Taking your nanny on vacation can add a lot to your trip if you plan well and communicate expectations. It’s not a vacation for her. It’s a business trip. If she were on vacation, she’d be with her friends and family. Pay her the regular hourly rate she receives at home, and if she’s working more hours than normal, include a bonus. Expect to pay all her travel expenses, including airfare, lodging and a meal stipend, just as you receive that from your employer when you to travel for them.
Give her some free time and give her extra money to go exploring on her own, just as your employer adds perks to your business trips. Give he a day off after a long day of travel to scope out the vacation spot and relax before she starts sitting… a day apart will be refreshing for everyone. Taking care of children is a lot of work. Plan ahead what hours she’ll be on deck, and when she’s free. Make a calendar and the hours she’s needed.
A private room for her is essential. This will enable you to be alone with your family as well. Don’t expect her to bunk up with the kids. She needs all her energy and mental availability for the daytime schedule. Having a nanny allows you to have some adult time and do some spur of the moment activities and to spend special one on one time with each child separately, maybe go water-skiing with an older child and leave her with the younger ones.
Don’t ask her for more hours than usual, unless you arrange for that and pay accordingly. Don’t pay $50 extra and expect 24/7 availability. Pay her from the moment she arrives at your home until you reach your destination and the kids are settled.
If she enjoys herself on vacation, that’s a benefit to the whole family. It strengthens the relationships and makes her feel good about her job. You may not want to take a brand new nanny traveling, because the adjustments can be overwhelming. You don’t want to damage the relationship you have with your nanny.
It is expensive to bring your nanny with you on vacation but it can be well worth it. It gives you the best of both worlds–family time during the day, and some adult time in the evening! It can be nerve-racking to hire a stranger in a new city, and with all the changes your kids are going through, new surroundings, new activities, it’s comforting to have that familiar face at nap and bedtime. The more you plan ahead and communicate expectations, the more enjoyable the experience will be.