The Au Pair Program is regulated by the US DOS and your local au pair agency, Go Au Pair, sponsors your au pair’s Visa and handles all the logistics for you! I am Joan Lowell, your Local Area Representative (LAR) for Go Au Pair – contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 401.309.1925 with your questions about an au pair childcare experience for your family.
One part of the au pair experience is exploring the country and participating in local cultural and social events. As your LAR, I plan at least six activities each year to help my local au pairs explore the Ocean State (RI), nearby Constitution State (CT) and of course, the Bay State (MA). So far this year, we have been ice skating, kite flying at our local park and zoo, hiking at the beach, and to an evening of sights and sounds at WaterFire. We still have plans for apple picking and cider tasting, a colorful 5K walk/run/stroll, and more! Why not register at http://www.goaupair.com/Providence (it’s free) and get started interviewing qualified candidates today?
Another part of the experience is the au pair exploring our great country on his or her own or with new friends. Each au pair is entitled to two weeks paid vacation during their one year placement. How great is that? The Host Family does need to find alternate childcare plans for a total of 14 days during their cultural childcare experience in order for their au pair to take his or her well-earned vacation time.
I am often asked how this vacation time works. The answer is another one of those gray areas. The regulations state two weeks paid vacation and Go Au Pair interprets this to mean 14 days, generally 10 weekdays and 4 weekend days. There are a number of ways an au pair can arrange to take this time, but in any event, the vacation days and times must be mutually-agreed upon by the Host Family and au pair, but not necessarily at the beginning of the placement.
Many au pairs choose to take one week after the first four to six months and save the second week for the last half of the year. Some families may be taking family trips without the au pair and will let the au pair have that as his or her vacation time. Still others arrange to take several smaller vacations over the course of the year, totaling the 14 days. Whatever the arrangement, it is important to discuss your intentions early and often, so as not to cause miscommunication or misunderstanding.
Finally, some Host Families like to take their au pair on vacation with them. If the au pair is going to be working on the trip, caring for the children in some capacity, it is not considered vacation time for the au pair. The au pair may have his or her one and a half consecutive days off while on a family vacation, but if they cannot leave or have free time, the days off would be owed upon returning home. Think of it this way, taking your au pair on vacation may be nice (by the way, he or she should still have a private room), but it he or she is expected to be on duty, it isn’t a real vacation for them!
Please consider a cultural childcare experience for your family in the coming year. Go Au Pair Providence is offering a great Locals Only Discount, bringing the average hourly cost of hosting your next au pair down as low as $7.53 per hour for up to 45 hours per week! Register online today or contact me with your questions!