WHEN they were little, we could easily get away with giving the kids a bundle of budget-friendly softs toys and books for Christmas.
But as they're getting older, the cost of the presents on their Christmas wish lists have shot through the roof - and we're not the only ones experiencing this.
According to a new survey, parents are being expected to fork out almost £1,000 on tech for their kids - and a Nintendo Switch is the most-wanted present.
Nearly half of children are hoping for the brand-new PlayStation 5 which retails at almost £450, while 43 per cent have their fingers crossed for a set of Apple AirPods which sell for around £160.
A third have a new smartphone on their Christmas list this year and 13 per cent are even asking for the new iPhone 12, which starts at around £799.
A further 41 per cent are wishing for a new smart speaker, which parents admit will likely set them back nearly £200, and almost half of youngsters are asking for a tablet costing at least £200.
Top 10 tech items on children's Christmas lists for 2020:
- Nintendo Switch
- Playstation 5
- Xbox Series X/S
- Apple AirPods
- Smart speaker
The research polling 2,000 British parents revealed how 62 per cent of 4-17 year olds are expecting an expensive gadget this year – and in total, the average child wants £938 worth of tech.
But more than a third of mums and dads admitted they won’t be able to afford to spend this much outright – however they could afford to spend an average of £16 a month on a phone for their kids
The study was commissioned by musicMagpie which is offering parents the chance to fulfil their children’s hopes with an iPhone from just £10 a month, with its new phone rental offering.
Liam Howley from musicMagpie said: “It can be so tough as a parent. We want our children to really enjoy their Christmas, but sometimes their wishes go beyond what we can afford.
“Our study has shown just how much pressure there is financially for families, and how it only gets worse as gadgets become more expensive.
"It makes it harder still if other children have certain tech, and your child just wants to fit in with their friends.
“We wanted to offer parents a more affordable option when buying tech for their families and have introduced our rental offering to keep monthly costs as low as possible and ask for no upfront costs.”
The study found a third of youngsters want the latest gadgets and gizmos because their friends have them and many are worried they won’t be perceived as 'cool enough' without them.
As many as 63 per cent of parents feel pressure to buy their offspring the latest tech for Christmas, putting them in a difficult position when 73 per cent feel the cost just gets more and more expensive.
In fact, three-quarters find themselves being pestered by their children frequently – more than once a week for many - and 59 per cent admitted to giving in to this ‘pester power’.
The research, conducted via OnePoll, also found children will start asking for tech for Christmas around the age of eight, with one in four beginning to ask for these gifts from as young as five.
In a bid to appease their children and not disappoint, one in 10 parents are looking to take up another job to help afford the tech they desire.
And three in 10 are looking to spread the cost of purchases as monthly payments – instead of one bulk payment – meaning they will carry the debt into the new year.
A further 37 per cent plan to sell old belongings to help make some extra money in the lead up to present buying, with 29 per cent buying second-hand tech.
Liam Howley added: “Even though there is significant pressure on parents to get certain tech for their kids, there’s certainly ways around it.
“You shouldn’t feel the need to buy things brand new, and this can often be more wasteful if the moment the next smartphone is released, they decide they want the latest device.
“As well as considering renting a phone instead, buying second-hand or refurbished tech can be a really easy way to make things more affordable and is also a much smarter choice for the environment.
“We know the following year they will probably want a newer better device which is why as part of the rental service you can upgrade every year with no hassle and to make sure you’re covered for any accidental damage, of particular importance when kids are involved, we offer free lifetime warranty and damage cover.”
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