In response to the research, Tesco has launched a ‘Toy Tester Hotline’ manned by an expert team of kids, who will offer parents advice on this season’s most loved toys. The Toy Tester Hotline will be available from 10.00 until 14.00 on Saturday 5th November 2016.


New research from Tesco has revealed: 

  • 66% of parents admit to not being sure what to buy their kids for Christmas
  • 43% say their children changing their minds is the route of the problem
  • 33% of parents forced to make at least one last-minute trip to the shops
  • Hotline to be hosted by kids to help parents buy the most loved toys for their kids this Christmas


2nd November 2016: Panicked parents across the UK will spend on average 16 and a half days buying Christmas presents for their kids with two in five parents (43 per cent) agreeing that their children changing their minds about what they want is the route of the problem. To give parents a helping hand, Tesco will launch a ‘Toy Tester Hotline’ on 5th November hosted by an expert team of kids to give parents a helping hand this Christmas. 

The research by Tesco, which polled 2,000 UK parents with children aged 0 – 16 years, found that 66 per cent of parents admit they aren’t sure what to buy their kids, causing a third of parents (31 per cent) to buy a toy their child didn’t like.  The ‘Toy Tester Hotline’ aims to help panicked parents across the UK, with children on hand to give advice on this year’s most loved toys, including why they like them and what the toy has to offer.

With nearly a fifth of parents (18 per cent) planning to buy their children’s Christmas presents in the first week of November, those needing guidance can call the Tesco ‘Toy Tester Hotline’ on Saturday 5th November between the hours of 10.00 and 14.00. 

Dawn Lavalette, Head of Buying for Toys and Nursery at Tesco, commented: “We want to help take the stress out of Christmas this year, and with our Toy Tester Hotline, we’ll be offering advice on this season’s most loved toys.

“With 66 per cent of parents admitting to not knowing what to buy their kids at Christmas, we hope the Toy Tester Hotline will help parents pick the perfect presents. Whether you need a Lego City Airport Air Show, a Paw Patrol Air Patroller or a Tesco exclusive such as Sindy, our expert team will be on hand to help you find the perfect gift at Tesco, home of the most loved toys.”

Alongside this, Tesco is working with child psychologist Dr. Sam Wass, known for his time on award-winning Channel 4 series The Secret Life of 4-, 5- and 6-Year-Olds, to investigate how confident parents are when it comes to choosing what present their child wants.

Dr. Sam Wass comments: “In our research we identified that just under half of parents (44 per cent) did not correctly guess the main present choice of their child. Of the ones that did guess correctly, the parents tended to be Mums (75 per cent).

Dr. Wass continued: “The above scores occurred in contrast to the confidence ratings parents gave ahead of the test, which were consistently above 8 out of 10 across all parents (with ‘0’ being not confident at all, and ’10’ being extremely confident). The results show a real disconnect between what parents think their child wants and what they actually want.”

Interviews revealed that predicting presents for children in early childhood is much easier for parents than for children in infancy and middle childhood. 

The Tesco Toy Tester Hotline will be available from 10.00 until 14.00 on Saturday 5th November 2016. Anyone wanting to use the service should call 0207 553 7344.

Outside of this parents can get more tips and advice from a series of Tesco Toy Testers videos available at Tesco Toy Testers.

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