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AIBU to expect more than £3.60 per hour as an aupair plus?

(60 Posts)
navyeyelasH Thu 24-Jul-08 20:28:57

Hey everyone, just wanted to get a second opinion. I work as a nanny and have a load of childcare experience. The family I nanny for have decided (a bit short notice) that they are going away for 2 weeks as of Saturday 25th July (I get still get paid).

I normally arrange to work while they are away as I would die of boredom otherwise but as they only decided last minute I have been struggling to find some work. So I decided to look on an au-pair site - I registered my details and pretty instantly got a load of interest.

There was one woman I liked the sound of and I emailed her explaining I am not an au-pair and available for 2 weeks (she is from Italy holidaying in St Agnes for 2 weeks). By the sound of it she wants me to do the sort of work I do as a nanny and for 25-35 hours per week.

I will be staying with the family in their holiday home and I will be eating with them (I'll eat what I'm given not fussy). The little boy is three and she wants me to teach him a bit of English, do his laundry and ironing, keep him entertained, cook meals for the little one and evening meals for all of us. Which is fine by me but for £90 a week, is that right hmm?

I wasn't expecting a normal nanny wage obviously as she was looking for an aupair initially. But £90 seems like a joke?!

thisisyesterday Thu 24-Jul-08 20:33:50

well presumably it's minimum wage?
you've advertised as an au pair, on an au pair site. so it's irrelevant if you're a qualified nanny surely?

sarah293 Thu 24-Jul-08 20:34:28

Message withdrawn

electricluluarella Thu 24-Jul-08 20:35:31

i thought au pairs got a small amount of money as they have room and board and are usually here to learn english ? and do some light houswork etc..

noonki Thu 24-Jul-08 20:36:18

I don't know what au pairs are meant to get but that sounds ridiculously low,

if I worked for 35 hours in a week

after I paid my rent and food I would expect far more than 90 quid left over

QuintessentialShadows Thu 24-Jul-08 20:37:19

Minimum wage does not apply to au pairs. They get food and board, plenty of time off to study etc.

By the sounds of it, you get your tickets paid for you, and plenty of time off?

I agree £90 per week seem little, even for a holiday au pair.

But, what about evening babysitting?

QuintessentialShadows Thu 24-Jul-08 20:39:06

Oh, my friend paid her holiday au pair £300 per week. This included help on the flights, tidying, and help preparing family meal, and tidy up after. She also ate with the family, and went jogging with my friend while her dh minded the kids. smile

thisisyesterday Thu 24-Jul-08 20:39:18

I actually think that what we think is irrelevant.

you have 3 choices:

take the job and the £90 a week.
ask them if they'll give you more.
look for something else.

googgly Thu 24-Jul-08 20:44:36

90 per week is normal, or a bit generous, for an au pair. Au pairs are usually unqualified young people, looking for a way to live in a country without paying. It's not a job.

ClareVoiant Thu 24-Jul-08 20:45:42

it doesn't seem much... but if you want to work, are going to a holiday destination, being fed, given a room, have time off etc and still being paid by your nanny family as well then is it really that bad?

if you stayed at home then you'd have to feed yourself for 2 weeks, not get to meet interesting people, not get to go to beach and lovely st. agnes.

doesnt sound all that bad to me smile

navyeyelasH Thu 24-Jul-08 20:49:32

Well I have turned the job down I asked for £150 for a 25 hour week and no charge for babysitting in the evening. There is no flight cost as I'm in Bristol and they are going to St Agnes which is in Cornwall and I am paying for my own train ticket down there £55.

thisisyesterdayI appreciate that the fact I am experienced as a nanny rather than aupair is irrelevant and I did not expect to make a nannies wage. But at the same time I did not think an au pairs job was so low paid for effectively doing the same job as a nanny? I thought you weren't supposed to even give au pairs sole charge of toddlers? I don't really know a lot about the au pair world though hence me asking if IABU.

electricluluarella Thu 24-Jul-08 20:52:19

au pairs don;t do the same as a nanny ? i thought they were mostly at college, and did some childcare and little or no sole responsibility. and did nsome housework etc in return for bed and board.

gooseegg Thu 24-Jul-08 20:54:47

I think you are possibly over-qualified for the job she is offering.

In Cornwall the going rate for a standard au pair who does no more than 25hrs a week of a mixture of light housework and child care is £60.

£30 for an extra 10hrs is therefore reasonable.

Young students down here looking to supplement their loans would love to earn an extra £180 for two week's work. My dd (first year uni student with student debts) is currently in Germany working as an au pair for 55 euros/week and loving it.

I will also have a German uni teaching student coming to be my ds' au pair soon. She is thrilled to have the chance to live board and lodge free with an English family to help improve her English whilst earning some pocket money.

ThatBigGermanPrison Thu 24-Jul-08 20:56:20

If you are advertising as an au pair, on an au pair's site, you should expect to be treated as an au pair, and this is how au pairs get treated.

