How To Shop At Ikea Without Getting Overwhelmed

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The best Ikea shopping tips to help you not get overwhelmed and to make the most out of your time while you’re there

Ikea is a big freakin’ place, y’all. It is like if Costco and Bed Bath and Beyond got married and had a baby and then Costco got remarried to Home Depot. I mean you can get everything from a refrigerator to candles. I’ve never seen them sell diapers at Ikea, but something tells me they’re probably hidden somewhere.

We have taken many a trip to an Ikea store and have a ton of their stuff.

Our Ikea desk in my office made with Alex drawers is one of my personal favorites! What I love about the Ikea Alex drawers is 1, the color, but 2, it’s a name of a product that I can pronounce and not something like Syvde. There is ONE VOWEL in that and it’s at the end. How do you even ….

You can also see in that photo the $20 chairs that we hacked which I also love.

AND we are planning our entire master closet renovation around their new closet system which I’m stoked about!

Before I get too far off the rails and talk about all the things from Ikea, I thought I would at least share how to shop there without getting overwhelmed.

Ikea Shopping Tips For Your Best Shopping Experience

Best Ikea Shopping Tips

Plan ahead

This is probably the most important tip I can give you. Know what you’re going for. Because Ikea has so much, you can easily get bogged down in both the upper level which is their showroom as well as all the fun little gadgets downstairs where you buy all the things.

ikea kithcen with hunter green cabinets

In this trip, we were (trying) to plan for our master closet, so we walked basically straight there stopping to snap one picture of a JAW DROPPING kitchen for inspiration and then it was right to the wardrobes.

man with beard and glasses looking at a paper

Wear Comfy Shoes

man with bright orange KD nikes

Tennis shoes are best. Just trust me. It’s a LOT of walking. Especially if you’re going just to browse, but even if not, you gonna getcha steps in, I can promise you that.

Don’t Bring The Bay Bays

Ikea does have a really cute little play place area called Smaland (who knows how you actually pronounce that), but the kicker is they can only stay for an hour. Which means you’re either going to be rushed or you’re going to have to get them and they will run wild throughout the entire store.

Also, as of right now, it’s not even open because of …. well, 2020.

If you’re okay with that, more power to ya, but I know for me, it just adds to the overwhelm and I’m trying to give you Ikea shopping tips to reduce the amount of stress here.

If at all possible, don’t go on a weekend

I know this may not be feasible but I’m telling you, we have gone to Ikea throughout the week and on a weekend and it is a giant difference.

Ikea charlotte NC

Everyone and their mama comes on weekends because everyone is off work, but it’s basically a ghost town Monday through Thursday. You will feel a lot less stressed without millions of people following you or waiting you to move out of that 200 square foot staged apartment so they can get in too.

Join the Ikea Family

They have a membership card just like many other stores. The membership is totally free to join and quite honestly has no benefits except if you forget your receipt and need to return something it’s way easier to look it up than having to go through all the rigamarole.

Pre-shop online

This somewhat ties into having a plan, but as we started our master closet design process, we realized that we had ONE piece of our puzzle missing. The hanging rods.

ikea aurdal wardrobe dark gray with dark gray walls

Seriously every friggin’ piece was there EXCEPT the hanging rod. And I’m not sure if you know this, but hanging rods are imperative in a closet.

But because we had a plan, we also didn’t waste our time and our gas driving out there for them. We made a visit to the store on one trip to get everything we needed and then stalked online to see when our bars came back in stock.

Pro tip: Signing up for texts does not work. Promise you. My husband and I both did it and when our rods were finally in stock, not a single one of us heard a peep from Ikea. Still haven’t actually lolz.

Snap lots o’ pics

Ikea painting with half woman half wolf

This is for several reasons. If you’re truly trying not to get overwhelmed and are there for one room or project, you may see things that catch your eye. Like this weird wolf lady painting. We don’t need this for our closet, but it’s cool.

Just make sure you get a picture with the Ikea tag in it so you can go back later and look at the product.

Ikea Komplement clear drawers
Ikea Komplement tag

Another reason is when you are heading down to pull your items from the product floor, these tags have the product location on them.

ikea vadholma

See that yellow tag? You can use that number to locate your item.

Have a backup plan

woman with glasses drinking starbucks with man with beard and glasses

This was me, pissed, wishing this was liquor, about 30 seconds after Jordan told me our original plan for our closet wouldn’t work because it was just too small.

But because we had a backup plan, we didn’t leave totally defeated.

Your turn! What are your best Ikea shopping tips/secrets?
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Ikea Shopping Secrets

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