Au Pair In China

Au Pair In China

Travel around China and get paid. Provide child care to a screened host family.

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Being an au pair in China is a great program if you want to travel and earn money at the same time!  Add to that great combo a loving host family where you will have all of your meals, a private bedroom and all the support you need.

If you are between the ages of 18 and 30, we’re interested in having you join us. All we need to begin is for you to hold a passport from the United States and Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa. We will screen your host family, ensuring you have a safe, comfortable environment and that they are a suitable host. We will also provide you with a clear set of guidelines and expectations that are set with your host family. We will also help you make new friends during your time there. Various social events are often planned so that you have the opportunity to meet other Au Pairs working in China.  That’s great chance to share your experiences with other Au Pairs from all over the world, to learn Chinese together and to make new friends. There are also organized trips to see local cities and explore the area.

Your private room and meals are included with your placement fee. Provide up to 25 hours each week of child care for the family and you’ll be paid around $450 US each month. You will be taking care of the children, escorting them to school, playing and teaching them, etc.  And then time is spent each week tutoring the children in English.  This can be done while helping with homework, playing with the children, taking them to a playground, or casually around the house.

70% of the Chinese families we use for the Au Pair program have one child.  30% of the families have 2 or more children.

Some of our au pairs tell us the bond they form with their host family can last a lifetime.  We know some au pairs who actually fly back a few years later for a reunion or to attend a milestone event for one of the children they cared for.  You will be able to participate in family activities, share cultures, make friends in your new community and with other au pairs in the area … a built in social network to make your time abroad a lot more fun, exciting and rewarding.

Becoming an au pair in China is a serious position … and while you do get paid to travel … your main responsibilities are the children you care for.  While you might consider yourself patient, fun-loving and perfect for a job like this … think about how responsible you are and your previous experience with children under your care.  If you’re ready … we have incredible families who need you right away, living in amazing locations in China.

Be ready to get to know and love the everyday life in China, enjoy a second home with new friends, become more independent and confident, discover new interests, put your organizational and creative skills to the test, get to know yourself better, add an international reference to your resume in order to help with future job applications as you become an au pair in China.

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  • Do you enjoy helping children with homework, assisting in keeping children’s rooms and play areas clean, preparing snacks and meals for children, and dropping them off or picking them up from school or activities? If the answer is “yes” then this program is definitely for you.

    This is a great program for people who want to experience life in China and the Chinese culture in-depth. The program has a focus on you providing child care for the family, who in turn will pay you.  But there is also a big cultural exchange component, and host families are excited to share the characteristics of their country, culture and cuisine.

  • Aside from earning money while you travel, our Au Pairs have the opportunity to learn more about children and influence their lives. As an Au Pair you develop more self-confidence and become more independent. Living with a family in their own country gives you an amazing insight into that county’s culture, values and people.

  • Yes! There are enough host families seeking Au Pairs, it is possible to place you and a friend near one another.
  • 3, 6, 9 or 12 months. Most families prefer an au pair who can commit to 9 or 12 months.
  • $350 for 6, 9 or 12 months. $599 for 3 months.
  • You will earn a minimum monthly stipend of approximately US$450.

    Surprisingly, when au pair program fees and other expenses paid are compared with pocket money earned plus the value of room and board, au pairs earn more than they spend.

    Did you know that being an au pair is one of the most affordable ways to experience international travel even if you have to pay program fees and flight expenses?

