Which advantajes do I have finding a family through Au Pair Conecta while there are so many offers without charges on the internet?
Au Pair Conecta does not charge any admission fee. The participation in our Au Pair program in Spain is free of charge. The online-agencies also charge a fee and all they do is offer you a database of families who you will have to select and check and contact yourself. There is no guarantee that you will find a family for your desired destiantion and period of time and they don´t offer any type of service or guaranty. The cheap option sometimes turns out to cost you more than expected, not only economically.
Au Pair Conecta makes their host-families as well as their Au Pairs undergo a strict selection process. We want to really get to know the personality and objectives of both to ensure a maximum of compatibility. Only through a good match between family and Au Pair the experience will be rewarding and enjoyable for all. You don´t have to waste your time on searching, contacting and selecting a family, as we will take care of all this instead.
We only accept families who are willing to welcome the Au Pair as a real member of their family and understand that this programme is based on a cultural exchange with it´s obligations as well as rights.
Au Pair Conecta provides its clients with orientation and long term assistance during the programme, taking care of the following economical, moral, cultural and social issues: assistance before starting the trip, support during the orientation process of adapting and integrating into the Spanish lifestyle and culture, emergency phonenumber 24h/day, reassessing the fulfilment of the agreement by both parts, help solving possible missunderstandings with the host family, substitution of family if needed, orientation regarding further formation and education, social and cultural offer, meetings with other Au Pairs etc.
How long in advance do I have to apply for inscription in the programme?
We recommend to apply for inscription as soon as you have taken the decision to participate in our programme. This way we have the possibility to find a fitting host-family for the desired dates. 3-6 months in advance is probably the best time-range, nevertheless don´t hesitate to contact us even though you have less time left before you want to start your trip. We usually dispose of enquiries of host-families throughout the whole year.
How do I find a matching host-family?
This depends very much on the time of the year when you apply and the length of time you plan to stay in Spain. It is also influenced by your personal qualities and characteristics and the interviews you carry out with the family-candidates we contact you with. The more detailed and explicit you complete your certificates and documentation, the higher is the chance to find a succesful match. Don´t hesitate to include all possible information you might have regarding childcare experience as well as concerning your hobbies and knowledge in fields that might have positive influence to the entertainment and education of children (such as music, dance, arts, sports etc)
What can I do if I don´t get along with the host-family?
We always try to make a good match between our Au Pairs and the families to make the experience abroad become a rewarding and enjoyable experience for all. This is why we follow such strict guidelines during the selection process. Nevertheless there´s always the eventuality of misunderstandings or conflicts with the family. In this case you should immediately get in touch with our agency. We will give advice and be your intermediator to try and solve any kind of conflict directly with the family. If this should not be possible, we will try and find you another family as soon as we can. You would have to accept the new family even if they were living in another city. The former host-family would receive another Au Pair. You always have to respect the agreement of committment between family and Au Pair which is signed once the family chooses the Au Pair.
Why do I have to send all documentation before receiving information about host-families?
When a family sends their request for an Au Pair, we also demand all type of documentation from them (Photos and general information about the family, application form, welcome letter to the Au Pair, their Id-cards or passports, evidence of registry at the city hall etc. How are we supposed to present them Au Pairs without having concrete information about them as well? Part of the documentation is required following the international agreement of Au Pair programmes.
What happens if I get homesick?
It´s normal that at the beginning of your stay abroad you miss your usual surrounding, especially if it is the first time you are away from home. Usually it passes quickly though. You will be supported by your host-family and our team at "Au Pair Conecta". However you should think things through very well before applying to the programme. If you have a lot of doubts, it´s better to wait until you are really sure about your decision.
Can I apply without any knowledge of Spanish?
Of course you can. We can find you a family that doesn´t nessesarily ask for someone with Spanish language skills.
Will I have to look after babies?
If you have experience and would like to take part in the childcare of children under 2 years of age, declare it in your application. It might increase your chances to find a matching host-family. If on the contrary you don´t feel comfortable with very small kids, we won´t recommend you the families of this type.
Can I participate in the programme as a boy?
Yes, you can, even though the majority of families usually ask for girls. Nevertheless sometimes we have families who don´t care whether their Au Pair is a boy or a girl. Some even prefer a boy.
