chcolate on shelves near a checkoutUK parents spend an un-planned £435 a year as because their kids pester them for treats on shopping trips.

British kids have perfected the art of 'pester power' at two years and seven months old, with one in ten children under the age of one already having mastered spotting what they want and doing whatever it takes to get it.

The survey of 2,000 parents showed kids turn on the tears and tantrums to get what they want. And forget about pushy parents, it seems we're fast becoming a nation of 'push-over parents'.

Even though times are tight for most families, four in five UK mums and dads admit to giving in to their kids 'impulse demands' on shopping trips. One in ten parents (10%) admitted buying their children 'whatever they want'.

  • 55 % demand chocolate and sweets
  • 41% Toys
  • 24% Magazine
  • 22% Books
  • 8% DVDs

I can't help think that nine out of ten of these surveys need to be taken with a large pinch of salt. These figures have bee released by online shopping outlet Littlewoods.com, which wants to encourage parents to shop from home.

Nonetheless, I can remember a fair few times I have bought my kids things they have miraculously spotted and urgently needed when out shopping.

But Littlewoods is laying it on a bit thick. It says more than 75% say shopping with their kids sends their stress levels through the roof.
  • 53% will throw a strop if their parents don't cave in to their demands
  • 30% will go on a charm offensive, giving the puppy dog eyes and asking politely.
  • 10% will try to bribe their parents

Some British kids are more persuasive than others, with kids from south coast seaside town of Brighton costing the most, adding an extra £12.36 to the cost of their parents' weekly shopping trip, compared with the UK average of £8.37.

I'm not convinced online shopping gets round this. If I'm on Amazon and my daughter spots me, she is very good at getting me to add things I don't need to my basket.