Au Pair in Spain – Your Southern Adventure

You want to become an Au Pair in Spain? Here, you can find out more about being an Au Pair in Spain, visa requirements, duties, costs etc..

You will see that an Au Pair in Spain will be an extraordinary time and that you will be able to gather valuable experiences.

Au Pair in Spain - At a Glance

  • Age: Between 18 and 30 years old
  • Duration of Stay: Between 6 and 12 months
  • Working Hours: Around 30 hours per week
  • Holidays: No official regulation (we recommend one week of paid vacation per 6 months + at least 1 1/2 days off per week)
  • Travel Expenses: You travel at your own expenses
  • Insurance: Same as in your home country (European!)
  • Pocket Money: Weekly pocket money of at least 60€
  • Visa Requirements: Citizens of an EU country do not need a visa; citizens of a Non-EU country need to apply for a visa, depending on where they come from.

Can I become an Au Pair?

In order to become an Au Pair in Spain, you need to keep in mind that you have to meet certain requirements:

  • You are between 18 and 30 years old
  • You have a basic knowledge of Spanish and good knowledge of English
  • You are healthy and don't smoke
  • You are in good health
  • Driving license and experience in childcare are always a plus

What are my duties as an Au Pair?

The duties and responsibilities of an Au Pair in Spain depend to a great extent on the host family's needs and on the host family's daily routine.
Nevertheless, the main task of an Au Pair in Spain is child care. You will, mainly, be responsible for taking care of the children of your host family. Therefore, it is important that you love spending time with children. Your host children should be like a younger brother or sister to you.

Apart from childcare, an Au Pair in Spain is also responsible for minor household duties. These might include to clean up the children's room(s), do the kids' laundry and iron it, vacuum, empty or load the dishwasher or to do some light shopping.

As already mentioned above, there is no official regulation regarding the weekly working hours of an Au Pair in Spain. Get into touch with your host family in the course of the placement process and discuss your tasks and weekly working hours.
We recommend that you work around 30 hours a week.
During your working hours, your host family might also ask you to babysit on 1-2 evenings per week.

Find out more about Au Pair duties in Spain here.

Visa Requirements

In order to legally work as an Au Pair in Spain, you might need to apply for a visa prior to your departure. If you need a visa to enter Spain depends on what country you come from.
For citizens of an EU country, it is sufficient to enter Spain with their identification card or their passport. Citizens outside the EU need to apply for a visa.

For EU-citizens

Citizens of an EU country can enter Spain with their ID card or passport and do not need to apply for a visa in order to enter Spain and work there as an Au Pair.
Make sure that your passport/ID card is valid for the entire duration of your stay in Spain.

EU citizens need to register with the residents office for foreign nationals if they stay in Spain for more than three months. The registration is necessary to obtain an EU registration certificate which approves that the Au Pair will be living with and working for his/her host family for the duration of the stay.
The application process and procedures depend on your local Autonomous Community and province.
In most cases, you need to make an appointment for an interview to apply for the EU registration certificate and have to present a set of the following documents:

  • Two filled out and signed copies of the official application form (EX-18)
  • Valid ID or passport
  • Proof of either public or private health insurace (needs to cover you for the entire duration of your stay abroad)
  • Written evidence that you have enough savings to fund your stay abroad

Please keep in mind that official documents need to be translated into Spanish.
You might hand in copies of the requested documents. However, you need to provide the original documents by the time you submit your application.

For Non-EU-citizens

Citizens from outside the EU need to apply for a visa in order to be able to live and work as an Au Pair in Spain. What visa you need to apply for depends on your home country.

Citizens of the USA

Citizens of the United States of America might either apply for an Au Pair visa or a student visa.
You need to meet certain requirements to be considered an Au Pair, such as:

  1. You have the address of your future host family
  2. Your services or household chores will only compliment the main purpose of your stay
  3. You won't receive a wage or salary for the abovementioned services

A detailed description of the requirements and the application process can be found on the website of the Spanish consulate in Miami, Florida.
There, you also find information on the requirements for applying for a student visa.

