My name is Lily-Sue, but my mummy calls me Munchkin (or 'Munch' for short!) I am 8 years old, and this is where my mummy will help me write all about all the fun things we do together. I hope you enjoy reading about the adventures of my mummy and me, Munchkin, with the occasional appearance from the siblings - Beastie and Plumlet.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Kiddicare - Caring for your babies on a BIG scale!

Just before Christmas, we were invited to the opening of a brand new store in our local area. Kiddicare were launching their latest superstore at Lakeside, Thurrock, and we had the opportunity to spend part of the day there learning about and experiencing all of the wonderful features they have to offer to their customers. We were really looking forward to seeing the store inside, as living so close to it, we had driven past the store a number of times during the building stages, and it just looked huge! It really was starting to look like something Thurrock had never had before!

The store has its own car park at the front of the store, unlike other stores around Lakeside who share car parking. However, Kiddicare does essentially occupy its own retail park area, and stands alone rather than sharing one of the other parks. This may give a small indication as to its size! With its glass exterior displaying attractive and eye catching designs, no one can say the new superstore looks anything less than impressive at first sight!

Kiddicare Lakeside is the third of ten new superstores to open – it’s taken the mantle of Europe’s biggest baby store, boasting a whopping 50,000 square feet, away from their flagship store in Peterborough, which is quite a claim to fame! This immense space is home to 3,800 products, including more than 150 car seats and around 350 prams, buggies and pushchairs! One thing this new Kiddicare store offers, which is obvious the minute you walk through the doors, is everything for parents and families under one roof as the company claims to be all about offering great range, incredible value and brilliant service. This aim is achieved ... ten-fold! 

We were looking forward to meeting up with some fellow Mummy Bloggers and their families at the store. We were met at the front desk and shown to our reserved area in the Kiddicafé where we were really given the VIP treatment for the entirety of our stay. We chatted over refreshments whilst the kids enjoyed themselves in the Play Area. After catching up with everyone, we were given the tour of the store.

 To make the shopping experience easy, happy and above all fun, Kiddicare Lakeside offers a whole host of family-friendly features, including:

“Walk in the Park” buggy test track

Making 'Buggy Buying' really fun ... A dedicated track to race test all the wonderful models available! (and of course, Munchkin needed to try it out!)

A FREE dedicated Event Room for customers and the community

Kiddicare planned a lovely session for the little ones to have fun and games with Jo Jingles!

There were musical instruments and rhymes (and even Beastie Boo could join in!) ...

... And pom poms and dancing!!

Children’s play area

A safe, secure and fun area for the little ones to let go of some steam! Well ... shopping is a tough, intense experience you know!!

Free and fast customer WiFi

Touch-screen 'Browse & Order' points

These points allow you to browse the huge range of products available at Kiddicare and to order products that are out of stock, as well as ordering products for Home Delivery. They seem to make your whole shopping experience less stressful! Another brilliant idea!

Nursing Nest - a relaxed environment for quiet feeding and privacy

Kiddicare offer a private, peaceful area within the Kiddicafé allowing parents to feed their babies in a safe and quiet environment. As well as this, there are also facilities to prepare your baby's feed, whether you're little ones are going for a liquid or a solid lunch!

Spacious and healthy Kiddicafé

With a tasty, varied menu available, Kiddicare offers both hot and cold food, including a 'Pick & Mix' style lunchbox option for the kiddies which is designed to present a vast number of possible combinations - all of which contain 2 of the recommended '5-a-Day'. The café is bright and spacious and is the perfect place to relax and meet with friends. Best of all, they have incorporated Starbucks into their eatery! Ideal for that necessary caffeine reload during your shopping trip!

Baby Gift List, complimentary gift registry service

Expecting ...? Set up your 'Baby Gift List' in three easy steps:
1) Register in store or online
2) Choose the items you need and want for your new arrival
3) Share your list with friends and family


V.I.B. (Very Important Baby) Free personal shopping service

Help and advice available from some of the most friendly staff ever! They are willing to help in any way they can, every step of the way with your decisions and purchases! And notice the Kiddi Cinema? Yet another little addition to avoid the moans of "can we go now, mummy?!"

