Childcare vouchers explained Free childcare
If your child is three or older but hasn’t started school yet, they can get up to 15 hours a week of free nursery education for 38 weeks of the year.
When can my child get free childcare?
You can start claiming this free benefit for your child starting from the first term following their 3rd birthday.
The free nursery education can be claimed until they are old enough to go to school (the term following their fifth birthday) and can take place in a nursery, playgroup, preschool or at their childminder’s house.
In autumn 2011, Chancellor George Osborne announced that 15 hours a week of free nursery education will also be introduced for all disadvantaged two-year olds - those whose parents are receiving benefits or on a salary of less that £16,190.
How to get free childcare
To find out where you can get free childcare in your area, you should contact your local Family Information Service. You can do this by searching on the National Association of Family Information Services website, or by calling 0800 234 6346.
If you want to find out which childcare providers in your area are recommended by Which? members, visit Which? Local – our local services reviews site.