(NAPSI)-As parents begin to unpack the holiday decorations, stock up on wrapping paper and create budgets for the upcoming season of gift-giving, schoolyards are already abuzz about the latest and greatest "must have" toys of the season.
Bionicles, Kinderbots, Lightsabers and more-navigating the wonderful world of the season's hottest holiday toys can be daunting for any parent, especially when working on a tight budget.
"Every holiday season arrives with a slew of toys children will add to their wish lists," said Gary Severson, senior vice president and general merchandise manager for Wal-Mart Stores. "When purchasing any gift for a child, a variety of things should be considered-age-appropriateness, price, popularity-and parents often need guidance when shopping for toys during the holiday season."
This is why Severson is providing the following sanity-saving shopping tips for customers shopping for the season's hottest toys:
Hot Holiday Toys:
Friends, popular television shows, and movies usually motivate children to want a certain toy. This year, Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones, Spider-Man, and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets will be popular, so expect related merchandise to be hot as well.
Video games and gaming systems will continue to be popular this year, so it's important to look for age-appropriate video games such as: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and Metroid Prime.
Don't dismiss toys popular from decades past-the classics are back in a big way. A few ideas include: Mr. Potato Head, Magna Doodle, and even Care Bears.
For those seeking toys that do more than entertain, look for learning toys like LeapPad which offer choices ideal for a range of age groups.
DVDs will be popular for older kids and some of the new releases that will be popular include: Spider-Man, Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones, Men in Black II, and even Beauty and the Beast.
When shopping for toys, follow the recommended age on products.
Consider looking toward a trusted retailer's Web site for a listing of age-appropriate toys. For example, Kasey the Kinderbot and Chicken Dance Elmo are popular for preschoolers, and Bratz Dolls and Hot Wheels are popular for young girls and boys.
Ask a sales associate what the coolest toys are of the season. They usually have a good idea of what the kids have been ogling at in the aisles.
Consider shopping in the early morning or late evening to avoid the high traffic rush.
No matter how well retailers' shelves are stocked, it's always a good idea to shop early in the season for best sellers.
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