Dec 022011

I have been heavily vested in the Kindle Fire in recent weeks and am even gave away 2 Kindle Fire gadgets in a contest that is ended last week.  But in learning and experimenting with the Kindle Fire I came up with the best way to give it as Christmas presents to my two kids who are 8 and 4 years old.

The Kindle Fire had a few limitations that made it less than ideal for little kids, 1 is that it required a credit card tied to “One Click Purchase” to the Amazon account the Kindle Fire was registered too.  You needed this credit card setup even to download and install free Android apps for the Kindle Fire.

kindle fire

The second is that you can’t put password protection on purchasing apps from the App store on a Kindle Fire, this would have potentially allowed my 5 year old who can only read a little from randomly installing apps and charging my card for them.  He does this with the iTunes app store now and constantly tries to download free games but doesn’t always notice the price tag next to some other games.

So I found a good solution at least one that works that will allow you to setup your Kindle Fire for your kids without worrying about your card being charged to infinity.

Here are the steps:

Setup a separate Account for Kindle Fire

If you use the Kindle Fire or you have more than one Kindle Fire, you will want to make sure your child has a separate Amazon account for their Kindle Fire.  This way you can assign a default one click payment option without affecting your normal 1 click and Amazon prime accounts.

If you only have 1 Kindle Fire or have Amazon Prime tied to your account only and want to keep it that way, then you can just set your default 1-click payment for the Kindle Fire to what is explained in Step 2.

Setup a Dummy Credit Card as your 1 Click Payment Method

I was researching on how to do this, when I found that PayPal gives you a list of “test credit card numbers” I figured why not test out one of these as a One Click Payment method and see if it allows you to download free apps and games.  Sure enough it works fine.

Setup a new 1 Click Payment Method and use Visa Card #4111111111111111 as your Visa Card.

Set up the expiration date as any future date.


Add your real address and shipping information on the next screen.

Voila, you now have a dummy card setup with your Amazon Kindle 1 Click Payment system.  Now, any real purchase will get instantly rejected, but this allows you to download all the free apps and games you want and you don’t have to worry about your kids charging your real account.


Syncing Media

I used the Amazon Cloud Drive to upload mp3 files to my son’s Amazon Music Cloud and have them sync to his Kindle Fire device, I even created a playlist and had a certain amount of songs sync locally on device so he could listen to them when not on the Wi-Fi.

Being that I have 3 Kindle Fire devices in my family, this was 3 separate Amazon accounts to manage and Cloud Drives but it was simple.  I just created 3 separate folders on my PC for each Kindle Fire music I wanted to sync and just keep those folders updated with the equivalent Cloud Drive.

IMG_0019Remember when giving the Kindle Fire as a gift that it is a Wi-Fi only device, and you will want to make sure your kids remember to sync any games, music or media locally to the device memory before leaving the Wi-Fi network.  Even though the Amazon Kindle Fire is 8GB, there is only about 6.2GB of free space when it arrives, so this should be plenty enough room for enough games/apps and media to last for a few hours without a Wi-Fi connection but it will need to be re-synced and switched around between long trips.  Worst case scenario get a Mobile Hotspot connection for your phone and use your Kindle Fire through your Mobile Hotspot!

Kindle Fire Default Applications

The Kindle Fire currently doesn’t support removing the default applications, I couldn’t find a way to remove Facebook, the Amazon Store…etc from the Kindle Fire, so all I can say is if you have younger kids you need to teach them not to use those apps.  Don’t have accounts setup and they really shouldn’t be able to sign up for one anyway.  As with any gadget device you need to monitor your kids usage and occasionally keep tabs on what they are using it for.  There is a web browser on the Kindle Fire and you should be aware of what your kids are doing and browsing.

-Dragon Blogger

I will be hosting a new Kindle Fire Giveaway soon, stay tuned.



