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Second-hand gifting could save cash-strapped parents £20 per toy this Christmas

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Parents may feel guilty about buying second-hand gifts for their children, even during the cost-of-living crisis, but new research shows that the majority of kids wouldn’t mind and some even think it’s “cool”.

According to a survey of 1,000 British parents and children by the website Gumtree this month, 87% of parents said they felt financial pressure to meet their children’s expectations this year. 

When it comes to considering pre-loved items, 44% of the parents said they would feel guilty about not buying new presents while 34% said they worried about the quality of used toys. Nearly 30% said they thought their kids only wanted something new.

But parents might find some encouragement from the children’s point of view, according to the poll.

New or used?

More than half (55%) of the children questioned said a used present would be fine and 18% said it would even be ‘cool’. Almost a third (30%) liked the idea of helping the planet by receiving a second-hand treat and 52% said they weren’t even sure they could tell whether a gift was new or used.

That could make a big difference when it comes to filling those stockings by the fireplace. The parents in the poll said they would spend an average of £46 on a new toy or game but just £26 if they bought it second-hand, according to Gumtree. 

Bargain hunting

In an effort to shrink the stigma further, Gumtree said it had set up what it called the Gumtree Toybox online to showcase the best second-hand bargains on its site. 

Hannah Rouch, chief marketing officer at Gumtree, said that giving second-hand gifts not only helps families save money, but also “helps save the planet – with fewer old toys and packaging ending up in landfill.”