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Obligations and Benefits of an Au Pair

The Au Pair's obligations may vary depending on the family, so it is very important that the Au Pair and the family agree, before the Au Pair starts her/his stay, on the tasks the Au Pair shall perform, it being recommended that a weekly planning be prepared, stating the pertinent tasks. Furthermore, such tasks will be included in the Au Pair agreement, which must be signed by both parties.

In general, the Au Pair's obligations shall mainly comprise taking care of the children and carry out simple house tasks. The total weekly hours dedicated to these services shall not exceed four-six hours per day (25-40 hours per week, according to the type of Au Pair placement programme selected), including babysitting 1-2 nights per week, if so required by the family.

Among the main tasks related to the kids, we may state the following:

  • Dress them up

  • Feed them

  • Change diapers

  • Take them to and pick them up from school

  • Help them with their homework

  • Play with them and read stories/books to them

  • Take them out for a walk, to the swimming-pool, to play sports, to the cinema, etc.

  • Bath them and get them ready to go to bed

  • Be creative and involve kids in any activities which will stimulate their growth and development

  • Help with the language

  • Once or twice a week, babysit

The main house tasks accepted to be performed by the Au Pair are:

  • Load the dishwasher and clean the dishes

  • Prepare simple meals for the children

  • Iron the children's clothes

  • Operate the washing machine and peg out washing

  • Keep the kitchen clean and tidy

  • Dusting

  • Vacuum-cleaning

  • Change the children's bed sheets

  • Keep the Au Pair's bedroom and bathroom clean and tidy

  • Empty garbage cans

  • Feed the pet and take it out for a walk, if so agreed

  • Do any required daily shopping

As an example of tasks not accepted to be performed by the Au Pair and which, therefore, cannot be required by the family, we may find the following, among others: clean windows, deep house cleaning, take care of the garden, wash the car, do the weekly shopping, train pets, make the parents' bed, iron the parents' clothes, cook for the entire family, clean the parents' bathroom, etc.


Among the benefits brought by being an Au Pair, we'd like to underline:

  • Learn languages: the stay abroad as an Au Pair is one of the best occasions to learn or improve a language, since you will be totally immersed in a country whose language you want to learn, living with a family who speak that language.
  • Get to know a new culture/country and meet new people: being an Au Pair will allow you to know the culture and visit the most interesting places in the target country, apart from meeting new people and making new friends.
  • Broaden your horizons and personal values: the Au Pair programme offers you the possibility of knowing a new lifestyle and different cultures, as well as meeting new people, which will broaden your knowledge in general, and living a great experience at the personal level, which will provide you with very important values in current life, such as building self-confidence, being more responsible, and many other values that will help you to be more independent and facing society's current conditions more solidly.
  • Obtain experience in childcare: if your option is to dedicate professionally to childcare or teaching children, being an Au Pair is an excellent way to start getting or increasing experience in this field. 
  • Combine your stay abroad with a job: you will have the possibility of financing your stay abroad without incurring so many expenses, and even receiving a weekly pay from the family which will allow you to be economically independent to face your daily expenses.