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After the au pair arrives

The first days with an au pair

You have waited for a long time for the au pair to arrive. You have prepared everything for the au pair, and you probably have also thought a lot about what your life with an au pair will be like.

Information and tips for host families you find here!

Starting off on the right foot with the au pair

Today, the au pair program begins and your au pair adventure starts. You are probably very nervous, but rest assured; your au pair is too on this very first day.

Now, it’s important that you and the au pair start off on the right foot. Since first impressions are important, make sure to receive the au pair warmly. This includes preparing your children as well. Talk to them and explain that it is important to you that they be friendly to the au pair and treat the au pair. Explain that the au pair might be away from home for the first time, and will probably miss family and friends at first and be homesick. Ask your children to be loving and caring and to help the au pair in this situation. Children usually understand this and they can relate to the idea of being far away from home. They will probably even show solidarity towards the au pair before arrival.

Before the au pair arrives: checking the au pair room one the last time

Check the au pair room one last time before the au pair arrives. Does the bed have fresh sheets? Does it smell fresh? Is everything clean and organized? Are the closets empty? Does everything (TV, computer, radio) work? Are there enough towels in the bathroom? Did you get the au pair some bathroom essentials, such as tooth brush, tooth paste, soap and shampoo?

Your  au pair  will probably appreciate having some flowers in the room. If your children are old enough, you could ask them to draw a picture or make something special for the au pair. And last but not least, it would be a nice gesture if you wrote the au pair’s name on your mailbox or on the door bell.

The first meal with the au pair

Prepare a nice meal for the  au pair’s first day . A typical dish from your region is probably a good idea. Just don’t expect too much from the au pair on the first day. The au pair will be exhausted after having left friends and family and after the long trip.

Picking up the au pair

Usually, the host family picks up the  au pair  from the closest airport, train station or bus stop. You could give each of your children one flower which they can give to the au pair as a welcome gift. Or, do some research and find out how to say “welcome” in the au pair’s language so you can welcome your au pair in their own language. If you pick up the au pair in your car, think about the route you want to take to drive back to your house. A scenic route might be a good idea in order to give the  au pair a nice first impression  of your area.

Talking to the au pair in the car

Once all the suitcases are in the car and everybody is seated, you and the  au pair  will drive back together. These are your first moments together. Wait to see if the au pair wants to start a conversation. If not, you can ask about the trip and simultaneously show the au pair the sights that you pass in the car. Ask the au pair what they did during the last few days back home, or how the weather was before departure.

Showing the au pair the house and the au pair room

As soon as you arrive, you should introduce all of the family members to the  au pair.  Then, you can show the au pair the house and talk about the most important things. Finally, you should show the au pair the au pair room and leave their luggage there. Leave the au pair alone for a little while. Tell your au pair at what time and where you want to have the first meal together and offer the au pair the opportunity to take a shower. Your first meal together with the au pair is also your first opportunity to get to know each other. The  au pair  will probably be tired afterwards, and might want to go to bed.