Getting to know possible host families as well as possible before deciding to do an au pair stay with them makes lots of sense - and it will help you to choose the right host family when the time comes. This works best with a video call, but a regular telephone call is also a good possibility. You and the family both have a chance to talk about your expectations for the au pair stay and you can get answers to the questions that are most important for you.
Our list of questions will help you to get ready:
Questions to ask about their family life:
- How is daily life organised in the family?
- What tasks and activities will you be responsible for?
- What habits and hobbies does the family have?
- What do they do on their weekends?
- What are the children like?
- Do the children have particular hobbies, friends, special characteristics? What kind of meals do they like? What games do they play? Is there anything else that you need to know about the kids?
- What are the parents' job(s) and working schedule?
- When does the family usually have its meals and what kind of food do they like?
- Does the family follow a special diet?
A tip from AuPairWorld
Suggest to the family that they prepare a schedule for you if you become their au pair that will list all your important activities - regular duties, appointments, free time, etc.
Questions to ask about the basic conditions of your au pair stay:
- When will you usually be working?
- What are the typical working schedules of the parents?
- Will you be expected to babysit in the evenings? If so, how often?
- On which days and evenings will you have time off?
- Are you expected to be an experienced driver?
- Will they take you with them on their holidays? If so: what will be your tasks during that time?
- Will you have your own room?
- Will you need your own laptop in order to use the Internet?
- How much pocket money will you receive each month?
- Have they considered taking out an au pair insurance policy for you?
- When will be the best time for you to attend a language course?
- Will your host family be able to help you find the right language course?
- Who will pay for it?
A tip from AuPairWorld
You should include all details you agree upon in your au pair contract. This will help you prevent misunderstandings and pave the way for a successful au pair stay
Questions to ask about your future au pair city, region or country
- How far is the nearest city from your host family's home?
- Can it easily be reached by public transport?
- Are there other au pairs living close to your host family's home?
Questions about past au pair experiences
- Why has the family decided to host an au pair?
- Has the family had a nanny, au pair or babysitter before?
- Are the children used to other childminders apart from the parents?
- Are you the family's first au pair? If they have had other au pairs, ask for the phone numbers or email addresses of former au pairs to find out more about their stay with this family.