We all value the time we spend with our children, but it’s also important for us parents to have some me-time every now and again for the much needed date night!

However, the process of finding a babysitter if you don’t happen to have some live-in help can  typically be accompanied by some anxiety. After all, our children’s safety and happiness is always top of mind, and finding professional and trustworthy babysitters isn’t always that straightforward in Dubai. With a little help from ServiceMarket, here’s some tips on how to find reliable Dubai-based babysitters for your family.

1. Understand your options

When looking for a babysitter, it’s important that you are aware of the different options available to you. There are two main options in Dubai to choose from: standard babysitters and registered nurses. Both will attract different fees. 

2. Consider your requirements

The option you should choose depends on what your requirements are. It’s important to consider the following factors:

Age of your children

Although more expensive, if you have very young children, it’s advised to choose a registered nurse. Registered nurses are educated and licensed professionals with a medical background who have years of experience taking care of small children. Their skills also make them ideal to handle medications and children with special needs whereas standard babysitters are the cheaper option who will come with child care experience in many cases. However, most standard babysitting companies will not look after children under the age of two.

Number of children

If you have a large family, with children in different age groups, then (if budget allows) you might want to consider hiring multiple babysitters so that each child gets the attention they need. Highlight exactly what you want ahead of time and make sure you clearly specify your requirements at the time of booking. For example, if you want the babysitter to heat up food for your children, make this clear so that you and the babysitting company have agreed on everything beforehand.

3. Know how much to pay your sitter

The price of hiring a babysitter in Dubai varies from company to company. Rates for a standard babysitter typically range from AED 35-45 per hour before midnight. In comparison, registered nurses are more expensive due to their educational background and their expertise. They typically cost between AED 60-85 per hour, although discounted rates may be available if you hire a babysitter on a regular basis. Weekend babysitters and overnight nannies charge similar rates although you may incur small additional charges such as transportation fees.

 4. Prepare in advance

Communication is key

Speak to your children beforehand about leaving them with a babysitter so that it doesn’t come as a shock to them on the day. Make sure to sit them down and answer all questions they have so that they feel comfortable with this. Ask the babysitter to come early if that’s possible. Before leaving your child in the babysitter’s care, it’s best to ask them to come early to ensure that both are familiar with each other. This will not only give your child time to get used to the babysitter, but you will feel more at peace leaving them alone.

Stick to their typical schedule

It’s important to outline your child’s schedule in detail. Write all the important things down and go through it with the babysitter before leaving. Make sure the babysitter knows the child’s typical bedtime routine and information such as where to find your child’s clothes, books and favorite toys. Sticking to their regular schedule will make your child feel more relaxed.

Consider all scenarios

It’s better to be safe than sorry. Before leaving, it’s essential that you provide the babysitter with all important information including emergency contact numbers, (and make sure they have enough credit on their phone to be able to call in an emergency, adding their number to your phone).its also a good idea to make sure she knows where you will be in the event she can’t get hold of you. 

Ensure your babysitter knows the location of your first aid kit and fire equipment. We’d even recommend going into detail on how you expect the babysitter to react to your child misbehaving and any other expectations you have, but make sure the child isn’t nearby while you have this talk.

5. Hire the same babysitter each time

In an ideal world, make your bookings as far in advance as possible as it’s important that your child is comfortable in the babysitter’s care if they’re awake by the time she arrives. If you like a particular babysitter, the good news is that that you can often book them on a regular basis, provided you plan properly in advance. This way the two will develop a good bond and you’ll be able to leave them with ease as well. 

6. Search for a babysitter through reliable sources

Many babysitters in Dubai are not working with a licensed company and have not been screened, so it’s crucial that unless you have close family and friends you can call upon, that you look for a babysitter through reliable channels. We recommend only using licensed companies, who have real childcare experience, to ensure your children are in completely safe hands. On ServiceMarket you can actually read vetted reviews from thousands of customers and get free quotes from reputable babysitting companies in Dubai before choosing the best fit for your childcare. It’s a new service that allows you to compare many services including babysitting so all that’s left now is for you to rest assured, get yourself ready and have that fantastic night out that’s long overdue! 

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