Pocket money, working time and au pair contract in Ireland

Find out the details of how au pairs and families work together in Ireland. How much pocket money does an au pair receive, how are holidays organised, what about the au pair contract? All the important information is presented here for au pairs and families in Ireland.

Young woman with a wallet in her hands
  • Au pair contract

    Au pairs and host families should sign a contract together, which should include detailed employment conditions, such as working hours, the exact amount of pocket money and rights and duties of both contracting parties. The signed au pair contract will ensure fair working arrangements between the au pair and the host family.

    Unfortunately, there is no official au pair contract for Ireland. We therefore suggest that au pairs and host families download the au pair contract for the UK (the official European au pair contract) and modify it according to their needs.

    Contract termination
    Two weeks' notice must generally be given when terminating the au pair contract.

  • Duties

    Au pair duties include childcare and light housework. 

    Before the au pair stay begins, the family and au pair should clarify what duties will be performed by the au pair. These duties and the rights and obligations of both the family and the au pair should then be specified in the au pair contract.

  • Pocket money

    In addition to board and lodging, an au pair in Ireland will receive weekly payment in accordance with Minimum Wage requirements for employees during the first year of employment.

  • Board and lodging

    According to the idea of au pairing as a cultural exchange, au pairs are entitled to receive free board and lodging, even if au pairs are ill or on holidays. Nevertheless, due to the Irish Minimum Wage requirements, if au pairs receive board and lodging in kind, the costs of such board and lodging must be deducted from their monthly pocket money.

    Currently, the weekly value for board and lodging is set at €54.13.

  • Working hours

    In accordance with our basic idea of au pairing as a cultural exchange, au pairs in Ireland should work a maximum of 30 hours per week. Au pairs can also do some babysitting up to 3 evenings per week, which should be included in the calculated working hours.

  • Free time and holiday

    Again according to the idea of au pairing as a cultural exchange, au pairs are entitled to two days off per week and to one week of paid holiday per six months.

    In Ireland, there are no official regulations with regard to public holidays for au pairs. We recommend that au pairs have a day off on public holidays. Only in exceptional cases should au pairs work on public holidays. The host family should discuss this with their au pair beforehand.

    More information on the topic:

  • Language course

    Au pairs should be given the possibility to attend a language course. Typically the au pair covers the costs of such a course.

  • Au pair insurance

    Unfortunately, there are no official regulations in Ireland concerning the health insurance for au pairs.

    EU nationals should find out if their health insurance from their home country covers them adequately for their stay in Ireland. If not, they should discuss whether their host family is willing to help them pay for their health insurance or at least bear some of the costs.

    Non-EU nationals will need to provide a certificate of medical/travel insurance coverage to be able to apply for a visa. The insurance should cover any costs incurred in the event of an accident or illness during the au pair's stay in Ireland. The au pair pays for the insurance costs by himself/herself. We recommend, however, that host families and au pairs discuss whether it is possible to split these costs.

  • Driving in Ireland

    If the au pair will be driving the car of the host family in connection with the au pair duties, issues of insurance and liability should be clarified in advance. Should any damages result from an accident, it should be clear who pays for them.

    Foreign driving licence:

    1. Licences issued by an EU/ EEA member state are valid in Ireland without any restrictions.

    2. Regulations for driving licences issued by a recognised state (Australia, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Japan, Jersey, South Africa, South Korea, Switzerland) are as follows:

    Au pairs with a valid licence issued by one of these countries can drive during a visit to Ireland. From the date of registering as a resident in Ireland an au pair's licence is valid for one year. To be considered a resident, an au pair must have been living in Ireland for at least 185 days of that calendar year.

    3. Au pairs who are not from any of the above countries but hold a national (or international) driving licence from another country may drive in Ireland for up to 12 months. If the au pair stays for more than 12 months, it is possible to apply for an Irish driving licence. However, in this case it is necessary to go through the full licensing procedure.

    For further questions, please refer to the Citizens Information in Ireland.

We are continually researching and updating our host country information, but cannot guarantee that all material provided is complete and correct. If you notice gaps or inaccuracies, we would like to hear from you.
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