View Full Version : Daycare choice - near home or work?
I need some opinions here! Did you pick a daycare near work or near home, and why?
We've just moved and now face a longer commute into work, possibly up to an hour if traffic on the freeway is bad, instead of just a half hour max. Chloe's daycare (family daycare) is just minutes from my office and has been great - I never have to worry about being late to pick her up and have even brought her back to the office with me when I have a few more things to finish off. But with the longer drive in the morning I'm dreading her boredom in the car, she can be a real crank sometimes!
So I'm considering shifting her to a daycare center just around the corner from home, but then worry about being able to pick her up by the 6pm closing if I have to work late - I rarely manage to leave before 5:20. Which stress is worse - a yelling/crying/bored child in the car, or road rage on the freeway to get home on time?
My hubby and I chose a daycare centre near our home, as we work in opposite directions. Fortunately, I only work short days 3 days/week and so the problem of getting to daycare on time rarely arises. Also neither of us have a long commute (usu 20 min) so that also reduces the problems. The benefit is that if you're not going to work (like today hubby and I are having off :) ), you can still quickly drop kids at daycare - only 5 min from home. Friends of our are also taking today off - but they'll have to drive 30 min each way to drop daughter at daycare. They are closer to your situation where both have a long commute so they chose day care close to work.
The one thing that may change your mind is if another baby is planned. I wound up still sending DD1 to day care the 2days/week she normally went while I was on mat leave with DD2. This was great with a new baby, as I got to spend two whole days/week just with her. It would not have been so great if I'd have to drive for 2 hours every day just to drop her at daycare and pick her up again.
I take my DD to a daycare that is right smack bang in between my home and work and it has been great. It is about 20 mins from both. I am soon off on maternity leave but have no problem driving 20 mins to drop her off a couple of days a week. If I have any trouble getting to daycare in time to pick her up it is not a terribly long drive for my partner to pick her up.
I have found that she is very subdued in the mornings during the trip but some days coming home can be an adventure!! I find singing songs (I learn the ones they sing at daycare), saying nursery rhymes and asking her about the kids she spends her days with keep her occupied for more than the 20 minute drive home. I also tell her about my day and what I did at work or at lunchtime if she isn't very talkative.
Good luck finding care for your little one.
I have done both. I had Harry in day care at my work place, but it was a 45 mins drive. I now have him in a day care centre around the corner from us. The problem I found with the centre at my work was if there was anything wrong with Harry and he had to go home, I was the only one who could take the time off work. Now that Harry is in his new centre my hubby can take time off work as well if need be (He only works 20mins from home). We found it also easy in dropping off and picking up. Either one of us could do it. If I was running late in the mornings hubby could drop off, but at the other centre I had to do all the dropping off and picking up. I wanted Harry's daddy to be involved in every aspect of Harry and this included his day care. My hubby knows where to sign, where our pocket is, where Harry's things belong and all the teachers who look after Harry. This allows us both to be involved. Also if I have a day off work hubby can still drop off and I can pick Harry up early.
This situation works beautifully for us, but your situation may be different to ours so only you can choose which is best for your family.
Thanks for telling me about your experiences! There were some things in there I hadn't thought of. Luckily DH and I work in the same office so he's already involved in the daycare issues, though more often it's me who can take time off in emergencies.
I suspect what it's going to come down to is where I can get a vacancy if I decide to move her. Waiting lists in Perth seem to be 6 months to a year!
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