Practical Life in Bucharest

Childcare, Babysitting in Bucharest

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Child care becoming increasingly common in Romania, as the traditional model of mothers staying at home is gradually replaced by a busy urban lifestyle where both parents work. You should always examine your options carefully before choosing child care or a babysitter for your child.

When selecting a child care facility, it is important to take into account various factors:

  • Budget - You have to take into account carefully the amount that you are willing to spend, and compare it with the fees charged by the facility. Have in mind the number of hours and the time of the day you will need to leave your child.
  • Language - It may be best to pick a dual language facility, if Romanian is not the native language of your child. Many schools and nurseries offer bilingual or English-only curricula and activities with highly trained bilingual staff, to encourage early learning.
  • Age of Children - There are limited choices in childcare for infants and toddlers (under 2 years).
  • Proximity to home or work - This is one of the most important factors when deciding a childcare facility, as commuting times may be quite high during rush hours. Consider a facility around your neighborhood, or the area you work in.
  • Service Provided - What kind of care (full-day, part-time) is offered, the days of the week, use of facilities, meals etc.
  • Staff turnover - Make sure the center has a stable personnel, as high turnover may indicate low working conditions and service offered for your child. Make sure you personally know and trust each caregiver you will leave your child with, as the well-being of your child depends on it.

Nurseries in Romania

Nurseries (creșe) are generally available to children between 1 and 3 years old. However, the exact age depends on the nursery, some may accept babies starting from 3 months. Nurseries can offer either a basic 4-hour day-time care (creșe cu program normal) or prolonged service (creșe cu program prelungit), make sure to pick one depending on your needs. Bucharest has around 40 public nurseries and an increasing number of private childcare facilities, in order to cope with the high demand.

A list of the public and private nurseries and their contact details is available here.

Kindergartens in Romania

Kindergartens (grădinițe) generally receive children aged 4 to 6 and provide pre-school education. As with nurseries, they can be either part-time or full-time. There are many state-owned kindergartens, however, the demand is extremely high and places must be booked around a year in advance. Private kindergartens offer different alternatives with regards to pedagogy and the language of instruction.

The list of public and private kindergartens can be found here. Note that many international schools offer kindergarten facilities. Also refer to our section on education.

Childcare Prices in Romania

Prices depend on the type of facility. Public nurseries (creșe de stat) are free, but the services and conditions may not be up to the standard expected. Private nurseries charge from 200 euros per month, but prices may be much higher for English-language schools.

Childcare Vouchers/Subsidies

The Romanian state offers childcare subsidies (alocații de stat pentru copii) for all children under 18 who live with their parents or legal caretakers. The subsidies are offered monthly in cash, and amount to:

  • 200 RON per month, for children under 2 years
  • 84 RON per month, for children between 2 and 18 years

Disabled chidren receibe 200 RON per month until the age of 18.

In order to receive the subsidy, a formal application must be made to the nearest Child Protection Agency. The children of foreign citizens legally residing in Romania are also eligible to receive the subsidy.

How to Find Childcare Facility

Recommendations from other parents are the best way to find a suitable child care facility that you can trust. You can meet at playgrounds, parks, or online forums like EasyExpat's Romania forum and networks. Be sure to visit different facilities to find one that suits you.

Babysitting in Romania

Babysitters are generally employed on a temporary or short-term basis. Often a friend of the family or relative is employed for an evening to watch over the child at the parents' residence. In Romania, babysitters may be called "bone".

Usually young women are the babysitters and may offer their services as a business. A babysitter should have civil liability insurance and the babysitter's parents must be informed if the person is a minor. Only baby-sitters aged 15 or more can ask for payment.

Babysitting Prices in Romania

Prices charged by babysitter are usually higher than what you would have to pay at a nursery center. Fees depend on the type of work, the schedule and the number of children to take care of. You should expect to pay around 1000 euros per month for one child for a babysitting service during regular working hours.

If you plan on bringing a babysitter from abroad, you will pay an additional one-time fee of approximately 3,500 euros to cover relocation costs and administrative fees.

How to Find a Babysitter in Romania

Most families find a babysitter by word-of-mouth, letting friends and family know that they are looking. Parents may also try posting on bulletin boards at community centers, grocery stores, or expat hang-outs.

A great on-line resource is to post on expat classified's, like on Easy Expat's babysitter search.

Other resources include:

For more frequent childcare, you may consider an au pair. Consult the section on "Find a Job>Au Pair".

Update 21/12/2018


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