Becoming an Au pair is one of the opportunities to gain international experience and improve your language skills. Working as an Au pair means living with a local family and participating in their daily life and tasks related to childcare and home chores. In exchange for the work done, the host families provide the Au pair with their own room, meals and monthly pocket money. Working hours are 30 to 45 hours per week, depending on the country of destination, and there are at least one day off per week. The Au pair period is usually 6 to 12 months.
Becoming an Au pair does not require any specific education or professional skills. However, previous experience with childcare is essential in many programs. The United States also requires a driving license. Usually Au pairs are between 18 and 30 years old. Age limits vary by program. Programs are open mostly to young women and in some countries to young men as well.
You can become an Au pair independently or through programs provided by different agencies. The agencies help the outgoing with practical arrangements and provide assistance in case of problems. It is good to compare agency offerings, prices and terms if you decide to use a one. The outgoing person must acquire the host family himself / herself and take care of the necessary agreements and migration issues independently. In case of problems, related to the agencies, help is not available.
To know more, visit the International Au Pair Association (IAPA) website.