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Going rate for a birth doula in London?

(44 Posts)
RunningGuerita Wed 09-Jun-10 18:03:10

I've just started enquiring about hiring a birth doula. The first person who got back to me quoted £750 for the birth package. I must admit I had thought the going rate was around £500 for central London. Of course we don't want to choose based on price so I would be grateful if someone could set me straight if my expectations of £500 were unrealistic....

Thanks, Gx

luciemule Wed 09-Jun-10 18:31:33

Probably £500 in London that'd be about right - a rip off though!
I charge £300 for a birth (not in London though).

RunningGuerita Wed 09-Jun-10 18:34:07

Thanks luciemule. I thought £750 was pricey but wanted to check...

luciemule Wed 09-Jun-10 18:42:20

my 300 would cover 4 weeks on call, 2 antenatal visits and one postnatal as well as the whole birth, so unless she's offering something much, much more, it does seem a lot.

You could out doula UK for a list of people near you - they're not allowed to charge more than 200 for a birth I think if they're still training or until they've done 4 births.

RunningGuerita Wed 09-Jun-10 19:56:10

That is what she is offering. I used the Doula UK website to find people to contact. Perhaps I need to look for a more recently qualified doula...

luciemule Wed 09-Jun-10 20:44:23

good idea. Or look at 'find a doula' - they have doula uk doulas too I think.

SelinaDoula Wed 09-Jun-10 21:30:10

You could use a trainee doula (they cannot charge more than £200, have attended a course and up to three births).
In central London, an experienced Doula is more likekly to charge £500 to 800 (or more)
'find a doula' website are not Doula UK doulas so have not been through a recognition process.

luciemule Wed 09-Jun-10 21:42:36

sorry - I think I meant the Doula Directory. They support courses such as nurturing birth etc.

daxibaby Wed 09-Jun-10 23:27:53

Most experienced and recognised doulas in london do charge between £700 - £900. I paid £750 and she was worth every penny!

RunningGuerita Thu 10-Jun-10 10:31:45

Thanks SelinaDoula and daxibaby.

CUNextTuesday Thu 10-Jun-10 11:02:19

My Doula (SW London) is costing 450 quid for 4 weeks on call, 2 AN and 1 PN visit. And she's lovely.

RunningGuerita Thu 10-Jun-10 11:14:25

CUNextTuesday Would you mind giving me her name and email or her website?

liahgen66 Thu 10-Jun-10 11:19:31

Hi there,

I am a recognised ane very experienced birth Doula and I charge between £550 and £600 for the package. This would include

on call 2 wks from before edd.

2 possibly 3 antenatal sessions lasting between 2 and 3 hours each, as much email, and phone contact as client needs/wants

2 postnatal visits possible 3 depending on how birth panned out and how clients feel.

Clients have full use of all my resources, slings, books, pool, hypno cd's etc

I do not charge mileage, or any extras at all. All I say is that dad buys the coffee at the hospital. This includes any false alarms that we may have and antenatal appts at hospitals that clients may weant me to attend with them.

lucie i have to say, your comment about the other Doulas fee being a rip off is totally unprofessional to that Doula. You have no idea what kind of a service she offers and how much experience she has. I'm sure you wouldn't have made the same comment on DUK or NB hmm

*running guerita* I'm sure you'll find someone lovely, you must choose your Doula on the whole package of how you gel with her, not just the price. I haven't met anyone yet who has said they wished thay hadn't spent the money on their Doula and would do it again.

My advice to you would be to meet 3 or 4, with your husband and listen to him too, he'll probably end up spending a lot of time with her and you must both trust her 1000%. You will be sharing the most magnificent and life changing experience of your lives so far with this person and so it must be the right person, if there is any doubt and you have a little voice saying, oh it'll be fine, then perhaps look somewhere else. It'as a personal and vulnerable time for you and she needs to bring only positive energy to you both.

Good luck.

