Table comparing part time maids vs. part time caregivers

Part-Time Maids vs. Part-Time Caregivers in Singapore

Need help with caring for a loved one, but not sure whether a part-time maid or caregiver will be better for your family? Learn more about the pros and cons of each option.

by Grace Koh

Do you have seniors at home who need extra help with their daily activities? Perhaps you are already thinking about hiring an additional pair of hands, but unsure if you’d like to hire a live-in helper. Fret not! With part-time maids and caregivers available for hire on the job market nowadays, there are many options. What are the differences between both roles, though, and which one can better provide care for your loved ones? 

What do part time maids and caregivers do?

Cleaning supplies, part-time maid

Source: Unsplash

A part-time maid can help with doing your chores for a few hours on a daily, weekly, or even fortnightly basis. They can help to clean the house, vacuum your floors, and change the sheets. For an additional fee, you can usually request services such as doing the laundry, ironing, moving furniture, cleaning windows, and clearing the fridge. However, there are part-time maids who do help out with personal care needs and transportation as well. In contrast, full-time maids mostly focus on general maintenance of the household and their job scope may include many other tasks, such as fetching your children and cooking meals for the family.

Senior holding a caregiver's hand

Source: Unsplash

On the other hand, a part-time caregiver provides specialised care services. Caregivers in Singapore are trained and certified to provide assistance to the targeted recipient, ensuring that whoever is receiving care is able to safely carry out their daily activities. A caregiver may also have had experience in areas such as nursing, medicine, or physiotherapy. While their main focus is caring for the recipient, they can help out with light household chores relating to the care recepient such as cleaning the dishes after use, tidying the bed, and more. 

Differences between part-time maids and caregivers

Both maids and caregivers work in the line of caring for others. How, then, do these roles differ?

Part-time caregiverPart-time maid
CertificationsCPR, AED, Caregiver Training Course by AICNot trained in specialised care
Additional qualificationsMay be familiar with health conditions like stroke, dementia or cancer
Duration of shift1 - 12 hours3 - 4 hours
NationalitySingaporeans, PRs, and foreignersSingaporeans, PRs, and holders of Dependent Pass
Where to hireAgenciesAgencies, or can be engaged independently
Cost per hour$25 - $29$18 - $30
Surcharges for weekends and public holidaysYesYes
Cost of packages$220 for 10 hours per month$230 - $480, for 12 - 16 hours per month


Part-time caregivers are familiar with the technical know-how of caregiving. They are able to carry out bed transfers safely, administer certain kinds of medications, and perform CPR in case of an emergency. Caregivers are also equipped with knowledge of common health conditions and can look out for potential complications, such as bed sores.

On the other hand, most part-time maids do not have training in caregiving practices, as most of them who are able to do so are usually full time maids who are eligible for caregiver trainingHowever, some part-time maids can assist with personal care such as bathing, dressing, and toileting.


On top of the training that all caregivers must get, such as CPR training and caregiving certification courses, some caregivers may be familiar with specific conditions such as dementia or cancer. This means that they would be better able to spot new developments relating to these conditions.

Duration of visit

Homage’s caregivers can provide care for a minimum of an hour per session, and each caregiver can work up to 12 hours per shift. As for part-time maids, each of their visits may last for 3 to 4 hours.

Save more with Homage's long-hour packages ✅

Thinking of engaging long-term home care services? Homage offers a wide range of home-based care services that can cover the full end-to-end care for specific conditions such as stroke, cancer, diabetes, and more. 

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Save up to $1,300 with our long-hour packages! Find out more by filling out this form and our Care Advisory team will contact you with more information.

Nationality requirements

Most part-time maids in Singapore are Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents, or Dependent Pass holders. On the other hand, caregivers in Singapore comprise of those from nearby countries, such as the Philippines, India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Indonesia, as well as Singapore residents. Do note that if a caregiver is employed by an agency, they are required to have a valid Work Permit. 

Ways to hire

Caregivers are usually hired from agencies as they must be certified and trained, while part-time maids can be hired from agencies or can market their own services independently.

If you are hiring an independent maid, be sure that they are under legal employment and is a Singaporean or Permanent Resident. Also, be aware that they may not be covered under insurance unlesss they have their own policies and coverage. 


Part-time caregiverPart-time maids
Rates per hour$25 - $29$18 - $30
Ability to help with additional tasksYes, but limited to light tasks for the care recipient e.g. washing dishesYes, at extra costs depending on difficulty of task
Surcharges for weekends and public holidaysYesYes
Registration feesNoYes, depending on the agency you hire from

Caregivers can charge between $25 to $29 per hour for their services. For longer-term care, Homage has long-hour caregiving packages will be more cost-effective for those who might need to engage caregivers more frequently.

