After moving to London many families wonder what they will do with their children. If the kids are school age things are pretty easy, but for those families with children under school age it gets a bit hairy. Much like in the States those new to London due to international relocation have several options when looking for childcare during the day.
A popular choice for many families moving to London due to international relocation is to hire a nanny. This way young children can stay in their home during the day and do not have to go through the disruption of changing locations. The other advantage is that one’s child is guaranteed one-on-one interaction with the caretaker. The average cost of a nanny in London is £10 per hour or $15/hour.
Nursery is the British way of saying day care, plain and simple. Much like American daycares families moving to London can expect nurseries to provide educationally based child care with similar child to adult ratios as in America. Nurseries are excellent choices for older preschoolers who will benefit from peer interaction. The cost of nursery care ranges but on average is £1500/mo or $2250/mo ($625/wk).
A choice growing in popularity for all families in England, not just those new to London for relocation jobs, is an Au Pair. An Au Pair is a young woman who lives with the family and provides childcare in the home. They do not work around the clock but rather the same hours as a nanny would. The benefit to an Au Pair is that because they live with a family they are more flexible in their availability. Many Au Pairs come from other countries. While an Au Pair costs on average £100/wk ($150/wk) families are required to also pay housing and transportation fees.
In the States this type of child care is called in-home daycares. Many people (often with their own children) babysit in their homes. This is popular with Londoners and costs less than a nursery or nanny. On average child minders are paid £4/hr ($6/hr).
When moving for an international relocation finding a reliable and trustworthy childcare provider can be a scary venture. Relocation agents will work with families to find a quality provider but ultimately the choice is the family’s. Regardless of what type of childcare a family decides upon it is safe to say the cost will be significantly higher in the UK. This is important for families to understand when considering moving.