5 Tips for Finding Child Care While on Vacation

Check out childcare tips to make your vacation more relaxing

Finding child care while on vacation or away from home can be somewhat stressful and scary! How do you really know your kids will be taken care of properly and kept happy and safe? Numerous resorts and vacation hot spots offer child care services, but parents should really check out the facilities and staff qualifications before leaving kids at an unknown facility. Here are places to try and things to consider before dropping off your tots!

Bring Your Caregiver Along

babysitter on vacation

Whether it's the au pair you are using, a professional nanny, or a beloved teenager down the street who often watches your kids, consider bringing them along for your trip if you're desiring an extra set of eyes and helping hands. Many families do just that, providing opportunities for parents to have couple time while a trusted person watches their kids on occasion. This is a great option if you're trying to combine work and pleasure on a trip. Just be sure you're comfortable enough with the person to entrust them to keep a close eye on your kids and be prepared to pay more for a room and entertainment. Having a connected room is one possible solution. More »

Look for Affiliates to Known Day Care Centers

daycare

Check out if there is an affiliate at the location you will be at. For temporary or part-time care, child records can often be faxed from your regular daycare to the location where you're headed and all registration forms completed ahead of time. Many large daycare centers can accommodate an extra child due to vacation and arrange for special rates or services typically found at the regular location. Word of caution: a same or similar name may not always mean it is the same daycare company, so be sure to do your homework. If possible, go online to the main website and look over locations and then call and verify before you leave home. More »

Hire a Babysitter at Your Destination

babysitter on vacation

Use your connections to seek out daycare "do's and don't's" ahead of time. After all, you don't hesitate in asking a friend about what they thought about a particular restaurant or hotel, so do the same with child care. Ask your child's regular caregiver for any ideas and ask whether she has connections to get additional input or ideas about options. Child care professionals often possess a vast professional resource and may know information you might never otherwise have been able to tap into! More »

Call Hotel in Advance for Services Offered

hotel services on vacation
A reputable concierge service should have a list of child care services that have met the approval of past patrons. Be sure to ask whether the listings you are given are just an accumulation of possibilities with no references or recommendations or whether they are ones that have been deemed as highly qualified or reputable services by parents and child care professionals. And, yes, there is a huge difference! Many hotels also offer onsite child care or evening babysitting; parents should check out the details in advance of the stay to know what is offered and at least have a pretty good inclination about whether the kid clubs are right for their families. Don't hesitate in asking to talk to staff directly before your stay for Q&A time. More »

Check Out Drop-in Care Options Ahead of Time

drop in services on vacation

A growing number of communities are seeing drop-in child care centers, and the convenience and hours can provide parents with another child care alternative. But rather than waiting until you're absolutely desperate for child care, search for drop-in care ahead of time. If you like what you read and see about a drop-in facility, the next step should be to get the center to fax over registration forms so that you can have them completed. Once you arrive at your destination, make an unscheduled stop into the prospective facility and check out the premises first-hand BEFORE you require child care. Only after you are armed with information and are comfortable with the facility should you consider leaving your youngster there.

Updated by Jill Ceder More »

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