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On-call/occasional babysitter for new to HK?

  1. #1
    seattleite is offline Registered User
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    On-call/occasional babysitter for new to HK?

    Hello,
    How do you find quality on-call babysitters? We are relocating to HK from the U.S. at the end of June. We have a 3-year old and a 9 month old. Eventually we will probably look for a full-time helper, but not until well after we've settled in Hong Kong.

    In the meantime, I will need an occasional sitter for the kids when looking for apartments and shopping for furniture, etc all the mundane "settling in" activities (wasn't able to do this during an earlier scouting trip- long story). We are staying in a hotel the first month.

    I've seen the posts for nannypia and rent-a-mum but they are old posts. Wondering if anyone has updated opinions regarding these services? Also wondering about non-agency babysitters- how to find one on my own? Is it standard to require CPR/first aid training? I can't even find that info on the rent-a-mum website. What is a standard rate for an experienced babysitter if I don't go through an agency?

    How did you find reliable on-call babysitting just after relocating to HK? Thank you in advance.

  2. #2
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    those are pretty much your ONLY choices.

    there are NO LEGAL part-time babysitters UNLESS they are local... if so, they are VERY hard to find, won't speak english, also unlikely to have CPR etc.

  3. #3
    zyxwv is offline Registered User
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    I have never used those agencies but they are worth a try. Otherwise, your best bet is to ask around at work and in your building once you get here. You could also put up another post after you arrive. As you probably saw in searching this site, occasionally HKers who are home from US/UK/OZ university over breaks will also post their availability or may respond to your post. You can also look to hire part-time help through helper listings on AsiaExpat but as CaraNg noted, that is not technically legal and most part-timers are hired to clean not for childcare.

    Otherwise, if you plan to hire a helper, I'd say to start looking (including by you/your husband putting the word out to work colleagues at that you are looking) as soon as you arrive.

    We had decided not to hire a helper until our son was 6 months and that meant either he went with us or we simply didn't go out. For what it's worth, everyone I know either has a helper, has local family or does 100% of their own childcare.

  4. #4
    Sazzy is offline Registered User
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    Some serviced apartments such as Parkview offer babysitting services. Also, your best bet is to make friends and use their helper every now and then.

  5. #5
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sazzy View Post
    Some serviced apartments such as Parkview offer babysitting services. Also, your best bet is to make friends and use their helper every now and then.
    yes, you could use your friend's helper occasionally, but beware that it is illegal and if you are caught, fines & other consequences may not be worth it to you.

    (i know lots of people hire helpers illegally, that is their choice. but i think that the OP needs to know that it is illegal to "borrow" someone's helper, even if it's for a few hours. personally, not a risk i would be willing to take, but i'm sure there are those out there who would disagree with me.)

  6. #6
    seattleite is offline Registered User
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    Thanks for the responses.

    I guess I'll just tote my kids around while I look for a place to stay. And once we get settled in, perhaps I'll get lucky and find neighbors who are also stay at home moms who will be willing to trade childcare every so often. (is that totally naive?)

    I think I want to find my way in HK before hiring a full-time helper. That may be totally naive too! But I feel like I want to get my bearings before trying to train someone else.

  7. #7
    Frenchy is offline Registered User
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    I've always used Rent-a-mum before to get a helper. They are very professional and at least you know that if anything happened you have someone to talk to. You can hire them from 4 hours to full days or weeks.

  8. #8
    seattleite is offline Registered User
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    That's good to know Frenchy. I like knowing that at least someone has used them before. Thanks!

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