Au Pairs travel abroad expecting to be the new member of a host family. As part of the stay, they are expected to take care of the children, drive them to school, prepare snacks for them and of course, help to keep the house clean like any other family member would do. However, cleaning can very soon turn into a problem between the hosts and their guests.

Although Au Pairs know that they will be helping with the household, some families do not specify the extent of this chores. In some cases, many Au Pairs end up spending more time cleaning than with the children. In other, the Au Pair does not agree to help with the household and the family feels that she/he is not doing his/her job. Both situations might cause problems and lead to an early contract termination. To avoid this, we have made a list of the most common Au Pair chores and the duties of a housekeeper.

Au Pair chores: What can the Au Pair do

Regarding the household duties, an Au Pair can help with:

  • Washing the dishes or putting them in the dishwasher
  • Keeping the children’s bedrooms clean
  • Driving the kids to school and other activities
  • Doing the kids laundry and ironing their clothes
  • Cooking for the children and once in a while for the family
  • Cleaning the kitchen after cooking
  • Vacuuming (shared spaces, i.e the living room)

The Au Pair’s chores do not include:

  • Cleaning windows
  • Cooking daily for the family
  • Cleaning the parent’s bedroom or bathroom
  • Doing the parent’s laundry/ironing their clothes
  • Taking care of the garden
  • Washing the car

Au Pair v.s Housekeeper

The main difference between an Au Pair and a housekeeper are:

  • The Au Pair comes from abroad while the housekeeper can be a local
  • Au Pairs offer a cultural exchange
  • Housekeepers get a salary, which should be at least the minimum wage in the host country. Au Pairs get pocket money which is around 200-450 euros each month.
  • The Au Pair program has specific rules and regulations.
  • Au Pairs are between 18-30 years old while there is no age limit to be a housekeeper.
  • The main duty of a housekeeper is to keep the house clean and in order. On the contrary,  the Au Pair chores are related to childcare and bringing the children closer to a new culture.
  • Au Pairs live with the Host Family while housekeepers usually don’t.
  • Housekeepers are considered employees while an Au Pair should be a member of the family.

If you want to become a Host Family do not hesitate and join us on!