This paper explores the implications of increasingly feminized flows of rural-to-urban migration on the gendered family lives of low-income migrants. We focus on the strategies of migrant with young children through life histories collected in 2008 in the contrasting destinations of Ha Noi and Ho Chi Minh City. We illustrate the trade-offs migrants make in their efforts to maximise earnings/savings and safeguard their children's future. We show that taking advantage of new economic opportunities for these low incomes migrants with young families comes at a cost. The cost is in terms of gendered family relations, social identities and subjective experiences and is strongly gendered.