Ultimately, any arrangement that you and your nanny agree to within the bounds of law, reason and morality is probably fine. As with many things in life, the answer is communication and planning.
Tips for Both Parents and Nanny:
- Put a separate travel contract in writing. Set out the nanny's hours, duties, schedule and compensation (including the nanny's food, lodging, travel, etc.). The trip should not count as the nanny's vacation unless you both agree to that.
- Inform the nanny whether or not it's appropriate to post vacation pictures, which could include you and your kids, on Facebook and other social media Web sites.
- Communicate, be flexible and keep your sense of humor.
Tips for Parents:
- Hiring a nanny from an agency at your vacation destination can save you money, but you should only use a fully licensed and bonded agency that you have carefully investigated. Resort concierges may also have lists of preferred agencies. Ask the agency specific questions regarding what activities their nannies are allowed to do with the kids (swimming, for example). These can vary widely due to liability considerations.
- Consider hiring a travel nanny. They're expert at traveling with kids, adept at scoping out destinations for activities and amenities and will go where other nannies might be unavailable.
- Don't wait until the last minute. Your nanny will need time to arrange to travel. And if he or she can't join you, you'll need time to find and investigate a local or travel nanny.
Tips for Nannies:
- Before you accept, ask yourself honestly how well you think you'll get along with the parents and how flexible your eating habits are. Also consider your tendency toward travel sickness and other potential problems.
- Do your research ahead of time and be prepared with activities, emergency numbers and anything else you might need to do your job while you're at your destination.
- Be assertive but flexible.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. "Child Care Workers." Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition. (May 20, 2010)http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos170.htm
- Capp, Lexy. Association of Premier Nanny Agencies public relations officer and philanthropic committee co-chair; owner and founder of Nannies & Housekeepers USA. Personal interview. May 5, 2010.
- Patterson, Thom. "Recession Shakes up Child Care for Families." CNN. March 31, 2009. (May 6, 2010)http://www.cnn.com/2009/LIVING/03/30/nanny.jobs/index.html
- Rinella, Heidi Knapp. "Minding the Children: Like One of the Family." Page 1E. March 15, 2005.
- Robinson, Donna. Traveling Nanny. Personal interview. May 6, 2010.
- Sachs, Wendy. International Nanny Association co-president; founder and owner of the Philadelphia Nanny Network, Inc.. Personal interview. May 4, 2010.
- Stout, Hilary. "How to Speak Nanny." The New York Times. Feb. 3, 2010. (May 5, 2010)http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/04/garden/04nannies.html?pagewanted=1&8dpc
- Susan Tokayer. International Nanny Association co-president; founder and owner of Family Helpers, Inc., Dobbs Ferry, NY. Personal interview. May 4, 2010.