Au pairs from non-EU countries need a visa to enter Austria. Croatians non-EU citizens should not be over 28 years of age when applying to be an au pair.
Step 1: A valid passport is required
Au pairs should make sure that they have a valid passport. If the au pair doesn't have a passport, sufficient time for obtaining the passport needs to be planned. Applying for a passport can take up to six months.
Step 2: Register the au pair at the Austrian employment office
Two weeks before the au pair stay begins, the host family must contact the Arbeitsmarktservice - AMS (the Austrian employment office). To complete this registration, the host family needs the following documents:
- Proof of the German language skills of the au pair
- A signed copy of the au pair contract in which the most important points of the au pair stay are specified
When both the au pair and the family fulfill the requirements of the AMS, then the application confirmation will be issued. This confirmation is typically valid for six months and can then be extended for an additional six months.
Basic requirements from the AMS for confirming the au pair application:
- The applicant is at least 18 years old and not older than 27.
- The applicant has not been an au pair in Austria in the last five years.
- The main purpose of the stay in Austria is to experience life in Austria as an au pair. The au pair would like to learn more about the Austrian culture and people as well as improve her or his language skills with the help of the host family.
- The au pair has a basic knowledge of German and can prove this.
- At least one child under the age of 18 lives in the household.
- The duties of the au pair consist mainly of childcare and in some light housework.
The following German language information sheet from the Austrian Federal Ministry for Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection could also be helpful: Informationen zur Beschäftigung eines Au-pairs aus einem Nicht-EU-Staat und Kroatien.
Step 3: Apply for visa
As soon as the application confirmation has been received, it is necessary for the au pair to have proof of insurance for the au pair stay in Austria. Both documents are necessary for the visa application. With these documents the au pair can apply for a visa at the Austrian embassy or consulate. The application confirmation from the AMS serves as the basis for the issuing of the au pair visa and the residence permit.
For the visa application, the au pair must include the following documents:
- The au pair contract
- A current photograph
- A birth certificate or equivalent document with a certified German translation
- A valid travel document (passport) and copies of all pages
- Proof of German language skills
- Proof that the au pair is insured at the time of arrival in Austria
In some cases, further documents may be required. The issuing of visas for au pairs from Africa and Asia can take up to three or four months. The AMS cannot compensate for this waiting period with a corresponding extension of the application confirmation. As a result, an au pair stay of twelve months is probably not possible.
If the au pair is from a non-Eu country and wishes to have short-term employment for a period of longer than 6 months, then it should be kept in mind that the au pair will have to apply for a temporary residence permit with "special working conditions" instead of a visa. For this purpose, the au pair needs a temporary residence permit and to be fully informed before traveling to Austria.When the au pair is from a non-EU country and will be staying for less than 6 months in Austria, then a D-visa is sufficient. A D-visa cannot be extended.
Here is additional visa information for au pairs from non-EU countries and for the residence permit for au pairs in Austria.
Step 4: Registration of the au pair in the Austrian social insurance system
As soon as au pairs arrive in Austria, they should register in the public health insurance system. The local health insurance office should be contacted for this purpose.