ThatBigGermanPrison Thu 24-Jul-08 20:57:56

3 year old not a toddler, 3 year old is preschool age.

navyeyelasH Thu 24-Jul-08 20:58:23

Plus I know that I wouldn't get to have it as a "holiday" I am not the sort of person who could say, "tut tut tut I've done my 25 hours I'm off to the beach now". I just couldn't do that at all especially if they really needed help. My own fault though!

googgly did you read that the family were from Italy come here to England? Also they did wants qualifications, such as first aid & crb and 2 years childcare experience.

ClareVoiant if I stayed home I could make what the family are offering in a single day. I'm more shocked in a "is this typical au-pair wage and roles" way rather than a "I'm outraged, I so amazing I deserve more than £90" way. If that makes any sense at all? The money is not that important I would rather feel like I was helping out a nice friendly family than go work for someone who is horrid but could pay millions. It just seems than £90 is too low, not just for me but for anyone for an holiday au-pair.

I do hope they find someone though. Maybe an aupair already in this current whose family are going away without them? Or does that not happen.

QuintessentialShadows That seems a lot! £300 for a week. I wasn't expecting that sort of rate, I bet her au-pair must be very good though.

kittywise Thu 24-Jul-08 20:58:38

aupairs aren't paid wages. They get an allowance for helping out in exchange for food and board.

If you are nanny bring paid nanny wages then you are dealing with tax and the like. As an au pair you are not considered to be 'working'.

£90 is ok. I have an au pair starting Sep she will be doing 30-35 hrs a week for £100.

googgly Thu 24-Jul-08 21:06:38

I hadn't read that, but then that's even more generous. I live in Italy and standard here for aps is 80-90 euros pw. People ask for qualifications as much to filtre the applicants as anything else. Also to make people remember that they are not just going on holiday, but agreeing to spend 25 hours a week looking after children.

QuintessentialShadows Thu 24-Jul-08 21:07:07

She was like you a professional nanny. The journey was a combination of flights, and looooong car journey. She was more like a holiday housekeeper, I would say.

navyeyelasH Thu 24-Jul-08 21:08:23

TheBigGermanPrison I appreciate that, my point is that I did not think holiday au-pairs were paid so little. QuintessentialShadows says her friend pair her holiday au-pair £300 for 1 week. I'm not expecting a nanny wage! I did not realise three year olds could be left in sole charge but I guess you are right.

gooseeg yes I am probably overqualified a little and I obviously expected a rate that reflected her advertising on an au-pair site the point is that I did not expect it to be so little. What does a standard au-pair actaully do though? Those things I have outlined? More, less? I am not sure that is why I asked here.

I think I would feel differently if I was going to a different country and could see it as more of a chance to have a "free" holiday. I suppose then it would be quite a good deal really. In my head I wont be living anywhere for free as I still have a mortgage to pay, maybe that is the problem!

Also I think that programme hire help or whatever it's called on channel 4 has made me scared they will treat me like a slave and pay me peanuts! blush

blueshoes Thu 24-Jul-08 21:11:28

£90 per week is about right for the hours you are required to cope, for the work you are asked to do IF you were the typical aupair ie untrained person in her late teens to twenties who wants the opportunity to learn English or have a cultural experience in a country she would not otherwise be able to afford the rent or board. She would do childcare and housework but would typically need a lot of handholding at the start.

The £90 is pocket money, not a living wage. After all, food and board is a big part of the package for an aupair.

In your case, you are so not an aupair. I think you are entitled to ask for something closer to a live-in nanny wage because:

- You are qualified and can hit the ground running something absolutely essential for a 2 week job.

- You would presumably have a lot of sole charge of the 3 year old almost immediately, a responsibility most aupairs would not be given so early on.

- Most importantly, she will not be able to find any UK-born person in Cornwall who would do this for 2 weeks for anything less than full babysitting rate. And there is no 'aupair' in the UK who would want this job because it is only for 2 weeks and therefore by its nature completely incompatible with that of an aupair.

Lots of 'aupairs', even unqualified, try to get nanny rates once they have been in the UK and get wise to things. In your case, don't sell yourself short smile

navyeyelasH Thu 24-Jul-08 21:18:34

Thank you blueshoes you have stopped me from thinking I am going mad! My partner thought I was bonkers when I offered £150 (but TBH I'd rather not be bored for 2 weeks!) and then when people started saying £90 was a very good deal I should think myself lucky I started to feel a bit hmm.

I think the distinction is that an normal au-pair does the work to get something - ie experience of a new country / new language. But this would not be true in my case nor in the case of any other applicants as the advert explicitly stated you must have very good English and live in England at the moment.

If this was a long term post then yes I feel £90 is fine even generous but for what they want I do not feel it is a fair wage.

TheSmallClanger Thu 24-Jul-08 22:09:39

Aren't most au pair positions for much shorter hours than the OP describes? £90 for that number of hours is a bit mean.

expatinscotland Thu 24-Jul-08 22:21:44

£90 for the week is taking the piss for all that work.

i'd tell her thanks but no thanks.

hatwoman Thu 24-Jul-08 22:26:56

£90. for a week. blimey. I'm off to find an au pair for my next holiday.

except I'm not because I have no idea when my next holiday is and I quite like spending them with my kids and not spending them with strangers. but it was a nice idea. for a minute.

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