RunningGuerita Thu 10-Jun-10 11:24:06

Thanks liahgen66. I agree that we don't want to base our decision on price but at the same time our budget is what it is. We've already committed to NCT classes. I am now looking into a trainee doula/newly recognised doula to see if I can find someone we both like who has less experience and is more in our price range.

liahgen66 Thu 10-Jun-10 11:29:20

I'm sure you'll find a lovely trainee or newly recognised lady, there are lots about.

Of course you have a budget, as we all do. I would say also that just because a girl/lady hasn't been recognised yet doesn't mean she can't bring alot to your experience also, she lmay have expertise in different fields such as alternative therapies and may have children/even grandchildren herself.

when is your baby due?

CUNextTuesday Thu 10-Jun-10 11:36:16

Defo echo liahgen, although mine was the first one I contacted and met up with and we all clicked instantly. Even DP who was initially v sceptical was won over.

I know I will be heading for the MW led unit and my Doula is totally geared up for that. Were I having a home birth I might be loking for what else she could bring with her, e.g. water baths, etc. But as it stands she will be perfect with her yoga breathing stuff and quals in massage!

With mine you pay in 2 installments, so it was 200 quid to secure her services and then 250 after 2nd AN appt so it does split the cost nicely. If you want to find her, her name is Lon and she is based in Wimbledon - she's on the Doula UK website.

RunningGuerita Thu 10-Jun-10 12:58:18

Thanks very much. I think I have already emailed your doula CUNextTuesday! She's on hols though till 20th June... so will have to wait and see.

liahgen66 I am due 21st Sept!

luciemule Thu 10-Jun-10 13:01:44

sorry - before I wrote rip off though - should have put 750 a rip off though- didn't mean £500.
That said, it's obviously my opion liahgen and it isn't unprofessional as the OP hadn't named the doula. If she had said who the doula was, that would have been unprofessional and I wouldn't have said anything. And the OP confirmed it was for the same package as I described. If you were getting quotes from builders and one was 800 and one was 300, you'd probably assume that the one charging 500 was about right. It's obviously down to choice and whether you want that doula and are happy to pay.

If you're hiring any service, anyone (including me) is within their right to say whether they think it's a good price or not. Whether in London or not (apart from the snob factor) there is no reason why one doula should charge £800 over another charging £250 for exactly the same work. It's their choice but it doesn't mean they are any better than the person charging less.

luciemule Thu 10-Jun-10 13:02:33

opinion (whoops!)

liahgen66 Thu 10-Jun-10 13:40:01

ah, my birthday

CUNextTuesday Thu 10-Jun-10 13:56:25

She is indeed running - and I'm due on 28th. Not that I'm fretting or owt!!!

She has sorted me out a stand-in though, which is great. Hope I can wait it out though, would love for her to be there...

RunningGuerita Thu 10-Jun-10 14:02:28

Oh wow, good luck with it all CUNextTuesday!

daxibaby Thu 10-Jun-10 14:24:04

I do think some of the comments that Lucie is making really unfair. If you are a practicing Doula, what other doulas charge has nothing to do with you and you should work closely with your peers rather than against

Doulas, as I am aware, work individually and i'm sure their prices do reflect their experience and where they live.

You sound like a very unprofessional Doula to me actually!

I'm sure there is a doula out there for you RG - just take your time and meet a few!

luciemule Thu 10-Jun-10 17:27:02

why do I bother?! If I hadn't said I was a doula, yet commented on how I thought that 750 was rather steep, nobody would have said anything. There's not difference to me saying that I think an evening dress for 250 is too steep rather than another for 100. I'm not being critical of anyone. The OP was aksing about price for heaven's sake so what I said was very relelvant.

Although you know nothing about me daxi, I was really hurt and upset when you said I sounded unprofessional. Unlike me, who has only commented upon the price someone is charging, you have just been outright rude to me for no reason. I have said nothing unfair at all.
As a doula, I am always very supportive of peers and make sure I keep my prices very low so that all social groups can afford my services. I'm even offering to work for free in my local prison so please don't assume you know anything about me!

Will leave the thread now - was just trying to be helpful to OP but there we go.

RunningGuerita Thu 10-Jun-10 18:40:22

oh please play nicely on the thread I started, pleeeeaaase.....

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