    Costs (Based on staying 12 months)
    • $350 program fee due before you leave.
    • $0 airfare.  Depending on how long you go, families will pay portions of the airfare.  We found a roundtrip airfare of $1,028 on STA Travel from Chicago.  Amount will depend on your own departure city and date.  The family will reimburse up to $1,450 of your air, so there would be no cost to the au pair.
    • TOTAL COSTS: $350
    How Much Will I Make?
    • $5,400 salary. This is around $450 a month for twelve months.
    • You get 1 ½ days off each week and your health and accident insurance is paid.
    • In a twelve-month placement you will receive a $200 completion bonus.
    So …
    • You will make around $5,600 over the twelve months as an AuPair including your bonus.
    • Airfare is paid for by your host family.
    • That means you could clear around $5,451! ($5,600 less $149 cost)  And your room and board are covered too!
    • Don’t forget the 60 hours of formal Mandarin lessons, which would normally cost $1,500US.
    • The value of your health insurance, which could be around $500 for the year.
    • Don’t forget that the value of your room (you don’t have to pay rent) and meals (you don’t have to buy food) is approximately $6,650. This figure is based on the cost of staying in Chinese hostels and eating the lowest cost meals.
    • Total financial value of this package is $14,101.

Why Is There A Placement Fee? It’s like I’m paying to get a job.

Over the years we have met au pairs who have had horrible experiences when they thought they were going into a fantastic overseas au pair job only to find out the family where they were living was not screened, families dismissed au pairs routinely without paying them, and there was no one to turn to for help and support. No one to look out for them.  And because they were on their own, they were lonely.

At GeoVisions, we have pre-screened the families and the position and in some cases, we have placed au pairs with that family before. We make sure you’re being paid the highest stipend possible. We provide a person in-country to help you and to be there for you. You will meet other au pairs just like you and we provide social activities with other au pairs. In fact, if your placement doesn’t work out, we will move you to another family (based on circumstances).

We have negotiated reduced airfare for you and we have negotiated 60-hours of Mandarin lessons so that you don’t have to pay to learn the language. We introduce you to other au pairs and provide activities for you to enjoy China and make new friends. On your own you are … well … on your own.

Can I choose my location?

You cannot choose your location in China. Almost all of our placements are in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, or Shenzhen.

What if I don’t like my placement when I arrive or I have host family issues? Can I move?

Before you depart, we connect you via email, phone and Skype with your new host family. You’ll have all the details you want before you ever leave home.  GeoVisions spends a great deal of time on match-making. It is the only way the program will be successful. There needs to be a “connection” between you and your host family. You will Skype, call or email your family before you pay the balance of your program fees. It’s the only way everyone will be happy.

But after you arrive if you’re having issues, we have a way to start the process to fix things or, change your placement, if necessary. This is extremely rare, but we’ve done this long enough to know things can come up on all sides.

Can I be placed with someone? I’d like to travel with a friend.

Unfortunately, host families needing an au pair have the room for one extra person in the home. So we are unable to provide a homestay for anyone except one au pair per household. If you want to apply with someone else, they would be placed with another family. We would try hard to find a host family so you would be close to one another, but we could not guarantee that.

If you’re set on traveling with someone and they must be close by, take a look at our other program types, because we do have those kinds of placements.  Give us a call and ask.

Some Fun Cultural Differences

By being aware of some of the cultural differences you lessen the impact of culture shock and you make your life considerably easier. Here is a list of some of the more overt cultural differences of Western culture in relation to Chinese culture:

Food Etiquette

Food etiquette in China is different from other cultures. Watch what they do. You will be amazed. Slurping and reaching for food is totally acceptable as is removing food from one’s mouth and putting it on the table. Note that playing with chopsticks and making faces at the food (no matter how disgusted you might be) is not acceptable. Showing this emotion is considered a loss of face. Also note that going “dutch” is seen as unfriendly. If you offer to pay for everyone’s meal it will develop your relationship with him or her or them, even though they may not let you actually pay.


We might as well address the one thing you HAVE to get used to. People. And lots of them. If you choose to travel or go out you will be exposed to crowds. On public holidays the masses of people will become readily apparent as you shop with 1.5 billion Chinese. Don’t expect people to wait in line. There is very little sense of personal space.

Visiting a Person’s House

If you are invited to a Chinese person’s house, which will happen, always take a gift of fruit or flowers. A pre-made basket of fruit costs about $5.00. A bag of oranges or a bunch of flowers only costs a couple of dollars.

Red flowers are good to take. White flowers are only used at funerals. