I had absolutely no idea that IKEA was starting operations in India with its first store in Hyderabad. Lucky me when I got to know that my trip to Hyderabad to attend a friend’s wedding was coinciding with the launch of IKEA. All my other plans for Hyderabad were cancelled with the only thing on my mind being IKEA.
I reached the IKEA store at 10:30AM on a Friday expecting little crowd but boy was I surprised. People were coming in buses (from other cities) to shop in IKEA!!
I was one of those excited kids entering the store- jumping around, photographing everything and ofcourse, cursing the fact that I had to fly out of Hyderabad and couldn’t buy a lot of stuff.
IKEA has launched their app which can used to navigate around the store and choose products with ease. To make using the app even more user friendly – there is free WiFi in the store!
The only other IKEA store that I’ve been to is the one in Amsterdam. They’ve tried to keep the feel of the store constant with some differences. This store is smaller with lesser items. I remember spending the entire day in the store in Amsterdam. I was more or less done with the entire store here in 2-3hrs. Plus the store was a little bit of a mess – thanks to the unorganised and crazy Indian crowd. While I found the Indian store staff very helpful, can’t say the same about the foreign staff that they have who were a little curt (to put it mildly).
The products on offer were insanely awesome. I had a hard time picking the items I wanted because of the looming luggage limit.
The best part is the concept rooms that they have where they’ve put the products up to show possible display options. I wanted everything!! They made everything look so beautiful.
The main part is the build it yourself furniture. I didn’t spend much time here as I couldn’t take anything with me. But the entire process is very smooth – you choose what you want, you pick it up from the store room and then you can either take it with you or have them deliver it to your place.
The checkout queue took me about 45mins to get through. There are self checkout queues for people with less than 10 items. Last but not the least, the IKEA cafe! The IKEA cafe had really nice food which was decently priced. Be prepared to stand in long queues for the cafe as well. The best part were the bottomless drinks!! Fruit flavoured soda water is a must have.
Waiting for IKEA to open in Mumbai and Delhi!!