Sitter pay for school pickups and dropoffs

Anyone with sitters who help with school pickups and/or AM dropoffs: How do you pay your sitter? Does you sitter start her time from the moment she leaves her home or when they get to kids school. Also, do you pay your sitter their commute time back home? Essentially paying sitter for time to get kids and time back to sitter's own home. TIA

Parent Replies

New responses are no longer being accepted.

We have a sitter who picks kids up from school twice a week, takes to activities, and brings them home. We pay from pickup to dropoff, excluding time in transit. It's a set number of hours and overall cost each week, which we negotiated very clearly up front. We also pay a couple extra dollars an hour because of driving them around. We've made other arrangements in the past, especially if we ask the sitter to pick our kids up and move them around on public transit, walking, or by bike.

Hi, we just started doing this and I’ve been paying the sitter for the time it takes to get from our house to the school. So she comes here and then goes to get the kiddo. We don’t pay for the time from her place to ours. I think this works because she is sitting after school, so it is just like paying for the time at our house for a date night or something, except at the front end it includes going to the school and back. In other words, we don’t pay for her commute to our house normally, so we don’t for a school pick-up, but we allow enough paid time for her to drop her things in our house and get to the school before dismissal. If she weren’t sitting afterwards for a couple hours but merely transporting the kid to us or an activity, I’d probably pay for her commute time or pay a premium. Hope this helps!

My daughter (age 17) drives for several families (usually to or from sports practices after school) and she has always been paid a flat rate.    When she is deciding whether or not to take a job, she weighs the total amount of time it will take her in order to decide whether or not it's worth it.  She uses her own car and pays for her own gas, so she factors that in too.  There are other factors too.

One family paid her $20 per trip (two kids) for about an hour start to finish.  She ended up deciding that it wasn't worth it because the kids whined and fought the entire ride, traffic was awful, and it just wasn't worth it.  

I would say in general, you should expect to pay a driver more than a babysitter since they are stuck with kids (sometimes tired and hungry kids) in a car in traffic (yuck) and they have a specific skill you need.  I would suggest you offer a flat rate.  If the driver is willing to do it for that, then you are probably paying enough.  It seems like for my daughter, if it's less than $20 for an hour of her time, she probably would decide not to do it.  If the kids are difficult, she wouldn't even do it for $20.

I'm not sure about morning drop-offs.  We don't have any experience with that.

Regarding the 17-year-old who is driving other kids, or if you are considering hiring a teen for this job, according to the DMV handbook: Minors may not work as a driver for pay.  

There are some situations when 17 year olds may drive as an incidental part of the job, but not driving passengers for hire. U.S. Department of labor rules permit driving by 17 year olds only when (among other rules), "Such driving is only occasional and incidental to the 17 year-old’s employment. This means that the youth may spend no more than 1/3 of the work time in any workday and no more than 20% of the work time in any workweek driving." and "The driving is limited to daylight hours."  The rules prohibit "Transportation for hire of property, goods, or passengers.

Also keep in mind that for the first 12 months of their driving license (unless they turn 18 first, or are an emancipated minor), teens in California may not drive anyone under age 20 except in very limited circumstances.