For Families

Booking & Service

  • 1. Why is there a minimum booking charge?expand_more

    The minimum booking charge which is equivalent to 3 hours pay is there to support our sitters to cover their travel costs and ensure the payment is enough to be willing to give up their free evening to complete your booking.

    On certain busy days, our sitters are in higher demand, so to help us fulfil your booking we ask that you either book for or pay the sitter for a minimum of 4 hours.

  • 2. Can I have the same SafeCircle Sitter each time I book?expand_more

    Yes, you can add your favourite sitters to your "My Sitters" list from your account. We will send your bookings to your chosen sitter which you can change on each booking if you wish. However the more notice you can give us the better your chances of having your preferred sitter.

  • 3. How much notice do you need if I want to book a babysitter?expand_more

    We accept bookings up to four hours in advance and will always try to fulfill your last minute needs. For the best chance of us matching you with a SafeCircle sitter in time, you will need to select multiple sitters (we advise at least three) and to try and give us as much notice as possible.

  • 4. Can SafeCircle Sitters provide care for my children during the day?expand_more

    At present we are an evening babysitting service, however some of our sitters are available during the day at weekends. We are currently making preparations to acquire regular sitters who are available to provide care during the day and we will notify member families to changes through our website and update emails.

  • 5. What time can I have a babysitter from and do sitters stay after midnight?expand_more

    The majority of our babysitters have commitments to their own families or employment so they are usually available to babysit for you from 7pm. It is often possible to arrange babysitting to start earlier if we are able to give the babysitter a few days notice.

    Most babysitters are prepared to sit after midnight on weekends and many are willing to work close to or after midnight during the working week.

  • 6. Do I need to provide food and drink for the sitter?expand_more

    No, member families are not expected to provide refreshments for sitters. We would ask that member families allow the sitters to use the facilities (microwave, kettle, cutlery) at your home to be able to prepare meals and drinks for themselves. You can expect that sitters will clear up after themselves as if they had not been there.

  • 7. Do I have to pay the sitter for travelling time?expand_more

    This largely depends on location and the allocated sitter.

    In London, most sitters will require a taxi home, especially on late bookings ending after 10:30pm, and in these circumstances we do ask that families contribute towards the cost of the taxi. These sitters will have an icon on their profile labelled "May require taxi home". You should discuss the cost of this with your sitter when they make their introductory call with you, however in most instances we do not expect the cost of a taxi to exceed £20. To arrange/pay for the taxi, the usual preferred solution is to book the taxi for the sitter using a third party taxi app.

    Outside of London, our sitters will not require payment for transport as they all have access to reliable transport to access the bookings. We do ask that member families pay sitters for a minimum of three hours per booking to warrant their travel time.

  • 8. When is payment taken for each booking?expand_more

    Payment is only taken once the booking is complete. Simply go into the app and select to "End & Pay" on the booking once you get back to your home or hotel.

Checks & Experience

  • 1. What do you mean by professional childcare experience?expand_more

    All SafeCircle Sitters have experience and a qualification in a child-based subject. and have worked in professional childcare employment roles such as qualified nursery nurses, teachers, teaching assistants, midwives or as registered childminders.

    We check each and every one of our sitters through our Assurance Framework, which is repeated every three years to ensure they are still suitable to be working with children. You can find out more about the SafeCircle Assurance Framework here.

  • 2. How do you check SafeCircle Sitters are suitable?expand_more

    We recruit our SafeCircle Sitters from childcare professions where they have gained the necessary skills and experience to meet our high standards and expectations of care. Each applicant is fully vetted against our unique 12 stage Assurance Check List including a formal face-to-face interview and character assessment. Unlike other babysitting services and website we ensure our babysitters continue to meet our Assurance Checks throughout their time with us by reviewing their references, feedback, first aid and DBS check every 3 years.

  • 3. Do all SafeCircle Sitters have police checks?expand_more

    Yes, every SafeCircle sitter holds a clear DBS check. The safety of our member families is our top priority and unlike our competitors, applicants for SafeCircle Sitters will not be registered without a clear enhanced DBS check (previously known as CRB).

    To ensure that this safety continues we also complete regular reviews of all our sitters to check they are still suitable to be a SafeCircle Sitter. Read more about our recruitment process.

  • 4. Do your babysitters have experience of caring for newborn and young babies?expand_more

    Yes, our babysitters have a range of childcare skills and experience including caring for newborns and young babies. To find a babysitter with these skills search local profiles for details of their newborn and baby experience or call us for a complimentary Expert Consultation where we can help you find the right sitter.

  • 5. Do your babysitters have experience of caring for Special Educational Needs (SEN)?expand_more

    Yes, many of our babysitters have skills and experience of caring for children with Special Education Needs (SEN) including; Autism, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Asperger Syndrome, Downs Syndrome and much more.

    You can see local sitters with these skills by searching their profiles, or call us for a complimentary Expert Consultation to help find the right sitter for your family.

Nervous First-Timers

  • 1. I am really anxious about leaving my children with someone I don't know, wouldn't you be?expand_more

    Of course, whether it's the first time you leave your children at playschool or for your first babysitting, it's natural that those same feelings of anxiety set in.

    That's why we make it our commitment to review every one of our sitters in detail to ensure they meet our high standards for experience and professionalism.

    Our commitment to recruiting the highest quality babysitters doesn’t stop at the initial stage, we ensure each of our sitters continue to meet those standards throughout their time with us. Our transparent Assurance Checks which are viewable on each sitters profile pages, shows parents the checks completed on the sitters and when they are due for renewal. This open information for parents holds us accountable to regulating the babysitters and completing the required re-checks to ensure they continue to be suitable to be a SafeCircle Sitter.

    In doing so we are setting the new standard in babysitting by meeting the regulation standards in childcare expected in other settings. Rest assured that they would not be standing at your door unless we were willing to have them in our own home.

  • 2. Can I meet the babysitter beforehand?expand_more

    Yes, we offer all of our families the option to have a ‘Virtual Meet’ with their sitter hosted by SafeCircle. Our Virtual Meet option is a fantastic opportunity for you to find out more about the babysitters skills and experience and ask any questions you have about the service. This also gives you an opportunity to see how they engage with your children and feel secure in their capabilities as well as discuss routines and your children's requirements.

    info Use our 'Virtual Meet’ feature next to the sitter in your 'Sitters' list.

    As an alternative to a full introductory meeting, another option is to book the sitter to arrive a little earlier than you need when you make your first booking with them, giving you time to get to know them prior to leaving.

    During any introduction, we'd always recommend asking the sitter to play with your children or read them a book before you leave so that this puts both you and your children at ease. Our sitters have been through a rigorous recruitment process and would not be standing at your door if we did not consider them capable of engaging your child and ensuring they settle comfortably in your absence.

    During the booking itself, our sitters are always happy to send you a text to let you know how your children are getting on if this would ease your nerves.

    A tip for anxious parents: Why not make your first evening out somewhere just down the road, and come home early.

    We also hold events throughout the year at local family fun days where you can come along and meet some of our babysitters. To find out about our upcoming events follow us on Facebook or Twitter.