This has been the question of the month:
How do you find babysitters while traveling?
Well, my work, my mental sanity, my survival and the relationship with my husband depend on it, so I take this babysitter scouting business very seriously and make it a priority for the first two days. Today I want to share all secrets with you ;-)
If you follow my stories on Instagram, you know that everywhere I go, in just a matter of days, I find someone I can trust to look after my children. We’re currently in Paris for a month: we arrived on Friday and on Sunday I had already found a babysitter. She came on Monday to try, the kids liked her, I liked her (she even cleaned the kitchen after making pasta fore the kids), she’s the one. (As a matter of fact, she’s there with them right now, which is why I’m able to write this).
I can’t really tell you how to find a babysitter, I can only tell you how *I* find babysitters. So here’s three stories.
How I found a babysitter in Montreal
When we lived a month in Montreal, we arrived at our AirBnb a bit earlier than the check-in time, and a lovely French-speaking girl was cleaning the apartment. She seemed right, so I asked her and she said yes. She came one day, the kids liked her, but I wasn’t sure (I felt like her personality wasn’t the right match for the kids).
The following day, at the playground, I met a mom who recommended her babysitter, a Venezuelan girl. She came one day and we all adored her (probably also because of the language), so we continued with her.
How I found two babysitters in Budapest
The very first week, we went to an Italian restaurant and I really liked the Italian waitress, she was sweet and connected with the kids. In that moment, I didn’t think of asking her, but when we went back the week after it was the first thing I did.
Eleonora came for one week, and when she went on holiday, she introduced us to her Italian friend Jenny who babysat the kids for the rest of our stay. The kids loved them both!
How I found a babysitter in Paris
On our third day in Paris, we went to a playground and I heard the cashier, a lovely Argentinian girl, speak Spanish. I said to her, “Hi, this might sound weird, but we’re here for a month and we’re looking for a babysitter. Would you know someone?”.
She didn’t, but she directed me to a Facebook group “Argentinos en Paris” where I found our current babysitter (that I selected among tens of girls who responded to my enquiry post).
So I guess my secrets, in order, are:
- Be cheeky
- Ask moms you like at playgrounds
- Ask people you instinctively like (your instinct knows best)
- Ask on Facebook groups of people who live in the city (I do this before getting there)
- Know your type. Knowing the kind of person you like helps: I prefer young, fun and confident girls than experienced old ladies, so that’s the type of person I look for.
- Follow your guts: I’m leaving my kids, my everything, with a stranger. Mo matter how much I need a babysitter, if something (anything, her look, her attitude, her right ear lobe… anything!) doesn’t feel right, it’s not right. But if it feels right, it usually is.