Childcare provision in Austria

For specific information about your local childcare options for pre-school and schoolage children, please contact the specialist support services at your university Fachabteilung Ihrer Universität.

Childcare facilities

Childcare facilities:

A wide range of childcare facilities are on offer to provide many different types of care.

The family support office at your university (Fachabteilung Ihrer Universität) can provide information about the options available locally and how to register children for a childcare place. Many Austrian universities offer their own childcare tailored to the specific conditions of the university.

The standard range of childcare facilities available throughout Austrian include:

  1. Cre´ches/nurseries (Kinderkrippen) which look after the very youngest children up to agree three. Lowest permitted ages for  starting depend on the individual facility.
  2. Trained daycare providers (Tagesmütter/Tagesväter) care for one or more children in their own homes and integrate the children in family life. With this type of daycare in private homes it is often easier to arrange childcare times on a more individual basis than is possible with cre´ches, nurseries and kindergartens.  
  3. In all Austrian federal states public and private kindergartens provide daycare for children from their third birthday (subject to the availability of places) up to the age for starting school (age 6). Attendance at kindergarten for at least 16 hours per week from September to June is mandatory for children living in Austria who have turned 5 by 31st August of that year. Families can apply for exemption from the mandatory pre-school kindergarten year in special cases.
  4. In all federal states there are also a range of different care facilities which provide daycare in mixed age groups for children from approx. one and a half to age ten. Information about these options can be obtained locally.
  5. Children´s groups (Kindergruppen) are a form of childcare run by parents organized in an association for this purpose. In principle, children up to age 16 can be looked after in this way, in practice this form of childcare is mainly available for younger children, especially for pre-schoolers.
  6. Compulsory school attendance for all children in Austria begins on the 1st of September following the child´s sixth birthday. Compulsory schooling lasts for nine years.
  7. After-school clubs (Horte) are childcare facilities which look after children aged 6 to 10 (sometimes to age 15)  in the afternoons outside school hours, sometimes also during the school vacations. Many after-school clubs are sited close to the schools but housed at a separate location.
  8. There are three main forms of afternoon care for school children offered in the schools themselves, especially secondary schools:                                                                                                     i.  Afternoon care on the school premises - no integration of lessons and afternoon  activities                (Tagesheimschule)                                                                                                                    ii.  Afternoon care at all-day-school lessons and afternoon activities are  integrated.   (Ganztagsschule)                                                                                                                      iii. Diverse other forms of afternoon care provision at morning-only schools.                                                                                                                                      


Informal flexible forms of childcare

Trained babysitters and many other informal and flexible forms of childcare complement the services offered by regular childcare facilities and can provide out-of-hours care. Details of options available locally can be obtained from your university´s family support service (Fachabteilung Ihrer Universität)


Private initiatives - parents´networks, childcare exchanges, playgroups, support services for home support in difficult situations etc.

The best way to make contact with innovative local childcare initiatives is through regional family services (e.g. Eltern-Kind-Zentren) or through your university´s family support services (Fachabteilung Ihrer Universität).

Here are a few useful contact addresses for families with children in difficult situations and in situations where they need help quickly

Below are a few useful contact addresses for families with children  in difficult situations or in situations where they need help quickly: