An au pair should be prepared to help his/her Host Family in childcare and light household duties.
Typical duties of an Au pair
* Help getting children ready for school.
* Driving/walking kids to and from school/activities.
* Cooking simple meals for them, tidying up their rooms, putting toys away.
* Supervising homework.
* Organizing activities for and entertaining them.
List of housework duties accepted as light housework
* Washing dishes, including loading and unloading dishwasher
* Preparing simple meals for children
* Keeping kitchen tidy and clean, including sweeping and mopping floors
* Loading and unloading laundry into washing machine
* Ironing for children
* Putting washed clothes away
* Making and changing children's beds
* Cleaning children's bathroom
* Everything to do with keeping their own room/bathroom clean and tidy
* Light shopping (not the household shopping)
* Walking and feeding pets
* Emptying bins
List of duties considered unsuitable for an au pair
* Window cleaning
* Spring cleaning
* Cleaning the oven, other than simple wiping out
* Washing carpets
* Washing the car
* Weekly shopping
* Pet training
* Clearing up after untrained pets
* Making parents bed*
* Ironing for parents *
* Cleaning parents? en-suite bathroom*
* Polishing silver and brassware*
* Cooking the family meal, unless the au pair enjoys cooking and has chosen to do this for the family
* These duties can be included where there is less childcare and the children are out of the house for most of the day, if this is agreed in
Au pairs should not be required to do housework such as ironing, when looking after children of primary school age or toddlers, due to
If you need more than this then you need au-pair plus, nanny or mothers help.
Host Family's Responsibilities
An Au Pair must be provided with her own bedroom, full board and weekly pocket money. It would be appreciated if the room is equipped
with a desk or table where she can work or study- this can be a good way for the au pair to improve her knowledge of English. Nowadays,
most of the au pairs will take their laptop with themselves and if there is Wi-Fi Internet in the house it is recommended to let her to use the
Internet from her room. That will help her to keep contact with family members; friends and also she can easily use it for her studies.
Au Pairs should be treated as a family member and not as an employee.
Duty hours for an au pair are regarded as those hours during which they are required to be available and are not free to leave the house or
pursue their own activities. They are considered to be on duty if they are required to be in the home or with the children even if they are not
actively involved in caring for the children, for instance if the children are sleeping.
The Host Family should allow the Au Pair to attend language classes and participate in cultural opportunities as the primary function of the
program is cultural exchange. The au pair shall receive two free days each week.
Two evenings babysitting per week are included as part of the programme. Additional pocket money should be paid for any additional
evenings apart from this.
Whilst in the UK, au pairs will usually be covered by the National Health Service and the host family should register the au pair with the
family doctor if possible.
Au Pairs are helping with light household duties, but they can not be in full charge of the houshold duties. Also heavy cleaning must be
done by a cleaner.
The au pair / agency is required to pay the travelling cost to and from the UK, unless the family chooses to fund this. If the Host Family can
not pick up the Au Pair from the airport in person, usually they contribute to the Au Pair s travel within the UK.
EU au pairs visiting the UK do not need additional health insurance as they are entitled to use the National Health Service. The au pair may
also wish to take out additional travel insurance to cover loss of belongings, repatriation in case of accident, death etc.
Language School and Costs:
Au pairs must be given enough time to attend language school. There are many courses in the UK for EU members, which are more
affordable due to government funding. These are usually ESOL classes. If an au pair chooses to go to a private school, they must bear
their own cost, unless the family offers to fund this.
The Host Family:
Each agency shall ensure that the family is suitable to host an au pair and understands the nature of the au pair programme, and that the
au pair is there to help the family and is not in charge of the house.
Au Pairs and Driving:
1. Check that your au pair has a current driving licence with no convictions, and find out how long she/he has been driving.
2. If your au pair is from an EU* or EEA* country then she / he can use her licence to drive in the UK.
3. Au pairs from most other countries outside the EU or EEA can drive for up to 12 months provided they have a full licence which remains
valid. To carry on driving after 12 months they must have obtained a provisional British licence and passed a British driving test before the
12 months elapses. For more information visit http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Motoring/DriverLicensing/DrivingInGbOnAForeignLicence/DG_
4. It is essential to ensure you are satisfied with your au pair s driving skills before allowing her/him to drive your children. The au pair will
probably be used to driving on the opposite side of the road and may be used to quieter roads. BAPAA recommends that host families
arrange a course of driving lessons for their au pair to make sure he or she is safe and understands our highway code. Ensure that the
driving instructor reports back to you when he/she feels the au pair has reached the correct degree of confidence required.
1. The family is responsible for insuring the au pair to drive the family car. Your au pair should only agree to drive if he/she is satisfied that
they are insured. Please show your au pair evidence that he/she is included on your motor insurance policy before they drive in the UK for
the first time.
2. Au pairs under 25 will be more expensive to insure than those aged between 25-27.
3. Au pairs from within the European Union are cheaper to insure with some insurance companies than those from other countries.
4. If your au pair has an accident in your car you will lose your no claims bonus so it may be worth insuring your no claims bonus.
5. Some families put their au pair on their company car policy to save the cost of insurance.
*Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Irish
Republic, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain,
Sweden, United Kingdom. (Iceland, Liechenstein and Norway are not members of the European Union (EU) but citizens of these countries
have the same rights to enter, live in and work in the UK as EU citizens. Switzerland is not in the EEA but an international treaty means
that Swiss nationals have similar rights.)