Holiday Shopping Tips for Parents

If you have not knocked out your holiday shopping, be prepared to fight the crowds.

When you are taking the kids with you expect even more chaos because during the holidays, police say it is easier to lose children in a busy store.

Six-year-old Olivia could spend hours studying the toys in this toy aisle.

"I have a boy that looks just like this one, except he has brown hair," says Olivia.

However, she is never allowed to wander too far from her mom, whose rule is, "if you can't see me, I can't see you."

Especially this time of year, Olivia knows she needs to stick extra close to mom.

"This time of year it's much busier, more frantic, people are rushed, there are more people at the stores. It's a little big busier and a little easier for a child to slip away. Kids move very fast and they're very curious. They move quickly to whatever it is that drew their attention," says Lieutenant Dan Donlin of Bismarck, ND police.

Experts suggest before heading to the store, parents should take a few minutes to talk about what to do in case you get separated.

Designate a meeting place, whether it is the checkout line or the toy section.

"Most kids know where the toy section is. Just tell them if they get lost to meet at the toy section," says Lt. Donlin.

A place kids like Olivia can find even faster than their parents can.

Police say parents should also make a mental note of what your child is wearing because that will help store personnel and police find them quicker if they disappear.


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