Where: Velachery, Chennai
Why: So you can rent, and not buy
Last year when I went to Chennai for the summer, I knew from the beginning that it was a bad idea. With two boys aged 5 and 1.5, going to a city that was baking hot and staying with family (grandparents/aunts/uncles) that did not include anybody below 18 years of age, I was prepared for a bad bout of boredom, restlessness and irritation.
Anyway, in order to prepare myself for this ordeal before I left Mumbai, I googled for some good libraries near the places of my stay. I then chanced upon this online toy / books library called toyzdayout in Chennai which is extremely far off from my relatives’ house. On calling the library, they informed me that I could order online and they would home deliver and pick up too. I could keep the stuff for 4 days. So I quickly put in the order online before I left and then reached my mom’s place to see a nice tricycle, a paddle pool, and an activity centre already delivered.
I was relieved and the kids were thrilled to bits. That took care of 4 days, and then the next order was again placed, and promptly the pick up and delivery happened. I was mighty impressed. I still have the account open with them, and I intend to use it when I go on short trips to Chennai with the kids. I can at least ensure I don’t have to carry toys and books in the luggage anymore.
Toyzdayout has a great range of books, toys and CD’s although there could be a better selection for kids above 8 years of age. The website is easy to navigate and one can view the entire range of merchandise without registering. The plans are easy to understand and consistent across age groups; standalone plans (only toys, only books) are also available. Don’t miss the pictures of the toys and the segregation of all their products age-wise. The number of toys one can rent is fixed regardless of size and age, unlike some sites where there is a complicated system of points.
In the past 18 months, toyzdayout seem to have spruced up the library to accommodate a party hall, play area etc. I wish Mumbai had one such library, I would have more storage space in the house, a heavier purse and a pair of happier kids. I did look for some, but the range is either limited or there is no home delivery.
Check out www.toyzdayout.com for more details.
(The author paid for her membership to toyzdayout and this review is based on her personal experience. If you have used this service, use the comments space to share your experience with other parents. Mumbai parents, if you know about similar libraries here, please leave your comments)