Overrated toys of SA

2019-12-11 06:00

EVERY parent knows the frustration of presenting a child with a toy that they’ve been nagging you for ages, only to abandon it within a few days.

According to Claire Cobbledick of Gumtree South Africa, it’s easy to spot which toys didn’t live up to the hype by analysing the listings on the site.

“Parents start listing abandoned toys between December 28 and the end of the first week of January, once it’s clear that their kids are not as enthusiastic about their expensive toys as anticipated,” said Cobbledick.

In an analysis on the site from 2018 to date, the following toys are the most frequently listed for sale:

• Hatchimals

These adorable animals remain a surprise until they noisily hatch from their eggs, but that is usually where the excitement begins and ends. Costing between R800 to R1 000 a toy, the hatched Hatchimals are often resold for R250 to R500.

• Build-a-Bear

Similar to Hatchimals, the fun of this toy lies in putting it together and customising it. Build-a-bear range in price from R250 to R1 000, depending on accessories and type.

“To cut the cost, take your little one to assemble the bear and buy your accessories secondhand on Gumtree. You can pick up wardrobes full of shoes, sunglasses and clothes for your bears for a tenth of the price,” said Cobbledick.

• Hoverboards

This was all the craze in 2018 but frustrated parents started listing their hoverboards on December 25 already.

“Last year we had dozens listed by Boxing Day for half price,” said Cobbledick.

The cause is unknown but reports of injuries and accidents might be behind the steep abandonment rates.

• Lego

Lego is incredibly popular, but once assembled, pieces invariably go missing and the novelty wears off. “The good news is that you can often buy secondhand Lego in bulk as incomplete sets — leaving your little ones free to use their imagination to assemble their own world,” said Cobbledick.

• Battery-powered cars

Car enthusiast parents will shell out thousands for mini Ferraris and BMWs for their little ones, but they often end up for sale soon after. “The batteries need to be replaced, kids lose interest or simply outgrow them,” said Cobbledick.

Cobbledick said there are a few tips parents should deploy before shelling out on big presents.

“Kids outgrow toys quickly. Before committing to a big ticket item, shop secondhand. You can teach healthy money habits by having your child sell their old toys to buy new ones. Make a point of donating or repairing old toys rather than throwing it out,” said Cobbledick.

— GumtreeSA.


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