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Which piggy bank is best?

Loose change and bills don’t always fit in your wallet or pocket, and sometimes, it’s just not practical to bring them to a bank. A piggy bank is ideal for holding your money, especially for those who need a little discipline with saving and budgeting.

Piggy banks now come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from classic porcelain piggies to high-tech coin and bill counters. If you’re looking for a classroom-friendly piggy bank, Teacher’s Choice Digital Coin Bank is a top choice that teaches basic math and counting concepts. 

What to know before you buy a piggy bank

What is a piggy bank?

Piggy banks have a simple responsibility: to store coins and bills. They have small slots, so you can easily insert money, but retrieving money from a piggy bank is a bit more complicated. More often than not, you’ll need to unlock a larger door, panel or plug to remove coins and bills. 

What do piggy banks do?

One of the main goals of piggy banks is to encourage saving, often for something in particular. They’re usually given to young children in the early stages of learning mathematical and financial concepts, including counting, budgeting and the value of money. 

Adults often invest in piggy banks, as well. They’re an ideal way to store loose change, especially for people who prefer having cash in the house to pay for odd jobs, allowance or food delivery tips. Some adults use piggy banks to save for expensive purchases that may fall outside their everyday budget, such as trips and electronics.

Popular piggy bank varieties

Classic piggy banks feature stout pigs with stubby legs and noses. Other animal-inspired banks have grown in popularity for younger children, such as giraffes, unicorns and elephants. Locker- and safe-inspired banks, often classified as novelty designs, are suitable for older children. Many adults prefer the convenience of jar-style banks that are easy to open, as well as digital banks, which tally up money every time new coins or bills are added. 

What to look for in a quality piggy bank

Materials

Traditionally, piggy banks are ceramic or porcelain and have fine aesthetics that complement most décor. While they are durable to some extent, they may show wear and tear with chips and cracks. Several modern piggy banks use high-density plastic and metal, which are more durable. Many plastic and metal designs are notably cheaper than ceramic or porcelain ones, as well. 

Storage capacity

On average, piggy banks store anywhere from 100 to 1,500 coins. Some include their actual storage capacities, namely high-tech and other modern designs. With that said, it’s more of an estimate. Storage capacities don’t account for the type or size of coins or whether bills are being added to the piggy bank.

Easy access

Although piggy bank slots are standard across most designs, the method of accessing money varies considerably. Some piggy banks have rubber or silicone plugs that prove challenging to put on and remove. Others have doors or panels with locking mechanisms, including combination locks. Jar-inspired piggy banks usually have twist-off caps, considered the easiest to open. 

How much you can expect to spend on a piggy bank

Small piggy banks cost $12 and below, whereas, for $15-$35, there is a broad range of classic, novelty and high-tech designs. Designer piggy banks, many of which are hand-painted or handcrafted, cost $40-$85.

Piggy bank FAQ

Can I store foreign currency in piggy banks?

A. Yes, but you might not want to store it in the piggy bank with the rest of your domestic coins. For one, it may give you an unrealistic idea of how much money is in the bank. Secondly, if you intend to dump the piggy bank’s contents in an electronic coin counter at a bank or retailer, foreign coins will skew the amount or cause a counting error. 

Should I place bills inside piggy banks? 

A. It’s hotly debated whether you should mix paper money with coins inside piggy banks. Some people prefer using banks as convenient “catch-all” money receptacles. Other people feel it’s more prudent to keep bills in a drawer or jar of their own, simply because they’re used more often. 

What are the best piggy banks to buy?

Top piggy bank

Teacher's Choice Digital Coin Bank

Teacher’s Choice Digital Coin Bank

What you need to know: If you want to store a lot of change and keep track of it, this digital coin bank holds up to 1,000 coins. 

What you’ll love: The bottle and lid are durably made with high-density plastic. Unlike other digital banks, this one has a convenient feature for adding bills. The bank also has a twist-open lid for quick and easy access.

What you should consider: There are a few reports that the digital counter isn’t accurate. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top piggy bank for money

Pearhead Ceramic Piggy Bank

Pearhead Ceramic Piggy Bank

What you need to know: A classic design, this piggy bank is often given to children who are learning to save money. 

What you’ll love: The piggy bank has a modest footprint that fits easily on most dressers or bookshelves. It’s available in a few colors and designs to match nursery and bedroom décor. The slot is larger enough to take folded bills. 

What you should consider: The rubber stopper is hard to remove and may require a tool or knife to dislodge it. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Melissa & Doug Created By Me! DIY Cupcake Bank

Melissa & Doug Created By Me! DIY Cupcake Bank

What you need to know: This craft kit, made by a leading creativity brand, lets kids customize a small cupcake bank. 

What you’ll love: The project can be completed within an hour. It’s suitable for practicing painting and fine motor skills. The ceramic bank is heavy and durable enough to withstand the test of time. The kit is an ideal gift or party favor. 

What you should consider: The paints and brush are not high quality, and many people invested in better ones. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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