Shopping centres are a complete sensory overload for many children and adults with autism and Toys R Us in the UK is leading the way to helping out this weekend.

Several Toys R Us stores across the UK will dim their lights and go quiet for a few hours on Sunday to make shopping more welcoming to people with autism.

“For many autistic people and their families, a simple trip to the shops, which should be an enjoyable experience, can be fraught with difficulty,” Daniel Cadey of the U.K.’s National Autistic Society said in a statement. “Autistic children and adults can become overwhelmed with too much information inside a busy store.”

To help create a calm atmosphere, the stores will dim the lights and have no music or announcements over the loud speaker.

“We understand toys are more personal to many additional needs individuals,” said Mike Coogan, marketing and e-commerce director at Toys R Us. “So being able to relax and choose something special themselves and enjoy the facilities and content of the store, the same as other children can do without concerns, will help in making their Christmas truly magical.”

FB toys r us

I think we should applaud Toys R Us in the UK for taking this step in the right direction and I would like to see them expand this across all stores in all countries and lead the way for other shops to implement this too.

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Image credit: Toys R Us FB


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  • What a nice thing to do. Pity it doesn’t also happen here.


  • No ads and no music sounds heavenly and a step in the right direction.


  • Well done Toys R Us,a wonderful idea.


  • This is a wonderful idea. I hope other countries will follow!


  • Great move. Hope it’s not a one-off, but something that will be carried out weekly and by many stores.

    • I agree – a regular occurrence would be a good thing for many stores.


  • It may help other children and adults with other disabilities too. ASD, some with epilepsy are sensitive to flashing lights or even just bright lights, hypersensitive hearing is aggravated by loud volume. It also over excites some with ADHD.


  • This is a great idea and very thoughtful.


  • Great idea bringing attention to autism. (However I fear that this will lead to increased shoplifting)


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