Pocket money superpowers kids’ spending across Asia Pacific

Up to 70% of kids receive money daily and choose how to spend it, our new research shows.

Since 2015, we have conducted studies across a robust representative sample of over 2,100 kids aged 6-14 throughout 7 key APAC markets, namely Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. The ongoing study explores pocket money and spendings of APAC children.

The Study reveals that most children in South East Asia receive pocket money daily and spend it on favourite brands, while Australian kids receive less frequent but bigger amounts. And while amounts vary greatly by country across Asia Pacific, all children surveyed regularly received cash to spend at their discretion.

Kids in Thailand (more than 70%), Indonesia (65%) and Malaysia (more than 50%) are most likely to receive pocket money daily, especially between ages 9-11. Highest monthly pocket money amounts are received by Australian kids (on average $131) and Singaporeans (on average $109).

Birthday money boosts spending power beyond daily averages

But those in other markets — Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam and Australia — are given larger amounts on special occasions such as birthdays, and those amounts increase with age. On average, the 6-8 year old cohort receives $28, 9-11 years receives $30, 12-14 years receives $34.

The special occasion amounts allow kids to stretch beyond their daily allowances to purchase the items they want.

According to the report, 45% said they have bought an item they saw online with their own money. This clearly shows almost half of the kids surveyed make active, independent spending choices.

And kids are actively making their own purchase decisions. Snacks, drinks, toys and confectionary are the most popular items for kids to spend their money on. Snacks is the favourite category across all the markets and Thai kids are the most active consumers – 80% spend their pocket money on snacks. Toys are ranked well in Australia, Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam; confectionery  in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia.

“So what we’ve found is that kids are direct purchasers with cash of their own,” confirmed TotallyAwesome CEO Quan Nguyen.

“But while children are budget holders and consumers in their own right, we should never lose sight of the fact they’re young and impressionable. This report highlights the need for brands to choose platforms that create safe, respectful environments in which kids can receive appropriate messaging for their age and experience.”

To learn more about APAC kids’ digital behaviour and media habits,  pocket money and spendings, pester power and brand awareness, please get in touch with our TotallyAwesome team.