With Christmas steadily approaching, the High Street is full of shiny window displays that boast the latest toys and sales, hoping to bring in seasonal shoppers. However, one of the best gifts for children this year isn’t the most popular toy, and it’s not flying off of High Street shelves – in fact, children might even be too young to understand it.

Despite this, contributing into a Junior ISA or other tax-free children’s savings account could be the most important gift a child receives this Christmas. Even if they’re too young to understand money, their Christmas contributions will be held in trust for them until they turn 18, held safe in a cash account or potentially achieving even higher returns in an investment account.

Junior ISAs are government-launched tax-free children’s savings accounts that allow anyone – not just parents – to contribute to children’s future nest eggs. The account is designed to give children a boost as they head into their adult lives, and the limit of £3,600 a year -- £3,720 in 2013/2014 – allows for a sizable nest egg over the 18 year period.

Arabela Velasco of CompareJuniorISA.com, a leading UK children’s savings comparison site, said: "Helping save for a child’s future may not be the flashiest gift, but it’s quite literally the gift that keeps on giving. The younger the child, the higher potential for growth until they turn 18 and head off to university. With tuition fees as high as £9,000 per year, children who don’t have a tax-free nest egg could be burdened with crippling debt instead of starting their working lives with a clean slate."

She encouraged parents to buy second hand or simple gifts, while putting the savings from what they would normally spend into savings for the future.

"Parents are encouraged to tell friends and family about their child’s savings account around Christmas, as contributions on holidays and birthdays can act as double gifts: a helping hand now, and a coming-of-age gift of a lifetime when the child turns 18," said Velasco.


Notes for editors

www.CompareJuniorISA.com is a free online resource for parents, providing information on children's savings and all aspects of family finance. The site includes performance comparison tables and parent reviews which can help you make an informed decision about where to put your child's money.


    Free independent children's saving website

   Compare the best performing Junior ISA, child trust fund and children's savings on line


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