It’s really hard to get the balance right? It’s ok if you have a profession that lets you take time out when your children are on holiday from school, but for the vast majority of us, we don’t have that flexibility.

Our opinion? Maybe kids don’t get almost two months’ holiday. Maybe a month would be enough and the rest of the time could be spent actually in education. Agree?


Iain McMath, chief executive officer of Sodexo Benefits and Rewards Services, a leading provider of childcare vouchers in the UK, comments on analysis showing that the cost of holiday childcare has risen to £114.51 per week.

“With the school holidays, families are facing the worrying – although not entirely unexpected – prospect of paying over £100 per week for childcare. It’s a situation that threatens not only family finances, but also the wider economy by encouraging parents to abandon work and stay at home, either in the short term via sick days, or permanently.”

“While the situation remains tough, there are schemes that can help families cope with the rising tide of childcare costs.

“For parents who want to stay in work, childcare vouchers – a salary sacrifice scheme for working parents – can fill some of the holes that shrinking child benefit and rising costs have made in their budgets.

“In their current form, exempt from tax and NI contributions , childcare vouchers offered by employers can lead to savings of up to £933 per year for each parent, contributing £1,866 to a family of four’s income.

“Although the government currently plans to change the system for new joiners from autumn 2015, the good news is that childcare vouchers are still available in their current form for children up to the age of 15.

“As such, parents that sign up for vouchers between now and autumn 2015 will have the option to stay on the current scheme and continue receiving vouchers, even when the system is revamped.”