The only way to go to the US as an Au Pair is with a valid J-1 visa! This visa can only be obtained if the participant is placed through a US Department of State designated Au Pair program and thereby follows the J-1 visa rules.
Our partner agency in the United States, Agent Au Pair, is your way to legally enter the country as an Au Pair!
The US Department of State has strict rules regarding the Au Pair program. In order to become an Au Pair in the United States, the candidate will need a J-1 visa.
To apply for a legal J-1 Cultural Exchange Visitor Visa, the candidate needs the following documents:
A passport (valid until 6 months after your stay)
The DS 160 form
A biometric photo, 51 x 51 mm in size
The appointment confirmation
The DS 2019 form
Confirmation that the candidate paid the SEVIS fee
Confirmation that the candidate paid the visa fee ($160/120€)
The Au Pair needs to make an appointment at the closest US embassy or consulate to their hometown. Usually the applicant will get one within a couple of days. At the day of the appointment it is really important to think of all the documents needed, otherwise the applicant will have to get a new appointment.
At the embassy the applicant will present all the documents, have a small interview in English and fingerprints will be taken. The embassy will keep the participant’s passport for the visa. Within a week the passport including the visa will be sent to the Au Pair by mail.
Families and Au Pairs are part of the program for a year. Participants have the opportunity to extend their stay for another 6, 9 or 12 months.
Please, do not, under any circumstances, try to take part in the Au Pair program without an agency. It is illegal for families to invite someone to become their Au Pair and for an Au Pair to participate without an agency. It is not possible to participate with a Tourist Visa or ESTA form! Please follow the rules, otherwise you might be unable to enter the country or, if you make it into the US committing visa fraud, it could result in fines, deportation and you may not be approved for any future U.S. visas. Moreover, if you are not coming to the U.S. on the appropriate visa, you will have no support system available, such as the U.S. Department of State overseeing the program, the US agency and local representatives in your area.
Au Pair in the USA: information about the Au Pair program
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