For your wedding guests with young children, traveling to your wedding may not be as easy as you think. If this is the case for several of your wedding guests, you might want to consider providing a childcare option for your guests.
Before you hire a professional childcare provider for your wedding, check out our 8 tips below —
1. Determine If You Truly Need It. If you intend to host an evening wedding or an adult-only wedding, don’t assume you need to hire childcare. Instead, reach out to your close friends and family members with children, and ask them if they would utilize childcare if you provided the service at your wedding. You may find that most of your guests intend to leave their children at home or with a family member.
2. Do Your Homework. Research as much as you can about the available child care company. Read their reviews. Interview them thoroughly and check their references — You want to know the following —
- Have they properly vetted their own team members? Have they performed background checks of their team members?
- Do their team members have experience working with children?
- Can their team members care for children of all ages?
- Are their team members First Aid/CPR certified?
- Do the team members speak the same language as the majority of the children?
- Can you see a copy of the company’s childcare license and proof of business insurance? Note: All childcare services should have a childcare license and business insurance.
3. Before You Sign the Contract, Pre-Determine the Pay Rate. When you interview the childcare company representatives, talk to them about their fee structure. If you pay an hourly fee, get the hourly fee and the overtime fee in writing. Also, find out if the hourly fee changes based on the children’s ages and the sitter’s experience. If you pay a flat fee, ensure that your fee includes additional hours — This helps if the wedding ceremony or the reception runs longer than planned.
4. Determine the Number of Children who will Need Childcare. When you create your wedding invitations, ask your guests to indicate if they need childcare for their children (and if so, how many) on your invitation RSVP card. This will help you keep an accurate head count for the childcare company. And, stress the fact that RSVP’ing for childcare is mandatory for participation. If they decide to participate on-site, there might not be enough team members to handle all of the children.
5. Keep the Parents Well-Informed. Once you hire the Childcare Service Company, share the details about the company and their services with your guests bringing their children. Provide the company’s web site, a profile of the sitters, the on-site meals for the children, and a list of the activities the children will participate in at your wedding.
6. Reserve a Separate Room for the Children. To children, attending a wedding is like watching “paint dry.” Children need to move. They need activities. And, they need to be able to communicate without fear of an adult telling them to shhhh! A separate room gives them the space and the permission to do all of that. Consider reserving a room that is comfortable enough and large enough for the children to play, sleep and/or eat.
7. Prep the Childcare Team. Prior to the wedding, provide the childcare team with the wedding day details. The details should include the location details (including the venue’s address, the venue’s event contact, the venue’s emergency contact, and the emergency exits); the timeline of the wedding day reception; the names and cell phone numbers of the wedding day contacts; and the details regarding the children. The details about the children should include the names and ages of the children; the names and contact information of their parents; and special accommodations for the children such as food allergies, special dietary needs, etc.
8. Prep the Parents. Provide the parents of the children with the name(s) and contact information of the childcare providers; the location of the childcare, along with their activity schedule; the meals and snacks that will be provided; and the drop-off/pick-up time for the children.
Love and Soul Always, Kay