Thursday 19 October 2017

Irish paying 10pc more than UK for kids' toys

Lego City Volcano Heavy-Lift Helicopter. Picture: Lego.com
Lego City Volcano Heavy-Lift Helicopter. Picture: Lego.com
Luke Byrne

Luke Byrne

Irish Christmas shoppers buying some of this year's most popular gifts for children are paying around 10pc more than people in the UK.

A survey of prices by the Herald showed how a basket of 10 toys that would cost €656 in Britain, costs €711 in Ireland.

It also found that shopping on the internet was the cheapest option, with the same toys costing €640 - a significant €71 saving on buying in the shops here.

A random selection of popular toys likely to be found under the Christmas tree was chosen for comparison.

The Lego City Volcano Heavy-Lift Helicopter, which was €129.99 in Ireland, was more than €10 cheaper in Britain with a price tag of €117.39.

For shoppers looking for a bargain, the same toy could be found online for €69.19.

As for gifts for younger children, the Fisher Price Code-a-Pillar had a price of €59.99 in Ireland but was the equivalent of €52.82 in Britain.

Online, the toy, which Fisher Price boats helps pre-schoolers with critical thinking and problem-solving skills, costs €50.52.

Another gift, the selfie mic, had a price tag equivalent to €17.53 in Britain, while its Irish price was €24.99.

However, the toy also proved that it was best for gift-buyers to shop around. Its cost was actually higher online, where it was listed for €32.83.

With Star Wars films growing in popularity the droid BB8 has appeared on the wish list for many children.

The online price for the Hasbro-made toy was €105.56, significantly less than its €174.99 price tag in Ireland.

Insulting

It was one of the few items cheaper here when compared to Britain, where it costs the equivalent of €176.14.

Dermott Jewell, head of the Consumers' Association of Ireland (CAI), said retailers have often used the excuse of higher costs in Ireland to charge customers here more.

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Dermott Jewell, Consumers Association

However, he said he did not accept that argument.

"I think that's insulting and it's a disgrace," he said.

Questions to Smyths toy store, asking why there was such a difference in prices between here and the UK, went unanswered.

Herald

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