Free car seat fitting and safety checking for all

Kiddicare offer a free car seat fitting service to all of their customers, as well as dedicated parking bays in the car park, close to the store entrance. At times, the store is expected to get very busy, as I can imagine it did over the Christmas period. However, instead of staff allowing a queue of customers to form at the desk in store, they have introduced a fantastic feature ...

Need your new car seat fitted? Simply enter your name and mobile telephone number into the touch-screen device at the desk and continue shopping. A member of staff will then call you as soon as a Kiddicare representative is available to assist you.

Pushchair Servicing

When you select and pay for your chosen pushchair at Kiddicare, the service and customer care does not end as you leave the store. Kiddicare have an on site 'Buggy Workshop' where they will service and repair your pushchair related faults*. Wonky wheels ...? No problem! (*Terms & conditions apply)

Mummy-and-Me toilet facilities (and Daddy-and-Me in the gents’ too)!

... including 'child height' sinks and hand dryers too ... speaks for itself really! They really have thought of everything!

From kiddy-size shopping trolleys, miniature doorways for miniature people and a 'try before you buy' area full of toys, as long as we shop at Kiddicare, I don't think Munchkin will ever call shopping 'boring' again! She and Emmy (Emmysmummy) had a wonderful time whizzing around the store with their trolleys. The store is so spacious though, they had plenty of space to do so without the worry of them knocking other shoppers flying!

Since our special Blogger Day at Kiddicare, Lakeside, I have visited the store again with Nanna Munchkin. We had to show her what the fuss was all about, and I think she was suitably impressed! All year round, Kiddicare advertises their "Lowest Prices Guaranteed!" and promise that they will not be beaten in price. Looking around at their prices before Christmas, I was pleasantly surprised at how much cheaper their prices were from those I had seen elsewhere. And we're talking cheaper prices for big brands too! Then, when I visited the store again this week, I was aware that they were running their Big Sale, with hundreds of items up to 80% off! Needless to say, we were browsing for some time! Another innovative feature that I feel I should mention here is their 'Price Tag System'. Instead of the conventional paper price tickets on the shelf edge, Kiddicare have implemented these ...

Every item has one of these either fixed to the shelf edge or hanging in a plastic pouch attached to the product itself. These digital displays show the item name / description, the price, the former price (if applicable) and the number of that item that are currently in stock. Fortunately, these are all controlled through Kiddicare HQ, meaning that the prices are always correct and up-to-date, prices can be altered centrally at the click of a button, staff working hours are not wasted on price checking and changing and, of course, there are not hundreds of wasted paper price tickets being lost, placed by the incorrect item or thrown away every time a price changes. Also, they are changed at the same time as the website, so if you see a price on the website, that is the price you will see in store. These seem to work really well.

An example of the bargains that are up for grabs right now at Kiddicare is the purchase I made for Beastie Boo ...

Kiddicouture Jump 'n' View - Pink Activity Centre

Currently reduced from £74.99 to £45.00!!

The staff were amazingly helpful and friendly and were all happy to help us out with our purchase. Most importantly, they were mainly interested in recommending the best product to suit our needs rather than the most expensive products in stock which made a lovely change! They even carried our new Activity Centre out to the car for us to make sure it fit in the boot ok. They had already told us if it didn't fit comfortably, they would arrange for it to be delivered to my home the next day, free of charge!

All in all, we are delighted that Kiddicare has brought their largest superstore to our doorstep! I know we will be visiting quite often, as we get great value, outstanding customer service and everything in one place. What more could you want?!

Why not take a look at Kiddicare's Big Sale for yourself on their website and search for your local Kiddicare store.
Also, be sure to keep up-to-date with all of their latest offers, promotions and competitions as well as news of upcoming products by following them on Facebook and Twitter.

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