The following information details some of the most frequently asked questions.

We invite all families considering our service to contact us so we can answer your questions which are unique to your family, location, children's age/s and other requirements.

I am considering an 'onshore Au Pair", is there anything I need to consider?

Onshore Au Pairs are already in Australia so can start at quite short notice. If you are considering an onshore Au Pair, please remember that you need to cover the one-way costs for the Au Pair to travel to your fmaily. For an example onshore Au Pairs may be based in another state or territory.

Can we pay the Placement Fee after our Au pair starts?

Your Placement Fee is due 1 month prior to your Au Pair's arrival or for faster placements, upon receipt.

While we understand families are busy,  the Placement Fee must be paid prior to your Au Pair transferring to your family. Non-payment will result in the immediate cancellation of your Au pair's placement. Please click hewre to read out terms.

What costs do I need to consider if my family hosts an Au pair?

You will need to consider the following costs: AIFS' fees - Service Fee (non-refundable) and the Placement Fee. The Placement Fee is due 1 month prior to your Au Pair's arrival. For faster placements, your invoice will be due upon receipt.

You will also need to cover the costs of pocket money, your Au pair's completion bonus and leave, full board throughout the placement and car insurance if your Au pair will be using your car. Click here for more information about costs to consider and here to read our Terms.

Who is AIFS?

The American Institute for Foreign Study (AIFS) and its family of companies organises cultural exchange programs throughout the world for more than 50,000 students and young people each year. Since we were founded in 1964, more than a million people have participated on an AIFS study or working-travel program.

AIFS opened in Melbourne in 1999 and in 2005 AIFS opened its Sydney office and student centre which also serves as the base for AIFS' regional headquarters. Each year, around between 3000-4000 adventurous young people will participate on an AIFS program to or from Australia. AIFS currently offers young Australians the opportunity to participate on Camp America or Au Pair in America. Our inbound options include Work & Travel, High School and Au Pair programs attracting young travellers from over 20 countries. For more information about AIFS in Australia please visit For more information about AIFS around the world please visit

What happens if the Au Pair gets sick or injured?

The Au Pairs are fully covered by medical and liability insurance for the duration of their stay with your family, however, if the Au Pair is unfit to help for a day(s), you will need to still pay the Au Pair a weekly pocket money according to the hours, most likely the minimum amount. If the Au Pair is seriously ill or injured for a longer period of time (weeks) and can't do anything and won't be able to resume her duties in a reasonable time frame, AIFS will assist with finding a replacement.

I know a young woman who would like to live and work as our Au Pair in Australia. Can you help if we both sign up with AIFS?

Yes, AIFS can assist with a pre-match situation. Please contact us for further information.

How much flexibility can I expect from an Au Pair?

As part of the AIFS Au Pair Application every Host Family is asked to complete a sample schedule so an Au Pair can understand what will be expected from them. Schedules frequently change so Au Pairs understand that flexibility is a key component to a successful placement, but also need some time to plan personal activities.

If it doesn't work out, what happens?

There is no warranty as to the satisfaction or the compatibility of any particular candidate as an Au Pair for a Host Family. AIFS will make endevour to resolve any difficulties regarding the placement. Please refer to our Terms & Conditions for details about our replacement and cancellation policy.

How many social activities do we as the Host Family have to offer the Au Pair?

Au Pairs join the AIFS program to complete a cultural exchange so it is expected that your Au pair will join in family activities when possible. This not only helps the Au Pair to get to know the family and your children, but to learn more about their new surroundings and Australia. Au Pairs are encourged to make friends in their local area and will normally use their days off to catch up with friends and explore the area/city in which they live.

I need more than 35 hours per week or care for my children. Can the Au Pair work more hours and if so what does it cost me?

AIFS Au Pairs may work up to 35 hours per week for a weekly stipend depending on their childcare experience and hours.

Are AIFS Au Pairs happy to help with housekeeping too?

All AIFS Au Pairs are happy to help with light household duties when those chores are childcare related, such as tidying the children's room, making their beds, preparing light lunches, cleaning up the kitchen after the preparation of meals or doing the children’s laundry. Au Pairs are not a substitute cleaner so ironing of parents clothing or house cleaning cannot be included in an Au Pair's duties.

Does AIFS have a Child Protection policy?

At AIFS Au Pair, we believe that adults in all aspects of children’s lives, whether parents or other carers have a moral and ethical responsibility to keep children safe and to protect them from harm and child abuse.

