2 for 1

opinion 1
Question #1: What should a nanny traveling with you be paid? Overnight?
Question #2: How much do you pay a nanny traveling with you. The rate in our area (Austin, TX) is between $13-$16 per hour, and we are traveling to Florida for a week - Driving there. We have a 18 month, 3 and 5 year old. We will be taking care of the children together most of the time, but will be leaving a couple of nights for dinner. Want to be fair and would appreciate help! Thanks.


Dr. Juris said...

I'd do a lump sum to make it easier and I'd probably double her weekly salary to figure out the amount. At the very least, she should make $1000. Considering she's going to be in the car with y'all for 30 hours (which translates to $450 for $15/hr), I'd probably say $1000 is extremely low.

Milehighnanny said...

My rule is: I make my normal pay for my normal hours. If I have to stay with kids overnight ( not my own room or I am expected to get up if they have a bad dream ect.) I make time and a half for those hours. If your nanny will be in her own room, after her regular hours then I would pay her a flat fee for being away from home ( 60-100/nt). I usually make bank when I travel with the family. But I am also working my butt off for every cent. Also, the family needs to pay for nanny's meals/ coffee because the nanny cannot prepare her own food usually.

Travel Mom said...

I'm sorry, but I think every post I've ever read on this site about traveling with the family is a litle bit crazy.

I worked as a full-time (55+ hours per week) nanny for 2 surgeons in Los Angeles for nearly 3 years (and I traveled with them) and I have employed 2 full-time nannies over the last 5 years (and traveled with them), so I think I can speak from both sides pretty well.

When you travel for your job as a professional, it kind of sucks. You work more hours and you're tired and you don't always get paid for your travel time, etc. I take 3-4 trips per year for my job and promise you that if I add up all the hours I should be doubling my salary for those weeks...but I don't. To ask for hundreds of extra dollars plus all expenses for a trip is grabby and weird unless you are truly expected to do a lot more "work". Sitting in a car or on an airplane is not hard work *unless you're expected to really entertain the kids constantly during that time* (in which case should be part of your weekly hours, not necessarily should you get a bonus for it).

Here's what we do (we take 2-3 weeks worth of vacation per year):
1. Pay regular weekly salary with the expectation that she will work regular hours (or less) during trip excluding travel time
2. Pay for ALL reasonable expenses on trip (food, drinks, etc.) Depending on where we are going we either just give her money to spend or let her put everything on our resort tab.
3. Always give the nanny her own room.
4. Give her ample time off to do activities in the place of vacation on her own.
5. Treat her to an activity such as snorkling trip or horseback riding during the trip.

The idea being that she's "out" nothing for traveling with us except sleeping in her own bed and some travel time. She shouldn't have to spend any of her own money unless she wants to shop or do lots of extra activities.

If we ever had our nanny work more than the 50-55 hours she would normally work in a week while we were on vacation (this has never happened, but just to say...) then I would pay her overtime by the hour.

That's professional working can't have it both ways.

If I paid my nanny an extra $1000 on top of her room and expenses and salary? I might as well just find a nanny service in the town I'm going (and perhaps consider telling our nanny to take her vacation weeks at the same time as us).

I get that some families might take advantage so it's important to set expectations and boundaries, but I see traveling with the family as part of the regular job. Not an opportunity to go on a trip and fill your pockets. Period.

Just my opinion.

Travelin' Nanny said...

I was a nanny that traveled with my family. Honestly, to expect to be paid all this "extra money" is crazy. I was paid my normal weekly salary, given my own room to stay in, and all necessary expenses. MB and DB took thier vacations as opportunities to relax themselves, so I was often in charge of all daytime activites. They always made sure my costs were covered for said activities. On my days off, I was invited to join them in whatever they were doing but not expected.
It sounds like you want to be fair to your nanny, which is so great! Make sure she has her own room if possible. If that is not possible, offer to compensate her a few extra bucks or extra time off to make up for the inconvenience, and dont expect her to get up with the baby just because she is in the same room. Make sure she is only working the same amount of hours as she does in a normal week at home. If possible, give her extra time off, and arrange with her the hours you will be needing her during the trip so she can plan some vacation time of her own. She wont know what hours she will be expected to work if you dont tell her.....most often, vacations are not a 9-5 gig. Also, keep in mind that while you are on vacation, her time off will not feel as much like time off for her. She is in a strange place where she has no friends, knows no one, probably has no transportation, and may not be comfortable venturing out on her own. If you are ok having her around, offer to let her "hang with your family" if she wants to, but make sure she knows it is not an obligation, and you will not be offended if she declines, or ask her if he would like a ride to go somewhere.
I think your nanny will appreciate these types of things much more than a "bonus" filled with lots of hours and little privacy. I know I sure did. I look back now, and am so grateful for the opportunities I got to see places I would probably never get to see otherwise, and I was actually able to enjoy the trips from more than just a hotel window.

Dr. Juris said...

Travel Mom: just because you travel for your job does NOT mean that it is part of the job description for all jobs. If it's not written into the contract, then it's not a normal duty of that job and should therefore be contracted for separately. Additionally, I don't know about you, but sitting in the backseat a car for 30+ hours with three children under the age of 6 is MISERABLE and requires additional compensation. Finally, traveling is exhausting and an inconvenience to many people (especially when they are not expected to travel within the normal confines of their job). That is why people pay more for these trips. The nanny may have to pay someone to watch her cat/dog/plants/house, she may have a husband/partner who she must leave for a week, she's effectively "on call" for the entire week, she is almost certainly without a car that week, has to think about expenses she may otherwise not have to worry about, etc etc.

Professional jobs often pay extra for doing such things as travel--and many times this inconvenience is tabulated into the original salary. I hope you consider that for future nannies.

nycmom said...

