Travelling with a family can be exciting but also a little daunting. To help ensure the process runs smoothly for everyone, we have put together our advice on how to manage the experience and what to expect.
Not a holiday for you
Remember - you are still working when you go on holiday with your nanny family. They might be there to unwind and relax, and you are there to enable them to do this. It’s a great idea to be proactive and see if the family would like any help researching or planning activities. This doesn’t mean that you have to be on 24/7, but you should show your usual work ethic.
One key point to remember is to never drink alcohol while you are working. Your employer may offer it to you but you should politely decline - I am sure they will respect you all the more for it.
Flights, accommodation and food
The employer is responsible for paying all travel, accommodation and food costs while you are away. If you don’t have travel insurance, ask the family if you can be put onto theirs.
Make sure to clarify in advance what the accommodation will be. E.g. will you have your own room or will you be expected to sleep with any of the children.
While in transit try and make yourself as helpful as possible. You can assist with moving luggage around and keeping the children entertained throughout the journey.
When going out for meals with the family, be responsible and don’t go ordering the lobster!
Pay and hours
Before you travel make sure to have a conversation with your employers about their plans for your work schedule. When travelling nannies often work additional hours so it’s important to have a clear understanding of their expectations. For example, parents might require more evening babysitting so they can enjoy meals out.
You might be required to share a room with a baby, in which case you will need to agree a 24 hour rate. For any other overtime worked you can either be paid extra or agree on some time off in lieu. We recommend having these things clearly covered in your contract if you are going to travel with a family regularly.
Who's in charge?
The change in routine can be a challenge for young children, and if you are a sole charge nanny so can adapting to having both your parents and nanny around. Make sure to speak with your family about who is in charge when you are away - you or the parents? The lines might be a little blurred sometimes but you need to at least be consistent with each other.
Most parents will want help with packing the children’s suitcases. Even if you aren’t travelling with them, this will mean making sure all the clothing they will need is washed etc. What you need to pack will depend on where it is you’re going so make sure you have a clear idea of the holiday plans. For example, a skiing trip in the Alps will require very different items to a beach holiday in the South of France.
Travelling with a family is a great perk of some nanny roles. While it is something to be enjoyed you still need to remember that you are at work. Making that extra effort will make the holiday more enjoyable for everyone, including you!