Thanks to one of my readers, I was informed about the Kids Place with Child Lock app for Android. This app works for the Kindle Fire and when you run the app you specify what is allowed to be accessed. It blocks access to everything else unless a PIN code is entered. It does a good job while the Kindle Fire is running and is good if you pass the Kindle Fire to younger kids to play with for short periods of time. Rebooting the Kindle Fire bypasses the Kids Place app however, so it can be easily thwarted if your kids have their own Kindle Fire, the other issue is that for some reason on the Kindle Fire it has an ugly orange background instead of the elegant one seen in the pic here:

Kids Place App

Kids Place with Child Lock

The Kids Place – With Child Lock app is still worth considering if you intend to let kids younger than 5 use your Kindle Fire to play some games or use some drawing apps, and it allows you peace of mind they can only access the handful of apps you setup for them (as long as they don’t power off and on the Kindle Fire).

Justin Germino
Working in the IT Industry for over 13 years and specializing in web based technologies. Dragon Blogger has unique insights and opinions to how the internet and web technology works. An Avid movie fan, video game fan and fan of trying anything and everything new.
Justin Germino


Technology, Gaming and Wordpress blogger who runs gadget giveaways, helps others with blogging tips, monetization, earning and more!
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  • LauLau81

    I think Kindle Fire is the best gift for my son this Christmas. He will surely love this. Thank you for sharing…

    • @LauLau81 You are welcome, yeah it also gives parents piece of mind too with the charging being controlled.

      • Bourmb

        @Dragon Blogger @LauLau81

  • EricHarbauer

    The credit card trick works great! Thanks! I was losing it trying to figure out how to set up an account for my 9 year old! Amazon is going to have a big issue with this after the holidays!

    • @EricHarbauer Yeah, this works for me since I am giving the Kindle Fire to my kids for Xmas this year.

  • chrisC

    Great help, thanks. If we do end up wanting to buy something…would we just add in the “real” credit card on the computer…make the purchase and then turn it off?

    Thanks again.

    • EricHarbauer

      @chrisC another great idea. I deleted the cc# and funded the account with a gift card (allowance) but that will work great too. Thx again

      • @[email protected] You can even use Amazon Gift cards and purchase the android apps while on the browser, but you can’t assign an Amazon Gift card/coupon to 1 click which sucks. So yeah, best thing to do is buy a Visa gift card or something which has a finite limit, some sort of rechargeable card is perfect.

  • I have amazon prime and gave my daughter one of my free prime family memberships. Is there a way to let her have access to all of my apps that I got from the free app of the day from Amazon? I am thinking I will need to registure the kindle under my account, download the free apps to her kindle and then switch it back over to her name. Seems like there has to be an easier way. I might just leave it reqistured under my account; I can assign her a ‘dummy’ credit card number like above and I think that will prevent any purchases.

    In your opinion, whaat is the best way to share apps and books?

    • If you register her kindle to your account it will get the apps, but when you de-register and put it back to her account it will lose them. The apps are tied to your “Amazon Account” not the Kindle itself per say. For my kids and mother-in-law for example, I setup 3 separate Amazon accounts and downloaded apps to each Kindle separately. I did setup PRIME for my kids and grandma but I don’t know if Prime lets only 1 member rent a book per month or each member you share Prime with. This is why I mostly get free apps, I don’t want to purchase the same app across 2-3 Kindle Fire’s. Leaving the Kindle on your primary account is fine, you can set a different 1-click method for the Kindle than your main Amazon shopping. So this is also another option, it didn’t work for me because I had 3 separate Kindles to configure though.

  • leftbrainfemale

    Helping my sis who lives outside the US set up these for her kiddos and found this app which is fabulous and works great on the Kindle Fire:

    • Is a really great app, but unfortunately it is bypassed just by turning off the Kindle Fire and turning it back on again. Too easy for kids to just bypass it to make it worth using. This is good if you handed it to them to play with for short periods of time, but not if it was their device and they kept it and were responsible for it. Also I think this app is ideal for kids younger than 5 that you want to give limited access to play what they want on the Kindle Fire.

      • leftbrainfemale

        @Dragon Blogger Ah, I had not yet discovered that it turns off. She’ll have to keep an eye on that then. Her kiddos are 2.5 and 5, so they won’t be trying to bypass it for a bit yet I don’t think. I’ve loaded ’em up with KidsTV and lots of games that will keep them busy for a while.

