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Out and about - baby-friendly places for FF / BF(14 Posts)
I'm sure it must have been done before but I couldn't see anything previously done on this.
I am a new mum and wondered where you have found to be baby-friendly for changing, feeding (e.g. providing a chair for BF or hot water for FF) or anything else baby-related.
I was recently at the customer services desk at Sainsburys and while waiting to be seen I was reading all those notices they have up. They proudly announced that not only do they have a baby changing area but they also supply a free nappy if you need one.
So where else is good if you're stuck while out and about? What about shopping centres, libraries or other places? And where's best to avoid?
John Lewis is usually pretty good - they tend to have a parents' room with a breast feeding area, bottle warming facilities and changing mats etc.
Anywhere is fine for feeding, including libraries.
Changing is a hard one, isn't it? We've used baby changing in B&Q, Tesco, Sainsbury's, Marks and Spencers, Wyevale and Waitrose. Pubs are a bit hit and miss. Some don't cater for babies in that regard at all.
Our local council offices have a baby-changing room as well.
John Lewis have family rooms which can be great in the early days. Now I feed just anywhere - cafe's, restaurants, the library, park benches, on chairs by the tills at Tescos....
Baby changing is more tricky IMO as the more dedicated changing rooms (e.g. not just a drop down table in the ladies) often have smelly nappy bins IME so how good the facilities are can actually depend on when they last changed the binbag. Department stores, shopping centres, supermarkets and chain coffee shops are usually fine. Pubs are definitely more hit and miss, especially bigger or cheaper pubs - e.g. the wetherspoons in newbury only has a drop down changing table in the disabled loo, which they keep locked, so you have to ask to use it and wait for a staff member with a key! Smaller cafes can have no facilities at all, not even a quiet table you can use with your own mat.
I'm new to this but feed anywhere, change anywhere the problem I have is toilets for me that are big enough to get a pram in
IKEA is excellent for all 3, my local one has a lovely BFing zone with comfy chairs, mummy magazines a table for coffee. I think they have bottle warmers and definatley a microwave to use. The changing facilities are dedicated and HUGE and if you are a shy BFer there is a chair in there too. The front info desk gives out nappies if you ask.
My DH is obsessed and loves wheeling my DD around the store so we go often!
Where in the country are you? We could be more specific!
I asked to change my DD in our Chingford B&Q today but was told I couldn't due to "health and safety". As the little miss got louder and more distressed and the rain outside got louder (okay, I am using a bit of artistic licence), I more of less bullied them into letting me use a security guard's room for the three minute job. She wanted a feed too but I thought I'd be pushing my luck so we came out with half the stuff planned and legged it home.
Ya boo sucks to the store but a bit of a shame the staff weren't more understanding.
Looby, you should have sat in an aisle to feed her! On one of those little dalek step stools? Or maybe nicked a chair from a spare till?
Our local baby cafe at the children's centre organised a list a few years ago of all local places who were happy to say they are "breastfeeding friendly" - it also listed which had baby changing facilities, which were happy to warm food or bottles, etc.
I know some don't like the concept of "breastfeeding friendly" as it implies other places are "breastfeeding unfriendly", but a lot of new mums do find it helps them build confidence in the early days.
Sorry - meant to say, maybe you could suggest or organise something like this locally?
Thanks everyone- I found a list of "bf-friendly" places online. Funny enough my first thought was to ask here rather than ask Google. It sounds like most shopping centres and the bigger chains that sell baby-related stuff are a safe bet. I've a John Lewis locally so that's good to know for during the early, newborn days. Once we're able to latch on discreetly I plan to feed anywhere but for now its good to know where quiet, private areas are provided.
Just to add that you are legally entitled to breast feed your baby in any public place, or place where public have access too.
Even if a feeding room is avaliable (sometimes a plastic chair in a disabled loo) you do NOT have to use it, but can breast feed whereever you feel comfortable.
Up here my local shopping centre has a really nice feeding room. (comfy chairs some bottle warmers etc) (also a seperate baby change room, with a few chairs you can feed at, but not lovely rocking feeding chairs) AND has baby change tables in the male and female toilets as well.
Some larger mothercare stores have a feeding room (AND a changing room) and again the feeding rooms have lovely comfy rocking chairs.
Have also seen decent feeding areas in my local boots store.... a large baby changing room, with a curtained off corner & decent chair for feeding too.
And as someone else said all ikea stores have a private area in the cafe for feeding.
Even when these rooms / areas are provided you dont have to use them and have just as much right to breast feed at any table, / chair / place you can find rather than the specific feeding areas if you prefer.
I'll just sit anywhere to feed and change DD anywhere if she needs it and there are no facilities. At the recent wedding where I was feeding DD during the ceremony I changed her on a table in a back room as there was no baby changing table in the loo - another Mum asked me if I'd found somewhere to change DD and looked shocked when I merrily said there were tables in the back room!
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