30 hours free childcare - 3 and 4 year old children
- For all families with 3 and 4-year-old children
- 30 hours of free childcare or early education for 38 weeks
- A total of 1,140 hours per year, that you can use flexibly with one or more childcare provider
- Some providers will allow you to 'stretch' the hours over 52 weeks, using fewer hours per week
Am I eligible?
You, and any partner, must each expect to earn (on average) at least £131 per week (equal to 16 hours at the National Minimum or Living Wage).
If you, or your partner, are on maternity, paternity or adoption leave, or you're unable to work because you are disabled or have caring responsibilities, you could still be eligible.
You can't get 30 hours free childcare if either you, or your partner, each individuallyexpect to earn £100,000 or more.
When can my child start?
Your child can start in their childcare place the term after they turn 3 years old and have received a valid 30 hours code, whichever is later. Term start dates are 1st September, 1stJanuary and 1st April.
To keep your 30 hours free childcare place you need to check your details are up to date every 3 months.
Where can I use it?
It's available at participating:
- Full day care (e.g. nurseries)
- Sessional providers (e.g. playgroups)
- Sure Start Children's Centres
- After school clubs
What isn't covered?
The 30 hours free childcare offer is not intended to cover the costs of meals, other consumables (such as nappies or sun cream), additional hours or additional activities (such as trips). Providers may charge a fee for these additions. If you choose to pay for these it is an arrangement between you and the childcare provider. However, you must not be required to pay any fee as a condition of taking up a 30 hours place, and must be offered alternative options.
Get an estimate of how much help you can get with 30 hours free childcare and other offers.