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How to work as a nanny in Dubai – general review

Part of the perks of living in the UAE is the ability to offer nanny services for quite a reasonable income.

With nannying in the UAE - and particularly Dubai and Abu Dhabi, becoming increasingly widespread and popular both among locals and expats, thousands of women and even men from almost all corners of the world, find this trend as an excellent way to earn a decent living. All of this while doing something they do best – offering dedicated child care. Even according to some surveys, having a live-in nanny is definitely one of the top reasons of why expats choose to live in Dubai.

Motherhood and parenting can be like a rollercoaster or confusing minefield without some help and guidance - be it by grandparents, day care centre, part time nannies or full-time nanny services, in such a vibrant and busy city like Dubai. A lot of mothers choose to stay home as much as possible when their child joins the family, yet once they run out of maternity leave, a vast majority of them are anxious to get back to the office. It is precisely at that moment, when they are stretched between providing their loved ones with proper care and their missed office life, that they feel the need for a babysitter in Dubai. Just someone who will look after the child development in same manner they themselves would, had they chosen to stay at home and secure their peace of mind without the need of a baby monitor.

First things first - what is considered a 'nanny' in Dubai?

A nanny may be both a qualified or simply experienced professional, a person who rejoices and enjoys in looking after children - and skilful in areas of education, general housekeeping and childcare. Although this often the case, nannies shouldn't be confused with a housemaid, who is another type of professional - someone who assists and supports families with household errands. This doesn't imply that housemaids are generally not capable of looking after your little ones. Quite on the contrary, many people have had great experiences enjoyed spending time with a trusted housemaid who went another step forward to raise their children.

However, if you're seeking a dedicated person, whose job description places a 100% of their focus on the upbringing of a child, then you are looking for babysitting services in Dubai. Many locals and expats have chosen, the most popular online services booking platform, as their focal point. You can find tons of practical advises and tips on how to find trusting babysitting services in the UAE and what to be careful about. You can book a nanny directly through several simple steps.

Apart from the apparent, which is looking after the kids, nannies often come prepared with a plentiful of different skills, be it simple household responsibilities, laundry and cooking that can save parents an incredibly important time at home. However, since their main focus remains the health and safety of children, this is usually done from time to time just as a helping hand to parents.

A nanny typically: * Looks after hygiene and health for kids (bathing, toilet training, feeding) * Does general tide up after your child * Cooks meals and snacks * Amuses the child (reads, sings, plays games, or teaches something) through active bonding * Assists with early educational content (colours, forms, language, shapes) to stimulate development

How to work as a nanny in Dubai

Many families in the UAE opt-in to hire live-in, full-time nannies to support them in regard to childcare and babysitting especially during early childhood. Since it is quite developed and established practice, hiring a nanny nowadays is a relatively simple and straightforward process.

In Dubai or Abu Dhabi, host-families are responsible to arrange all visa formalities for their nannies since they, as an employing family, will become the official nanny’s sponsor for work permit purposes. The general rules are the following:

  • In order for nannies to reside and be employed in Dubai they must hold a valid working visa. This means they have to get a valid job offer from a host family before commencing the visa application process.
  • The working visa permits multiple entries which means they can leave and re-enter the country for work or vacation as they please for the whole year and with no extra formalities.
  • The employer as the sponsor is entitled to initiate this procedure with the UAE immigration department.
  • Upon validation and approval - the nanny will get a labour card needed in order for her to apply for the residence visa, which is valid for 3 years and is renewable. This visa is mandatory for all foreigners residing in Dubai.

Families take care for visa sponsorship for their nanny, an investment that roughly costs about 6,500AED including the compulsory on-entry medical screening. They can either process the application and complete the process by themselves or they can invest additional fees to have an Agency completing of all the paperwork for them.

Medical insurance policies are necessary for all nannies and there are many insurance companies offering policies for minimal investment that are in compliance with the UAE law.

Host families also cover return flight ticket each year for their nanny. If the nanny chooses not use her right of an annual leave and works all year round, then she is entitles to an additional one-month salary.

How can families find a nanny in the UAE?

There are different ways to find a nanny in Dubai. Although the preferred way is to simply continue working with nanny who worked for a family friend once they no longer need their services, there are some professional service providers and platforms such as who make the whole searching and booking process way easier.

If you choose to go through an agency, you may invest a bit more, but you can rest assured that all the paperwork, government formalities and entry procedures will be professionally looked after by the providers.

Sponsoring a nanny in Dubai

In the event when you already have a nanny in mind who's currently living in the UAE, her visa can be transferred locally following the rules set by the GDRFA (General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs). However, should you decide to take the second option, the hiring process starts by partnering with a service provider who will bear in mind your projected salary bracket and assist you in sponsoring a nanny from abroad.

Initial steps cover shortlisting and interviewing candidates, sponsoring the approved person, applying for their Emirates ID and undergoing the compulsory medical tests within 30 days of entry into the country.

Nanny visa may be obtained by the head of the family, whose salary is not lower than AED 6000 per month or AED 5000 + accommodation. According to UAE laws, bachelors are not eligible to sponsor a nanny, while employers can only sponsor a nanny from India, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Uganda and Kenya The application should be done by the following order:

  1. Residence visa (employment permit to enter the country)
  2. Medical fitness report (after the nanny enters the country)
  3. Residence stamp on passport, Emirates ID application and issue of domestic worker card

The list of documents needed for the residence visa contains the following:

  • Sponsor’s salary certificate in Arabic (for government employees) or the sponsor’s labour contract (for employees in the private sector) and accommodation contract confirming minimum 2-bedroom apartment with Ejari attestation.
  • Typed official application form obtained from authorized typing office
  • Sponsor’s passport
  • Copy of nanny’s passport
  • Passport photos of the nanny (minimum 3 required)
  • Affidavit from embassy/consulate certifying non-relationship, if the nanny comes from the same country as the employer

Monthly salary

Since nannies can be sponsored only from a designated list of countries. Each of them has its own provisions for minimum wages, age and other specific working conditions which are published by the respective Embassies. The average monthly salary moves around AED 2,000 although hosts should plan some additional AED 400 for things like phone credit, food, clothing and toiletries.

Offering a better nanny experience

Like in everything in life, proper communication and understanding is crucial for having success in everything we do. As nannies slowly but surely become and integrate part of the family, it is important to have everything settled down and discussed with the family before starting with work. Nannies should:

  1. Be familiar with the duties that are required from you
  2. Be specific about what they will and won't provide
  3. Be clear about working hours and time off
  4. Be clear about guests’ policies
  5. Set the level of freedom and authority over the children
  6. Express their disagreement with certain required practices (pets, trips, driving, overtime etc.)
  7. Improve their skills and train themselves - every country has different ways of doing things, so take the time to train and educate in the way things are done in the local environment

Finally, every family has a unique experience and sharing it would be highly beneficial for many people who are in your shoes. Be sure to share yours on popular sites such as and offer practical recommendations by acting as a trusted and credible source.

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