We’ve been a nanny family for over four years now, and each year, I stress a little bit about what to give our nanny for Christmas.
She’s truly a part of our family and takes care of the most important people in the world to me. I want to do right by her and give her something meaningful, thoughtful, and generous.
To find out what nannies really want, I’ve polled other working moms and full-time nannies. I bring to you a comprehensive list of Christmas gift ideas that your nanny, babysitter, or au pair would love and appreciate.
1. Money, Money, Money
If you want to give something your nanny truly desires, give them cash! The vast majority of nannies and parents with nannies say cash is king.
How Much Should a Nanny Christmas Bonus Be?
The amount you give is up to you, but one nanny said, “give an extra paycheck if you can, and we’ll be very happy!”
That sentiment is reflected in a poll I did with almost all respondents saying 1 week’s pay is a sufficient Christmas bonus for your nanny.
You can prepare for this at the start of the year by setting up a savings account with automatic transfers (we like Capital One 360 savings accounts for this). As an example, a Christmas bonus of $750 is just under $15 per week. You won’t miss it throughout the year, and she will feel so appreciated!
Honestly, you could stop reading here if you want, because you cannot go wrong with a cash bonus.
However, if you want to throw on something your nanny can unwrap or you’ve had a great year financially and want to spread the love, I have a lot of fun gift ideas recommended by parents and nannies across the globe.
2. Arts and Crafts Made by the Kids
Your nanny likely has a very special bond with your kids, and a handmade piece of art is a super thoughtful gift.
Your kiddos could make a special Christmas card or custom ornaments would be fun, too.
If you’re giving a cash bonus, pairing it with something handmade by your kids would make your nanny’s day!
Here are some DIY ideas to get the inspiration flowing:
- DIY snowglobes
- DIY handprint ornaments
- DIY fingerprint Christmas tree ornaments
- DIY pom pom Christmas photo ornaments
3. Nanny Swag
Most of the nannies we’ve had are rightfully proud of their profession.
Consider gifting some nanny swag, like a soft and flowy nanny shirt, a “best ever nanny” sweatshirt, or a nanny tote. I absolutely love this tote that says “coffee | messy bun | leggings | #nannylife.” This tote is more general if you think your nanny would prefer their name on the tote.
The great thing about ordering any of these items from Amazing Faith Designs is you can customize anything. It’s a small business, and the owner really spends time on each and every order making it just how you want it.
As an example, if your nanny drinks energy drinks instead of coffee, you can swap that out on the tote design! Just write your request in the personalization box as you order.
You can use code BESTNANNY10 for 10% off any of these nanny items!
4. Items They’ve Oohed and Ahhed Over In Your Home
I happen to work from home, so I’m able to interact with our nanny on a daily basis. Because of this, I pick up on things she says, like “I wish I had a robot vacuum,” or “I’ve never had a garlic press and always wanted one.” (Both of these items have been gifts, and she said the eufy robot vacuum is amazing! This is the garlic press I got.)
If you notice your nanny enjoying certain items in your home, consider gifting those for her birthday or Christmas. It’s that attention to detail that’ll make her feel seen and appreciated.
5. Nanny with Kids Photo Album or Framed Photo
A nanny is only with you while your kids are young, and before you can even blink, her time with you will be over. Capture that time by remembering to take a photo of your nanny with your kids every now and again.
Have them framed, or if you have enough images, put together a little photo album. It’ll allow her to cherish these memories when the kids have grown. Framed photos and photo albums are wonderful sentimental gifts for your nanny.
I know a nanny will never have the bond that a mother or father does with the kids, but it’s a close second. The best nannies we’ve ever had have truly loved our children!
6. Getaway Vacation
Your nanny likely works a lot of hours, and taking care of children is no walk in the park. Consider gifting her a paid-for vacation, such as a cruise.
You might try to feel her out to see if she’s open to traveling alone or if she would have a potential travel companion (husband, siblings, parents, cousins, or friends).
But at least she won’t have to get approval on the vacation days from her boss – you’ll have that part handled!
