30 hours free childcare for working parents of three and four year olds will be available from September 2017, but you can apply now.
The 30 hours extended entitlement is double the 15 hours currently available for all three and four-year-olds. Eligible parents can use it as 30 hours per week during term time or spread the hours over the full year (1140 hours in total). Working parents will need to meet the national eligibility criteria.
Once your child turns three, if you are eligible, you can start claiming from the following term date which will be 1 April, 1 September or 1 January.
You can find out more and apply through the Childcare Choices website. If you are eligible you'll get an 11 digit eligibility code. You will need to keep this safe, as you will need this to access your free place. The Childcare Choices website also offers a comparison guide for all the ways you can reduce childcare costs.
Choosing a childcare provider
You will need to choose an eligible childcare provider that has capacity to offer you a childcare place for the hours you need. Visit our looking for childcare page where you can search for local provision and look at the types of childcare available.
Please note: Childcare providers may choose not to offer any of the free hours or the pattern of childcare you require to access your free hours. You can split the 30 free hours between up to 3 childcare providers.