Wednesday 21 August 2019

Irish paying 10pc more than UK for kids' toys

Lego City Volcano Heavy-Lift Helicopter. Picture:
Lego City Volcano Heavy-Lift Helicopter. Picture:
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.


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.

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.


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