Now that you are taking the time to read this article, you have probably already spent a few days as an au pair in your new country. You know the daily routine of your host family and you are more familiar with your new surroundings. Now you are ready to leave the nest, meet locals and make friends. But you have no idea how you should do this since you never meet anybody your age. This is a problem many au pairs have and this is exactly why we want to take some time to talk about the topic: “finding friends as an au pair“.
First, we want to tell you that you don’t have to worry. As soon as you make the decision to go out and meet new people, you have already made the first important step in the right direction.
If you hired an au pair agency to find a host family for you, you can contact your agency and ask them if there are other au pairs living close to you. If there are, ask for their contact information so you can get in touch with them. However, in our experience, many au pair agencies just claim to put you in touch with other au pairs once you arrive in the host country, but really they just say this to promote their services. Later they might never keep their promise. So, if you were relying on your au pair agency to help you meet new people , you are probably on your own.
The promised au pair meetings hardly ever take place.But this doesn’t have to be a bad thing, since meeting people through your au pair agency means meeting people from your country that speak your language. As an au pair, you want to meet local people and learn more about the new culture. This is why we have put together a small list with suggestions that can help you meet new interesting people and find many new friends.
Tip 1 – Language classes :
If you take language classes you will definitely meet new people . However, most language courses for au pairs only start a few weeks after your arrival in the new country.
Find out what language courses are offered close by. Make sure you pick a class that corresponds to your language level. Also ask how old the people in your course are going to be. Some language classes are mainly for older people – you should avoid these courses.
Tip 2 – Groups and clubs:
What else do you want to learn in your host country, besides the language? Are there any special dances that you are interested in? Do you want to learn how to cook? Is there anything else you have always wanted to do but never found the time for?
Usually, in every region you can find groups or clubs that offer activities for various interests. Search online to find something close to you. Go to these events and you will meet a lot of new people and find friends.
Tip 4 – Aupair Village-Community:
In addition, you can get in touch with au pairs in your town or area through our online community. Just sign up and join our community and you can meet people from all over the world that live close to you, and you can participate in different events and activities for au pairs.
Tip 5 – Multicultural Events:
Many municipalities or church organizations regularly organize multicultural events for foreigners that live in the area. As an au pair, you might find these meetings very interesting, since you’ll have the chance to meet people from all over the world, each with their own story.
Tip 6 – Facebook:
The Aupair Village team has also created various Facebook groups for different countries and cities. Just type “ Aupair Village ” or “Aupair Village + the name of your city” into the search field and you will end up on the Facebook site for your city.
There you can find au pairs from all over the world that are open-minded and also want to make friends. If you click “ Like ”, others can see that you are in the same city and they can send you a private message.
Of course, this also works the other way around and you can send a private message to the people on the site, too. Almost every town has its own Facebook group . Write a post on the wall saying that you want to meet people or you can also contact the administrator of the site via private message. You’ll see, this way it won’t take you long to find new friends.
Tip 8 – Meet people through other websites
This tip was sent to us by an au pair in Spain. She told us that as an au pair she found many new friends over the website www.couchsurfing.org. She still keeps in touch with the people she met, even though she finished her au pair year. Couchsurfing is a website for travelers, offering free accommodation worldwide.
This site can be useful for planning cheap trips during your au pair year. Moreover, if you sign up on Couchsurfing you can find other Couchsurfers in your proximity – a smart search option makes this possible. You can even see in the profile of each Couchsurfer what languages they speak. So, all you need to do now is contact the Couchsurfers and the rest will follow, as Couchsurfers are known for being open-minded and outgoing.
The “Aupair Village Team” wishes you an unforgettable time abroad, with many new friends.