When Should I apply?

We recommend that you apply at least 3 months prior to the date you would like to start your placement in China. This will allow time to complete the required documentation, to match you with a host family, apply for your visa and for your flights to be booked.

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How long will it take to match me to a suitable host family?

It can take between 1-4 weeks for a good host family match to be made.

How many hours a week will I be expected to work?

You can expect to assist your host family for up to 30 hours per week.

What sort of work will be expected of me?

Your key role will be the education of the child – conducting activities in English, tutoring in English and sharing information about your culture. We encourage you to also share any other interests or hobbies you may have, such as music, sports or languages. You may also be asked to undertake some light household chores, and will be responsible for keeping your personal space clean.

How many children will the family have?

The majority of families only have one child. In some cases a family may have two children.

Am I able to specify any preferences I have?

Yes, of course – if you would prefer to work with a certain age group, gender or have a special hobby you’d like to teach then we encourage you to note this on the questionnaire form. This will be sent to you after your initial interview with us.

When and where will I study the Mandarin course?

Your coordinator will arrange for you to study Mandarin at a local language school. There are a variety of course options to choose from based on your level of Mandarin, and how much time you wish to commit to studying. Typically, most Au Pairs study for a few mornings per week.

Will I get any time off?

You will have 2 consecutive days off per week, one full weekend off per month and a couple of days of annual leave for every 2 months of service – additional leave can often be negotiated directly with a family once you arrive.

How much is my monthly stipend?

You will receive monthly pocket money of at least 1,500 RMB, and a monthly bonus based on your performance of up to 500 RMB. The cost of living in Chengdu is cheap, with a meal at a local restaurant costing RMB20-40, taxi ride RMB10- 20 and pint of beer costing RMB10.
All living and study costs will be covered by your host family.

Will I have my own bedroom?

You’ll be provided with a simple, clean and secure bedroom.

Will I meet any other Au Pairs?

Yes, there will be regular meet ups for you to meet other Au Pairs living and working in the city, and you’ll be able to share your experiences and socialise! Where possible, we will link you up with others already in Chengdu before you depart for China.

What sorts of cultural activities and social events are organised?

Monthly cultural activities and events are held for Au Pairs, such as dining out in traditional Chinese restaurants, trips and visits to scenic spots or cultural sites, watching traditional Chinese shows, hands-on experiences with traditional Chinese hand-crafting or cooking, and so on.

Am I allowed to do what I choose in my free time?

Yes, of course – Chengdu is a great city to explore with every entertainment option imaginable! The Sichuan Province has so many interesting and beautiful places to explore. All we ask is that you make your host family aware of your plans and what time you will return home, and keep in regular contact with them.

Do you have any advice on coping with cultural differences?

It can be difficult for an Au Pair to get used to living with a new Chinese family, but remember it is equally as difficult for your host family to get used to a new person in their home! Host families are very welcoming, and will do all they can to help you settle in. It’s a nice touch to take a small gift from your country for the family to show them your heritage and culture.

Different cultures have different ideas on what constitutes privacy, so it’s a good idea to discuss this. You need to be respectful of house rules and stick to them, make sure you communicate regularly with your new family and work together on a schedule that can work for both parties. It’s polite to not come home late or stay out over night without prior notice, and to ask before inviting friends into your new home.

You’ll need keep your personal space tidy and treat the rest of the home as you would your own. During meal times and other family activities, try to be on time, help with washing and cleaning up (unless you are asked not to!). Meal times are important in Chinese culture so try to eat with your family and embrace their food – it will usually be delicious!

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