Youth Mobility Scheme

Canadians can enter Spain under the Youth Mobility Scheme.
Check the validity of your passport before you start planning your trip and ask your host family to send you the Au Pair contract ahead of time as this is an important requirement for the visa application.

The application for the Youth Mobility Scheme needs to be done in person. Bring the following documents with you to the appointment at the Spanish Embassy (one copy and orginal):

  • Your passport (needs to be valid for at least one year)
  • Filled out and signed application form
  • Recent full-face photograph
  • Return ticket or evidence that you have enough fundings to purchase one
  • Documentation proving that you are a resident of Canada
  • Proof that you hold valid health insurance
  • Proof that you can afford your stay in Spain
  • Medical certificate issued from your doctor (no older than 6 months)
  • Clear police certificate
  • $150 Canadian dollars (CAD) to pay the application fee
  • The signed Au Pair contract

Follow this link to find out more about the agreement between Canada and Spain on Youth Mobility Programs.
Keep in mind that the Spanish Embassy issues only a limited number of visas each year. Get into touch with your local embassy and inquire about the availability of visas.
The embassy will probably need between 2 and 4 weeks to issue your visa, thus, arrange enough time for your visa to be issued.

If you plan on staying in Spain for more than 6 months you need to apply for an identity card for foreign nationals (tarjeta de identidad de extranjero) at your local police station or the Immigration Office once you arrived in Spain.

Working Holiday Program

Citizens of New Zealand may apply for a Working Holiday visa in order to work as an Au Pair in Spain.

Please note that you can only work in Spain for a maximum of 6 months and stay only for three months with one host family. Moreover, under the Youth and Mobility Scheme you are not allowed to take up permanent employment.
You can only apply for the Working Holiday visa once.

In order to be able to apply for the scheme you need to meet certain requirements.

In the course of the application process you need to make an appointment at your local embassy and provide the following documents:

  • Filled out, dated and signed application form (make sure to state your e-mail address)
  • Recent colored photograph, glued to the application form
  • Passport (valid for at least three months subsequent to your departure to Spain)
  • Return ticket or proof that you are able to afford a return ticket
  • Evidence (e.g. bank statement) that you have enough savings to fund your stay abroad (at least 532,51€/month)
  • Health insurance for your stay abroad (needs to be valid for one year)
  • Police certificate from New Zealand + any other country that you lived in during the last 5 years
  • Medical certificate from your doctor (not older than 6 months)
  • Foreigner identification number (N.I.E)
  • Visa application fee (payable via bank cheque or in cash)
  • Prepaid envelope or courier bag

The embassy will probably need between 2 and 4 weeks to issue your visa, thus, arrange enough time for your visa to be issued by the Spanish Embassy.

Student Visa

If you are neither a citizen of an EU country, nor from Canada or New Zealand, you may apply for a student visa to work as an Au Pair in Spain.

Inform yourself beforehand if you need a visa to become an Au Pair in Spain. Citizens of some countries are exempt from visa requirements if they stay for less than three months.
Nevertheless, you need to present certain documents upon your entry. These include evidence that you can afford your stay in Spain, documents stating whether your stay is for study or private purposes as well as an invitation letter from your host family and the signed Au Pair contract.
The local police station of your host family will issue the invitation letter.

Should you plan on staying in Spain for more than three months you need to apply for a student visa.
You need to be enrolled in a Spanish course prior to your departure. Ask your host family to enroll you in a suitable course.
The course needs to meet the requirements of the Instituto Cervantes and you need to attend at least 20 hours per week.

In the course of the visa application you will need to present the following documents:

  • Certificate of matriculation
  • Signed Au Pair contract
  • Evidence that you obtain travel health insurance during the time of your stay in Spain

Within one month after your arrival in Spain, you need to schedule an appointment at your local police station in order to have your residence permit issued.

