I was looking at our latest voucher usage stats* this week and was concerned to see that parents are missing out on thousands of pounds of savings for after school and holiday childcare.
The stats show that an average of 68% of voucher usage is for nursery care, whereas only 8% is used for after school care or activities.
Even during July and August this year, a time when parents should be heavily reliant on their children attending holiday clubs, less than 1% of parents used vouchers for day time activities.
This suggests to me that parents may not realise that vouchers can be used for after school and holiday clubs for children up until the age of 16; preferring instead to use them only for nursery provision for the under-5s.
With half term approaching that’s a worry as parents may be missing out on vital savings opportunities. There are loads of children’s activities on offer across the country that parents could use childcare vouchers for. In fact, my local sports centre has had their adverts for holiday activities up for a few weeks now; booking forms are pushed my way each time I walk in to make sure I sign my children up for their activities!
I’d urge parents not to miss out, and find out whether your local holiday activities will accept childcare vouchers.
*Latest statistics run until August 2010