervals.
Withdrawal is relatively easy and makes the saving process worthwhile. I managed to save a lot for my holiday and was quite impressed to withdraw 'all funds'. With a pin number set it is not possible for someone to 'break in'; the money is safe and secure...the only access being through the assigned pin number. I did lose my 'debit card' but managed to put my Boots advantage card in and still access my money (with the pin number).
The mini ATM is easy to use and boasts a really good clock, alarm clock and calendar. These are easy to set, and are very useful the mini ATM could replace an alarm clock and calendar, saving space beside the bed.
The mini ATM takes 3 x AA batteries and these do last a while. Obviously cheap batteries will run out quicker and therefore will require changing more often...I would advise the use of strong extra life batteries as the ATM does not store the information such as target, balance, time and pin so it all needs to be reset. Strong batteries with everyday use last between 7-10 months.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
I got this as a Christmas present last year it was on sale in Argos for £25 but this year I have seen it in department stores such as Debenhams, Marks and Spencers and Woolworths. The mini ATM is also available in boots at £20 (currently on the 3 for 2 gift offer).
SO WHY SHOULD I BUY ONE?
As much as we hate to think of Christmas in November, we can't seem to ignore the deluge of tinsel, selection boxes, advent calendars and tacky glittery objects hitting all stores in August! After 2 months or so of the Christmas songs I like to get all my stuf in one visit and this is a great present for most people.
This year I have set myself the task of saving enough money and buying all my gifts before the 'mad rush'. For those who love to be organised and prepared this is a great idea and will be a useful gift for any gadget fan. It is equally entertaining for men and women of all ages so you can't really go wrong with one of these!...in fact I will be buying one for my nan and grandad.
The obvious benefits of one of these is that saving is made more enjoyable. I do not have to pile my coins into piles to count as they have already been counted. I am sure one of these would be great for a child receiving pocket money and could not save it up without spending. It's also great for adults who want those extra luxuries but lack the motivation to save. It keeps the money safe so no one else can access...in fact it is probably safer than most 'piggy banks' with padlocks and keys.
This mini ATM sounds and displays lights just like the real thing. You input your card with a 4 digit pin to use the ATM, it accepts both coins and notes and calculates your total enabling you to check your balance at any time and set savings targets.Batteries included.