Posted by: englishdubai | August 15, 2006

IKEA – Degrees of freedom


IKEA’s world dominance is quite amazing. Everywhere I have been recently the blue and yellow signature warehouse has been prominent – especially here in Dubai- their recent relocation to Dubai Festival City has allowed them to create an IKEA of epic proportions which is also nicely integrated into a modest but good looking shopping mall.

In the aftermath of the unpacking with Pickfords I discovered that they had misplaced the screws to two sets of shelves. This currently means I have about 12 boxes of books waiting to be unpacked but nowhere to store them. I decided the cheapest thing to do was to get a couple more matching “Billy” bookcases from IKEA while the insurance claim was processed – I was also in the market for a new bed and despite my best efforts in looking at stores such as Home Center, PAN, Marina and The One – I found nothing to my quite modern European tastes.

It was not without some apprehension that I approached the idea of shopping at IKEA. In both the appartments I have owned in the UK I have had to buy some furntiture from IKEA and in both instances it has been a rather painful experience. Below is re-count based on factual events.

IKEA UK Hell

1. Decide which of the three IKEAs in Southern England to drive too
2. Choose North London branch from the Hampshire/Surrey boarders as it probably has te best access
3. Spend one hour 20mins battling the M25 and North Circular
4. Spend a further 20mins trying to find a parking space
5. Another 90minutes wandering around the maze like store to write down the aisle numbers of the furniture I am after
6. 45mins loading up several trollies with heavy flat pack furtniture
7. 20mins in the check out queue
8. Checkout and take it to the home delivery point
9. 20 mins while argument ensues that Basingrad is out of the North London’s Delivery area
10. 20 mins getting a refund
11. Drive to Bristol branch – 2hrs
12. Repeat steps 4 to 8.
13. Finally get the furniture delivered 3 days late and having being charged 100UKP for the pleasure
14. Spend the following weekend in pain from self assembling (poorly) flat pack- I am very adverse to DIY

IKEA Dubai Heaven
1. Drive to festival park – about 40mins from Dubai Marina
2. Park next to the entrance
3. Select furniture and note down isles
4. Get a nice chap in the store to help load the trolleys
5. Have a nice checkout lady open a lane for me
6. Have another nice chap ensure I have all the parts for the bed I was buying
7. Take it to the home delivery section
8. Wait a couple of days and the furniture is not only delivered for FREE but also assembled for FREE
9. Enjoy new bedroom suite and shelves

I was really pleased. This type of service is nigh impossible to find in the UK at any sort of reasonable cost.

I for one may even consider shopping there again – unlikely I will ever walk into an IKEA in the UK though.


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