Costs, working hours, time off etc.

You will be hosting an au pair in Germany? Here you will find more information about working hours, pocket money, the au pair contract and more.

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The main duty of an au pair is to look after the children. Furthermore, an au pair helps with light housework. You should clarify with your au pair, what his or her duties will exactly involve. It is recommended to make a note of these duties and include them in the au pair contract.


Accommodating an au pair results in higher living costs. After all, an additional adult will be living with you throughout the placement period.

Board and lodging

An au pair receives free board and lodging throughout their entire stay. The same applies in case of illness and during the au pair holiday. Providing the au pair with a separate room with a window is considered as an important standard pre-requisite. The room should be lockable, heatable and have a dimension of at least 8 square metres.

Pocket money

An au pair receives monthly pocket money of 260 euros - also in the case of illness or while the au pair is on holiday.

If a host family should pay you more than the legally defined €260 of pocket money, you are obliged to report your job. The au pair can then pursue part-time employment. The host family has to register this employment with a so-called household check form at the job centre.

If the host family pays the au pair more than €450, the pocket money is subject to social insurance contributions.

Travel costs

Normally, the au pair bears the costs of the journey to the host country and back home by themselves.

Language course

Your au pair should attend a language course in order to improve their knowledge of the official language of your country. Usually, the au pairs pay for their language courses. As a host family, you can help them find a suitable course close to your home. It is compulsory for German host families to contribute with 50 euros a month to the cost of their au pair's language course (in addition to the pocket money).

Costs are tax-deductable

The costs of the au pair placement can be deducted from your taxes. Attention: The pocket money should be transferred to your au pair's bank account in order to be acknowledged.

You can open a bank account for your au pair at any German bank or savings bank (Sparkasse). Ask your bank if it offers low-priced accounts or even accounts free of charge to young persons or students.

Working hours

Arranging the time for carrying out household chores can be done according to the family's habits and needs. The au pair is not supposed to work more than 6 hours a day and 30 hours a week, including babysitting.

Free time

Your au pair is entitled to one day off per week. Once a month, this day should be a Sunday. As a host family, you should make sure that your au pair has at least 4 evenings off each week.


An au pair is entitled to 4 weeks of paid holiday, provided that the au pair placement in planned for an entire year. Should you go on a holiday and should your au pair resume their regular duties such as babysitting, this is considered as work for your au pair. Accompanying the host family on their holiday does not count as an au pair holiday, unless the au pair has less duties and is not obliged to be available at all times.

In Germany, it is regulated that au pairs do not need to work on public holidays. Only in exceptional cases au pairs should work on public holidays. The host family should discuss this with their au pair beforehand.

Separate treatment for families with four children or more

Families with four children or more may employ two au pairs at the same time.

Information from the Bundesagentur für Arbeit (Employment Agency)

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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