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Is it worth joining the NCT for antenatal classes?

(19 Posts)
Caitni Wed 12-Aug-09 12:54:53

Hello smile

I'm pregnant with my first child and I've just had my booking forms etc through for the NCT antenatal classes. I've just realised that excluding the membership fee of £39 drops the price to £240...which is still a lot of money but worth it (we hope!).

But before I make up my mind I'd like to know what other women think. Is it worth joining the NCT? Does any regret joining/not joining during the classes?

Thanks in advance

mummy2looney Wed 12-Aug-09 13:22:39

I think so, I never joined with my first but my friend did and 2.5 years on still meets the mums weekly for playdates/evenings out

makipuppy Wed 12-Aug-09 13:34:48

You'll meet the mums anyway through the ante-natal classes, which as you say you sign up for without joining the NCT. Well, that's what happened to me. The brilliant thing is they match you with people at the same pg stage as you. I loved the ante natal course and found it really useful.

I did join the NCT - I think you get invited to nearly new sales, events, get the magazine, etc. Also, I think there may be a breastfeeding support service, but don't quote me on it.


zulubump Wed 12-Aug-09 13:44:52

Hi, I did the NCT antenatal classes in my first pregnancy and then joined the NCT later after having my dd. The classes were really worth it, mainly for the friends I made through going. We still see each other weekly (dd now nearly 2). I joined the NCT so I could find out about the nearly new sales which are great. If you are an NCT member you get to go and look around 15 mins before they let everyone else in and grab all the best bargains.

Good luck!

Tigresswoods Wed 12-Aug-09 13:52:57

I am joining our local one for the ante natal bit. My reasoning is that even though you do pay you will PROBABLY get what you pay for and meet like-minded people.

Also there are something like 8 courses that all happen at 8pm at night. As my DH works in a job where he has an hour and half commute this really suits us rather than NHS ones at whatever god damn time of day they feel like having them.

Gone off the NHS (know it is brilliant and all but...) when I booked in for my early scan with the Dr I told him date given was not convenient for me (I work) and he just said, "Its not about whether it works or not, this is the NHS. Take it or leave it"

I can afford to pay (not rolling in it but not on bread line either) so I will as DH and I have agreed we will only have one baby we might as well do it right.

Not sure if this helps your decision making process but I think we will get a lot out of it and meet a group of local people.

Caitni Wed 12-Aug-09 13:56:50

We're definitely going to do the classes, mainly for my DH but also for the chance to meet other parenets-to-be at the same stage as us who live locally. I'm just not that bothered by the magazines etc.

Zulubump I saw that membership allows you into nearly new sales 15 mins early. Is that really worth it? If all the best stuff disappears to members then I may not bother and stick to ebay instead! We're away in Sept when our nearest nearly new sales are on so ones later in Autumn would involve a fair bit of driving and lots of hassle...

strongblackcoffee Wed 12-Aug-09 14:00:21

We were so completely anti NCT when pg with DS1, were all set to go with the nhs classes, etc., thought that the nct ones would be full of smug middle class twats and a complete waste of time.

However, close friends were then current local nct chair and secretary, and announced that they had reserved our place for us so we didn't miss out. We ummed and aahed, and eventually just went for it and became one of the smug mc couples. blush Well, hopefully not so smug.

Actually, to be fair, everyone was actually really lovely. Out of 6 couples, we are now really good friends with 3 of them. Still meet up with 2 other mums and kids every single week, was an absolute lifeline when the babies were tiny. But we did only pay about £120, maybe there are cheaper options than the one you are looking at?

I'd recommend it. It's a bit cringey to start with, but it was well worth it for us... smile

londonlottie Wed 12-Aug-09 14:00:48

Message withdrawn

Caitni Wed 12-Aug-09 14:01:01

Hi Tigress smile

That's terrible about your scan, especially as my letter says to get in touch if the scan dates don't work. So you're booking privately then?

The evening class times were one of the things that work best for us as my DH also works later hours than me so the NHS ones aren't practical.

Caitni Wed 12-Aug-09 14:12:20

Strongblackcoffee know what you mean about the smug middle class stereotype! I'm a big fan of the NHS, (and have friends and colleagues who loved their NHS classes and made lots of friends) but the NCT is the only practical option for us. envy at £120 - don't seem to be any cheaper options, possibly because it's in North London? I'm not too bothered by the cost, as broken down it's not so much but £39 seems steep for a year's membership (compared to my other yearly memeberships and subscriptions).

Lottie ooh not long now til Zurich! Shame you won't be around...p'raps we should have an assisted conception meet up before you go grin

makipuppy Wed 12-Aug-09 14:16:12

The NCT classes are a bit muesli but very good, lots of information.

I couldn't get DP anywhere near the class though - I went on my own <wears big girl's badge>

londonlottie Wed 12-Aug-09 14:25:14

Message withdrawn

Caitni Wed 12-Aug-09 14:43:47

makipuppy well done you! Though your DP is very bold! I'm hoping my partner likes the classes...haven't even given him the choice of not going!

Lottie my sister has a mountain buggy and LOVES it...also very appropriate for Switzerland grin. And would love to meet up - lunch or evenings work for me (now that I'm no longer comedy exhausted anymore grin). Drop me a line on and we'll get organised. And let's put the call out on the assisted conception thread too smile

smackapacka Wed 12-Aug-09 14:46:05

I tried to do NCT for similar reasons as others - like minded people etc... But there wasn't one at the time that DH could attend. I just did the NHS classes on my own. I have good friends from that class, and all the info went out the window with my C-section formula fed baby anyway.

I did actually go to NCT sales (bought a pushchair), and call the NCT breastfeeding helpline (not very helpful), all without parting with any hard earned cash

BlueChampagne Wed 12-Aug-09 15:48:58

Like many others, we did NCT class because the times were more convenient. However, as it was summer hols, our only option was the concentrated 2-day course. It was good, and easier for DH to get to, but I think you develop better friendships over the longer courses. I see more of my ante-natal yoga chums than NCT (2 years on).

Never bothered with NCT membership though - you can always join later if you think it's going to be worth it.

Caitni Wed 12-Aug-09 15:58:24

Thanks smackapacka good to know bargains can be had at nearly new sales even without membership!

bluechampagne think I'll probably just join later if I need it.

Been interesting to read people's experiences, so thanks to all who've posted.

londonlottie Wed 12-Aug-09 19:36:10

Message withdrawn

Chynah Wed 12-Aug-09 19:42:27

I found NCT invaluable not for the antenatal classes but for the freinds I made - I would have been lost without them.

musicmaiden Fri 14-Aug-09 13:56:35

I am also in north London and agree the price is jaw-dropping at first so I didn't bother with membership.

However the classes were excellent, had a great teacher, DH especially learned loads, and the people are lovely (yes, all m/c 'professionals' but so are the majority of my friends so who cares grin). The girls have been meeting every week for lunch (we're all due around now-ish), and it is genuinely exciting when one of us has given birth! I think it will be an invaluable support/source of fun while on mat leave and hopefully beyond.

They hold nearly-new sales round the corner from us and you just pay a small fee to get in, there is still plenty of good stuff You can definitely still phone the helplines and find out about meet-ups so I don't think membership is too important.


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