With the school holidays soon to begin in Scotland and in the rest of the UK shortly after, we thought we would quiz parents on how you are planning to make the most of childcare voucher savings during the summer break. Thank you so much to everyone who took part in the poll, which we ran on our Facebook page. It made for interesting reading…
- 39% of those who voted said you would be putting your childcare vouchers towards the cost of traditional childcare, such as nursery and childminders
- While 18% of you plan to use your vouchers for local holiday clubs
- Just 6% will be using childcare vouchers for residential adventure holidays, such as PGL or King Camps
- And only 4% of you plan to use your vouchers for special activity sessions, such as Mad Science
But the main statistic that got us thinking is that 33% of you answered that you didn’t realise you could use vouchers outside of ‘normal’, more traditional childcare.
Childcare vouchers uses
It is a commonly held myth that childcare vouchers can only be used for very young children and for nursery care. But the good news is that they can actually be used for a wide range of registered childcare - and for children up to the age of 16 years old!* Karen, who has a one year old daughter, plans to continue using vouchers after her daughter has left nursery: “I use childcare vouchers to pay my nursery and wasn’t aware of all the other types of childcare I could use them for. When my daughter gets older I’ll definitely continue using them wherever I can.”
Childcare vouchers are incredibly versatile, but many parents do not realise you can use them towards the cost of a range of activities for the kids, including holiday camps, activity clubs and even some theatre and music lessons.
Vouchers can even be used for popular adventure holidays run by regional and national organisations, such as PGL and Camp Beaumont! We spoke to Jill who has an 11 year old daughter, who told us she carries on using her vouchers over the summer holidays: “I use my childcare vouchers to pay for my daughter's PGL summer camp, so I don't need to take as much annual leave and I can still afford to take her on other day trips like to the safari park, as she loves seeing the animals."
So to help and inspire you, we have created a special Holiday Activities page on Facebook http://cpu.vg/XGc1X where you’ll find an interactive map and a list of organisations that operate activities during the summer months.
And our top tip - if you’re starting to plan in some summer activities, then make sure you ask if vouchers are accepted, so you can start making the most of the savings.
Remember you will find lots more information about childcare vouchers on our website www.computersharevoucherservices.com, and if you have any questions you can always send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or give the team a call on 0845 002 1111 (8am-8pm, Monday to Friday).
*1st September following 15th birthday or 1st September following 16th birthday for children who are registered disabled.