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Local Flair Issue 27: Hire4Baby

hire4baby mummyonmymind

Local Flair is back, and this time I got an insight into Hire4Baby, a Baby and Toddler equipment rental company, through it’s founder Jossette Naiken. Hire4Baby offers a complete family travel solution for trips to Dubai and the UAE. from where you can rent premium baby & child equipment. Jossette was also kind enough to lend me the Hospital Grade breast pumps on rent just after I gave birth to Little Z a couple of months ago, so do read on to know more about my experience with them. 

hire4baby mummyonmymindTell me a little about yourself.
Hi, my name is Jossette Naiken. I’m Australian and was raised in Melbourne and Perth. I relocated to the UAE in 2007, where I worked for some of the worlds largest investment banks as a regional Equity Trader. I have two children, Mikah 3.5yo and Lua 18 months old, so you can imagine with a full time business, my days are very busy. Living in this wonderful country allows me to have the time to do this, as I have a fabulous home helper who takes care of our children and home while I’m out running the business.

Tell me about Hire4Baby.
Becoming a mother myself led me to launch Hire4Baby.com in 2015, which was created with the sole intention of making family holidays to the UAE more convenient. Hire4Baby.com is mostly the result of my own stressful experiences, strengthened by the wealth of feedback I’ve had from fellow UAE parents. Hire4Baby.com supports the UAE’s thriving tourism industry with a full service ‘one-stop shop’ baby and toddler equipment rental service, offering highest quality products to the travelling parent. We ease the burden of travelling with children by providing parents with the expertly-researched items from trusted premium brands, which are delivered and collected straight to them at the home, hotel or even airport terminal of their choice. The service is extremely efficient and convenient, and means families can travel with far less luggage, lightening their load and leaving more time and energy to enjoy their trip. Our clients can arrive in the UAE with total peace-of-mind that all the equipment they need will be at their chosen destination, sanitized and sparkling clean, even before they reach it.

What’s the most rewarding part of your business?
Offering convenience and peace of mind when parents are visiting is the top of our priority list at Hire4Baby.com. Every step we make has that concept at the heart of the decision. We all want to make great memories when we visit this country, and Hire4Baby.com is my way of helping families forget about the frustrating elements of travelling with children, and instead focus on all the fun to be had!

What’s been the most frustrating or challenging aspect of your business, and how have you overcome it?
I make no bones about the fact my life doesn’t have the ‘work-life balance’ I am striving for. I am juggling two young children and a business, which is my third baby, and that makes my life time-shy, mentally challenging and physically intensive. But I am very grateful that my husband and children are very supportive, and are patiently allowing me to develop Hire4Baby.com. My kids have a section in the office dedicated to them, where they can unwind after school, have a bite and take a nap. This allows me to maximize my hours at work, without having to sacrifice face time with my children, and I know how lucky that makes me.

hire4baby mummyonmymind

What do customers need to know before renting from Hire4Baby?
Hire4Baby.com caters to all budgets and our stock of 500+ items is ever-growing. We have the broadest range of baby and toddler related items, ranging from strollers and travel cots to sterilizers and hospital grade breast-pumps. If we do not have an item, that is requested, we generally purchase it for the parent as we are constantly researching, improving and realigning our product blend to ensure that we remain a one-stop shop for any baby & toddler equipment rental.

And the rental system could not be easier. You simply plan your trip to the UAE, log into the website, select your items and we will send you a confirmation after which you make the payment. We then deliver and collect the products from whichever address you provide,
whether it is a hotel or a residence.

hire4baby mummyonmymind

Along with the must have baby and toddler items, you also rent hospital grade breast pumps. What made you decide to include this in your range of products and why have you chosen the three that you offer?
Before I gave birth, I had heard from friends that breastfeeding was really hard, for some the most difficult part of having a baby. Nothing could have prepared me for what was lying ahead as breastfeeding was a huge challenge for me. I was abroad, I didn’t know where to go to for help, it was 5am and I was in tears from the crippling pain but at the same time desperate to feed my hungry son. Of course, it all ends with a happy story, as I sourced a lactation consultant and I can’t thank her enough for being there and being so supportive. When I returned from abroad, I rang around a few clinics for hospital grade breast pumps but I couldn’t find any available, and at that point I decided it needed to be more accessible to mothers. Just like myself at that time, 90% of customers looking for pumps are new mums and having difficulties as well. I am an advocate of “fed is best”, but if my service means that one more mother gets to breastfeed her baby, then I’m so happy to have played a small part in it.