        • It’s a decent option and I added it to this post, I think it’s perfect for the ages you described. My sons at 5 and 8 are old enough to download apps and recognize the word “free” so I give them a little bit of freedom (unless they give me reason to remove it).

  • speckledlamb

    Tried the paypal cc setup it worked like a charm, I am working on setting up a kindle fire for Christmas for my son, of course the cc was a huge issue, I would love to see amazon make a change for this but in the mean time no worries about accidental overcharges here 🙂 thanks!

    • @speckledlamb Glad this helped solve your issue as it did mine.

  • Glad you found the info helpful.

  • ShipraKaul

    The 2 Kindle Fire gadgets in a contest that is still ongoing are good and will be useful to light fires

  • excellent review! the kindle fire has had huge success because of the cost of the device. parents cant afford an ipad so they are looking for other alternatives.

    • @Kid Computers Yes, though not designed originally with Kids in mind, it doesn’t take much to make the Kindle Fire an excellent tablet for kids.

  • ILoveMyFire

    Fantastic Tips!!

  • ILoveMyFire

    Fantastic Tips!!

  • guest

    Thanks for the tips! I love the credit discovery. I just gave my daughter one of these for Christmas. I used your method for one-click and gave her a $25 Amazon Gift card. It purchases as if it is using the one-click, real nice!

    • Great, glad it helped I know if I wouldn’t have done this with my kids my 5 year old would have purchased apps in seconds.

  • Great, glad to know you can use it for the regular Kindle models as well.

  • Dragonblogger

    Very happy it worked for you, both my kids enjoy their Kindle Fire’s they got for Xmas (ages 8 and 5) and they have already downloaded dozens of free apps.

  • Hmm, are you using amazon US for the kindle registration? The number should work, but try some of the other numbers on Paypal Test Credit card page:

  • Anita

    Thank you, this was a great help. We bought Fires for 3 kiddos in our house this Christmas and were about at the end of our rope with this cc issue. Thanks again

    • Glad to have helped, I find that solving problems for my own family helps make great articles for the site. This one was a big one, and over 8,000 people have come to this article for help in the past 30 days.

  • Charlie

    Thanks for the great tip. Santa brought a Kindle Fire for my 11 yr old daughter and discovered the required one click cc requirement afterwards…even for free apps. Your tip was a perfect workaround. Thanks!!! -Santa

    • Real glad my tip helped you Charlie, I did this for my own kids aged 8 and 5 and they got Kindle Fire’s from Santa. I researched how to do this while I pre-configured their Kindle Fire’s weeks before Christmas because I know my 5 year old would just buy stuff like crazy without meaning too.

  • mich_state

    In order to restrict questionable websites, you should look into setting your Router to OpenDNS Family Shield (a free service which most public schools use to block unwanted websites – super simple, no software).

    • Sorry, this won’t work for the Amazon app store which is hosted from same website. This may be a good option for blocking specific websites, but having a whitelist restriction is better than individually blacklisting websites which can number too high to manually enter.

      • mich_state

        @Dragon Blogger Not sure what you mean by won’t work for Amazon app store – if you setup your DNS in your Router to OpenDNS ( & it just blocks a large number of questionable website (nudity, gambling, etc). You can also get a free OpenDNS account and choose which categories to block. I set it up on my router and Amazon app store works fine via the fire as well as getting the blocking on questionable websites via the browser.

  • profstone

    I found out about this blog when I was trying to set up a Kindle 3 account for my daughter (I got her the Kindle Keyboard because I was pretty sure she would not use the fire for reading purposes); only to learn that Amazon would not let her order books with her Kindle Gift cards without an active credit card on file (something I hope most parents do not have for their young kids) and based upon my daughter’s prior experiences with access to my money, I was not permitting her to use my account. In fact, I was looking at the Amazon / Kindle account as a way to help her develop better financial literacy. Your showing me how to use the paypal fake numbers was a life and budget saver. It is sad that Amazon does not understand its client base and sets people up to be unable to continue as customers.

