Au Pair, travel, and language programs in – China!

China

(photo courtesy of the Asia Kids Society)

Have you ever thought about working as an au pair in China? If so, I just found out this week about an organization that can help you get there. The LOHO CentreĀ in Beijing offers people au pair jobs, internships, and other work and language programs throughout travel. It’s also part of the IAPA (the International Au Pair Association), so it’s legit.

I don’t have numbers to prove this, but I would think that China is still a bit off the beaten path as far as au pairing goes. But apparently they have a very large number of host families looking for au pairs to come work for them. The agency also says that they have an increasing number of au pairs coming in from Western countries, which I can imagine is true.

So if the Chinese language, culture, and people are fascinating to you and it’s a place you would like to find out more about living and working in, take a look!

 

Au Pair in China – part 2 – One au pair’s story

Chinese countryside(photo courtesy of dreamstime)

In our last post, we talked a little bit about the growing popularity of China as an au pair destination. One of our readers, G. M., who is working as an au pair in China, has been gracious enough to share her experience with us. Here is some of what she has written about her time in China so far …

“I’ve been here for 3 weeks now. The agency told me that the first week was the ‘honeymoon’ phase, and then it gets hard. That didn’t happen to me … I hated the first week … “

She goes on to say that the first week she was very depressed and homesick. She was having some trouble getting used to such a different culture, and was even working more hours than she should. She was more or less wondering what she had done and if going to China had been the right decision. But she did go on to say…

“After the first week things started to get better and are continuing to get better.”

After getting over the initial sadness of leaving home and culture shock of living in such a new and different place, G. started to really appreciate China. Except for maybe the bad weather … About the country, she says,

“China is amazing in every sense. The size of Beijing, the number of people, the weather is bad, and the people somewhat difficult.”

She also says that people who can’t adjust quickly should not go to China, which is probably very true. For many westerners, Asia can be a BIG change, so you need to be sure that you can handle such a drastically different place and culture.

Like most au pairs, there has been the occassional issue with her host family, but for the most part, the au pair job in China is working out. An email sent several weeks into the job reveals that things are working out great. The agency she is working with is great and encourages other au pairs in the area to get to know each other. She has also made friends outside of her family and au pair circle, and she her work situation has balanced out nicely. She works 30 hours a week, taking care of the family’s son, whom she is getting along with very well. Of course, things haven’t been 100% easy, but G.M. is happy she made the decision to work in China as an au pair.

So, the final verdict on working as an au pair in China? Totally worth it, but not for the faint of heart!

Are there any other au pairs working in China? Or interested in going? If so, please speak up – we’d love to hear from you!

Au Pair in China – part 1

Shanghai China(Photo of Shanghai from Dreamstime)

Due to its strong economy and growing number of high-income-earning families, China is emerging as a popular au pair destination.

Requirements for working as an au pair in China

To be an au pair in China, you have to be between the ages of 18 and 29 years old and single with no kids. Minimum education requirements are a high school diploma. No Chinese language knowledge is required, as au pairs in China speak English with their host families (unless of course they want to learn Chinese, and they will be placed with a family who will speak Chinese with them).

Au pairs usually have to cover their own travel expenses to China, and the length of stay as an au pair in China can either be 6 or 12 months.

Pay and benefits

Monthly pay for au pairs in China is approximately (or 60 Euros). This is not a lot of money, but China is a very inexpensive country, so you can get by on this.

Those are the basics about working as an au pair in China. Our next post will share the personal experience of one of our readers, who is currently an au pair in China. Stay tuned