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Au pair in Europe: Rules and Regulations

Activities

This program is for young people who want to experience and learn a new language, customs, and traditions of a country or, more simply, discover a new way of living. Being an au-pair means living in a family and actively taking part in it in exchange for a babysitting job. Your experience with children can be minimal, either from regular babysitting or caring for younger siblings.

Obviously, the au pairs won’t have a holiday, but they will equally be offered much free time. Au pairs meet new friends, visit exciting places, and, at the same time, significantly increase their language skills.

Once there, the au pair will be provided with a board, room and bathroom, and a weekly wage.

Au pair’s duties

Au pairs take care of the host family’s children, entertain them, play with them, supervise them when they are sick or during school breaks, get them ready for school and bedtime, take them to school and other activities/appointments, and keep their bedroom and closet clean. Usually, au pairs are asked to speak their native language so the children can learn a new language more easily and naturally.

Au pairs should help at mealtimes by setting the table, loading the dishwasher, etc., without doing cumbersome work.

Obviously, the au pair should also clean and keep their own bedroom and closet tidy and wash and iron their clothes.

“Mothers help” program

Other than help with childcare, some families need to help with household chores such as cleaning and maintenance of the house. In this case, in addition to specifying it before departure, the family will also have to offer a more advantageous economic agreement for the girl/boy so that they can decide whether to accept.

Period of the stay, holidays, and hours

The usual period of stay in the family varies from 3 to 12 months or 1 to 4 months in the summer, and you can leave at any time of the year.

The girl/boy works no more than 6 hours a day, for a maximum of 30 hours a week (au pair) or no more than 8 hours a day, for a maximum of 45 hours a week (mothers help).

Everybody has the right to two days off from either Monday to Friday or the entire weekend. A maximum of two weekly evening babysitting sessions are planned.

Tips

It is a good idea to have studied the language of your chosen country to at least an elementary level. You can improve at a school near your family home. If there is a fee for the course, the family usually does not help with this expense.

It is unnecessary to have a driver’s license, but some families prefer au pairs who have it and are willing to drive.

The au-pair becomes part of a new family, with new rules, habits, and values; thus, a great spirit of adaptation will be respected.

Expenses

The au-pair has to pay the cost of the outward and return journey. We recommend estimating the cost of the language course if needed.

Celtic Childcare is available to help with the most convenient flight via the Internet.

Once in their exchange placement, all the expenses related to personal care, clothing, and leisure will remain at the cost of the au-pair.

Economic conditions

One free week is paid for every six months of stay (so four weeks in the case of a one-year stay). Holidays are considered vacation time but are paid; in case you are required to work during holidays, you will need to pay extra.

  • The au-pair will be paid €80-110 on a weekly basis.
  • Mothers help will be paid €150-200 on a weekly basis.

Insurance and permits

European citizens have the same right as the citizens of the host nation to access free medical care and first aid throughout Europe. There are some exceptions, such as dental treatment.

For non-EU citizens and those who travel outside the EU, it is mandatory to have private insurance.

Cancellation and assistance

For any kind of help during your stay, you can contact the family and the agent in your host country.

In case you are not happy with the host family, you can ask for a change. In any case, a 14-day notice is required to give the agency the time to find a replacement.

Safety

To guarantee the safety of our au-pairs, we send agents to potential host families to verify that everything is in order before they can apply to host au-pairs. Before leaving, the host family and the au-pair will be put in contact so they can have the opportunity to get to know each other and understand if they will get along well together.

Legislation reference

The rules governing the relationship “au pair” are inspired by the European Act of 24/11/1969 that establishes the principles to be observed in the matter and the rules of conduct dictated by the International Association of category IAPA.

Celtic Childcare is authorized to carry out its duties by the Ministry of Labour pursuant to DLGS 276/2003 (prot-107/RS).

Registration

Now we are ready, you just need to fill in the application form!

What do you need to do before leaving?

Discovering the world is a fantastic experience. We can help you live it; this is what we ask you to do.

Present yourself

Write a letter to the future host family (in their language) and present yourself. Talk about who you are, your family, hobbies, studies, and experiences with children. You can use this letter to give them all the information you think are interesting for the future host family.

Get two references

Get two verifiable written references; at least one of them has to be about your experience with children. These references have to be written by two different people and attach their data to contact them. They have to be written in English or in the chosen country’s language or translated from Italian into English.

Send the documents

Send us by email, fax or mail a copy of all the required documents (the list is next). Please, send us color scans and not photos. If you do not have the means to do so, consider that many stationers scan documents.

Prepare your luggage

As soon as we receive your pack, we will start looking for a suitable family. The families we propose are all carefully selected by agents abroad and referenced, and we do everything possible to ensure that they are suitable for the au pairs’ profiles. Once you select the family, you will be sent a presentation of them, and then we will get in touch with you to do an interview.                                                                    Through Skype, you can talk to your family about commitments, cities, and services. All you have to do is sign the contract and book your flight!

You have to send us:

Au pair application form
We gave it to you along with the presentation letter.

Medical report
The picture of your health, we gave it to you.

References
Fill them in with the help of the form we gave you.

Photographs
The family will want to see and talk to you before welcoming you. Create a collage that shows you in the company of children, with your family, on a trip, etc..

Identity Card
It must be in good condition, intact and valid for expatriation. You can ask for a new one at the registry office.

Certificate of good physical and mental
We want to make sure that you can leave without risk to your health and that of others. You can get this type of certificate from your General Physician.

Police report
You can file it in court, we make sure no one’s had a problem with justice.

You can send us:

Driving license
We make sure it’s valid and can be used abroad.

Passport
Is necessary for all extra-UE travels and optional if you stay in Europe. It’s a useful ID, for example, if you lose your ID.

High school/University degree
Many families like to receive your educational certification.

CV
As in the case of graduation, families are pleased to receive it.

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