    Thanks again for providing this information.

    • @profstone The Kindle Fire has some great educational games and many of the RPG/Strategy games have a ton of reading/story line in the games. Though I will admit my kids really only use the Kindle Fire for media and apps, my oldest son does read a lot of the story bio’s on games and background. He is a good reader though and read his Diary of a Wimpy Kid Cabin Fever book he got for Christmas in a few days.

  • Right, just meant I wish there was a filter so that kids couldn’t download inappropriate apps from Amazon app store, not that there are a glutton of bad apps like the main Android store, but still some apps I prefer them not to be able to download. Same goes with any VOD. Having this setup as the DNS server is a good option for blocking potentially negative sites, though I haven’t tested familyshield myself.

  • Momofteen

    Thank you Justin. We are poised to purchase a Kindle Fire for my 13 year old son. You solved my issues with separate accounts and credit cards but I still have issues with the lack of parental controls for what they can browse either on Amazon or the web and also for limiting ratings on which movies he will be able to stream. We use Mobicip (a web filter) on their other apple devices (Ipod touch) and it works well. It looks like there is an “android” version that they are saying will work on the Kindle Fire. Was hoping you or someone you know has seen it or tested it on the kindle fire. When I decided to use mobicip on our touches and iphones, I had them in hand to see first hand that it indeed worked. We do not have the kindle fire yet, as I am unwilling to purchase it without some kind of parental controls on what they can browse etc. before I actually buy it. Have you heard of mobicip or how it works on Kindle Fire?

    • @Momofteen If you read below, Mitch did mention a good service for filtering websites you can configure the Kindle Fire to use DNS servers that block content online, you can also customize to filter specific sites. There is no way to prevent them from choosing certain apps vs others however, but Kids Place can lock down the Kindle Fire to only the specific apps you allow (again unless rebooted). Smart App Lock can lock down applications as well.

  • keverets

    Sadly, when using the “Paypal Test” and our US address & phone number, I still get “Your payment method has a non-USA billing address. A US credit card is required.”

    • @keverets Try different numbers, did you try some other numbers on this link?

      • keverets

        @Dragon Blogger ah, thanks for the link… another card number did work!

        Thanks again!

      • Megha

        @Dragon Blogger
        Try different numbers, did you try some other numbers on this link?
        My latest conversation: Developing Custom Formidable Pro Forms
        I’m from India, and your blog was a life saver! Tried a few of the numbers and an AE number worked. YAY! : )

        • Really glad you found this helpful and glad to know it works Internationally as well.  Question, Amazon isn’t selling or offering Kindle Fire internationally yet, did you have a friend in the states send you one?  How are you hooking it into Amazon?

        • Gabriela

          [email protected] Blogger Thank you so much!! I was really P.O when I realized the appstore was only available to US credit holders; now I’m proud I “cheated” the systems because of you. I’ve been buying stuff from amazon for years, books mostly. When it comes to High Tech apparels, I ask a friend to pick it up at his cousin’s house and the he brings it to me.

        • Glad I could help, yeah even with the Amazon Android App store I am still manually installing some .apk files for apps like Dropbox and others which aren’t in the Amazon app store but work on the Kindle Fire.

  • ChrisJohnson1

    Thank you so much!!!

    • [email protected] you found this article helpful for setting up the Kindle Fire so it doesn’t charge your credit card to death.

  • EJRunyon

    Your instructions are:
    “Setup a separate Account for Kindle Fire If you use the Kindle Fire or you have more than one Kindle Fire, you will want to make sure your child has a separate Amazon account for their Kindle Fire.  This way you can assign a default one click payment option without affecting your normal 1 click and Amazon prime accounts. If you only have 1 Kindle Fire or have Amazon Prime tied to your account only and want to keep it that way, then you can just set your default 1-click payment for the Kindle Fire to what is explained in Step 2”
    Can you give examples of what these steps looks like for someone not versed in setup step yet?
    I have a teacher with 5 devices and can use this work-around for setting up her units for class use.
    Thanks so much.

