au pair

Au Pair stay cost: How much will it cost to become an Au Pair?

⏱ Reading time: 5 min.
The average cost of the Au Pair program varies depending on many factors: and other Au Pair’s expenses. 
How much does an Au Pair program cost? The Au Pair program cost ranges from 50 USD to 4000 USD. For more information, look at this table. If you wonder how much Au Pairs get paid, have a look at our post covering in details Au Pair wages.
Are you a Host Family? Read here: Au Pair cost for Host Families.
Au Pair cost
The Au Pair program is a great chance to experience another country in the most economical way. As a participant you will get accommodation, daily meals, and pocket money in exchange for your help with childcare. Nevertheless, as any other experience, the Au Pair program has certain costs you need to consider in advance. 

Video: What Are The Costs of Being an Au Pair?

In the following, Charlotte explains in a video what kind of costs you will have to pay as an au pair.

General Au Pair costs for candidates

This category of costs are applicable more or less to any Au Pair participant. They include:

1. Visa costs

Visa requirements differ for each participant depending on his/her citizenship. Though the Host Family will help their Au Pair with all the necessary documents, visa costs will be the participant’s responsibility. If you need visa, take a look at the post about common visa requirements. If you are planning to go to the USA, learn more about the J-1 Visa. Several countries also issue Working Holiday Visa for Au Pairs. 

2. Transportation costs

As a rule, travel costs are covered by the participants. We strongly recommend the Host Families to support their Au Pairs with travel costs, though it’s not their direct responsibility. Even if the Host Family decides to contribute, the Au Pair will cover the transportation costs initially. After his/her arrival abroad, the refund should be done in installments. For example, travel cost of 800$ could be repaid in 10 installments of 80$, for 10 months added to Au Pair’s pocket money.
Transportation Cost
Au Pair's travel - tips before going abroad
If you already found your perfect Host Family, now it's time to plan your trip to the host country! What should you keep in mind? Find out

In such countries like the USA and China, the ticket is covered by the Host Family - wholly or partially. If the Au Pair completes the whole stay in the US as written down in the contract, he/she can get a return ticket covered as well.  
We advise to discuss this question with your future Host Family and note down the important details in the Au Pair contract.  

3. Insurance

Au Pair cost
Health security plays an important role during the whole stay abroad. Your future Host Family can help you out with the insurance in the host country. Nevertheless, we recommend you to read more about insurance for Au Pairs. If you are a citizen of the European Union and you are planning to visit another EU country, read more about the European Health Insurance Card. Sometimes the Host Family offers to cover the insurance costs, but if it’s not the case, we advise Au Pairs to choose one on their own.

Cost of Au Pair program at a glance

Au Pair program costs for Au Pairs vary depending on the target host country and even the homeland of the Au Pair, which influences the cost of visa application (if the visa is mandatory). Nonetheless, we gathered for you the most important information in the following table:
Service Cost Is it mandatory? Keep in mind
Au Pair’s visa 0 - 200 USD No - it depends on your nationality and the host country you choose. If you are an EU citizen, you can enter every EU country without a visa. If it’s not the case, try our visa for Au Pairs tool and have a look at the Au Pair program all over the world posts You need to call the embassy or consulate of the host country in your homeland for specific information. According to the program rules, the visa cost should be covered by the Au Pair, but the family may reimburse you the money after your arrival (ask them about it)
Insurance 0 - 450 USD Yes, but it may be free of charge - if you are an EU citizen, you can apply for EHIC which lets you benefit of the standard medical service package in the host country, if it belongs to EU too. Otherwise, you need to choose a private insurance for Au Pairs. In cases of some host countries, the Host Family has to cover the price of your insurance. If it’s not the case, you can still ask the family to participate in the cost of your insurance. To learn more, read the detailed information about the program regulations in your host country.
Travel to host country 50 - 2000 USD
Yes! You need to reach the host country somehow, but the means of transportation and thus also the price depend on your decision.
The Host Family can participate in the cost of your travel, but don’t expect the family to pay for it in advance! You can discuss the travel cost with the family and ask if reimbursing after your arrival is possible.
Gifts for the Host Family 0 - 100 USD No, but it would be nice to bring a little something from your homeland with you. Gifts are not mandatory, but if you are looking for some ideas, have a look at our post about present ideas for Host Family.
Agency assistance 0 - 1000 USD No, although in case of some host countries (eg. USA, the Netherlands) you will need agency’s assistance to participate in the program. Have a look at the program descriptions all over the world and decide, if you need to cooperate with a full service Au Pair agency In majority of the cases,, which can be totally free of charge, will be a sufficient solution for you. Have a look at the Host Families registered with us and get your Au Pair Program started!

Specific costs

In addition to general costs that most Au Pairs have, there are some specific costs that depend on your preferences. 

Agency costs

Online matching agencies like let you find a Host Family at NO COST. As an Au Pair you can write free-form messages to Host Families for free! Most of them are able to read and reply to these immediately. On the other hand, visa and further formalities should be arranged by you after finding a suitable match. 
about - your online Au Pair agency
At you can find a reliable and trusted Host Family for free! Au Pairs don't need to pay anything to contact the Host Families. Learn more

If you would like to choose a full-service agency that will help you with the different procedures after finding a Host Family, they will charge you for these services. The costs depend on the agency. If you would like to participate in the Au Pair USA program, both you and Host Family have to work through a local agency. This will also involve additional cost depending on the agency.  

Miscellaneous costs

If you would like to travel during the holidays abroad or buy some personal things, you can cover these costs either with your pocket money or personal money. You can check the website Numbeo to find out costs of different products or compare the cost of living in your home city with the future host city. 
As a rule, the costs an Au Pair has to bear are really low compared to what she will get while living abroad with the Host Family. 
Free Registration as Candidate

Can an Au Pair have a second job?
It depends. If the Au Pair is an EU citizen and is staying within the EU, then he/she can have another job. For the rest of the cases, it depends on the visa the Au Pair holds, the amount of hours she already works and the specific labour laws of the Host Country
Can Au Pairs work more than 45 hours?
No. Every country has its own regulations for how many hours/week the Au Pair is allowed to work, and they correspond to a specific monthly pocket money. In some countries, like the USA, this includes extra babysitting hours. In other Host Countries it depends on the agreement between Au Pair and Host Family. 
Who should pay for the travel expenses?
We recommend Host Families to help Au Pairs with travel expenses, though it’s not their obligation to do so. In any case, the Au Pair needs to cover the travel costs initially. If the Host Family would like to support the Au Pair, they can repay the ticket price in monthly installments that will be added to the Au Pair's salary during 10 months. In the case of Au Pair USA and China, the ticket will be covered by the Host Family. We recommend to discuss this topic before the Au Pair’s arrival and note down the conditions in the Au Pair contract. Learn more about other Au Pair costs to participate in the program or Host Family costs for hosting an Au Pair.  

Au Pair: Who pays for the Au Pair language course?
Au Pair: Who pays for the Au Pair language course? Read More »
Visa requirements for the Au Pair program –
Visa requirements for the Au Pair program – Read More »
Au Pair salary: pocket money standard in different countries
Au Pair salary: pocket money standard in different countries Read More »
Au Pair travel tips before travelling abroad and during your stay
Au Pair travel tips before travelling abroad and during your stay Read More »
Au Pair responsibilities and duties: what should an Au Pair do?
Au Pair responsibilities and duties: what should an Au Pair do? Read More »
Au Pair Insurance - Make your Au Pair stay abroad safe
Au Pair Insurance - Make your Au Pair stay abroad safe Read More »

Pro Aupair