Would You Lie About Your Child's Age?

Would You Lie About Your Child's Age?

Oo-er. This really surprised me.

According to new research, more than one third of parents have lied about their children’s age to get discounted tickets for travel, entertainment or events.

Surely not?!

And get this – a poll of 1,500 mums and dads also found one in 10 have trained their kids to lie about their age if questioned - even practising lines in advance.

Other tactics include hiding their little ones from ticket inspectors, asking them to feign sleep to avoid questioning, and telling them to affect a younger sounding voice.

One tenth of the population claim they’ve gone to “extreme” lengths to get reduced fares for their families.

And more than a quarter believe it’s completely acceptable to try and make their child look younger to get discounts on tickets of entry to events.

On average, parents who are happy to be fast and loose with the truth have fibbed about their children four times to save money.

Dads are more likely than mums to encourage underhand behaviour to save cash.

Those in the North-East were found to be the most honest when it comes to fibbing to save money, while parents living in Yorkshire and the Humber were most likely to try and get away with a scam.

Young parents aged 18-24 are more than twice as likely to try and bend the rules for cheaper tickets than those aged 55 or older.

The research was commissioned by Heathrow Express, who partnered with Scottish comedy duo The Krankies to launch the campaign. Together they created a video that saw Wee Jimmy Krankie go undercover to try and blag a free ticket on the Heathrow Express.

Ian Tough, star of the Krankies, said:

“We’ve loved bringing back Janette’s character to see if the Oldest Kid in Town can even try to pull off what so many parents continue to do across the country. Thanks to Heathrow Express and their free tickets for children 15 and under, we were able to just about pull it off.”

Fraser Brown, director at Heathrow Express, added:

“It’s been a lot of fun working with the Krankies to see if they can still pull off the legendary Wee Jimmy Krankie character. For those travelling on the Heathrow Express with children, there is no need to tell any fibs because all children aged 15 and under get free tickets. You can also get your tickets for a cheaper fare too if you book in advance – head to the website today to book.”

Funny as the campaign is, I don't mind admitting I was gobsmacked to read about parents actively encouraging their kids to fib in order to get a discount. Doesn't that eventally backfire, in so far as you kid learns to think it's ok to lie when it suits them?

We'd love to hear your thoughts on this. Would you encourage your child to tell a lie if it meant paying less for something? Leave us a comment here or come and join the conversation over on our Facebook page.

You can watch the video featuring The Krankies here.

84 comments

  • Becky J.

    Too risky with Kai :joy::joy::joy:

  • Karla C.

    Hasnt most parents done this? Just me and do this :joy::joy:

    • Hayley G.

      :unamused: my child is 1, she is just a little tall and talkative for her age

    • Karla C.

      Immy was under 5 so she was free for london underground :joy::joy:

  • Vicky R.

    I have never done this....honest!!! :joy: x

    • Claire P.

      hahahahaha, noooooooo never in Cornwall ever! x

  • Nanny J.

    was 9 til he was 14 lol x

  • Chantelle W.

    every time we go cinemas :joy:

  • Sophie G.

    I done it to get my little girl into the Zoo for free instead of paying £25 xx

  • Lynsey W.

    you wouldn’t do this would you?

  • Sarah R.

    do you think I could get away with it, size of my kids :joy:

    • Sophie R.

      You struggle to get away with their real ages :joy:

    • Sarah R.

      At least they can get on rides haha

  • Leanne F.

    Yes.... when the difference in price is substantial.

    • Leanne F.

      We went to a childs themepark the day after my son turned 4.... the price difference for the sake of a day was 12.50... so we lied and said he was 3 :joy:

  • Carla C.

    My partner took our daughter to the zoo in summer and told them she was 3.... not realising she was wearing her ‘I am 4’ tshirt! They still never questioned it though lol

  • Mandie D.

    Yep! But on the other hand it’s damn annoying when you have tall children and there age is questioned and disputed!

  • Latisha M.

    Erm yes. Sorry half price :joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy:

  • Mike H.

    Hahaha can't do it now though for 2 and under

  • Ross W.