    • [email protected] this case you don’t want each kid in the class to have their own Amazon account or do you?  You can tie all Kindle Fires to the same account and they will all have access to exact same apps like clone devices.  Just go to and create a new account / register, you need to use a unique email to register with, then sign into the Kindle Fire with that email you tied to your new Amazon account.After you setup an account and register your Kindle Fire, you will click on account under your Kindle management section you will see an option to setup 1 Click Payment. 

  • MRicks

    This article has been so helpful!  I set up a dummy account, but now I’m wondering if things can be purchased with a Gift Card.  I’d like for my daughter to be able to purchase items, but I’m not sure how to work around the dummy account.  I’ve tried various ways, but it’s leaving ME feeling like a dummy.  🙂  Any ideas or help you can give would be appreciated.  Thanks again for all the work you did to help us give a great gift to our kids without breaking the bank in the process!

    • Ok, if you apply a gift card to an Amazon account, any purchases draw from the gift card before any credit card is charged.  This means you can leave the dummy credit card and not change anything, just apply the gift certificate like normal and you can charge purchases until the gift credit runs out.  I do this all the time with my kids Amazon accounts setup this way.

    • Sometimes I just buy $5 amazon gift coupons and send them to my kids via email, they apply them than can buy a few apps.

      • MRicks

        [email protected] Blogger Thank you!  I had problems at first, but now it’s working.  My youngest child accidentally purchased something on my Kindle today so now I’m EXTRA happy I can do the fake credit card on the other Kindle.  Guess Big Sis will be sharing her Kindle Fire with Little Sis so we don’t have any more accidental purchases.  🙂  Thanks again for all of your help!  You’ve really saved me a HUGE headache and a hefty credit card bill.

  • bake_jake_16

    dragonblogger, can you add a minecraft or xbox360 code generator

  • KuriusGames

    A fun puzzle game for kids on the Kindle Fire is called Traktor Digger

  • marina

    hello, I have recently tried this on my kindle. I am not from the united states but I do have an address there and I used it as my billing information. Yet I still can’t use get free apps even though the information on the amazon website is accepted. Is there a waiting time for it to register? Or am I doing something wrong?
    Greatly appreciate the help!

    • When you connect it to your wireless network, your IP is what dictates your location, if your IP address is in a country that doesn’t support Amazon Android App Store, you won’t have access to it. You would have to use some sort of proxy service that can provide you an IP from the U.S. for it to show you the Android app store on

  • JL

    I tried the Paypal thing and now Amazon has completely locked me out of the account I set up. I did foolishly try to see what would happen if I hit the purchase button, which would have absolutely been tried by the child I purchased the Kindle for. This method is not a good idea. I’m also worried about my main Amazon account now with all of the digital purchases I’ve ordered over the years. DON’T DO THIS.

    I regret not going with a full fledged Android tablet. This thing is going back.

    • I use this method now, and all Amazon does is say a charge could not go through. My kids to this day continue to order an app occasionally, Amazon does not disable their Kindle Fire accounts, and when my expiration date I put in for one of these fake cards expired, I just renewed it by extending the expiration date another year and it still works fine.

      I do however now endorse the Google Nexus 7, when I got the Kindle Fire there was no other 7″ tablet as a viable option in the $199 price range, the Google Nexus 7 is by far the best choice now in my opinion.

      • JL

        I’m completely locked out. I’ve tried changing my password 3 times and I still can’t log in to my account. It all started after I clicked purchase on a paid app. I would try switching to a more legit workaround, just for safety’s sake. You might not ever have problems, but still..

        Thanks for the suggestion.One of the kids has a Novo7 that’s held up fairly well. Not the greatest or fastest tablet, but you can download stuff from Google Play without having to link a credit card or finding a way around it. I’ll probably end up shopping around for a decent non-locked tablet this time.

        I have a old Kindle e-ink reader that I still love, but I’m completely soured on buying any type of Kindle that Amazon puts out from now on. I knew it was a closed system, but I never knew it would be this much of a nuisance I should be able to set it up out of the box without having to worry about the kids going on a spending spree or someone else messing with the tablet and doing the same. It just seems kind of evil of Amazon to not have options to prevent this from happening.

