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Au pair pay question

(11 Posts)
FeatheredHeart Fri 16-Oct-09 22:10:35

We have had a new au pair for 2 weeks who has been fabulous in every respect.

She arrived just as we were a) moving from our granny flat to the upstairs house and b)looking for a new tenant for the granny flat. I have to do all the preparations for both on my own and look after a toddler and 5mo. She did know the circumstances before she arrived. We then found a tenant the week she arrived but he wanted to move in the following week.

She offered to help in what would've been her free time so we could get everything done and she has pitched in non stop (besides mealbreaks) 12-13 hours a day every day Mon - Thurs doing things way beyond what her contract says, like helping lug mattresses up 3 flights of stairs. Today we all went out for the afternoon but she still did about 7 hours besides that.

I offered her her time off this week but she said she could see all that needed to be done and was happy to help. I couldn't have done it without her.

She has a clear package / duties summed up in £70pw for 25 hours, one day out per week with us, weekends off and own room and bathroom. Next week we will go back to 25 hours.

My question is how much should I give her for her work this week? I want her to know we really appreciate what she's done. Whatever I give her, I will also be able to include an extra day off next week.

DadInsteadofMum Fri 16-Oct-09 22:23:01

How much do you want to pay them?

I have two rates of ay term time and school holidays, when they do extra (for example if I have to go away overnight) in term time I pay the holiday rate.

Summersoon Fri 16-Oct-09 22:32:33

£100 extra? Plus the extra day off.

Great to hear you appear to have struck gold with your new AP!

Treeesa Fri 16-Oct-09 22:37:08

Why give money...?

Show your appreciation by buying her something realy nice that she might appreciate.. or taking her somewhere for a treat..

I'm sure she'll remember this type of gesture from you more than equating something always into cash terms..

Always worked for us..

FeatheredHeart Fri 16-Oct-09 22:41:10

Yes, that's pretty much what I had in mind Summersoon. Probably £180.

Interesting idea DIOM.

For the future...I think I saw somewhere someone say that extra a/p hours (beyond 25) are £4/hr. Is that a norm for people here?

Or do you pay AP+ rate (£100?) if they do 35hrs one week? Then some other rate for any hours above that?

FeatheredHeart Fri 16-Oct-09 22:42:57

Good idea Treesa but it's early days so not sure what she'd like and we do already take her and the kids somewhere once a week and she has a large say in where we go. For the kind of work she's put in I'm pretty sure it's cash she's going to appreciate.

Treeesa Fri 16-Oct-09 23:49:10

It's difficult one but I know that some of my au pairs would have been really insulted for me to just offer money like that though. They would do it for me because they genuinely wanted to - and as you put your au pair said she was happy to help..

As you say it's early days but it can be easy to hurt someone's feelings..

If money is always given it also creates an expectation for the next time that any extra hours is always more money... It's all about give and take - in this case she gave an awful lot more than just the normal give and take - but she wanted to make a good first impression - and she obviously succeeded..

We can cheapen relationships by always thinking that gving money will be appreciated. Would you offer your best friend or your family cash for helping you...?

If it were me I'd write a hand written card of appreciation, buy her a huge box of choccies and tell her that you'd like her to name anywhere she'd like to go to visit and you'll make arrangements. If it has to be cash equivalent then why not buy her Christmas flight home now if she's not already organised it and present it to her as a token..

StillSquiffy Sat 17-Oct-09 09:28:52

I would offer her a return flight home as a thank you.

Summersoon Sat 17-Oct-09 13:33:57

I am surprised that some people here think that AP's would be insulted by being offered money - I would have thought that, if you are being paid £70 a week, or even £170 a week, an extra at all would come very handy indeed, especially in the run-up to Christmas.
Flights home - hmm yes - but that could work out very expensive - the airlines seem to put up prices especially for the occasion, not that I blame them

frakula Sat 17-Oct-09 14:20:56

In that situation I would have really appreciated being offered a flight home or, depending where she's from/what she's into, vouchers for a shop - maybe Topshop or another 'respected' British fashion store, Boots (because cosmetics etc can be REALLY expensive on the continent) or some theatre tickets/a day out. Try and find out in casual conversation what her interests are and give her something related and personal.

I do agree that cold hard cash isn't be best way forward, although it would probably still be appreciated. A thoughtful present would be much better - possibly vouchers in a card with a big box of chocolates or some nice bath stuff. The nicest bonus I got I thought was a box of chocs and when I opened the card it had vouchers in.

argento Sun 18-Oct-09 14:35:26

I would much rather have money than a gift or vouchers!

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