packing for a nanny vacation

Dear DNB,

My family is taking our annual family vacation to Hawaii soon, and my husband and I decided to bring our nanny so that the two of us can have some time alone together. What’s the norm for bringing our nanny on vacation?


Beach Babe

Aloha, Beach Babe!

Let’s start with the basics.

  • All expenses, including airfare and room and board, should be covered by the family.
  • Your caregiver should have her own room or space wherever your family is staying.
  • She should be given a set schedule with some free time factored in.
  • She should be paid her base weekly pay and compensated additionally for any extra hours. 

As always, family-nanny relationship success comes down to communication. 

Before you go on vacation, discuss the travel plans with your nanny. Be specific. Let her know how many hours she’ll be “on” and “off,” and what’s expected of her. For example:

  • On her off days, can she go anywhere she wants, or is she expected to stay on the resort?
  • Can she enjoy a margarita on the beach, or should she avoid alcohol completely?
  • During her working hours, what are the expectations?
  • When does the family wake up in the morning, and what is she responsible for throughout the day? 

Relationship issues can almost always be avoided with clarity and communication. 

Communicating effectively before and during the vacation will help your nanny perform at her best. Although she is joining you, this is still your vacation, not hers.

If norms are different for your family while you’re on vacation, let her know. For example, if your kids only eat healthy at home, but they’re allowed to have ice cream on vacation, tell your nanny so she’s aware. 

Your nanny’s main goal is always to help and assist you. Be honest about what you need from her so that you can fully indulge in your vacation. Maintain boundaries and don’t go back on what you’ve agreed on in terms of her hours and responsibilities so that this vacation is a fun and memorable experience for everyone.

Once you’ve communicated, you can lei back and enjoy.