    You did and you didn't even need to at Alton towere:joy::joy:

  • Lauren S.

    Soft play before 1 £1. Soft play on first birthday £4.50. considered fibbing but the ' it's my first birthday' t-shirt ruined my plans

  • Kelly E.

    We went to Disneyland California about 3 months after my daughter's 3rd birthday. After their 3rd birthday you have to pay a fair price to get in about $50 a day so we put her in her pram covered her up with a blanket and told her if they asked she was 2 haha. She was a really really tall 3 year old too but we got away with it

    • Kate T.

      They always look younger wtb a dummy too!

    • Ling D.

      So did we. But we went with family so there were at least $200 extra of tickets they sold for the grandparents who came along to see the grandson enjoy himself. That particular trip I went guilt free knowing that. Lol.

    • Kelly E.

      Yeah there were a few of us so they had their money's worth out of our family so don't really feel guilty haha x

    • Kelly E.

      During the same trip our son who was 6 was about 1cm too short for the Indiana Jones ride, he was so desperate to go on it so we took the insoles out of his shoes and put tissue until he was the right height for the ride. We had been on the ride before so knew it was safe for him to go on it. It worked and made his trip haha

  • Louisa T.

    Yes course, so I don’t have to pay silly adult prices for my 12 year old sons hair cut ,

  • Kayleigh D.

    :joy::joy: luckily my kids are little haha xx

  • Bethany S.

    My daughter was under 2 till she was about 4

  • Hayley B.

    Milk it as long as you can I say :joy: xx

  • Anna M.

    I would but generally I get run through 50 questions to prove he’s under 5 anyway...

  • Danielle S.

    paying to get on the bus when they go 5 :joy::joy:

  • Leanne F.

    Sundown is bad for it lol!!

  • Kate L.

    If it's ok for companies to RIP OFF parents it's ok to fib!

  • Kate S.

    Hehe I would be shocked!!!

  • Laura P.

    I just said she’s 2 next week :see_no_evil: she was sat in pram too x

  • Lindsey W.

    My child is 7 and a big 7 still getting her on the bus under five lmfao :joy: how I do not no but never been questioned as of yet

  • Amanda M.

    Yes, for soft play places. My daughter is on the small side so can usually manage the category down. Why does it get more expensive the older a child is? Usually it's less exciting for them the bigger they are!

    Theme parks generally go by height now,over a metre and you pay.

  • Sam P.

    Well if ya can get away with it why not haha x

  • Jacqui S.

    Oh my days :see_no_evil::see_no_evil: 4 on the train, 6 on the driving school :see_no_evil:

  • Amie G.

    :joy::joy::joy::joy::joy::joy: i dont know what you mean hes 2 :joy::joy::joy:

  • Hannah H.

    Jai cohen and harry have all been 4 for a extra 3 years :joy::joy::joy::joy:

  • Mark S.

    You do and you get him to xxx

  • Claire D.

    Yes on the train last year he was age 5 a few days from being 6 but told him he was 4, although the next trip a few weeks later we got him a ticket, it’s hard getting a 6 year old to lie :joy:

  • Della I.

    Deffo Jenson is still 2 I am sure :joy::joy::joy::joy::joy:

  • Lisa M.

    Mum was telling her the other day when we go on our day trips on the bus in the summer she's 4 still not 5 :joy::joy::joy:

  • Vicki T.

    No, as they normally say but mummy I'm not 4 I'm 5. :joy:

    We told the truth on the train once as didn't want to get caught out and the kind conductor said well she only looks ?? so don't worry, I'll just charge for 2 adults and 1 child as she was 6.

  • Rachel M.

    Every time! :smirk::raising_hand_tone1:‍♀️

  • Nicola N.

    We queued for a ride for ages tfhen realised the single rider q was literally non existant, explained to my daughter that she was 7... Walked literally a few feet, the guy asked and she replied 6!!! Her conscience doesn't often get the better of her, trust it to kick in right then!

  • Gemma L.

    Think every parent is guilty of this!!x x

  • Claire O.

    We did it until we could get away with it, if they they didn’t charge so much then there would be no need! :see_no_evil:

  • Sarah M.

