While an au pair can find work in just about any country, it is important to consider logistics such as visas, insurance, and travel arrangements. It is important to do research when looking to become an au pair as some countries have official au pair programs, while others do not. However, even if a country doesn’t have an official program, they may still have guidelines for au pair work. For example, there is not a program in the U.K., but the Home Office still sets a salary of 70-85 GPB per week. If money is a concern, make sure to check conversion rates. At the time of writing this article, for example, it is financially more beneficial to be an au pair in the U.S. than in the U.K.
Here are some countries recommended by previous au pairs:
Germany: While Germany does not have a structured au pair program, it does offer a visa to au pairs between the ages of 18-24 who have basic knowledge of the German language. A test is required when applying for the visa. Host families are required to pay the au pair a minimum of 260 euros a month.
Australia: There is no au pair program or visa, but Australia does offer a working holiday to non-citizens who are 18-30 years old. There is no guideline for salary, but au pairs tend to make somewhere between $150-$250 AUD a week.
United States: The U.S. does have an au pair program, and anyone interested in working as an au pair must find work through an official agency. There are 14 agencies that can be found listed on IAPA (International Au Pair Association). The au pair must be between 18-26 and know English well, as well as pass a background check. They earn a minimum of $195.75 a week.
Switzerland: For au pair work in Switzerland, non-EU residents who are age 18-25 can get a visa and work for up to one year in the country. They earn between 700-800 Swiss francs a month. In addition, the host family must pay for at least half of a language class for the au pair.
Canada: Canada does not have a program for au pairs, but it does have a working holiday visa, which is called “International Experience Canada.” The au pair must be between 18-35 years old and be from one of 27 different countries, a list of which can be found online. The salary generally ranges from $235 to $290 a week.
Denmark: As opposed to a visa, Denmark offers a permit to au pairs who are between 17 and 29 years old. The au pair is paid approximately 3,050 DKK (the currency of Denmark) a month and host families generally pay for insurance and the au pair’s flight home at the end of the stay.