As Australia's only Child Wise accredited Au Pair agency, AIFS Au Pair actively supports measures towards child protection and child abuse prevention. AIFS Au Pair always considers and acts in the ‘best interests of the child’ principle as outlined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and this principle forms the basis for this AIFS Au Pair Child Protection Policy and Reporting Framework.

As an organisation in the Cultural Exchange sector offering in-home services, AIFS Au Pair has a place in ensuring that children are protected from harm and believes that all children have a right to be safe from abuse and neglect.

AIFS Au Pair child protection and safeguarding practices include:

  • This Child Protection Policy and Reporting Framework, annually reviewed and updated
  • A Code of Conduct for appropriate behaviour towards and around children
  • Materials displayed at our offices, on our website and advertising about Child protection and safeguarding
  • Child Safe recruitment and screening including a personal interview, reference and police checks, working with children check, arrival orientation containing a dedicated session on child protection and completion of an Australian paediatric first aid course.
  • Supervision, support and performance monitoring of Au Pairs by the AIFS Child Safety Officer. 
  • Professional Development Training in the Child Protection field for both office representatives and Au Pairs, creating an understanding including legal responsibilities and Duty of Care to children in Australia
  • An appointed Child Safety Officer
  • Child abuse complaints/reporting procedures; and
  • Quarterly and annual review of child protection policies, procedures and code of conduct, ensuring our company continues its child safe practices and has an appropriate continuous improvement process in place.

For a copy of our Child Protection Policy please contact us on 1300 889 067

What does it cost for our next Au Pair?

Many Families choose to become "Returning Families" to ensure a continuous level of care for their children. AIFS values your family's support and offers a $200 discount on the program fee when you apply for your next Au Pair. Click here for Returning Family Fees.

I want an Au Pair for a longer period of six months. Can you help me?

Many Au Pairs prefer an initial placement of 6 months however it is often the case that Au Pairs extend their placement. If you wish your Au Pair to extend their placement, please contact AIFS. We will be able to walk you through the steps as well as related costs for extending.

What kind of childcare experience do AIFS Au Pairs have?

Au Pairs must have a minimum of 200 referenced hours of childcare experience. This may include internships in kindergartens, as midwives, children's nurses, camp counsellors, sports coaches, babysitting, tutoring or caring for younger siblings. You can expect a motivated young woman or man with a genuine interest in children.

What is the age range of most AIFS Au Pairs?

AIFS Au Pairs are between 18 and 30 years of age although most Au Pairs are around 18-20 years old and participating on the program under a gap year. No matter what age, all AIFS Au Pairs have at least 200 hours of verified childcare experience and they have been carefully screened and interviewed before being accepted onto the program. Please remember that even with the relevant experience, as a young adult they will need your instructions and guidance, particularly in the first few weeks of the placement.

Can AIFS Au Pairs drive in Australia?

Yes, almost every AIFS Au Pair has an International Driver's License and can assist for example with the school runs or with driving the children sporting or other afternoon/weekend activities. It is the responsibility of the Host Family to assess the driving ability of the Au Pair before granting permission to operate a vehicle and we recommend that you enrol your Au Pair in at least one driving lesson. Please be aware that most Au Pairs come from right-hand-side traffic countries. Please be mindful that some Au Pairs, depending of their home country, don't have experience with driving automatic cars.

Under the Terms of the Program, If the Au Pair is required to use a motor vehicle, the Host Family will provide comprehensive vehicle insurance coverage for the Au Pair, and have the Au Pair listed as a driver on the insurance policy of all vehicles which the Au Pair will use.

The Host Family agrees to limit any claim against the Au Pair for uninsured damages resulting in the negligent operation of a motor vehicle to a maximum of AUD$1,000. In the event of an insurance claim, the Host Family will be responsible for paying any excess relating to the claim. The Host Family will be liable to pay 100% of any damages if the Au Pair is not listed on the vehicle’s insurance cover.

How long does it take to find an Au Pair for my family after I apply?

Generally, we require 4-8 weeks notice to find an Au Pair for your family. Au Pairs coming from countries other than Germany normally can arrive in Australia at much shorter notice.

The matching process is highly time-intensive to ensure that the Au Pair matches the needs of your family, and that you are the family that will suit the profile the Au pair has given us. AIFS' Au Pairs are living in their respective home country when we are matching them with a Host Family. After the placement is finalised flights and visas must be arranged.