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How to obtain a Visa

In Europe it is relatively easy to move between different European countries, often you just need a European passport. There are usually regulations regarding working while visiting a country.

Visiting non European countries, or visiting Europe on a non European passport requires a travel visa. A travel visa is simply a document giving you permission to stay in a country. Au Pairs typically visit under a working holiday visa or student visa. These visas normally have rules regarding the length of the stay (typically 12 months to 2 years) and the type or amount of work that can be done while staying. Applications for these visas sometimes require a letter of offer or contract from the Host Family.

Below are visa details for some popular Au Pair destinations.

australian flag Australia

Australia offers several working holiday visas. These visas are offered to people aged 18 to 30 years. The first two visas allow an Au Pair to stay in Australia for up to 12 months, work for the same employer for up to 6 months and study for up to 4 months.

If you hold a passport from a country involved in the Working Holiday Program you can apply for Working Holiday visa subclass 417 (see the link for eligible countries and how to apply).

If you hold a passport from a country not involved in the Working Holiday Program you can apply for Work and Holiday visa subclass 462 (see the link for eligible countries and how to apply).

If you are a citizen of New Zealand you can enter Australia under Special Category visa subclass 444, which allows you to stay, work and study in Australia.

english flag France

Citizens of the European Union (EU) or European Free Trade Association (EFTA) can enter France with a valid passport or Valid ID Card.

Non EU/EFTA citizens require a long stay visa (see the link for details). A long stay visa allows you to stay in France for more than 90 days. Au Pairs should apply for a visa at the French embassy in their country.

The Host Family must have an employment contract approved in advance by the DIRECCTE (Regional directorate for enterprises, competition, consumption, work and employment) for the Au Pair to submit with the visa application.

The Host Family must also register an Au Pair employee with Urssaf (see the link for details).

english flag Germany

Citizens of the European Union (EU) or European Free Trade Association (EFTA) can enter Germany with a valid passport or Valid ID Card.

Non EU/EFTA citizens require a long stay visa (see the link for details). A long stay visa allows you to stay in Germany for more than 90 days. Au Pairs should apply for a visa at the German diplomatic mission in their country.

Au Pairs in Germany must have basic knowledge of German and not be older than 26.

new zeland flag New Zealand

Au Pairs visiting New Zealand need to apply for the Working Holiday Visa (see the link for details). This allows people aged 18 to 30 years (up to 35 years for some countries) to travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months.

If you are from the UK or Canada you are permitted to stay up to 23 months.

If you are Australian, you are permitted to study, work and live in New Zealand without a visa.

english flag United Kingdom

Citizens of the European Union (EU) or European Free Trade Association (EFTA) can enter the United Kingdom with a valid passport or Valid ID Card.

If you are a citizen of non EU country then you apply under the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme or Student Visa. The Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme is for young persons aged from 18 to 30 years for selected countries (see the link for details).

Au Pairs are generally not classified as workers or employees.

us flag United States of America

In order to become an Au Pair in the United States, the Au Pair, upon finding their host family needs to apply for a J-1 VISA through one of the designated US Au Pair agencies (see the links for details).

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