Yet another miserable Sunday morning googling what we can get up to, having already been up since 6, trying to let the OH have a lie-in… Too miserable to go out for a walk but nothing’s open…
It got me thinking about how much more family-friendly businesses could be..
1-Open earlier! I can’t be the only parent up at 6 trying to keep their child entertained?! Why don’t any soft plays open before 9, or even 10?! I guarantee you if opened at 7 or even 8, you’d always have customers at these times!
2-Open a drive-thru! McDonalds is a guilty (not-so) secret of mine. It was SO frickin’ handy when W was a baby and I needed to nip out for lunch but didn’t have the energy to get him out of the car into the pram etc etc. It’s also so handy now on the car journey up to my mum’s (a 2 hour drive) where we can just nip through the drive-thru for lunch for us and treat W to some of their fries (and a new toy!) Wouldn’t it be awesome if more shops/ food places had a drive-through option?! Imagine being able to buy milk, nappies from the comfort of your car!
3-Wide parent and child car parking spaces– there’s a retail park near me (Leckwith) that has parent and child spaces nearest to the stores, great you think… Then you realise they’re the same width as the normal spaces – what the hell is the point of that?! Give me a row of spaces in the far corner of the car park…. But make them wide enough to negotiate getting your baby/toddler out of the car…. And in my case, the pushchair which doesn’t fit in the boot. I can think of a few places that don’t have wide places, and it does put me off going there esp if I’m on my own and it’s a busy day. I once had to leave W in his pushchair while I got my car out of a space at St Fagans museum.. Not ideal!
4-Put gates on your Parks – parks are great for toddlers, but why do so many have wide open gates e.g. Victoria park in Cardiff?! There’s a brilliant little play area down in Cardiff bay which has gates that W can’t open…. Perfect… He can run around like a loon and I don’t need to worry ever second that he’s about to bolt towards a road etc!
5-Be proper family-friendly in restaurants – we hardly ever eat out with W… He won’t sit in a high chair for long so we end up having to entertain him/run after him while we take in turns to eat or watch our food go cold! We would probably eat out a bit more if eateries prioritised families with toddlers… Basically we want to be in and out as quickly as possible, served quickly, food brought out quickly…oh and you might as well bring the bill out with the food!
I’m aware that if you’re reading this and don’t know me, you probably think I’m one of those mumsnet-stereotypes who thinks the world should revolve around them and their children. Not at all. I just think businesses could make a lot more money if they thought of toddler’s parents needs…
Open earlier, make more money…
Add gates to your park, we’ll spend money at your ice cream kiosk. Serve us before other people in a restaurant and you’ll have your table back quickly ready for your next paying customers!
Give me a wide parking space, I’ll spend money at your establishment
I have disposable income, I have choices, make life easier for me! No skin off my nose if you don’t though, I’ll spend my money elsewhere… But you’re the business that is losing out 🙂