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Au Pairs in America

Au Pairs in America

Old Jan 10th 2007, 3:58 pm
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Default Au Pairs in America

I understand that agencies for Au Pairs are government controlled in order to ensure proper standards/visas etc.

I had also heard that the only way that these agencies can help you find an Au Pair in the USA is if you are a US Citizen or have a Green Card.

Is this true? Have any Expats on Non-resident visas been able to find an Au Pair to work/live with them?
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 4:13 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by William Shaw View Post
I understand that agencies for Au Pairs are government controlled in order to ensure proper standards/visas etc.

I had also heard that the only way that these agencies can help you find an Au Pair in the USA is if you are a US Citizen or have a Green Card.

Is this true? Have any Expats on Non-resident visas been able to find an Au Pair to work/live with them?
Now we are talking about one of my personal fantasies.

But no way I could sell it to the wife.

You have to be a Resident, which an Expat could be.
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 5:32 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by William Shaw View Post
I understand that agencies for Au Pairs are government controlled in order to ensure proper standards/visas etc.

I had also heard that the only way that these agencies can help you find an Au Pair in the USA is if you are a US Citizen or have a Green Card.

Is this true? Have any Expats on Non-resident visas been able to find an Au Pair to work/live with them?

I am sure that Ms. Louise Woodward would be able to fill you in on the Pros & Cons about being an Au Pair in the USA:scared:

Jim.
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 7:58 pm
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Exclamation Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by William Shaw View Post
I understand that agencies for Au Pairs are government controlled in order to ensure proper standards/visas etc.

I had also heard that the only way that these agencies can help you find an Au Pair in the USA is if you are a US Citizen or have a Green Card.

Is this true? Have any Expats on Non-resident visas been able to find an Au Pair to work/live with them?
You can be a resident. Just be willing to pay an agency a fee of around $5000 in the Tri-State area to bring an au-pair in from overseas (which should cover insurance, health/travel insurance, airfare and agency fees).

However - there can be quite a few pitfalls. The au-pair agencies love to promote to parents what a lovely cultural and enriching experience it is to share their home with a young person whose no. 1 aim is to spend "quality time" caring for children and with the side benefits that they will do some housework as well. Just look at the websites for Au-Pair Care, Au-Pair America etc.

Quite a few of the parents I've come across in our area have the impression that an au-pair is a much cheaper alternative than paying for a full-time or live in nanny whilst they commute to do their long hours at work. In our area a daily nanny costs around $600-$700 per week for illegals who don't have a driving licence, legal residents get more. An au-pair gets much less than this and allowed to drive by the DMV!

On the other hand.....many of the young people (mostly young women but a few young male au-pairs too) want to spend a lot of their time 'partying' - after all most countries allow drinking from the age of 18 - and they certainly don't want to spend all weekend babysitting as they like to meet up with other au-pairs.

I'm certain that when they apply to work as an au-pair they get caught up with the romance of spending some fun time abroad and getting a small wage to boot....and being just a 'mothers helper' rather than doing a professional job (but why should they, they're not professional nannies?!). My own daughter when on her Gap Year refused to even consider being an au-pair after seeing how hard some of the local families around here expect them to work. They must also be given time off to go and do a local course of study. Many of the au-pairs switch to another family as expectations (on both sides) are often very different.

My friend here had a nightmare with one au-pair; she got a Polish au-pair whom had fallen out with the host family and was looking for a new employer. My friend got suspicious as her little boy (one year old) seemed afraid of her, but there seemed to be no evidence of ill-treatment. Within a week, she drove my friend's leased car across a traffic junction without paying attention (whilst the children were in the car) and the rear side panel was badly damaged. The au-pair didn't seem at all bothered, so she was sent packing.

The next au-pair was even worse; my friend found her and interviewed her when she was back home on a visit to Australia and had to pay an agency thousands of $ to arrange the visa to bring her into the States.

This young lady (Holly - aged 20) was a strapping young farmgirl and seemed very enthusiastic at first and was a bit of a laugh. She had made friends with other au-pairs and started to stay out overnight at other towns during the weekends, and one day asked if she could have one of them over to stay the night at my friends house. This au-pair was a young Frenchman....and my friend had to listen to them having sex all night and the plaster was coming off the ceiling onto my friends bed LOL!

After a few weeks Holly was getting bored looking after two children aged 15 months and 5 years and was spending more and more time Instant Messaging to all her mates back home in OZ. My friend got home from work one evening and her daughter said "Mummy, my brother was in the toilet eating my poo".:scared: (She sometimes forgot to flush the toilet). When Holly was questioned she admitted that she was busy in a room downstairs on the internet, oblivious to what the toddler was doing. She was dispatched back to Australia...her room was in a disgusting state with rotting food, empty beer and wine bottles and discarded knickers piled up under the bed. My friend never managed to get any money back from the agency as they would have placed her with another family!