If you decide to do a cruise, Carnival seems to be a great budget-friendly option, and it’s regarded as “the party ship.” If your nanny is younger, this may be a crowd she’ll appreciate.
For a more luxurious experience or an older crowd, I have high recommendations for Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and Virgin.
Just price it out – you may be surprised that you can gift your nanny a getaway cruise within budget! Plus, you can choose dates that work around your own schedule, and you’ll have plenty of time to make backup childcare arrangements.
Note: I feel this goes without saying, but if you decide to gift a getaway vacation, be mindful of out-of-pocket expenses your nanny might have along the way. While the gift is undoubtedly generous, it’s not something she asked for, and she may not have the extra finances to pay for a passport, excursions, or specialty dining. Plan and account for these extra expenses so she can truly relax and enjoy the gift.
7. A Relaxation Basket
Another way to gift your nanny some relaxation is through a thoughtfully curated gift basket.
Here’s a list of items dozens of nannies suggested to me as gifts they’d love for Christmas (I’ve linked all of my favorites):
- Massage or facial spa gift card
- Handmade or unique soaps
- Bottle of prosecco, rosé, wine, or champagne
- Bath bombs
- Soap sponge gift trio
- Face masks
- Hot chocolate bombs (here’s a recipe on how to make them)
- Cozy robe
- Weighted blanket
8. Setting the Mood Basket
A close second to a relaxation basket is a basket of items that set the mood for a cozy, calm evening.
Here are more ideas from nannies who gave me input:
- Ember travel mug to keep coffee and teas warm on the way to work and during the day
- Luxurious candles
- Barefoot dreams blanket
- Cozy pajamas – Lake Pajamas and Lunya Washable Silk Pajamas are a hit!
- Vitruvi diffuser gift set
- Stance slipper socks
9. At-Home Gym Equipment or Gym Membership
I’m betting your nanny has trouble making it to the gym or making time for fitness. For some families, their nanny works upwards of 50 hours per week.
At-home gym equipment from NordicTrack or Peloton can make all the difference for your nanny’s fitness goals.
Note: You can get up to $300 off accessories with a Peloton Bike or Tread order using my referral link. You can also get 60 days of the Peloton App for free using this referral link, and you don’t need any equipment to use the app!
If your nanny has small living quarters, consider gifting a gym membership that’s on her route home.
10. Airpods or High-Quality Headphones
Last but not least is a nice set of high-quality earbuds. During naptime, our nanny tidies the house and does the dishes. Listening to music or an audiobook is a great way to make those tasks more enjoyable.
What should I get my nanny for Christmas?
Nine times out of 10, you should get your nanny a cash bonus for Christmas. You cannot go wrong with one week’s pay in the form of a Christmas bonus!
Should you give your nanny a Christmas gift?
You should absolutely give your nanny a Christmas gift! The industry standard is a bonus equivalent to one week’s pay, but you can also show your appreciation through a thoughtful gift. Handmade art from your kids, a getaway vacation, and nanny swag are just a few ideas!
How much do you tip your nanny for Christmas?
I’ve polled parents and nannies in the industry, and about one week of pay is a standard Christmas bonus or “tip” for your nanny. That amount will depend on how much you pay your nanny, which varies based on your number of kids and hourly rate.
How much should I spend on a nanny gift?
If you plan on giving your nanny presents instead of cash, I still think you should budget for the equivalent of one week’s pay. If you pay your nanny $750 per week, you should try to budget for Christmas gifts equal to that amount.
You can prepare for this at the start of the year by setting up a savings account with automatic transfers (we like Capital One 360 savings accounts for this). A Christmas gift of $750 is just under $15 per week. You won’t miss it throughout the year, and she will feel so appreciated!
It can be challenging to find that perfect present for the sitter or nanny in your life. I hope this list of ideas helps you show your nanny all your appreciation during the holiday season!
If you’re looking for more gift ideas, be sure to check out all the other gift guides as well. Happy shopping!