Depending on whether you hire from an agency or engage a part-time maid on an independent basis, charges can range from $18 to $30 per hour. Some agencies may provide a discounted package if you sign up for regular services. In this case, may range between $230 to $480 per month for weekly cleaning services for a stipulated number of hours. Higher rates might apply for visits on weekends and public holidays. Additionally, there may be additional costs if you request for additional services or have to pay registration fees to the agency.

Subsidies available

Infographic for Home Caregiving Grant, updated 5 November 2022

When you hire a part-time caregiver, you will qualify for the Home Caregiving Grant, which gives a $200 monthly cash payout to support the costs of senior care and caregiver support services in the community. The Home Caregiving Grant can be used if you hire foreign domestic helpers and caregivers as well. 

What are Activities of Daily Living (ADL)?

The 6 activities of daily living (ADLs) include:

  • Washing: The ability to wash your face or body in the bath or shower independently as well as physically getting in and out of the shower.
  • Dressing: The ability to choose which clothes to wear, putting them on, and managing your self appearance. This includes securing and unfastening any artificial limbs, braces, and other medical and surgical appliances, if needed.
  • Feeding: The ability to feed oneself after the food has been prepared.
  • Toileting: The ability to get to and from the toilet, use it properly, and clean yourself afterwards. This includes putting on protective undergarments such as diapers or surgically appliances unaccompanied, if required.
  • Mobility: The ability to sit, stand, walk and move from one place to another on level surfaces by yourself.
  • Transferring: While similar to functional mobility and sometimes used interchangeably, transferring focuses on all aspects of being able to move from a bed to an upright chair or wheelchair and vice versa.

An individual is considered to have permanent moderate disability if they are unable to independently perform at least 3 ADLs and will always require the physical assistance of another individual throughout the entire activity. 

However, there are no subsidies available if you hire part-time maids.

Why a part-time caregiver might be better for your loved one 

It seems like in comparing the two roles, the consideration factors would be whether you need help with caregiving tasks or just with household chores. Another factor to consider is whether your loved one can move around independently or needs assistance with their everyday activities.

Professionally trained

Most part-time maids are not trained in specialised care. They might not be able to care for an elderly person with dementia or mobility issues, or someone who is recovering from a stroke. 

Flexible hours

Part-time caregivers can help out for as short as an hour and can also be a good option for round-the-clock care, especially if you are working long hours or have to be overseas.

Comparatively, a part-time maid will spend about three to four hours per session doing their tasks, which may not be suitable if you only need help for a short amount of time to run your errands, or need help beyond 3 to 4 hours.

Ease of hiring 

Part-time caregivers are usually recruited from agencies, so you can be matched to a caregiver in 3 to 4 days, especially so as many may be looking for urgent respite care in cases of family emergencies.

Provides specialised care 

Part-time maids can help individuals who are able to carry out daily activities on their own, such as eating, bathing, and moving around.

However, caregivers may be necessary for individuals who require a moderate or high degree of care and assistance. For example, seniors who have difficulty with walking or using their mobility aids, or those who are recovering from an operation, may benefit greatly from a professional caregiver who can help with bed transfers or assist with rehabilitation exercises.

Elderly person carrying out ADL

Source: Unsplash

Above all, you will have to decide what is suitable depending on your loved one’s needs, and what you and your family require as well. Do you already have someone at home who is able to provide care for your loved one, but is burnt out from having to bear the brunt of housework alongside caring for your family member? A part-time maid, in this case, can be of great help. On the other hand, you may be coping well with house chores but unable to provide care for your loved one. In this instance, a part-time caregiver is likely a better option.

If you want to care for your loved one, you can undergo caregiver training. You can also tap on various government grants to offset some of the costs in taking up these courses.  

Alternatively, Homage provides caregiving services for your loved ones at every stage. Our trained care professionals are able to provide companionship, nursing care, night caregiving, home therapy and more, to keep your loved ones active and engaged. 

Provide the best care to your loved one today! Fill up the form below for a free consultation with our Care Advisory team. 

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  1. A Singaporean’s Guide To Part Time Maids: Are They Worth It? (2020, October 20). Seedly.
  2. Can Maids Work Part-Time in Singapore? (Updated) – Auntie Cleaner. (2020, November 7). Auntie Cleaner (Singapore) Pte.
  3. Guide to Hiring Part-time Maid in Singapore | MSIG Singapore. (n.d.).
  4. Homage. (2021, September 27). Financial Assistance for Elderly & Caregiver Grants.
  5. Homage. (2022, July 1). Pricing.
  6. Yeo, E. (2019, August 20). How Much Does Part Time Maid Cost In Singapore? Part Time Maid Singapore.
  7. Yeo, E. (2022, September 5). Part-Time Maid For Elderly Care in Singapore. Part Time Maid Singapore.


About the Writer
Grace Koh
Grace is a healthcare writer who has experience in hospital settings and community agencies. Apart from reading, singing, and plodding up muddy trails, Grace enjoys scribbling notes and thinking up a storm.
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