Non Profitable Temporary Residence Permit

Alternatively to the student visa you might also enter Spain on a non profitable temporary residence permit.
More information about the non profitable temporary residence permit can be found here.

How much pocket money will I get?

Working Hours per Week Paid weekly? Weekly pocket Money
Around 30 hours per week Yes Minimum of 60€

An Au Pair in Spain gets a weekly pocket money of at least 60€.
In addition to your pocket money, your host family provides your with free board and lodge, meaning that they provide a room for your and meals free of charge.
As your host family provides your with free board and lodge, you are free to spend your pocket money for traveling across the country and around Europe, or, on other leisure time activities.

An Au Pair in Spain is entitled to at least one day off per week and, in addition to that, we suggest a paid vacation of two weeks per year.

Most host families also give their Au Pair the opportunity to attend a Spanish course.
The Au Pair needs to bear the costs of the language course and the travel expenses to and from the language course itself.

Since many host family's in Spain want their children to learn English from early childhood on, they usually ask their Au Pairs to also speak English with the children. A Spanish course is a great opportunity to still improve your language skills and meet new people.

But don't worry, even if your host family asks you to mostly speak English with your host children, you will still improve your Spanish skills enormously as you will talk to your host parents in Spanish and you will hear it on a daily basis in your everyday life.

Click here for ore about Au Pair pocket money in Spain.

At a Glance:

  • Weekly pocket money of 60€ (minimum)
  • Free board an lodge
  • At least one day off per week
  • Although there is no official regulation, we recommend that an Au Pair in Spain gets two weeks of paid vacation per year
  • Possibility to attend a language course (optional)

How much does it cost to become an Au Pair?

It is easy to loose track of the costs when you are in the middle of the preparation of your trip abroad. No worries! We have a summary of the most important cost points which you need to keep in mind ready for you.
However, the costs vary according to the distance between your home country and your host country, and, consequently, the flight ticket, the amount of your agency fees, if you need to apply for a visa and so forth.

At a Glance:

  • Fee for your Au Pair agency (if you choose one and depending on the agency's benefits)
  • Fee for your visa (if needed) & additional documents such as f.i. police record, health certificate etc.
  • Travel expenses/flight ticket
  • Gift for host family (optional)
  • Language course (if you take one)
  • Monthly fee for your health insurance 

What about the insurance?

An Au Pair in Spain cannot be registered with the national insurance scheme in Spain.

If you are a citizen of an EU country, your local health insurance company will cover you for the first three months of your stay abroad. Get into touch with your local health insurance so that they can send you the "European Health Insurance Card" (EHIC).

If you intend to stay in Spain for a longer period than three months the EHIC will insure you in the case of a serious illness, accident or maternity. To make use of the benefits you need to ask your local health insurance company to send you an S1 Form and fill in the form prior to your departure.
Once you arrived in Spain you need to take the filled in form to the Seguridad Social in order to get it stamped.
After this you will receive a card from the Seguridad SocialThis card entitles you to primary health care at a medical center.

Alternatively, you can take out an individual private health and accident insurance.

Citizens of a non-EU country need to take out private health insurance (if your home country has not signed a bilateral healthcare agreement with Spain).
You do not need to bear the health insurance fees all by yourself as Spain has signed the European Agreement on Au Pair Placement, meaning that Au Pairs in Spain and their Spanish host families split the fees of the private health insurance contribution.

Protrip-world will help you find the perfect insurance package for you so that you won't have to worry during your whole Au Pair stay!

Au Pair Blog - Share your experience!

Did you spend time abroad as an Au Pair in Spain yourself and would like to share your experience with us?
We would appreciate it if you let us know about your experiences and shared them with us below.

Your stories about being an Au Pair in Spain are a great opportunity for future Au Pairs to learn more about a normal day of an Au Pair in Spain.

Do you have an online blog about your time abroad in Spain? Share your blog link with us below.

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