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Parents want to find quality babysitters they can trust, while babysitters want to find jobs that fit their schedules and pay rates.
UrbanSitter is a nationwide service that helps both parties in a convenient and secure way.
It's free to join for sitters, who get to keep 100% of their pay, and $19.95 to $35 a month (depending on the subscription) for parents to get unlimited access to hundreds of thousands of sitters.
For busy and working parents, getting a babysitter can involve a hectic roller coaster of phone calls, texts, hurriedly jotted-down instructions, and furtive wallet checks to make sure there's enough cash on hand to pay the sitter at the end of the night.
It's not enough to just secure any ol' person either. They of course want to make sure their kids are in good hands, especially if they're infants or have special conditions that need to be monitored.
The old-fashioned tactic of consulting your network of neighbors and parent friends is safe and reliable because the sitters have already been vetted by people you trust, but it can also be slow and inconvenient communicating with each other, exchanging contact information and schedules that might already be outdated by the time they reach you.
This stressful process cuts into the date nights, work events, and personal time that parents want to focus on _ after all, they're parents, but they're also just people who have lives outside of their children.
One successful company that's helping both parents and sitters out in these situations is UrbanSitter, an online platform and app that brings together the things parents look for the most in childcare: trust, flexibility, and convenience.
The service connects parents to over 150,000 babysitters and nannies across more than 60 cities nationwide, so whether you're at home or traveling, you can find a trusted caregiver. Once you're all set up, booking a sitter is fast, too: the company says that most last-minute jobs receive a response from a sitter in three minutes or less.
UrbanSitter is also available as an app (iOS and Android), allowing both parents and sitters to browse listings, update their availability, book jobs, and accept jobs from wherever they are.
Here's how UrbanSitter works for parents and sitters:
A few tiers of pricing are available for parents who want to join UrbanSitter:
One month (pay as you go): $34.95
Monthly subscription: $19.95/month
Annual membership: $99.95/year
The price includes unlimited access to bookings and tools. Parents can schedule as many interviews and bookings as they'd like, so the site is great for busy parents who know they'll be consistently out of the house. You can cancel a subscription or membership at any time.
Parents search for sitters based on distance, availability on specific dates, and a number of other specific criteria. Sitters with more recommendations from other parents will appear higher in the search results.
Parents can also see any mutual groups they and the sitter are part of, so at a glance, they know there's a tangible connection to work off of. They'll send a Booking Request to sitters they're interested in, and wait for job confirmations for anything from a same night commitment to a gig a month from now.
Parents like UrbanSitter for giving them the trustworthiness of the word-of-mouth parenting community on an easier-to-navigate platform where they can quickly filter out sitters who aren't a fit, communicate with the ones who are, and pay sitters efficiently after a job well done.
The site is free to join for sitters and they can set their own hourly rates. Average rates range from $11 to $16 an hour for one child and sitters get 100% of the rate they post.
After setting up their profile and setting up their calendar availability, they'll use the Job Board to view one-time, part-time, or full-time jobs that parents in their area need childcare for. As with parents browsing for sitters, it's easy for sitters to narrow their search for jobs by criteria such as distance, soonest start date, and highest rate.
If they see a job that's a good fit, they can 'express interest' in it. Parents will then be able to check out the sitter profile and send them a booking or interview request if they feel the sitter is a good fit for their family and job. The sitter can view the details of the booking request: date, time, social connections, number of children, job tasks, the parent's message to the sitter, and more. Once the sitter clicks 'accept,' the job is booked and ready to go.
To boost their chance of getting booked, sitters can add a video to their profile in which they introduce themselves, and they can also set up a direct deposit account. The company says these two features get sitters booked three times more than other sitters, likely because 1) the video allows parents to get a better sense of the sitter's personality, and 2) it's more convenient for a parent to use their credit card to pay the sitter, rather than scrambling for cash at the door.
UrbanSitterMany steps are taken by the company to maintain privacy and security and provide peace of mind to parents using the service.
Your contact information is only shared with another member when a booking is confirmed. All parents go through an authentication process before they can book sitters, while all sitters are checked against the National Sex Offender Registry based on the name and date of birth they provide.
Sitters who have a CPR badge on their profile have been confirmed by UrbanSitter as CPR-trained with verified providers such as the Red Cross and American Heart Association. If they have a Background Check badge, then they've cleared the following in the last 12 months:
National Criminal Search
Sex Offender Search
Global Watchlist Search
In addition, all sitter profiles are reviewed by a real person, not a computer. Outside of talking to your personal contacts and connections, these cautionary steps add an additional layer of security that, on your own, would require a lot more work to ensure.
UrbanSitter is a modern babysitting solution that's safe, convenient, and easy to use for both parents and sitters. You can sign up and try it for yourself below.
Sign up as a Parent on UrbanSitter here
Sign up as a Sitter on UrbanSitter here
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