Right now, I’m telling you, it’s easier than you think. And, the benefits are much greater than you might think.
First, let’s go over the basics. By becoming an “au pair” girl or boy, you will be able to live a rich experience. Playing lego again with a little girl, painting your face, climbing a small wall, building plasticine towers, are just the surface of the iceberg.
In depth, you will discover a culture, without having the hassle of looking for accommodation, a job (since you already have one) or money to feed yourself. There are many advantages to being an au pair, it is known and that is why it has always worked.
What exactly is being “au pair”?
As you probably know, being an au pair means helping a family with these children. This allows the family to have a permanent babysitter. In addition, au pair implies that you are a foreigner. This is what families are actually looking for because otherwise they would simply take a local babysitter.
There is no predefined task as in a classic employment contract. The au pair can look after the children, take care of the groceries, look after the animals or something else. Watch out for abuse anyway! You are not meant to be the “jack of all trades,” without any derogatory form in my terms.
6 Reasons that will push you to travel the world as an Au Pair
I list here all the good reasons that can convince you to become an Au Pair. This might be a good option to find out if you really like to travel permanently. In addition, you will be able to make your first experience abroad in a simple way.
1. Travel the world with as little hassle as possible
When one wants to travel the world, there are several obstacles that immediately arise. The biggest are the fact that you need money (a lot of money sometimes) and that you also have to find time to free yourself from your job (generally). Suddenly, it’s the snake that bites its tail. To travel you need money, and to have money, you have to stay where you are and therefore not travel.
Being an au pair fills this flaw in the system (hehe). By being an au pair, you can travel all over the world, earn money and better yet, have a roof over your head and food. This is the winning combo especially if you are young and without international experience.
2. Discover a culture in depth and learn a language
By being an au pair, you will be living with a family. That is, you will be like a full new member. It is excellent to better discover a culture. Nothing better than being with a family to understand the customs and traditions of a country.
In addition, by taking care of the children, you will have to attend schools and music or sports clubs. That is to say, you will also set foot in the cultural world of the country.
As you already have a job, and often it involves accompanying the children to school, you have a lot of free time. You will therefore have plenty of time to walk around the city, without having to constantly worry about making money.
Often people decide to work as an au pair to learn the language as well. In contact with family and children, you will learn the language much faster than at school, that’s for sure.
You are well aware that speaking another language is already a skill in itself that you will be able to use all your life. Whether in translation or otherwise, having a foreign language is a definite plus in your career and in your personal life.
3. You are part of a family and you gain new friends
Yes, the title is a bit caring, I know. However, in absolute terms, this is true. As I said above, you will integrate a family. This means that you will be in a good position to make new friends and expand your circle of acquaintance.
As you also have free time, you can also make friends. By going to the right places, you will definitely make new friends. It’s even a good time to worry.
4. You have benefits in kind
It will depend on the family you have. Some au pairs “fall” on golden plans and others on less good plans. This is you and your luck 😉
I mean, there are families with a great location, a great villa with a pool, and activities to make the most difficult of you dream. While other families who take au pairs have a rather classic life of Mr. and Mrs. everyone. We have nothing against that, but hey as I’m talking about the advantages that can be found by being an au pair, I have to say it.
It goes without saying that if your family has a swimming pool, for example, your free time will be well spent, one might assume.
Likewise, many families take you with them on vacation. You will also have to look after the children but you take the opportunity to make a new trip for free.
Not all of the benefits listed above should blind you. Unfortunately, not everyone is made to be an au pair.
The 3 reasons for not becoming an “au pair”.
If you decide to become an Au Pair just so you can travel, I think that’s not enough. You still have to enjoy the company of children. It is, moreover, this first reason that should motivate your approach. The rest is secondary and supports your general motivation.
Avoid being an au pair for the following reasons:
1. If children are not your “hobby”
Very clearly, once again. Caring for children is no easy task. For some people, it is very natural. For others, it can quickly become hell. Besides, if you don’t like children, your whole experience will be distorted. Children will feel it, parents too for that matter. You will not benefit from your experience and worse, it can turn into an ordeal.
In short, if baby crying is already driving you crazy or crazy on the plane, then drop the idea of being an au pair.
2. If you tend to be homesick
In general, the people who land on this blog are precisely people who are anything but homesick. They have rather the reverse 😉. All that to say that you might be a person who likes your family zone and everything that goes with it, maybe not really suitable. Then traveling as an au pair might not be the right solution for you.
In general, being an au pair lasts between 6 months and 1 year, or even more when the two parties agree. So, if you are homesick, it will be downright hard to appreciate the country. Try to leave somewhere already a month, for example by being hosted for free against a small job. You will learn more about your management of being away from home.
