While the hottest toy of the season is currently unavailable in stores, that doesn't mean that there are none to be found, period. Parents who refuse to take no for an answer can turn to eBay, Amazon Marketplace, Craigslist, or local Facebook "yard sale groups," where those lucky enough to snatch up the popular toy back in October are selling them for a tidy profit. But how much should you pay for a resale Hatchimal? The going rate is currently anywhere from $150 to $250, and consumer psychologist Kit Yarrow told TIME that those prices will continue to increase until Christmas. But as soon as the holiday has passed, expect those prices to crash. Parents of patient children would do best to wait; the manufacturer does anticipate a new batch being in stores by January.
One also must ask oneself if they feel comfortable supporting resellers, who are capitalizing on Hatchimals' popularity with little regard for the effects their "business" has on children and their parents. While the original retail price of $50 to $70 was already rather high for some families, the resale prices puts the toy completely out of reach for many more children. No parent should have to choose between two weeks' worth of groceries and a toy. But don't take my word for it; watch this hilarious video in which a frustrated mom takes resellers to task, asking, "Did somebody take your lunch money when you were a kid?"
There's also the question of whether it's best to acquiesce to a child's nearly-impossible demands. Some parents fall back on the excuse that their kids are too young to understand the concept of supply and demand, but it's really not that complicated. And surely, even toddlers understand the concept of "no," whether or not they understand the underlying "why" behind it. Parents don't let their kids run into the street or use the stove. They don't rush out to buy a horse when their kids ask for one after watching My Little Pony (at least, most don't). It might be best to teach children the concept of delayed gratification, a crucial life skill, lest we raise a generation of Veruca Salts.
Finally, consider how big of a deal getting a Hatchimal really is to your child. Is it really No. 1 on their wish list, or has it just taken on outsized importance in your own eyes because of how hard it is to get one? Did your child even ask for one? Will they still be playing with it in six months, or a year? Or have you just been swept up in the craze of it all, the competition that demands that every parent procure the hot new toy at any cost, lest they ruin their child's holiday? If it's truly that important (and affordable) to your family to procure a Hatchimal, it's certainly possible, but just remember that for the same amount of money, you could get a year-long membership to a museum for the whole family. Maybe just wait until January?