Au Pair in Germany
An au pair stay is possible for young people from 18 to 26 years of age, or from 17 to 30 for au pairs from EU/EEA countries and from Switzerland. It offers many opportunities to get to know a new culture. But you will also have to do your bit and get good information.
As an au pair, you can live with a German host family for a maximum of one year: you are a temporary member of the family! Your job: taking care of the family’s kids and helping with light household duties.
The host family and the organisation will take care of your stay: you will normally get your own room, a monthly allowance and free meals. It will contribute a certain amount to your language school and make sure that you are covered by a health and accident insurance.
- General Information
- Your rights and duties
- Cost, Insurance and Visa
- Information for parents
Your duties as an au pair
You are important for your host family! As au pair, you will help them take care of the kids and the household. Your daily tasks will depend on the specific situation and the lifestyle of your host family – the place they live, the age and number of their children, the organization of their household and their everyday life.
Taking care of the children
You define your specific tasks in caring for the children together with your host parents. Your typical duties may include waking the children in the morning or taking them to bed at night, taking them to kindergarten, school or leisure activities, playing with them, or helping them with their homework. Other tasks may include babysitting in the evening, preparing meals or feeding and bathing younger children.
Helping with the household
Your duties in the household will mean light housework. They may include: tidying rooms, vacuuming, doing laundry, ironing or even going shopping, preparing small meals and laying the table. And it may be part of your job to look after pets, the apartment or the house. Your host family may ask that you cope with the tasks given to you in a reasonable time.
Caring for ill or elderly people is not part of your duties. However, it is best to discuss and list all your duties in a schedule together with your host parents.
Work and leisure
Your rights and duties and those of your host family will be agreed in writing in a contract.
As the purpose of your stay in Germany is not to work in regular employment, but to get to know the country and improve your knowledge of German, you will not receive the usual type of wage; you will get a monthly allowance instead. In Germany, this allowance is set at € 260. In addition, your host family will pay € 50 per month towards your language course. Furthermore, you are entitled to suitable accommodation – normally your own room – and free meals. As you are a temporary member of the family, you should participate in the family‘s life, and this may possibly include holiday trips and leisure activities.
You will be covered by health, liability and accident insurance. Your host family must arrange the insurance and pay for it.
Your help in caring for the kids and the household may not exceed 30 hours a week – including babysitting in the evening. When your help is needed for longer in exceptional cases, this should be arranged in advance with your host family. If you work longer hours once, you may take more time for your leisure on another – in coordination with your host family. Your host family will normally have a daily routine in which you will be integrated
You are entitled to one day off per week. At least once a month, this day must be a Sunday. You should also have four free evenings per week. Whether you get more days off depends on your individual arrangement with your host family. You should discuss with your host parents when and how you use your days off.
You can arrange your leisure time to pursue your interests, meet with other au pairs, attend cultural events or explore your city and its surroundings. Attending a German course will normally be part of an au pair stay, too.
Your host parents must give you an opportunity to take a language course in your free time, to practice your faith and to attend cultural events.
During an au pair stay of 12 months, you are entitled to 4 weeks of paid holidays. If you spend less than a year in Germany, you will get two working days of vacation for every full month spent as au pair.
If you are taken on vacation by your host family, this will only count as personal vacation, if you do not have to work at all or have minor tasks only and when you are not obliged to be present.
Accommodation and meals
You will get both from your host family. Normally, a room with adequate furniture and heating will be available for you in the host family’s apartment or residence. You will usually share your meals with the host family. Please keep in mind to inform your host parents about food allergies and to already mention them in your application.
Termination of your contract
The au pair relationship ends at the end of the period agreed in the contract. If there is no agreed notice period, the contract may only be terminated with your consent and the consent of your host parents. In exceptional cases, a termination will be possible for a serious reason.
Most au pair contracts include a notice period of two weeks. Notice may be given by both parties with the notice period agreed in the contract. If you were placed through an agency, which looks after you during your stay, you should consult it in the case of a termination of your contract.
If you have not been placed by an agency, you have the opportunity to call the ‘Telefon-Seelsorge’ crisis counselling service, whose hotline numbers are also open to au pairs: 0800 1110111 or 0800 1110222.
As a matter of principle, you always have the option to contact the police at the following nationwide phone number: 110