We have taken several nannies and different pt sitters on a variety of driving and flying trips.

Paying for all transport, meals, fees goes without saying. If feasible, we have invited our nanny to bring along her young child (and we paid).

If we rent a house, the caregiver gets her own room. If we are in a hotel, we do adjoining rooms and caregiver has her own double bed in room with kids. However, she is not responsible for the kids at night, nor has that ever happened. I am an extremely light sleeper and none of my traveling caregivers have ever woken before me, though I also keep a monitor right next to my bed.

Regarding the room, I just cannot justify the cost of getting my nanny her own hotel room when we travel and am honest about this with her. It would likely be an extra $5000 for the week just for the room and for that price, if that was a deal-breaker for my nanny, I would make other arrangements.

Regarding pay, we negotiate everything beforehand, including writing out a schedule which can be flexible. My prior nanny just preferred to work the whole day, but others have preferred less hours. Whatever the agreement is, we adhere to it strictly and never violate her private time. It varies, but we usually end up paying our ft nanny double her weekly salary for travel. She works roughly 1.5X normal hours, but with overtime that's usually where it ends up.

I do agree with Travelin Mom that some of the posts on here are not realistic. I know lots of other families that have traveled with their caregiver and no one has ever approached anything like the numbers I have seen on here in the past. I pay double because my nanny works many more hours. If she didn't, I would do similar to Travelin Mom and Travelin Nanny with a much smaller bonus.

Finally, now that my kids are past the toddler stage, I no longer take our nanny on trips. I use agencies at the destination so we we can have some parent time once in a while. I gotta say -- it is SOOO much easier. The nannies have been average-excellent, but certainly met our needs at a fraction of the cost of traveling with our nanny. For 3 kids, I've paid anywhere from $17-26/hour which isn't bad since there is no flight cost and minimal meal cost. Plus, I can give our nanny some of her vacation at the same time which is great.

Travel Mom said...

I agree there should be something in the contract about travel and what's expected, of course, but even if a family doesn't have that in there...again, if you are a PROFESSIONAL you can roll with the punches. There has never been anything in my contracts at work about travel and I don't travel frequently for my job (depending on the year, somewhere between 0-4 times/year) but I would not expect extra compensation. At best, if I have to travel on a weekend I take a day off upon my return. I do not believe that unless it's a job where frequent travel is expected, that most employers do give any extra compensation (even rolled into the salary) and anyone who travels for work has to get a petsitter, babysitter, etc.

My overriding point was that if you want to elevate the position of nanny to "professional" level, you don't nickel and dime your employers for a week or two of exceptionally hard work per year. If a family is taking advantage or does a LOT of traveling, then that's an exception but I'm giving the family the benefit of the doubt here. I'm not suggesting the family cut corners on the nanny's pay to make the vacation cheaper, I'm just balking at the notion that you'd pay someone $1000 extra dollars for a week of travel.

AZ said...

I usually received over $1000/week and all expenses paid PLUS I rarely ever had the kids alone...we all MB/DB/Kids spent time together. I no longer work for the family but I still vacation with them (a gift to me each summer) and it is STILL all expenses paid. I LOVE the families I've worked for!

Nanny Nina said...

For one week away, working all 7 days, and listening out for the kids at night(they rarely wake up), I get %4500. Based in NYC though.

Unknown said...

A nanny does not have to travel for work.
If you want her to you have to pay her extra. That's the facts.

Unknown said...

A nanny is not required to travel with your family. A nanny gets paid 52 weeks out of the year whether or not she travels with you on your family trips. If you want the convenience of having her with you then you have to pay for it.

Family Trip Nanny Pay:
Her regular weekly hours (always)
Plus a $50-$100 a night fee.
You must provide her with her own room.
You must pay for all of her travel expenses: meals, transport & lodging.
She must be given free time to herself at night (as always)

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with some of the other nannies that have commented. I have worked as a full time live in and live out nanny since college. I have a college degree, excellent references, over a decade of experience and most importantly, I love the work I do. In the past, vacationing or traveling with the family for a week or less, I would receive the following for 2 young boys I cared for. My own private room and bathroom in the hotel or in the vacation home, all expenses paid which includes meals, coffee, any type of grocery food I'd pick out for the week for meals at home. Also, in some instances, I would bring my vehicle to the vacation destination. Of course, I was reimbursed for gas expenses and additionally, I charged a flat amount for use or wear/tear to my vehicle for a long drive (over 3 hours). This was actually cheaper than getting my usual $20 per hour. I would charge for gas and a flat rate for the use of my vehicle between $60 and $100. I am not a "princess" nanny if there is such thing, but I work for my money and the family's home or vacation home is actually, my workplace. Keep it professional. In addition to the expenses paid for, I charge a $150 rate per evening. If a family would expect me to work over 8 hours a day (which is my normal work day), I would not go on "vacation with them". I'd rather let them find someone else and I take a break without them. If they want someone they can trust, someone who will honestly care for their children, that is a service that is not free! Yes, you do get what you pay for. When you pay your nanny appropriately, you will notice she will go above and beyond to wow you on a continuous schedule!
Here's a good example, a family with one elementary aged child that needs me to attend a weekend trip, I'd expect my room and meals to be paid for as well as my car expenses and I'd likely charge a flat rate of $150 per night.
Yes, I do have to get a house and pet sitter when I travel with them. Yes, it is a little inconvenient to travel with someone you work for and adjust to a different environment. (I miss my bed! type of thing) so it is only fair to compensate appropriately for this type of service.
I don't take advantage, but I certainly stand up for my "worth". It is priceless at times to find someone that you can entirely trust with your child, pets, home in our crazy world.
Whatever your case, I hope you can come to agreement and all parties involved can have some type of enjoyment with the "vacation"! :-)