Mother and Baby

Childcare in London is 16% more expensive than the national average

Section: Toys & Education
Childcare costs UK

In a new league table produced by, the cost of childcare in London was revealed to be a staggering 16% more expensive than the national average. 

Using their own data, the company created a nationwide league table of the most expensive regions to hire a childcare professional. Of course, London tops the list, with an average cost of £8.45 an hour, 16% higher than the national hourly average of £7.16.

As we delve further, the study reveals the most expensive form of childcare nationwide is having a nanny, costing an hourly average of £9.81 nationwide. The next biggest childcare cost is the babysitter you leave your children with on a Friday night, costing an average of £8.32 an hour, yet rising to £9.56 an hour in London. In third place are day nurseries, costing an hourly average of £5.60, and the cheapest childcare option nationwide is childminding, costing an average of £4.89 per hour.

Of course, it’s not all about London. Outside of the capital city, Middlesex is the most expensive county in the UK, with an average hourly childcare rate of £9.17.

According to the survey, if you’re looking for cheaper childcare, you’ll need to move to the East Midlands, where the average hourly rate is £6.09 an hour. Alternatively, Moray in Scotland is the cheapest at £5.93 an hour – a whole £2.50 cheaper per hour than London!

The top 10 most expensive regions for childcare

Here in the UK, childcare is an expensive, but necessary cost for most parents. Based on an hourly rate, have ranked regions in terms of average hourly costs:

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

In sight of this research, CEO and founder of, Richard Conway 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.”

Want to see how your area compares to the national average? This helpful cost comparison tool might help. 


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