3. If you need something more “professional”
By doing your au pair experience, what you gain will not be considered a professional skill in the proper sense. Of course, you will have learned humanely, that’s for sure. But, to add it on a line of your CV, it is another thing.
Having said that, having experience with children can also be highly regarded depending on the future job you seek. No amalgamation my dear friends. Just, if you want to work in a bank, I’m not sure that having babysat is going to be crucial in your job interview …
So if you want to travel the world while learning skills that will serve you professionally, then clearly avoid the au pair. I invite you, once again, to consult the article on the different jobs against free hosting . You will find missions with NGOs or companies, all abroad.
If none of these reasons apply to you, then you can take the next step:
How to become an au pair and travel the world?
In this section, we will see the steps and prerequisites for traveling “au pair” anywhere in the world.
The qualifications you need:
Already, the first condition is that of age. You must be between 18 and 26 years old or max 30 years old according to certain programs. Although it is a job for both men and women, the majority of Au Pair jobs are held by women. Men are nevertheless accepted especially when the family has many boys (prejudice?).
Often, sites that put “au pairs” in touch with families require prior childcare experience. They want to make sure you know the topic. Be creative on your CV. Even if you’ve kept your cousin, try to include him objectively. Each experiment counts even if it was not carried out within a legal framework. Many people want to travel the world as an au pair. The competition is fierce. make sure you stand out.
An up-to-date criminal background check, basic first aid training (sometimes), some form of childcare qualification, and good character credentials are all pre-requisites.
Here is what is required of all people who want to be an Au Pair:
Where to take the initial experience?
As I said above, generally, you are asked for a small experiment beforehand for the children. It is as much a guarantee for them and for you. Yep, imagine for a moment that you actually didn’t like babysitting?
So, to have a little experience, it would be best to start at home already. There are plenty of sites for babysitting and there are plenty of offers. Likewise, if you already want to experience childcare and travel at the same time, try going to the Workaway site for example. You will certainly find your happiness.
How much does it cost to become an au pair?
Ah, the angry question! Some sites put a registration fee for the application fee. Indeed, once you submit your case, it is the agency that takes care of finding the right family. So that’s what your registration fee is for, which is understandable. There are also free sites. This most certainly means that they take a larger commission on your compensation.
Never forget that if it's free, you are the product
Also, even if you pay registration fees, you will quickly pay off because I remind you, you are also paid by being “au pair”. Certainly, little, but all the same.
As a rule, all costs incurred in your home country will be your responsibility. This includes: visa fees, medical check-ups, ticket prices, etc. If you are already traveling to a country and decide to work there, the family will bear the costs; usually your return flight and language lessons if necessary. In general, when you travel au pairs, you will find that most of your costs are covered. This is also why we say that it is THE good plan to travel when you don’t have too much money.
How to find an au pair job abroad?
Now, it’s time to take action! Here are the sites that will allow you to find missions to be an au pair:
- Aupair world (one of the most famous sites)
Do not hesitate to multiply your applications to increase your chances of being taken.
Which countries pay the best au pairs?
I love this question. It is often believed that the prices are the same and that an au pair earns as much as another, regardless of the destination. It’s wrong. There are au pairs so lucky that they come across rich and generous families (the two are not necessarily related, as you know).
The three highest average payments for an au pair are …
- The Middle East: From $ 1,800 to $ 4,200 per month. If you go to Dubai or Abu-Dhabi to be an Au Pair, it will be financially the best plan of your life.
- Australia: Around $ 1,000 per month. There, it’s quite comfortable but out of the question to save money. Living in Australia is expensive, but since you don’t have accommodation or food, you can get some pretty cool extras.
- Europe: Around $ 500 per month. From England to Germany, in Europe, incomes are rather average. This may vary, however.
In fact, try to balance the language and the culture you want to learn and experience. Because, yes, that’s also what being an au pair. Then, see if want to make money or not so much. If you want to come back to your country, with a little capital, then clearly, without hesitation, it will be the Middle East. If you especially want to love and enjoy a country that makes you dream, then do not look at the financial dimension.
Conclusion on traveling as an au pair
If you have read all the reasons that can motivate you to become an Au Pair and you validate them all, then it would be good to seriously consider taking the plunge.
I’ll give you a little tip to finish. When contacting families, be as enthusiastic as possible. Families tend to choose pleasant and enthusiastic people. This is not recruiting for a regular job, so limit formal manners. Be natural and show yourself as you are: be authentic.
Also, if it’s not for you (babysitting), there are plenty of other ways to travel and work at the same time. You could become a digital nomad or find a job from home.
Do not hesitate to consult our “training section” if you want to have the detailed guide to learn how to earn your money online while traveling wherever you want.
Now that Christmas is around the corner I just want to remind you that the a Rubik’s Cube is the best gift for any occasion which can be easily solved with the online tutorial.