Can I chose the city I want to live in?
he majority of families that assign us with Au Pair placements are from Seville and Cordoba. However we receive requests from cities all over Spain. If you wish to come during the summer months, it´s important for you to know that most families from Seville and Cordoba pass the summer on the coastlines of Andalusia. If you have any preferences regarding your destination area or city, please note that on your application and we will try to satisfy your wish if possible.
Will I have the chance to make friends?
Of course you will! First of all through the other Au Pairs participating in the programme. Our agency will provide you with contact details of other Au Pairs in your area. We also organise meetings with the Au Pairs, so you can get to know each other easily. You will also make friends in your Spanish classes or in any other courses you participate in. Same with cultural activities or sports, in your neighbourhood or through your host-family...
My friend and I would like to participate in the Au Pair programme together. Is it possible to be in the same destination?
If it is possible, we will always try to place you in the same city or even area. We are conscious about the fact that being close to a friend can help a lot during your Au Pair perios, especially at the beginning, when you probably still miss home. However Au Pair Conecta and your host-family will help you to find friends quickly.
If I have already applied at an agency in my home country, can I still participate and benefit from your programme?
If you are already registered at a local agency in your home country, we have no problem with accepting you in our programme, subject to the condition that it is a legally registered agency which follows the code of conduct of the IAPA (Internacional Au Pair Association). We will contact your agency to see if they agree to collaborate with us in your placement process as Au Pair. In this case you won´t have to pay us any fee, given that you already have paid your local agency, who has taken care of interviewing and verifying your documentation.
What personal expenses will I have living in Spain?
This will depend on your preferences regarding the destination you choose for your stay. There are differences between living in the centre of Seville or Cordoba or in a residential area, or even in Madrid or Barcelona, where in general life is more expensive.
When planning your stay in Spain, it´s important that you can count on some money put aside which you can dispose of, apart from the weekly pocket money you receive from your host-family.
Generally speaking you have to calculate the expenses which won´t be nessesarily covered by the host-family, for example:
- A monthly public transport ticket, in Seville about 33€ (in case you need it), usually the families assume part of the cost.
- Spanish school, here the costs depend on the amount of lessons you take, generally count on an amount of approximately 80 € a month. In some destinations there are occasional free Spanish courses for foreigners.
- Private Health insurance, (about 45 € monthly). If the Au Pair comes from a country outside the EU, the family is obliged to contract a private health insurance, which will be paid 50% by the family and 50% by the Au Pair.
- Money to be spent during your free time, for travelling, going out, clothes etc.
The Au Pair has to cover the costs of her trip to her destination in Spain, where she/he will be picked up by the host-family.
There are some families that take over part of the expenses, or others that pay the Au Pair´s trip home, but usually only after a long-term stay with the family.
As the host is obliged to pick up the Au Pair at the airport or train station, it´s nessesary to advise about the timetables of your trip in advance. In case the family can´t pick up their Au Pair personally, they will send someone clearly identified on their behalf to the agreed meeting point.
The Au Pair needs to make sure that her/his passport is valid and doesn´t expire for at least six months after the completion of her stay.
The Au Pair should leave all contact details of her host-family and of "Au Pair Conecta" (address, phone numbers, contact person, names of host parents etc) to her family in her home country.
Health Insurance Coverage
Au Pairs coming from a country in the EU are covered by the National health insurance of the Spanish social security. Before leaving their home country, they need to request the European Sanitary card.
The host-family has to register the Au Pair at their local health centre during the first week unpon arrival.
If the Au Pair is not resident of a EU-country, the family is obliged to subscribe a private health insurance, which will be covered 50% by the family and 50% by the Au Pair.
How can I become Au Pair if I´m not living in the EU?
To be able to legally stay in Spain you will need a Visa. If your stay won´t exceed 3 months, you can obtain a normal tourist visa (depending on your country). If your stay will be longer than 3 months, it is most likely that the Spanish embassy of your country will provide you with a Student-visa or Working-visa. The student visa is issued once the Au Pair is registered in an official language school, university or college and has paid the course (the evidence of payment is needed for the processing of the VIsa). For a working-visa you would need a contract with the family. From our point of view this doesn´t really go along with the European agreement for Au Pair placements in Spain, as the stay of the Au Pair is not considered as literal "work". An Au Pair is not a domestic worker and the weekly payment is considered as pocket-money.