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Traveling With Your Nanny

Traveling With Your Nanny: How to Compensate Your Nanny on a Family Vacation

Traveling with small children can be a challenge for any parent, whether it’s trying to keep the kids from getting restless and bored during a long car ride, struggling to maintain control and safety in busy airports, or being able to enjoy some “grownup time” away from the kids while on vacation. Therefore, many families find it helpful to bring their nanny along for the trip.

For those families that do travel with their nanny, it’s important to remember that their vacation time is not the same as their nanny’s vacation time. A nanny who travels with a family and performs work responsibilities should be paid accordingly. Before a family hires a nanny, the nanny’s compensation should be detailed fully, including the rate of pay for attending family vacations and any mileage or expense reimbursement that may occur.

Here are some quick travel tips and compensation guidelines when bringing your nanny on a family vacation:

  • Before the vacation begins, outline exactly what the nanny’s job responsibilities will be during the trip and the hours she will work.
  • Communicate effectively what the expectations are, particularly when the nanny and the family are all together; the nanny is likely used to being the authority figure around the children, so have some clear discussions before the trip about how the roles will work.
  • Your nanny needs to be paid for all travel time to and from the destination.
  • All travel expenses are to be covered by the employer. This includes flights, accommodations, meals, and any other travel related expenses.
  • Your nanny needs to be paid her normal salary for all hours they are responsible for the children.
  • Your nanny’s privacy is important – she should have her own hotel room/living space for when she is not on the clock.
  • You do not need to pay the nanny for rest time, as long they receive 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep in a row, and receive a total of 8 hours rest time.

Example:  If the children and the nanny go to bed at 9 pm, and the children need assistance at 1:30 am for 15 minutes and then wake up at 7 am, you will need to pay her for the 8 hours she was supposed to be resting. If the children and the nanny go to bed at 9 pm and wake up at 3 am, she tends to them for 15 minutes and then goes back to bed until 6 am, you are able to deduct the 8 hours because she received 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep.

  • You do not need to pay the nanny for any hours where she is free to go off on her own and is not responsible for the children.
  • In accordance with federal labor laws, if your nanny works over 40 hours in a week – even if it’s while traveling with your family – he or she needs to receive overtime pay at one and a half times the regular hourly rate of pay.

For more information, please contact the Household Employment Experts at GTM Payroll Services at (888) 432-7972, or visit

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