What does your child what to be when they grow up? A pilot, police officer, hairdresser, chocolatier or dentist?
At Kidszania, a city designed for children ages 4 to 14 based within Westfield children can get a sneak peek and try out their dream job. There are more than 60 real-life role play activities to choose from and children get to experience whichever they like. The various jobs are designed to teach children essential life skills, team work and independence.
My girls were really excited about going they wanted to do everything, well almost!
I have braved kidszania and although the children had fun I wish I had known various things before going so that I could be prepared. With that in mind I have written these top 10 tips to surviving Kidszania designed to make every visitors lives easier.
- Decide what you want to do before you go. Activities generally take less time than the actual time it takes to que for them so don’t waste time, be prepared!!!
- If you can go during term time i.e., if you have an inset day or your school closes for holidays a day or two before others or goes back after others take advantage of this. There will be less people about and you can experience more activities and less ques.
- Organise to go with a group of 10 children if possible as this will make it more fun for the little ones and a little easier on the pocket. A normal child entry price is £29.50 and adult price is £16. The discount for a group of 10 or more when booked together is approximately 25% off.
- Children should wear sensible clothing as otherwise this will affect the activities they can do.
- Arrive early; or late there are less people around so naturally shorter queues.
- Make sure that all group members go in together as the time starts once the first members of the group enter and if the rest go in 30 minutes later they lose this time.
- Go to your top activity first. If your children want to take part in an activity the likelihood is that everyone’s will so make sure you go there first to avoid disappointment and make sure that the children get to do the activity they most want to do.
- Be sure to make full use of the map provided and find the location of your next experience whilst the children are busy having fun being their chosen profession this will help save time.
- Take some snacks and possibly drinks as children always get hungry and thirsty and you don’t want to waste valuable time queuing for these items. There are water fountains located near the toilets.
- Be warned the shop is for children only and your child will struggle to find much that they can afford even if they have taken part in quite a few jobs. The items children can afford after one visit was rather disappointing considering the price of entry. Mine had 69 kidZos each and the best we could afford was one of these wind up snails each.
Room for Improvement?
There sure is and quite a bit. On arrival they somehow messed up our booking so we lost about 25 -30 minutes whilst the cleary undertrained member of staff (not the lady shown in this picture I hasten to add) attempted to figure of out what had happened extremely sloooooooooowly!!!! It didn’t help that two mums had already gone in which meant our time had started before we even go to the check in desk that looks like an airport check in.
You are limited to 4 hours which although seems like ages it really isn’t. You will find like we did the time flies by and there is always that one experience that children haven’t had a chance to do which then triggers the water works or complaints. With the cost of entry it would be nice to have that bit longer at the site. We had a little time left but when we went to do the climbing the que was too long so we went to try something else and although there was still time remaining we were told it was not enough to allow for the activity so I had 2 disappointed girls to deal with.
The shop was a nightmare, I like many others was told I was not allowed in even though my children were struggling to find items they could actually afford. The staff direct the children to buy any old thing so that they can make a purchase and move on which I was not having so I stayed in the shop and didn’t budge until my children and my friends children were happyish (it took forever!!!!). The worst part is that you can’t purchase a better item with cash so I saw a large number of disappointed children and annoyed parents. My tip avoid the shop and buy them something from one of the shops in Westfield you can always use the money if you revisit and work some more to be able to afford a better item although it would take quite a few trips so get something worth getting so isn’t particularly cost effective. I really think the shop needs rethinking, the kids worked so hard and were so excited and this part of the experience was disappointing and frustrating for them and the adults present.
After a very looooong time we managed to decide on an item.
Overall aside from the tears and disappointment in various areas the children had fun but it is quite pricey and the adult price is excessive as you don’t get to do anything or even get a drink or snack included. Some of the other mums I went along with wanted to go again as there were still activities their children wanted to do but whether I will return is yet to be decided.
You can get 2for1 tickets ‘here’ until October 2016!
This is NOT a sponsored post.