Tips on Traveling with Your Nanny￼
As we begin to approach the holiday season there’s always the possibility that families will be traveling. Air travel especially has gotten a bit more complicated ever since the pandemic. Additionally, there have been an increasing amount of flight delays and other changes in air travel. It can be a daunting time to travel, made even more interesting by the addition of traveling with nannies and child caregivers. As always, A Perfect Fit is here to help. Here is your comprehensive overview of hot tips for traveling with your nanny in today’s world:
Check-in with your nanny about their travel preferences
Everyone is different and it’s important for families not to assume that their nanny can make travel work with their schedule and lives. Make sure if you’re planning on traveling and would like to bring your nanny along that you speak to them about it far enough in advance of the travel dates that you won’t find yourself scrambling for childcare options last minute should your regular nanny be unavailable. It’s always best to plan ahead. Remember, many nannies have families of their own that they might want to be with during the holidays, or perhaps they just prefer not to travel for work. If that’s the case, you want to make sure you have the conversation with your regular nanny early enough that you can arrange a backup plan should your nanny not be amenable to traveling with your family for whatever reason.
Many nannies might see travel as a perk of the job, however, and if you’re a family that travels often and you’re interviewing for your perfect fit nanny, it would be a great idea to see how this potential nanny feels about traveling with your family. Make sure to give your nanny a sense of your likeliest travel plans and dates as early as you possibly can so that they can make sure to let you know if they’re going to be available. Also, make sure to factor in the specific travel locations and their requirements so that your nanny can be aware of those requirements as well and prepare accordingly.
Make sure administrative details are in order
For example, the biggest hurdle to traveling – especially traveling internationally – is making sure that your nanny’s travel documents such as their passport and personal identification are in order and up-to-date. The lead time on an updated passport in particular, if your nanny is an American citizen, can take several months to secure. Things get a bit more complicated as well if your nanny would need to update their passport via a country outside the United States should they carry a non-United States passport.
It is also a good idea to make sure that your nanny has an up-to-date form of photo identification, such as a driver’s license. By May 3, 2023 all United States travelers will need a REAL ID to board domestic flights, so if you plan on keeping your nanny for a long time and you’re a family that travels a lot, it might be a good idea to allow your nanny to schedule a time to go to the DMV during their work hours so that they’re able to update their REAL ID and also accomplish any other administrative tasks to prepare for both domestic and possibly even international travel.
It might even be a good idea to offer to pay for your nanny to get TSA pre-check to expedite the travel process for air travel. The process for receiving TSA pre-check is surprisingly straightforward and saves a ton of time and hassle in the long run – so especially if the family all has TSA pre-check already, it would make sense for families to offer to cover the cost of TSA precheck to nannies that will be traveling with them so that everyone can stay together during the flight boarding process.
Be ready for the unexpected
Any parent knows, however, that you can plan for every eventuality and unexpected outcome, and life can still sometimes surprise you. Remember that traveling with someone always requires an extra layer of sensitivity, adaptability, and preparedness even before the pandemic complicated the travel process even further. With flight delays and the occasional COVID-19 positive outbreaks and testing requirements, it’s especially important to be respectful of your nanny’s comfort level with traveling in groups and best practices for their personal health and safety. Additionally, be aware that your flight might experience some delays, as that has become fairly common with many airlines. Be prepared to change or alter your flight details, especially in the event of inclement weather. All in all, when the inevitable complications of travel come up, try not to worry too much that things haven’t gone according to plan. Remember that everyone in your family, as well as your nanny traveling with you, wants the same thing: to have a fun, safe and happy vacation. Try to remember that when travel gets inevitably a bit frustrating, and make sure you’re maintaining a level of control even when the most unexpected changes occur. Remember also that there is always a solution to unexpected changes, it’s just a matter of patiently finding it. You’re not alone!
Accommodate your nanny
Make sure that your nanny is comfortably accommodated for your upcoming travel, remembering that they’re technically traveling for work while you’re traveling for personal reasons. For instance, they might miss their families should they have children of their own – so make sure to budget in “off the clock” hours for your nanny to connect with their family or even have some personal time to themselves if they so choose. Make sure that they have adequate privacy levels in whatever housing accommodations you will be providing for their stay, including their own room and bathroom. Remember, a happy nanny means a happy home, and the longer you can keep your perfect nanny in your employ, the better off things are for everyone. While travel can be fun, it can also be stressful at times – so it’s important to give your nanny adequate space to decompress whenever necessary.
Make pay adjustments
Especially as we come up on the holidays, it might be beneficial to revisit your nanny’s rate to incentivize them to stay with your family or help out for special events and occasions, such as traveling with your family. A Perfect Fit specializes in making sure all parties are happy with payment packages for childcare workers, and it’s important to use us as a resource available to you to secure the best fit for your family using the nanny’s employment package. Remember also that as the holidays come up if you plan on traveling with your nanny during the holidays it would be standard to offer them increased holiday pay, as they will not be able to be with their own families at this time. Be prepared for any changes to their rate and be sure to factor that in if you opt to bring along your nanny to your next family vacation.
At A Perfect Fit, we offer Travel Nannies specifically for the purpose of having a nanny to travel with when your current nanny is unable to do so. These nannies that we offer would be considered a temporary placement with your family, and we can organize all the details should your family choose to go with this option.
Generally speaking, it’s recommended that families pay their nannies a daily travel stipend of $100-$200. When making a decision on the exact stipend amount, families can take into account the location where your family is traveling and the value of your home currency there to get a sense of how much is appropriate to cover the cost of living for a day at the destination. Also, it’s important to factor in the differences in cost for daily living expenses for your nanny based on your family’s specific lodging choices – for instance, if your family is staying in a place where your nanny has access to a kitchen and is able to access groceries for themselves they might not require as much stipend money to access fresh food.
Lastly, it is important to remember that all travel time for your nanny should be factored into their “on-the-clock” hours, as they’re technically working for your family even if they’re not directly responsible for children during travel hours. For instance, during a cross-country flight, the nanny should be compensated for those hours, as they would not normally choose to fly cross-country in their personal lives if it weren’t work-related.
Remember: Have Fun!
Remember that traveling is supposed to be fun and an expansive time for everyone! Give your nanny and your family the flexibility to explore the place you’re visiting, especially if it’s full of attractions and interesting offerings. It’s always good to have a change in scenery, and a nanny that is flexible and accommodating enough to be willing to travel with their families is such a huge benefit to having the privilege of being able to employ added childcare help. Enjoy the memories you will inevitably create during these happy times, and try not to let the stressors of travel, especially during the holidays, drain your spirit. There’s so much to be grateful for, especially your beautiful family. As always, A Perfect Fit is always here to help with our services and offerings for families, contact us today.