Last weekend the wife and I went to our first baby show as a family. I was pregnant the last time we went and the time before that we were trying, so it was really nice to visit from the perspective of parents.
Going as parents this time meant that we knew what we needed and likewise, what would be good for the future. There have been several occasions previously, when we were trying or whilst I was pregnant, where we saw something and thought; “that’ll be good!” but here we are today and that particular item is still in it’s packaging!
Our day started particularly early as usual, however this came in handy as we needed to be out the door by 7am to arrive by 10am to grab any freebies deals. So instead of putting T back to sleep after his 5:30am feed, we got him dressed and in the car where he then slept the way there. Perfect!
As we arrived, I got incredibly excited. I love Baby shows. I love the shopping experience, the new gadgets and gizmos that aren’t in the shops yet, the discounts! It really is a world of its own. I also love chatting to the companies and hearing how their product came to be and how enthusiastic they are about their product, especially now since we’ve worked with a few of the brands that attend the show. It’s like talking to someone we know.
The actual day itself was no different to previous times – apart from new stalls, and the fact we got to meet Laura and Amy from We Forgot The Sperm and Al from TheDadNetwork! So this time, I thought I’d share some tips to help make your experience easier if you decide to go.
1) Get there in good time. A lot of the offers (freebies or my) go quite quickly so if you’re a sucker for a deal like me you have to get there in the morning.
2) As usual, we planned a route. It’s really easy for something to catch your eye when you’re walking around, especially with exhibitors calling you over or handing you something. If you’re strict with your route you’ll see everything in your own time and at your own pace!
3) Likewise to the above, mark down who you want to see or the things you need to buy. It’s really easy to forget (or spend the money you saved for bibs!)
4) We started at the back. This meant that we got a bit more room to browse whilst everyone else was at the front, and by the time we reached the front everyone was at the back!
5) We took a packed lunch. Although the food there is lovely and with tons of choice available, it was always so busy; meaning you couldn’t always find a seat within that cafe’s seating area. Taking a packed lunch meant we could plonk ourselves down anywhere (maybe not as easily if you’re heavily pregnant), saving our lunch money for more goodies!
6) Don’t make decisions straight away. If you’re not sure about something, make a separate pile of leaflets to talk about over at lunch. There are also several exhibitors selling similar items, so don’t just go with the first one you see.
Although in general the show was no different to the previous times (which is good!), we really noticed this time how good the facilities are around the show for babies. Whether it was comfy rocking chairs in the feeding area, the availablity to go to a private feeding area if you wished, or the fact that the changing area offered free nappies and wipes on top of a decent changing table with nappy bin. Everything really had been thought of.
As usual, I’d highly recommend paying the baby show a visit if you’re expecting or even with a young baby. There really is something for everyone, however I can’t promise that everyone will be as keen as you.
You can visit our favourite stalls here.