The three tier system: what are the restrictions for nannies?

Published: 16/10/2020

With London shifting into Tier 2 of the government’s new lockdown tiered system, we’ve had many questions from both parents and nannies what exactly it means for them. 

The good news: both live-in and live-out nannies are still able to visit their employers’ houses to work, even if that means travelling between areas of different tiers and mixing with another household (i.e. their homes and the household of their employer). However, the rules are slightly more restricting when it comes down to playdates. In this article we’ll be outlining exactly what each tier means for London nannies and their charges. 

Tier 1

Tier 1, or ‘Medium Risk,’ is the lowest level risk in the tier system, where the rules for household mixing in both the indoor and outdoor settings are the same. 

The only restriction in place is rule of six, which states that social gatherings are not to exceed more than six people, remains in place, although the six people can come from any household. This means that for playdates, two nannies with two charges each, or three nannies with one charge each, can still continue to mix both inside and outside. 

The three tier system: what are the restrictions for nannies?

Tier 2

As of Saturday 17th October, London and the boroughs of London will be moved into Tier 2, which means that mixing between households indoors is now banned. This means that playdates can no longer take place within households, even if there are only six people present. 

However, in outdoor settings multiple households can mix, as long as the rule of six is adhered to. This means that while two nannies with two charges each are not allowed to visit each other's households, they are allowed to meet up together at the park. 

Tier 3

Tier 3, the highest of the lockdown levels, bans all forms of households mixing in both indoor and outdoor settings. This means that if you are in a Tier 3 area, playdates are forbidden both indoors and outdoors.

The only exception to this rule are social bubbles. If you or the person within your social bubble is in Tier 3, you can still arrange to visit them in both indoor and outdoor settings, although we advise taking extra precautions, such as washing your hands and wearing a face mask when possible. This means that if London goes into Tier 3, both live-in and live-out nannies in London will still be able to go to work. 

If I’m in Tier 2, can I arrange a playdate with someone in Tier 1?

Only in an outdoor setting. The law states that you must follow the rules specific to the area in which you live, as opposed to the area you’re visiting. 

The latest guideline is a build upon the already existing rule of six, which states that any social gathering of more than six people is against the law, with individuals risking being fined up to £200 should they break the law. Exceptions to this rule include schools and workplaces, weddings (allowing 15 people), funerals (allowing 30 people) and social bubbles. For more on the rule of six, read here

As a reminder:

Outdoors: you cannot meet up with more than six people together in a group at any one time. If meeting others from outside of your household, remain two meters apart.  

Indoors: as London moved into Tier 2 lockdown, you cannot mix households indoors. Both live-in and live-out nannies are an exception to this rule.

Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 minutes, as long as it would take you to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ twice.

Wear a face mask on public transport and in shops. 

Create space: stay at least 2m apart from others unless they are a member of your household. 

Check your symptoms

The symptoms of coronavirus are:

A high temperature - you are hot to the touch on your chest or back. 

A new, continuous cough – coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual).

A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal.

If you or someone in your household start to develop any of these symptoms make sure you self-isolate immediately and book a coronavirus test, either by calling 119 or booking online at: 


We’re here to support you through these difficult times, so if your questions haven’t been answered by the above, feel free to contact us at and we’ll be in touch.

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