It's not all disastrous - another set of friends had a Japanese au-pair as they used to live in Tokyo and it worked really well; however she never had to do any housework (they had a cleaner coming in), the wife was a stay at home mum she was basically a mother's helper. She did have a minor car accident though.

I think you just need to have a liberal and open mind if you have an au-pair and it's hit-and-miss if it's going to turn out to be a beautiful thing or a chaotic experience!

For British Au-Pairs see here:

http://www.payaway.co.uk/aupairprin.shtml

Interesting article:

(In the UK and EU au-pairs are supposed to work for a max of 25 hours per week, over here approx 45 hours per week)

http://wjcohen.home.mindspring.com/o...ips/aupair.htm
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 10:02 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

My hubby as always wanted an au pair............. "a big au pair" boom boom !!!
sorry it had to be said....
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 10:24 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

I've been an au-pair myself and I wouldn't mind having one in the future.

I had a very good and a very bad experience . The first family was really lovely (very young too she was 33 and he was 25) and had a baby that turned 1 when I arrived. The also had 2 gorgeous dogs and they didn't expect anything from me other than looking after their baby and walking the dogs. They both worked full time so I didn't mind doing all the housework and having dinner ready for them when they got home (I didn't have any time to attend English lessons but I didn't mind, I was very happy with them). They really appreciated my work and were very kind in return, taking me everywhere with them (to visit places that I wanted to see, horse riding, out drinking, etc). When they moved away to the Peak District they told me that they would never get another au-pair because they were sure that they wouldn't find one as nice as myself (bless) and they just put their child in a nursery..

The second family was awful.. I don't feel like talking about them..

As I said having an au-pair is something that I would definitely consider..
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 10:28 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by anabella View Post
I've been an au-pair myself and I wouldn't mind having one in the future.
The second family was awful.. I don't feel like talking about them..

As I said having an au-pair is something that I would definitely consider..

How can you leave us hanging like that!!!
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 10:34 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by TouristTrap View Post
How can you leave us hanging like that!!!
Turn in next week...
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Old Jan 10th 2007, 10:46 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by TouristTrap View Post
How can you leave us hanging like that!!!
I mentioned something about them recently here (55):

http://britishexpats.com/forum/showt...=413998&page=3

I didn't give up without a fight (never do).. I tried really hard to get on with them and in fact eventually I won the child over (amazing what painting little plastic soldiers can achieve ) and I got on well with his mother.. but I couldn't stand his dad. There are people that we just can't get on with..
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Old Jan 11th 2007, 6:02 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by Boiler View Post
Now we are talking about one of my personal fantasies.

But no way I could sell it to the wife.

You have to be a Resident, which an Expat could be.
Not to worry mate... my wife won't let me have an au pair, or a pair of 'em either...*sniff*. I was thinking a Swede and a Spanish or Italian- for cultural exchange, learning the language(s), etc. My wife is sooooo against expanding my horizons.
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Old Jan 11th 2007, 6:07 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

I remember that one of the options that I was given was to go to a "family" that consisted of a man and a dog.. :scared: At the agency they also insisted that since I had a driver's license I should go to the US instead of the UK, but being that far away from my family was not an appealing option.. (sigh) So much for not wanting to come here
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Old Jan 11th 2007, 6:10 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

My friend and I did the Au Pair thing years ago.
A family in Germany with 3 kids.
We wondered why they needed 2 au pairs, soon found out .......they were little horrors
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Old Jan 11th 2007, 6:12 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by anabella View Post
I remember that one of the options that I was given was to go to a "family" that consisted of a man and a dog.. At the agency they also insisted that since I had a driver's license I should go to the US instead of the UK, but being that far away from my family was not an appealing option.. (sigh) So much for not wanting to come here
I have 2 dogs

Any link for this Agency?
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Old Jan 11th 2007, 6:15 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by Boiler View Post
I have 2 dogs

Any link for this Agency?

If you are really desperate I can do some research, I don't know if this agency is still there
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Old Jan 11th 2007, 6:19 pm
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Default Re: Au Pairs in America

Originally Posted by anabella View Post
If you are really desperate I can do some research, I don't know if this agency is still there
I went to a Comedy Night last night, the main acts parting comment was about needing to go back to his baby sitter.

Just fascinated to know how the Agency explained this 'position' away.
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