Become an Au pair

The Au pair programme is a cultural exchange programme based around childcare  An Au pair is a young person, male or female and aged 18 – 30 who provides childcare in exchange for living with a family in the UK or abroad. Au Pairs usually have a strong desire to improve their English while learning about a new culture. As a live in Au pair you will be welcomed as part of the family; invited to eat with the family, be invited on days out and have your own private bedroom.

Working hours and pocket money

If you are from an EU country, you could be on duty from 25 – 30 hours per week, divided over 5 days plus 1-2 evenings babysitting a week. An Au Pair Plus works up to 35 hours per week, again over 5 days a week, plus up to two evenings babysitting. Our recommended minimum weekly pocket money ranges are (including 1-2 evenings babysitting) although sometimes this varies.

–         £85 for 25 hours

–         £110 for 30 hours

–         £130 for 35 hours

–          Additional evening babysitting – a minimum of £3.50 per hour

An Au pair has two free days per week and one full weekend off per month.

Holiday entitlementAu pair making a cake

In addition to the two full days off per week, an Au pair is entitled to 28 days paid holiday for every 12 month period, including our Public Holidays. Holidays should be mutually agreed between you and your host family with pocket money paid during this time. We would be happy to help you calculate your holiday entitlement for placements less than a duration.

Notice period

Either you or the host family can terminate the agreement by giving an obligatory two weeks notice if for any reason things are not working out or you have to return home for important personal reasons.


Before arriving in the UK, you will need to apply for a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC or E111) entitling you to obtain free state care or at a reduced cost. You may also decide to arrange your own private travel insurance in addition.

An Au pair’s duties

Being an Au pair gives a young person a special opportunity to learn about British culture and to drastically improve your language skills through interaction with the children that you will be helping take care of.  If you become an Au pair, you’ll also help with light housekeeping. Duties can vary and will depend on the particular needs of your family but your main task is to help with the children.

Acceptable light housework tasks:

  • washing dishes, including loading and unloading dishwasher
  • preparing simple meals for children
  • keeping the kitchen tidy and clean, including sweeping and mopping floors
  • loading and unloading laundry into washing machine
  • ironing for the children
  • putting fresh laundry away
  • vacuuming
  • dusting
  • making and changing children’s beds
  • cleaning children’s bathroom
  • keeping their own bedroom/bathroom clean and tidy
  • light shopping (not the weekly grocery shop)
  • walking and feeding pets
  • emptying bins

Tasks considered unsuitable for an Au pair:

  • gardening
  • window cleaning
  • spring cleaning
  • cleaning the oven, other than simple wiping out
  • washing carpets
  • washing the car
  • weekly grocery shopping
  • pet training
  • clearing up after untrained pets
  • making parents’ bed
  • cleaning parents’ bathroom
  • polishing silver and brassware
  • cooking the family meal, unless the Au pair enjoys cooking and chooses to do this

Why work with our Au Pair Agency?

We offer a highly personalised, professional and individual service and will want to get to know you well before recommending one of our host families to you. We have au pair opportunities locally in Northamptonshire, or you could be an Au pair in London or even abroad. Once you find a family you really like and you are offered a placement, we prepare a written offer covering all the important details such as: pocket money, hours, holidays and help expected etc. and which is then mutually agreed. Of course, we offer our full ongoing support to you during the whole placement and will invite you to join our social network and special Au pair events.

Antler Languages Ltd – Our English Academy

At our language school in Oundle, we offer the highest quality English tuition and prepare students for the internationally recognised Cambridge English exams at our Certified Preparation Centre. This is a fantastic focus to your stay in the UK and a professional enhancement to your CV and as a result we attract high calibre candidates to our Au pair programme.

Some families choose to contribute towards a language course although this is far from obligatory and you should be prepared to fund your own classes (budget £25 per week plus Cambridge English course book) . Attending classes is a great way to make some new friends and is a really worthwhile focus during your Au pair placement.

We also offer you a Welcome Pack with details of useful websites and things to do and places to visit during your stay as a live in Au pair.

If you would like to register as an Au Pair, please complete our Registration Form here.