hire4baby mummyonmymind

Something that is a major concern amongst parents when renting baby items is it’s hygiene. How do you ensure the level of hygiene is excellent for each of your products?
It is our priority that you only ever receive equipment in “as new” condition. We hygienically steam clean all our equipment to ensure complete hygiene for you and your family. We undertake a 5 step cleaning process for all our equipment before and after each and every hire. And we only use Seventh Generation’s natural products throughout our cleaning process. Seventh Generation’s baby product range are plant-based and provide gentle, hypoallergenic products designed to clean, soothe and shield baby’s delicate skin. When it comes to car setas, I will often say, that our car seats are in FAR better condition than 99% of the car seats children sit in today. I know this for a fact as my own children’s car seats are covered in crumbs, raisins, milk stains etc. Whereas Hire4Baby stock is cleaned and sanitised after every single hire – they are pristine inside and out. I also created a “like new” policy, whereby if you aren’t happy with the product, we will happily exchange or refund the customer. To date, we haven’t ever had a complaint.

hire4baby mummyonmymind

What is the unique trait about Hire4Baby?
There aren’t many companies in the world which have taken the “sharing economy” model of baby & toddler equipment rental as seriously as we have Hire4Baby.com. We are implementing ‘best-in-class’ systems to take this service further than a single town business.
Hire4Baby.com believes that it is supporting the UAE tourism industry while providing traveling parents with convenience. Throughout it all, we keep that message at the core of our growth.

Tell me about a day in your life, as the owner of Hire4Baby?
My children are both irreversibly and irrevocably tuned to wake the house up at 6am every single morning. Depending on your definition of work, it starts immediately! I will scoop up one child under my arm, while attempting to review Hire4Baby.com orders and emails through the tiny screen on my phone with the other. I then have 1.5 hours to get myself and the kids fed and dressed and off to nursery, after which I head directly to our warehouse. After that, it’s go, go, go until around 4pm when I try to head home and help with playing
with the kids, dinner, the three B’s, bath, book and bed time. The weekends can be a little bit easier as my husband is around, but I’ve always got so much backlog my mind can never truly rest.

hire4baby mummyonmymind

What advice would you give to other mothers looking to start up their own business in the UAE?
Don’t wait. Do whatever you can – now. There are so many things that I feel I want to accomplish, and I’m kicking myself for not making them happen sooner. Hire4Baby.com was my brainchild. I’m really proud of the way I just ‘went for it’, and I couldn’t be happier with its success so far, but I do wish I left my job in the corporate world of finance to start it a little sooner than I did. All this with 2 children makes life very difficult but extremely rewarding at the same time.

Where would you like to see the business in 5 years time?
There is tremendous scope for growth for Hire4Baby.com. We see the business more closely aligned with the region’s most established airlines and hotel groups, and are taking steps to form those partnerships. The main pillar of the business will always remain the same, however, and that is to offer convenience to all parents visiting the UAE, while supporting the tourism industry. We are also looking to expand our range to further cater to travelling mummies by adding on consumable items such as diapers, wipes, formula etc so that you don’t need to carry it over here with you, its all at your hotel along with the baby gear on guest arrival.

hire4baby mummyonmymind

Mummy On My Mind Review

Jossette was kind enough to lend me two hospital grade pumps from their inventory – the Ameda Elite and the Ameda Platinum. Hire4Baby also has the Madela Symphony, available for rent. The pumps are to be used with the Ameda Dual HygieniKit® Milk Collection System which is available for purchase from Hire4Baby. This ensures the optimum hygiene for users of this product.

Having given birth to Little Z (who is exclusively breastfed on demand) roughly a month after I was given the pumps on rent, I was still very much looking at ways to increase my milk supply, and pumping is a great way to do so. I used each of these pumps for a week each, about two times a day.

Having used a manual pump with my first born, these hospital grade pumps were somewhat a revolutionary upgrade. To be honest, my experience with pumping my first child doesn’t make me look back at it fondly, and so I was rather uneasy at first about how my experience will turn out with using these pumps. When I received both these pumps, I was slightly taken aback by how big they are. Their huge size and weight means that these are not exactly portable pumps you can pop into your handbag, and the electric cables are also not too long, as they are not designed to be taken with you outside of your home.

However, as I began using them, I loved how efficient they are as well as being so easy to use. Both pumps came with easy to follow instructions. They were powerful and automatic, and with the option to do single or double pumping, it made the entire process incredibly fast. The Ameda Elite is the one I tried out for the first week. It has an analogue control with built in bottle holders and is also BPA and DEHP Free. The Ameda Platinum on the other hand, is all digital. It has 3 easy to read LCD screens, a built in timer, as well as VacuSense™ Technology that adjusts itself to ensure more consistent suction levels at varying altitudes. It is a lot less noisier than the Elite and overall I preferred the Ameda Platinum over the Ameda Elite for the ease of use extra functions.

As far as the service goes, both pumps were delivered on time and I can vouch that both pumps were indeed of a “like new” condition. It is obvious that Jossette takes great pride in her business, and I would highly recommend this service for anyone travelling to the UAE with little ones, who could do without the hassle of carrying the big ticket items.

Thank you Jossette for sharing with us the services provided by Hire4Baby. For more information, head to their website or follow them for updates on Facebook and Instagram.

Note: All photographs in this post belong to Hire4Baby and have been used by the owner’s permission. 

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