Written by Brooke Strickland for Nannies Plus
With spring break on the horizon, families of all kinds around San Francisco, East Bay, Marin, and Sonoma County, are planning for some time away from the hustle of work and school. Whether you’re booking a vacation to a faraway destination or you want to keep things simple and stay close to home, it is important to keep your nanny or family assistant in mind. You might choose to bring them along with you or give them some time off. Here are some key details to keep in mind for both scenarios.
Vacationing with Your Nanny
Bringing your nanny or family assistant along with you can be a huge benefit for parents and children. Not only will you have an extra pair of hands to help with the flight or car ride and to care for them if you choose to step away to temporarily explore or take some time for self-care, but it provides time for your kids to bond with the nanny or family assistant, too. Having them there with you can be invaluable!
Remember, this is not your nanny’s vacation time. They are working and that means they will be completing their regular duties and will need to be paid their regular rate for all working hours, including any overtime incurred. If you plan to adjust their duties during the vacation, make sure to discuss your expectations ahead of time so you are both on the same page.
Giving Your Nanny or Family Assistant Time Off
If you decide to vacation without your nanny or family assistant, remember that they have guaranteed hours and you need to pay them for their regular schedule even if they are not working. The term ‘guaranteed hours’ is a standard industry benefit for household employees. In short, if the nanny or family assistant is able and available to work during your vacation, but you choose not to use their services, you’re still required to pay their regular wage. If you want, you can talk to your employee about continuing to help out with any standard household duties already outlined in their work agreement, for example, bringing in mail or deliveries, running simple errands, or light tidying and laundry. These duties should be in line with those they would normally perform.
To prevent confusion or frustration about guaranteed hours and vacation time, make sure that you have a comprehensive work agreement that is understood (and signed) by both you and your employee. This is the best place to include important job details about paid time off, paid holidays, or any other travel or vacation clauses that you determine essential and specific to employment with your family. If you expect that your nanny or family assistant help with house- or pet-sitting duties while your family travels, these should be included in your work agreement ahead of time.
It is important that, as you get the ball rolling on your vacation plans, give your nanny or family assistant as much advance notice as possible. This gives both of you the opportunity to determine if they are coming with you or if they will alternatively take time off.
Nannies Plus is honored to serve families in Marin, San Francisco, the East Bay, and Sonoma counties. If you are ready to find an experienced nanny or family assistant who is ready to travel with your family, we would love to connect with you!