Does the word au pair sound familiar to you? An au pair is a young person who moves to another country to live with a foreign family and takes care of their children. In exchange for these childcare and education services (such as teaching your mother tongue to the family’s children) for about 30 hours a week, the family provides housing, full board, and a weekly stipend.
Why work as an au pair in Spain?
Does the idea of being an au pair sound exciting? Many au pairs come to Spain every year to live a life-changing experience, learn Spanish and immerse themselves in the Spanish society and culture.
The reasons for working as an au pair in Spain are many:
- The Spanish language. Spanish is the second most spoken language globally by native speakers, a faithful ally to grow new professional, academic and personal opportunities in Spain and most Latin American countries.
- The climate. In Spain, we can find different types of climates. The climate of Northern Spanish cities has nothing to do with Southern Spanish towns, but as the saying goes – “variety is the spice of life”.
- The gastronomy. This is something Spanish people are proud of. If you want to bond quickly with Spanish people, enjoy and talk well about the food! Every city has its typical dishes, and they are all extraordinary.
- Spanish people. As it happens everywhere, everyone will be different, and you can’t expect all people from a particular country to behave the same (beware of stereotypes)! But in general, Spanish people are warm-hearted, welcoming, outgoing and friendly people.
- Rich culture & history. Civilization after civilization, from the Pre-Romans, the Celtic and the Iberians, to the Romans, Phoenicians, Carthaginians, the Greeks, and the Arabs, have made Spain what is it today. Living in Spain is like taking a journey to human history’s past, present, and future.
- Tourism. Spanish cities enclose boast many beautiful spots that delight both locals and tourists.
- Nightlife. The intense tourist activity of the country means that cities such as Madrid or Barcelona have nightlife like no other in the world.
What are some general requirements to be an au pair in Spain?
- You should be 18 to 30 years old.
- Being an EU national with English, French, or German as mother tongues or having a complete command of those languages (though people with other languages as mother tongue may be accepted as well).
- For non-EU nationals: only those whose mother tongue is English or Chinese and with private medical insurance for their stay in Spain.
- Having experience and interest in working with children.
- The initial length of the stay can’t exceed one year, which can be extended up to two years.
- Having elementary knowledge of Spanish.
- Not having a criminal record.
- Be in good health.
To know more general requirements to work as an au pair in Spain, we advise you to check specialized agencies that handle all the au pair formalities.
Do I need a visa to work as an au pair in Spain?
Au pairs from EU countries only need their ID or passport to work as au pairs in Spain. However, if their stay is longer than three months, they must register with the Central Register of Foreign Nationals. Au pairs coming from some non-EU countries do not need a visa if they are not staying longer than three months (if nationals from your country are not legally required to have a visa to enter the Schengen territory). However, they need a student visa and stay and private medical insurance for stays over three months.
What are the working conditions?
Au pairs work a maximum of 30 hours a week. If the au pair has to work more than 30 hours, the family pays them more. Au pairs get around 300 euros each month and have their weekends free, although some families may ask them to work on Saturday mornings. When it comes to holidays, au pairs are entitled to a week’s vacation for a six-month stay or two weeks for one year. However, speak with your host family about this and the details of your contract.
What to do next?
As an au pair in Spain, you will know some Spanish and be integrated into the Spanish lifestyle. Are you thinking about staying longer? You may be concerned about looking for another job or how to extend your visa. We have good news for you!
If you speak English to an advanced level (which is very likely), you can make a career in Spain by teaching English as a foreign language. With EBC’s TEFL courses, you can get the prestigious Trinity CertTESOL certificate, acquiring all the skills to become professional English teachers, which opens many doors in Spain and the world. We also help students make all the arrangements for their visa extensions and find a new job with our lifetime job placement service. EBC’s Lifetime and worldwide job placement service is an exclusive benefit for our EBC graduates.