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Au pairs - pocket money and do we then pay for language lessons?

(14 Posts)
stressed2007 Fri 10-Oct-08 10:18:32

Hi - looks like our 3rd au pair may be on her way. Quick question - we have offered to pay £90 a week which I think is quite generous (we are in Hertfordshire/borders of London) - maybe I am wrong? however she has now said she wants language lessons too which are about £280 a term (this is the only college course she can get on)- are we expected to pay for these too? Thanks

Weegle Fri 10-Oct-08 10:26:14

That's really between you and the AP. How many hours are you asking her to do? I would say that was good pocket money for the standard 25 hours.

We pay for language classes but we pay less pocket money. We do this as an incentive to get AP's out our way! Ours are £125 per term at the moment.

You could do a compromise of 50/50, or whatever suits both parties.

stressed2007 Fri 10-Oct-08 10:34:12

it varies with our ladies but they probably do more like 35 but no housework at all or babysitting (neither of ours wanted to do any housework when they got here). What do you pay then?

Kathyis6incheshigh Fri 10-Oct-08 10:39:07

That's expensive - twice as much as we are expecting to pay.

The agency we used says an au pair shouldn't be expected to spend more than about £10 a week on language lessons, so if you were paying the average pocket money it would be reasonable for you to top them up. However you are already paying her £20-30 more than the standard rate.

Are these lessons expensive because they are more than 4 hours a week (which seems to be the standard for £130ish courses) or because someone is making a lot of money out of them? If she's not getting more lessons than the standard it seems a bit harsh that she has to spend a lot on them and I would be inclined to be generous. OTOH if she's getting more lessons than the average au pair maybe it's reasonable she spends more of her pocket money on them.

Either way a compromise is probably a good idea.

Kathyis6incheshigh Fri 10-Oct-08 10:40:15

when I say 'twice as much' I mean the lesson cost, not the au pair pocket money - ours gets £60 which is at the lower end but she hasn't started her classes yet and we will pay about half the cost plus her bus fares.

Julesnobrain Fri 10-Oct-08 18:08:03

We pay £80 a week for 35 hours and do not pay for lessons, We're in London. I do however offer to loan them the money and they can then pay me back over x weeks as I found the AP's often don't have that much cash up front.

TheRealMrsJohnSimm Fri 10-Oct-08 18:34:38

We pay £65 per week for 25 hours (plus 2 nights babysitting - altho reality is more like twice a month!) and we usually offer to pay for first course on successful completion and then after that its up to them to pay.

googgly Fri 10-Oct-08 20:11:57

I'd wait and see whether you like ap first. If she's awful and you decide to get rid it would be really annoying to have shelled out a lot of cash.

jura Fri 10-Oct-08 20:36:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Quattrocento Fri 10-Oct-08 20:41:15

I pay £65 a week plus mobile phone and travelcard £100 a month plus language lessons of £300 a term. It helps them to get out of the house and make friends.

dannyb Sun 12-Oct-08 08:14:11

YOu are not expected to pay for language school and the agencies I have used have gone mad when I have said that I was thinking of contributing. I pay £70 a week in london but she has the dossiest job. 2 hours cleaning twice a week, one hour ironing, a few hours playing with the kids and certainly no more than 22 hours a week work even though I pay her for 25 hours. I only really need her to help me out if work hours are unpredictable and for babysitting as we do like to go out in the evening so I would resent paying more.

SqueakyPop Sun 12-Oct-08 08:39:13

No, you are not expected to pay for language classes.

If you want to contribute, then do not pay up front or the full amount. She is more ikely to stick it out if she pays for it herself. You could pay for her exam fee at the end of the course, if you want to be generous.

moeaw Sun 12-Oct-08 09:38:48

We pay the maximum at 105 per week but we're in London and its for 35 hours but don't contribute towards language lessons. 90 is good also as I know a lot of families pay less.

We've found that a lot of the London language schools are very expensive (rip off!) so its a real incentive for au pairs to find the type of class they need at a reasonable price and travel if necessary if they pay themselves. For example if they are intending to take exams to go to University here (our last au pair has stayed in London to go to University) or just improve their English.

We keep extra incentives for things like paying towards travel home at Christmas and New Year as we want them to spend the time as a child in their own family rather than ours..

NewTeacher Mon 13-Oct-08 15:39:03

We pay £65 a week for 25 hours and an extra £20 for cleaning.

You are not expected to pay for language classes, the whole point is for them to come to the UK as an au pair to learn English how they learn it is their responsibility.

Whereabouts in Herts are you? My AP goes to language classes on our High St at WORKNET and they are free for residents (you provide a letter to state they are living with you). Its on Shenley Rd in BOrehamwood if that is anywhere near you. Or find out out if there is a worknet near you.

HTH

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