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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've received numerous offers to au pair in endless cities around the world and CAN'T decide where to go so I'm enlisting ya'll for your suggestions!

I'm currently deciding between going to Spain, New Zealand, Italy or the South of France but have never been outside the United States and to tell you the truth, really don't know much about the areas other than that I love Spanish culture, New Zealand wine, Italian cinema and food, and the South of France looks beautiful!

I would, ideally, love to be in a medium or small town with a lot of culture and character that's near-ish to a larger city and has a lot to teach me with also plenty of opportunities to travel to other places.

I would really appreciate any suggestions!

Thanks so much :)
 

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Hi,

Welcome to the forum.

Can you speak Italian/French/Spanish? If you decide to live in a country where you can't speak the language you're going to find it very difficult. I'm not saying it's impossible, but difficult.

Dolly
 

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One thing you may want to check out are the legal requirement for an "au pair" in the countries you are considering. For example, if you go to the south of France, you are required to be enrolled in some sort of school - usually language classes, but also you can take culture or other types of classes in the area. It's one way of limiting the hours you are expected to work.

Some countries require the host family to give you your own room so that you can get away during your time off, and most countries these days limit the hours and type of work you can do. (This is not the case in the US, where "au pair" can mean anything from a babysitter to a live in nanny and housekeeper.)

Take a look, too, at the support system being offered in each case. I have heard of some au pair arrangements that have gone very, very wrong. Though it may not happen to you, you want to have a procedure where you could (if needed) contact the agency that placed you or some other third party if the situation turns out to be a problem in some way. Potential problems range from the host family not honoring the agreement or laws to not being adequately fed (happened years ago), or paid or allowed the minimum time off. You should be encouraged to meet up with other au pairs in the area during your time off, and in general treated as a member of the family rather than as a servant or employee.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you Bev and Dolly!

I've researched the families, countries and excpectations and I have a few GREAT opportunities. I also have basic knowledge of all three languages. I guess now it's just that I can't decide because I've never been to any of these places and don't know which one would suit me best! Like I said, I'd love to be in a smaller town that's close to a big city, convenient for travel, big in culture, and like no place I've ever seen.

Any ideas?

Thanks for your help!
 

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Thank you Bev and Dolly!

I've researched the families, countries and excpectations and I have a few GREAT opportunities. I also have basic knowledge of all three languages. I guess now it's just that I can't decide because I've never been to any of these places and don't know which one would suit me best! Like I said, I'd love to be in a smaller town that's close to a big city, convenient for travel, big in culture, and like no place I've ever seen.

Any ideas?

Thanks for your help!
Then you're a bit stuck, because only you will know what will suit you ... not knowing where the families are its difficult to give any more advice
 

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