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Childcare in London 26% more expensive than national average

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
Childcare in the capital costs around £8 an hour, more than a quarter higher than the national average. 

Parent and childcare platform analysed the hourly prices charged by more than 457,000 registered childminders, babysitters, nannies and day nurseries.

It found that of all the UK regions, London topped the chart with the average cost of childcare services coming in at £8.45 per hour. This was 26% more expensive than the national average of £6.69 and nearly £2.50 more expensive than the cheapest region of East Midlands (£6.09 per hour).

Outside of central London, the study found Middlesex was the most expensive county in the UK with an average hourly rate of £9.17, while Moray in Scotland was the cheapest at £5.93 per hour.

The 10 most expensive UK regions for childcare based on average hourly rates:

  1. London – £8.45
  2. South East – £7.16
  3. North West – £6.69
  4. East of England – £6.66
  5. South West – £6.64
  6. Yorkshire & Humber – £6.42
  7. Wales – £6.34
  8. West Midlands – £6.29
  9. North East – £6.13
  10. East Midlands – £6.09

Looking at which childcare service was the most expensive, nannying topped the table at £9.81 per hour, followed by babysitting (£8.32), childminding (£4.89) and lastly day nurseries (£5.60).

Richard Conway, CEO and founder of said: “It’s always interesting to find out which areas of the UK are the most expensive when it comes to childcare services. I think many people assume childcare providers charge a flat rate for their services, but as our data shows it varies widely across the country.

“It’s no surprise that London topped the list as the most expensive region, however we weren’t expecting the East Midlands to be the cheapest. Prices vary according to supply and demand, as well as other factors including house prices and employment.”

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