How to find a vacation babysitter

A vacation doesn’t feel like much of a getaway if your kids are still whining, crying and clinging to you 24/7. Thankfully, it’s possible to get a babysitter when you’re on vacation. It just takes a little extra planning, experts say. Here’s how to make it work:

Use social media

When you’re looking for a babysitter in another city, state or even country, Facebook, Twitter and all other social media avenues are great because they reach far and wide. “However, keep in mind social media safety rules,” said Cindy Richards, the Oak Park-based editor-in-chief of travelingmom.com an online travel magazine. “Don’t post publicly that you are planning to visit X city on X dates and that you need someone to watch your kids. Keep that info for the private exchange once you identify someone in the locality.”

Go through an agency

There are plenty of agencies in the United States that provide babysitters for traveling and local families. These include sittercity.com care.com and urbansitter.com. While some of those require fees, subscriptions or memberships for their services (which may include vetting and help depending on the agency.) Shelly Rivoli, the San Francisco-based author of the “Travels with Baby” guidebooks and blog, has created a free (no subscription, no registration required) online worldwide directory of hotel-babysitter and vacation-nanny agencies at travelswithbaby.com. “I think that going through the established agencies is the safest bet when hiring an out-of-town caregiver,” Rivoli said. She also recommended opting for a paid service to ensure that the sitters have been fully vetted and background checked — and then do your own Skype interview with the sitter before committing your kids to that person.

Contact a local college or university

Call the department of student affairs or the financial aid office of the college in the area where you’re vacationing. If you’re already there, you can go to the college and look in the college newspaper or on the bulletin board in the campus student union building. Ask for a list of babysitters — most colleges have an up-to-date list of students who want to babysit. “I think that is a great idea as long as you follow the same safety procedures you would at home with a new sitter,” said Seattle-based Anne Taylor Hartzell, of hiptravelmama.com.

Kid’s clubs

Many hotels have kid’s clubs — especially the larger resorts. For a minimal fee, you can drop off your children for a few hours or even for the entire day to be entertained in a room with other children (almost like camp). However, Richards said, they aren’t all created equal. “Some have incredible programming, and some are little more than another place to watch TV or play video games,” she said. “But if you want an hour to get a massage at the spa or two hours for a quiet dinner with your spouse, the kid’s clubs can be the answer.”

Co-vacation

Save babysitting money — and don’t stress about a stranger watching your child — by vacationing with friends. “This works best if traveling with friends who have children with similar ages and interests as yours,” said Colleen Lanin, Scottsdale-based author of The Travel Mamas’ Guide and editor of travelmamas.com. “Couples can take turns babysitting to give grown-ups a chance to steal away for date night.”

Do everything ahead of time

Regardless of the method you choose for a sitter, Lanin suggests booking your babysitter before you leave the house so you’re not wasting your vacation time finding child care. “Save time by checking references before your trip, too,” Lanin said. “If you know that you want to book a sitter more than once during your vacation, book the same sitter in advance so you and your child can feel comfortable with the consistency of a familiar face each time you go away.”

ad-high_impact_4
Life
Kids become firefighters at Fire Station 98 open house
Henderson residents wore fire hats, learned about CPR and met firefighters at the Fire Station 98 open house Saturday, August 11, 2018. (Marcus Villagran Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
People from all over the world attend RollerCon 2018
RollerCon 2018 is a five-day convention focused on the roller derby community and culture at Westgate in Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Camp Broadway teaches kids how to sing and dance
The Smith Center's seventh annual Camp Broadway musical theater program gives 150 kids ages 6-17 an opportunity to learn musical theater skills from industry professionals over a five-day period. Marcus Villagran/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @brokejournalist
Las Vegas police officer on being PETA's Sexiest Vegan Next Door
Las Vegas police officer David Anthony talks vegan lifestyle and how he feels about being voted PETA's sexiest Vegan next door from his home on Monday, July 9, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Over 40,000 People Attend The 4th Of July Parade In Summerlin In Las Vegas
Over 40,000 People Attend The 4th Of July Parade In Summerlin In Las Vegas. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Bark-Andre Furry meets Capitals superfan Ovie the Bulldog
Two of NHL's furriest fans met at the Forum Shops in Caesars Palace on Tuesday, June 18, 2018, in Las Vegas. Vegas Golden Knights superfan Bark-Andre Furry and Washington Capitals superfan Ovie the Bulldog shared a plate of meatballs and spaghetti with help from Logan, "The Girl with the Hat." (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like