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childcare.co.uk - is it worth paying?

(114 Posts)

I am registered as a chidminder on the site, but if i wanted to reply to any parents it would be £25 a year, is anyone else registered and is it worth paying the fee? There are a couple of parents on there at the moment, probably too far away from me.

leonifay Thu 16-Apr-09 13:30:44

?? i'm registered with childcare.co.uk and i contact and reply to parents, it doesnt cost me anything. but i can only send 5 messages a day, which if you include a e-mail adrees or phone number in one is enough.
personally i havent had any business from the site, but have a friend who had 1 parent contact her through it.

oh how strange. I have had contact from one parent, who i was able to reply to, but if i go onto the list of parents then it askd me to pay

Upgrade your Account
Join our other exclusive Gold members
In order to send messages you must upgrade to childcare.co.uk Gold Membership.

childcare.co.uk Gold Membership is an essential tool for childcare providers:

Send secure messages to local parents introducing your childcare services

Send unlimited replies to parents who have enquired about your service

All messages you send to parents can be read and replied to for free

Contact other local childcare providers to share advice and information

Choose your plan 1 Year childcare.co.uk Gold Membership £24.99
Best Value and Most Popular. Equivalent to around £2 a month!

3 months childcare.co.uk Gold Membership £12.99
Great value. Equivalent to around £4 a month.

leonifay Thu 16-Apr-09 13:45:20

ahhh, i see, thats new, i've managed to send messages to parents before with out paying.
i'll just update my profile page and make sure that i have a strong page then just wait for parent to contact me.
personally i dont think it would be worth it, not for me any way.

hmm, i have even just tried joining as a parent, but you still have to pay to send messages, i doubt a parent is going to pay to send us messages hmm

RachieB Thu 16-Apr-09 17:36:18

i thought this was a really good site before they started charging!

I am a Nanny & had lots of enquiries and messages sent back and forth.

then they started charging !

I am not sure whether to sign up or not

it doesnt work out that much per month etc,and if you get work out of it ? .... hmm

no i agree it doesnt seem that much, but when parents register they now have to pay to send messages, so thats not likely is it hmm so i spose it would be up to us to pay and then scour the site

SarahLondon1 Thu 16-Apr-09 19:01:41

You only have to pay to initiate contact with another user. It's free to read and reply to messages. So only the person that starts the message conversation has to pay.

There is actually a 20% discount voucher code that I saw advertised on another forum if you enter save20 in the discount voucher box which makes it really good value. I used the voucher and got a year for £19.99.

As a parent I don't find that too bad as it means I can find and use different babysitters for a year. I work around the country in different offices so it is useful for me to access babysitters all over the country.

If you are a childminder or babysitter then I should think it would be reasonable value as you can search for parents and contact them before they contact you. If you only get one customer then you would probably get your money back.

RachieB Thu 16-Apr-09 19:18:07

Thanks Sarah
i have used the code to sign up

missymoo2411 Thu 16-Apr-09 19:29:14

well im on there and a parent contacted me i tryed to reply but it still said i had to pay and she styarted the conversation

SarahLondon1 Thu 16-Apr-09 19:31:22

Glad it worked RachieB

When was the missymoo2411? I think it changed in the last week so it is free for everyone to reply.

RachieB Thu 16-Apr-09 19:56:35

i am contacting parents and putting my contact details in the message
so as long as they can read the message for free? it will be ok

nannynick Thu 16-Apr-09 20:41:29

I didn't get any enquiries when it was free, so not expecting any now that its a subscription service.
All posts on mumsnet by SarahLondon1 have been about that website, so that poster may work for that site. However Sarah, the discount code may be useful to some, so I won't winge too much smile

Parents: Your local Families Information Service will provide childcarer information for free. childcare.direct.gov.uk

SarahLondon1 Fri 17-Apr-09 16:08:39

I don't work for them, am just a customer who has used the service.

fabhead Tue 28-Jul-09 21:25:51

I am a parent looking for local babysitters and there are quite a few on there so I am considering paying as fed up of never going out - is there a current voucher and I might go for it?

Failing that if you are on there and can babysit in Reigate, Surrey contact me for free on here! wink

shellchildminder Tue 28-Jul-09 22:54:07

I am a childminder and i had the same problem i was sending and receving messages for free then it changed and you had to pay ,ive already seen a few adverts from parents saying there not using the site because there not willing to pay to send messages not when there is so many free sites now such as gumtree , netmums findchildminders.com etc.
It was a good site shame! i know everything cant be free but they could at least do a one month payment i sent them an email enquiring about this and they said no the least is 3 months, and as far as im aware you cant send any messages for free!

shellchildminder Tue 28-Jul-09 22:58:38

I am a childminder and i had the same problem i was sending and receving messages for free then it changed and you had to pay ,ive already seen a few adverts from parents saying there not using the site because there not willing to pay to send messages not when there is so many free sites now such as gumtree , netmums findchildminders.com etc.
It was a good site shame! i know everything cant be free but they could at least do a one month payment i sent them an email enquiring about this and they said no the least is 3 months, and as far as im aware you cant send any messages for free!

Also ment to say you cant leave your contact details on your advert it wont let you otherwise there is no need to pay!

moomillion Wed 29-Jul-09 20:32:40

Tip put your business name or full name or postcode somewhere in it and the parents can search for you on google if they wanted to so always worth putting an advert in..... But I have paid as a childminder but also have a parent profile and me childminder sent me parent a message and then I the parent replied in the last week so can reply for free so worth sending message to local parents

RachieB Wed 29-Jul-09 23:26:23

and breathe!

SarahLondon1 Tue 01-Sep-09 07:47:07

I am a paying member as I travel around a lot for my job and I often find myself ending up somewhere I don't know and requiring a babysitter at short notice. The site is great for that as they have over 9000 babysitters.

It's true that there are quite a few other sites offering a similar service but I have tried them all and none of them work as well as this or have the number and quality of people on there.

Even if you don't want to pay the minimum of £12.99 for 3 months, it's still worth joining as you can wait for someone to contact you and it's free to read and reply to messages.

If you are a childminder then I should imagine you would get a good return on your money as there are over 18,000 parents on there currently seeking childcare and many of them say they are looking for a childminder.

AvadaKedavra Tue 01-Sep-09 19:25:58

Wow you seem very keen on them Sarah wink

Parents! Why pay for it when as Nannynick points out you can get the info for free from your local CIS/FIS??

www.childcare.direct.gov.uk



I am a member (before they sprung the charges on us) and have been since it started and have to date 0 enquiries.

I too am registered on this site as a babysitter and maternity nurse but refuse to pay a membership fee to contact people as there are many free sites such as gumtree and netmums.

SarahLondon1 Wed 09-Sep-09 09:00:52

There are other free sites but in my experience none of them work as well as childcare.co.uk.

I find the quality of the babysitters on childcare.co.uk to be much higher than I found on Gumtree.

If you can get extra business as a result of paying a small free then surely it is worthwhile? Just because you may advertise on gumtree and netmums, doesn't mean you are also targeting all the parents on childcare.co.uk. There will be parents on childcare.co.uk that never use gumtree or netmums.

The local babysitter I use when I am at home (which I found from the website) works for me about two evenings a week but she gets work other evenings too by looking out for new parents in the area and sending them a message shortly after they have joined. In total she is working about 4 nights a week from the site.

The goverment sites are great but they generally only cover childminders and nurseries not babysitters.

AvadaKedavra Wed 09-Sep-09 10:11:55

You should be paying for this advertising ;)

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