    Are you joking I. Do it all the time your younger to get a kids meal and all sorts x

  • Cheryl D.

    If only Autumn and Aaron would keep quiet we could!

  • Dave R.

    Don’t blame them. Keep up the good work parents

  • Vicky R.

    Except the little voice pipes up ‘ I’m not 5 I’m 6!’

  • Clare W.

    The zoo was the funniest one as she was like 8 in a pram

  • Helen B.

    Yep! My girls are small for their age so we take advantage!!

  • Mena D.

    That was funny. We had rehearsed it all the way up too :joy::joy:

  • Jodie B.

    Regularly isn't it part of being a mum? Not sure Ali will pass for 2 again this year :joy::joy::joy:

  • Romaine T.

    More than 1/3?? Come off it - 50% minimum :joy:

  • Sofia M.

    I had to fight to convince folk of my childs real age as she is tall. No way i could get away with that.

  • Jessi S.

    You need a bigger suitcase

  • Chelsea B.

    I didn’t pay adult on the bus until I was 20 :joy::joy:

  • Lesley M.

    When we went to Florida my brother used to say I’m the morning “what age am I today” lol

  • Sarah M.

    Come on! It was four days!! And he was technically 2months early :joy:

  • Becca W.

    That time we couldn't work it out tho :see_no_evil: full on panic attack haha xx

  • Staci R.

    I'm lying

  • Rochelle P.

    Took my 3 children out the otherday to a farm and i have a double pram where the new born is at the top in the pram n my 2 year old was in the bottom seat underneath and when i paid the man only charged for me n my oldest son coz he didnt see my 2 year old :smirk:

  • Louisa F.

    My 2 yr old speaks in full sentences, he’s very advanced for his age!

  • Lynda S.

    did today with my grandkids!:joy::joy:cheeky bastards wantin to charge for a baby that cant even walk to playbin a play area?? dont think so ?

    • Kate M.

      That really winds me up when they charge for 1 year olds. What exactly are they going to do other than crawl or waddle around?!

  • Louise S.

    Not much lying needed in my case baileys that small :joy::joy: xx

  • Lucy W.

    100% :joy: she always questioned it though! I was once at the zoo and the guy said "an adult and an under 3?" (who are free) she went no he's 3

  • Samantha C.

    I remember this , and crouch down to the height restrictions or make urself taller lol

  • Leighan R.

    My daughter was 3 until she was about 6 !!! :joy::joy:

  • Lisa R.

    I never paid for busfair for my son till he was 8. I kept saying to him if anyone asks u r 4. :joy:

  • Sarah M.

    Last summer we Qd up for ages for the baby driving school at Lego land my youngest was 2 but you have to be 3 or 4 to drive. I spent the whole q telling him to say the older age. We get to the front of the q and my eldest goes I’m 5 and his 2

  • Lisa C.

    of courses i would :joy: let's face it who hasn't see my little boy has Autism and has no speach yet so they can't Question him on his age. i dont understand how it say £2.50 for a 3 years old but oh there 4 thats £6.50 if it was just a Pound i wouldn't bother lying but if im going save money why not

  • Kate M.

    Very rarely but yes I did pretend my toddler was under 2. It was at a play farm place where he would have been charged £6 to include activities and play equipment he wouldn't be able to do anyway while his dad and I were already paying £9 each entry fee (for pushing him around in his pushchair, one tractor ride and seeing some lambs). For £18 and a few white lie months difference I felt zero guilt and it was so busy they didn't check or care.

  • Nicola W.

    Always!!! Alfie your 2 tell them your 2 and you can have some Haribo :joy::joy::joy:

  • Donna S.

    I lied in Florida every year lol :joy:

  • Emma B.

    Ive done it. My 5 year old went to Drayton Manor for his 5th birthday and we paid £7 for his ticket for a child age 2-3 :joy:

  • Kyle P.

    Well out of us 3 it is 2/3 soooo... my research says their research is wrong...

  • Yvonne K.

    Lots of times and for travel also,cant do it anymore coz my daughter now a teenager and as tall as me :joy:

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