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SWITZERLAND

Au Pair Stay in Switzerland? Are you looking for an au pair family in Switzerland? Check out Switzerland as an au pair destination!

 

Being an au pair in Switzerland

schweiz aupairBeware that in Switzerland, most families only accept female au pair candidates. If you want to be an au pair in Switzerland, you cannot be married or have children.

 

Furthermore, you have to have some basic knowledge of the language spoken in your canton. You are only allowed to work as an au pair in a part of Switzerland that doesn't speak your native language. If, for instance, your native language is Italian, you cannot be an au pair in the Italian part of Switzerland. With this rule, the Swiss government wants to encourage au pairs to learn a new language.

 

One of the most popular au pair destinations in Switzerland is the western (French) part of the country, where you can learn a lot about Swiss culture while surrounded by amazing scenery.

 

REQUIREMENTS FOR AN AU PAIR STAY IN SWITZERLAND

  • no children and not married
  • good health
  • if possible, driver's license, class B
  • experience working with children
  • age for au pairs in Switzerland: 17-30 years (if you are not from an EU or EFTA country, 18-25 years)

 

AU PAIR WORKING HOURS IN SWITZERLAND

In Switzerland, you can work no more than 30 hours and no less than 12 hours per week. If your au pair working schedule includes babysitting at night after 8 PM your late hours will have to be compensated with free time. Au pairs get 1,5 days off per week. At least 2 free days within a period of 4 weeks have to be on a Sunday. If you have a day off, it is not required that you stay with the host family in the house at night.

 

Au pairs get 4 weeks of vacation if their au pair stay in Switzerland lasts at least 12 months (if you are 20 years old or younger, you get 5 weeks of vacation). During your vacation and on your free days you receive an allowance of 21.50 CHF per day for food (information from March 2013, according to the AHV).

 

AU PAIR SALARY IN SWITZERLAND

There is a set wage for au pairs in Switzerland. From the salary you earn before taxes – which depends on the size of the household and your age – you have to subtract the so-called “natural salary” for food and accommodation. There will remain a total of 500-800 CHF, depending on the size of the household and your au pair working hours. The exact sum of your salary also depends on the canton.

 

As an au pair, you have to pay income taxes in Switzerland. Your family has to inform you about this. It is possible to deduct some of the taxes directly from your salary. Apart from this, au pairs in Switzerland receive a daily allowance of 21.50 CHF for food during their vacation and on their days off  (information from March 2013 according to the AHV).

 

AU PAIR ENTRY REGULATIONS IN SWITZERLAND

If you are not from a country of the European Union or the EFTA community, it can be quite complicated to organize an au pair stay in Switzerland. The au pair stay must be organized through a SECO certified agency. If you want to work as an au pair in Switzerland you have to be between 18 and 25 years old. The host family has to apply for a work permit for you. This requires a copy of a contract between the au pair and the agency as well as an au pair contract between the au pair and the host family.

 

Only with a written permit from the migration police department of the specific canton can you enter Switzerland with a valid passport. After entering Switzerland, you have 8 days to register your stay with local authorities. Also, you have to register with the Swiss Compensation Office, the health insurance office and the tax office of the canton. Recently, Switzerland has significantly lowered the amount of au pair visas issued to applicants from non-EU and non-EFTA countries.

 

If you want to inquire about the status of your au pair visa application in Switzerland, contact the migration office of the respective canton.

 

If you are a citizen of the EU or EFTA, the entry regulations for Switzerland are not as strict. This includes the extended age limit from 17 to 30 years for au pair applicants. Also, you don't have to contract a SECO certified agency in order to find a host family in Switzerland. If you are from the EU or an EFTA country you can find a host family through an internet platform, which is usually a lot cheaper and also faster. Your host family applies for your au pair residence permit at the local registration office by providing their personal information, the duration of your au pair stay, and the weekly working hours, which cannot be less than 12 hours per week. Once approved, you have the right to stay in Switzerland for one year (364 days). Citizens of EU and EFTA countries can extend this stay for another 12 months, at the most.

 

DURATION OF YOUR AU PAIR STAY IN SWITZERLAND

Host families in Switzerland can apply for an au pair visa only once a year. Therefore, many families are looking for an au pair that can stay for at least one year. Usually, the au pair stay in Switzerland begins in September and ends in July or August of the following year. EU or EFTA citizens can stay with the same host family in Switzerland for 24 months at the most. For au pairs from non-EU countries the maximum stay is 12 months.

 

HEALTH INSURANCE IN SWITZERLAND

The host family in Switzerland takes out an au pair health insurance policy for you. Your host family has to insure you against illness and accidents. The host family pays 100% of the rates for the working compensation insurance and 50% of the rates for all the other insurance. You have to register your au pair occupation in Switzerland with the corresponding Swiss Compensation Office. Your host family is allowed to deduct up to 50% of your social security payments from your au pair salary.

 

DRIVER'S LICENSE IN SWITZERLAND

Au pairs are not required to have a driver's license in Switzerland, but if you have a license it can certainly make it easier for you to find a host family.

 

LANGUAGE COURSE IN SWITZERLAND

All au pairs in Switzerland have to take language classes in the official language of their canton. The language classes are paid for by the host family. The course has to comprise at least 120 hours.

 

AU PAIR EXPENSES IN SWITZERLAND

The au pair usually pays for travel expenses, but there might be different regulations depending on the canton in Switzerland. In some Swiss cantons, the host family has to pay for your travel expenses.

 

Some host families pay for part of your travel expenses after 50% of the au pair stay has gone by. In Switzerland, the host families also have to pay for the language classes of the au pair. For more detailed information, contact the responsible office of your canton.

 

 

INFORMATION ABOUT SWITZERLAND FOR YOUR AU PAIR STAY

Population: 8.014.000 (2012)
Surface Area: 41.285 km2
Capital: Bern
Official language: German, French, Italian, Rhaeto-Romanic
Currency: Swiss Franc (CHF)
Emergency numbers: 112 – International emergency number
117 - police
118 – fire department

 

POPULAR AU PAIR CITIES IN SWITZERLAND

Au pairs like to stay in or close to the following cities in Switzerland:

  • Basel
  • Bern
  • Geneva
  • Lausanne
  • Lucerne
  • Lugano
  • St. Gallen
  • Winterthur
  • Zurich

 

More information about "Au Pair in Bern" here!