Whilst it’s disappointing to have to mention this, there is a general misconception that it’s ok to take your own food and drink to indoor play areas? But just like any other café, coffee shop or restaurant, you may not bring your own food or drink to The Square unless it’s a specific dietary need for which we cannot cater. This is not a petty rule designed to spoil your enjoyment or overstretch your budget. Like most indoor play centres, we genuinely rely on food and drink sales to make the business viable. The perception exists for a few reasons and we have tried to tackle the common ones below.
We pay an entry fee so can bring what we like?
People assume we already make a lot of money and that they are therefore justified consuming their own produce. But the entry fee is for your child’s play experience only. In reality, the entrance fee alone does not cover the many significant costs associated with creating a space that’s both safe and suitable for children, and it would only have any chance of doing so if we could guarantee being full every hour of every day that we are open! If, for example, we were to close the café and become a “bring-your-own” venue, the entry prices would have to significantly increase.
It’s an indoor play centre not a café
We are actually both. You wouldn’t think of bringing your own slide to play on so please don’t bring your own sandwich to eat!
Your prices are too high?
This is simply not the case (and you are, of course, under no obligation to buy anything from us once inside). We are easily comparable, and in most cases much better value for money, than any coffee shop or café of a similar quality. We also run Membership or Membership² schemes that offer great discounts.
Of course, you can buy many of the items we sell (or comparable items) much cheaper from a supermarket, and people often compare the two. But that is a false comparison. If it were a genuine comparison then supermarkets would sell chips in their in-shop restaurants for the exact same price as chips on their shelves, would they not?
If I’m buying some stuff from you then it’s ok to bring some of my own?
People may buy a sandwich then think it’s ok to consume their own drink, for example, but I’m afraid the rule has to apply to all food and drink otherwise it would become unworkable.
I have special dietary requirements?
If you have a genuine dietary need that we cannot fulfil then we have absolutely no issue, as long as you tell us about this when you arrive. But, as an example, bringing your own Coke because we sell Pepsi and you don’t like Pepsi, is not a genuine dietary requirement!