        • I just had a long email chain back and forth with a reader who got a Kindle Fire as a gift and they don’t live in U.S. or U.K. so it basically can’t access any app store or do anything. Useless if you live outside U.S. or U.K. only thing about left is to plug it into PC and try to root it.

  • Razz

    do i have to use my name as the credit card holder? i keep getting an error that the expiration date is not valid…i live outside the US

    • Any name should work, expiration date may be something silly like you are using the wrong format for MM/YYYY or something that was previous. What were you entering for expiration date, I just changed the one for my son’s Kindle Fire to 12/2015 and it worked fine.

  • obi

    thank you very much…works

    • Happy to help, note that I haven’t tried the new Kindle Fire HD and it supposedly has built in family friendly features, not sure if it can natively lock purchases of app store or whatnot, so not sure if this article is needed for Kindle Fire HD owners as well. Though I think it locks out all app store, and this method lets them at least download the free apps and blocks paid downloads.

      • Kindle Parent

        Same problem on Fire HD, couldn’t find any way out but your method.

  • i got a Kindle FireHd in December and was trying to download apps but it said my country setting were not supported in other words if i wasnt jn the US it wouldnt let me download the apps any advice would be much appreciated

    • I think Amazon now supports UK and US for Android App Store but is very limited in other markets. This is why I recommend the Google Nexus 7 or other Open Android OS.

      That being said, there are some things you can do. On the Kindle Fire there is a setting to allow you to install 3rd party uncertified apps, this will allow you to copy any .apk file over to your Kindle Fire via USB from your PC and run those files to install games and such. They should work fine if they are supported on that version of Android the Kindle Fire HD uses. The problem is that you need a file explorer, which is an app on the Kindle Fire that can browse files and execute APK files, I like ES File Explorer which is free.

      However, if you use the browser you can do it manually and this may work.

      Go to more, settings, Device. Make sure allow install from unknown sources is on.

      Using the Kindle Fire built in browser (assume you have Internet access)

      Navigate to

      Search whatever app you want.

      Download it.

      When it is done, click on the downloaded file in the pull down bar.

      Click Install.

  • Kindle Parent

    Thank you very much for providing this simple fix for a headache inducing problem. Amazon should definitely compensate you for stopping us from returning their Kindles.

    • Glad you found this article helpful, the new Kindle Fire HDX has a little more robust child place features, but this tip still helps and using a test Paypal card still prevents charges.

  • Luis

    it works perfect!!!!! thanks so much !!!!! 🙂

  • Andra Dunn

    Thank you! Glad I found your post. It did the trick and I’ve shared with my friends as well!

  • Tuck

    Hi I was wondering if the dummy card setup next his still works! Is it safe/legal to do?

    • Yes, I just used it for my kids Kindle Fire HDX they got in December 2013 for Xmas, and set it again in January 2014. This is perfectly legit and legal.

  • Malia

    i used the dummy credit card information for an amazon account because it said please add your payment information to continue(I was using a gift card to pay though) and then i got this email….. can i go to jail? I’m really worried about what might happen. can i get in trouble with the police

  • Guest

    Can you still buy apps with a giftcard using this?

    • Yes, if you apply an Amazon gift card to your account, the gift card balance will be drained before it charges anything.

  • Jamie Vick

    Thanks this was very helpful. I went in and added parental controls as well.

  • Barbara Halleman

    I’m just curious if the dummy credit card setup still works since it’s been several years since you posted that info. Am getting ready to set up Fire tablets for our 3 granddaughters before Christmas. Any current info would be greatly appreciated!!

    • Yep just validated it still works with the 4111111111111111 as the dummy card, and set expiration to 12/2017 you set it in Amazon “add payment method”

      • Barbara Halleman

        Thanks so much for the quick response — and two days before Christmas at that!!

      • Lindsay

        Mine keeps declining this saying it is invalid. What did you put as the CVC code?

        • I added it through my Amazon Account in browser, it never asked for CVV code from back of card when adding it that way. Did you try adding it from the Kindle Fire or PC in Browser?