A Christmas price war broke out yesterday as the toy industry revealed the ‘must-have’ presents it expects to be this year’s top sellers.
Following Asda’s move to cut the price of 70 toy lines, Sainsbury’s retaliated with its own half-price sale, including a number of the 12 gifts predicted to be on many children’s lists for Santa.
Hi-tech products, such as computer tablets, digital cameras and sophisticated interactive cuddly toys dominate the ‘dream dozen’.
With 58 shopping days to go until Christmas, it is reckoned that one in three children have already written their gift wish list.
And, understandably, most youngsters are oblivious to the financial strain facing families this year and have compiled lists for Santa with scant regard for their parents’ wallets and purses.
According to a survey for Asda, three in four parents are planning to spend up to £199 on presents per child. And one in five expect to spend up to £499.
Asda’s study said: ‘Perhaps eager to dazzle their friends, kids are piling their Christmas requests high with expensive products with a third of parents expecting up to ten presents to feature on their list this year.’
More than one in three parents plan to ask extended family for help with gifts, the survey found.
On its dream dozen list, the Toy Retailers’ Association expects Lego, Star Wars and other kits to do well.
The £22.99 Doggie Doo game – featuring a toy dachshund that turns ‘food’ into plastic droppings that players have to scoop up – is also expected to be a hit.
As well the top 12 the TRA named 70 toys it believes will do well.
Chairman of the selection panel Gary Grant said: ‘We’ve seen some amazing technological advancements by the toy industry this year.
'This doesn’t mean the toys are “techy”, rather technology has been used to enrich the experience of play.’