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Should we bring our nanny on vacation?


Image Gallery: Beaches If your nanny joins your family on vacation, it frees you for some time to yourself. See pictures of beautiful beaches.
Stanislav Solntsev/Getty Images

Ah, vacation. You labor year-round to support and care for your kids, yet it's so rare that you manage to escape for some family fun time. When you finally do, so many day-to-day childcare tasks demand your attention that your family holiday feels more like a working vacation.

Wouldn't it be nice to have an extra pair of hands along for the trip to help with the day-to-day tasks of feeding and watching over your kids? Not to mention arranging activities for your children that stimulate their intellectual, physical, emotional and social growth. (And keep them out of your hair.)

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were about 1.3 million childcare workers employed in the United States in 2008, and about 33 percent of those childcare workers were self-employed -- most of them providing childcare in their homes. Obviously employing a nanny is fairly common practice, but whether you employ one already or not, chances are the idea of having an additional caregiver along on a family trip sounds appealing.

Can you bring a nanny to the beach or along for your luxurious European vacation? Sure you can. But you have to remember that bringing a nanny on holiday differs quite a bit from employing one at home. There may be added expenses for you. And although you may think you're doing your nanny a favor by taking him or her to the French Riviera, the nanny will still spend that time working, not relaxing. So you need to work out a very clear arrangement beforehand.

What are the pros and cons of bringing a nanny on vacation?