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Becoming an au pair in France, where to start?

Datum: 05/10/2021
Over de Auteur: Manou is naast onze queen of blogs, zelf ook erg actief op insta (@manouzwolle) en is ook het brein achter de Nanny Nina socials (@nannynina_nl). Je kan haar omschrijven als een creatieve, dromerige kluns en een hele goede vriend voor haar vrienden en haar kat Molly.

What are the requirements to become an au pair in France and what does the process consists of? Which documents do you need and what exactly are you going to do? In short, how do you become an au pair in France? 


On your day off, take a nice walk through the soothing nature or enjoy a croissant and coffee in a café. An au pair stay in France sounds like the dream!

These are the requirements to start working as an au pair in France:

  • You are between 17-30 years old

  • You have a nationality other than French

  • You are unmarried and have no children

  • You will stay in France for at least 3 months

  • You have enough money to pay for your trip

  • You have basic knowledge of the French language

  • You are willing to follow a French language course


Before traveling to France, it’s important that you have a valid ID or passport. Au pairs and host families must sign 2 copies of the au pair contract before one can start working as an au pair with the host family.

The host family must register the au pair as “trainee aide familial étranger” with the URSSAF within 8 days of arrival. In addition, you must be registered as an au pair with the public health insurer CPAM and you will receive a citizen service number (BSN). The host family pays the social security contributions for the au pair.

More information to get started as an au pair in France can be found here.


The au pair and host family should discuss mutual expectations before arrival. These agreements must then be laid down in a contract. This includes vacuuming, loading the dishwasher and doing laundry.

Minimum and maximum stay

You can stay and work as an au pair for 3 months and for a maximum of 2 years in France.


Au pairs from a country outside the European Union are entitled to at least €320 pocket money per month. Au pairs from countries within the European Union are entitled to a minimum of €325.80 per month. This amount must be specifically stated in the au pair contract.

Host families in France are seen as an employer. Due to this, the au pair must be registered with the local URSSAF office and be paid as an employee. Calculate here how much the host family has to pay the au pair.

Language course

Au pairs from EU countries are required to participate in a French language course. Au pairs from non-EU countries should have the opportunity to take a French course if they wish. Au pairs have to pay these costs themselves. The host family, on the other hand, is responsible for enrolling the au pair for a course.

Amount of working hours

In France, au pairs are not allowed to work as an au pair for more than 5 hours per day and 30 hours per week. This includes babysitting. Au pairs from countries outside the European Union are not allowed to work more than 25 hours a week, including babysitting. The au pair’s schedule must allow enough time for the au pair to attend a language course.

Days off and holidays

Au pairs are entitled to at least 1 day off per week. At least once a month this should be a Sunday. For au pairs from outside the European Union who work in addition to their “au pair” hours with another employer, the total working time may not exceed 60% of the legal number of working hours as defined by French law; this corresponds to a total of 964 hours per year. This total also includes the hours worked by the host family.

There are no official rules regarding holidays for au pairs in France. You will discuss this with the host family. When the au pair stays longer than 6 months, she is usually entitled to 2 weeks of vacation.

Street in france with yellow walls and restaurants

Au pair insurance

Au pairs in France must be insured in case of illness, accident at work or when someone becomes pregnant. The host family must therefore register the au pair with their local URSSAF within 8 days of arrival. After registration, the au pair will receive a social security number with which he or she can receive benefits.

Are you ready for a new adventure?

As discussed, there are a number of conditions that you must meet to start working as an au pair. For example, the condition that you are unmarried and not allowed to have children.

In addition, there are a number of steps after arrival in France, such as registration with the URSSAF and registration with the public health insurer CPAM. Host families in France are seen as an employer. Due to this, the au pair must be registered with the local URSSAF office and be paid as an employee.

It is important that the agreements between the au pair and the host family are captured in a contract. For example, the amount of pocket money per month and on which days the au pair is free.

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