I love IKEA! But have you ever noticed that everyone enters IKEA smiling and giddy only to be released hours later looking war-torn and weary? How sad. Well, I treated myself to a spur-of-the-moment IKEA trip yesterday and I thought I would share my four tips on how to survive and come out smiling. 

 

   
Rule #1:  Shopping trips and inspiration trips are two separate things. I love walking around the acres of showroom IKEA has to offer. But if you are going to BUY things, I seriously suggest you skip this area altogether. I prefer to browse the showroom only on leisure trips where I am there for the specific purpose of looking around and getting ideas. This leads me to…

Rule #2:  Shop online first! IKEA has a great website where you can create a shopping list of all the things you like. You simply select which store you plan on going to, and it will generate a printable checklist, complete with aisle and bin numbers… So you can skip the showroom and go right to what you need in the marketplace! Brilliant!

    
Rule #3:  Never shop hungry. Whether I am there to shop or just look, my first stop is always the cafe. My favorite thing to get is their chocolate indulgence cake and a free cup of coffee. Yep, coffee is always free for IKEA Family Members! Now that I am thoroughly caffeinated and sugared up, it’s time to end with…

Rule #4:  Head toward the exit at the first sign of weariness. Even if you stick to my previous rules, the sheer amount of stuff IKEA has to offer will eventually drain you. As soon as it does, put down that throw pillow and head to the check out! You will do a much better job shopping if you return another day refreshed. 

  
Here is a little sample from my shopping trip. I would show you more, but I don’t want to give it all away before the big “reveal!”

  

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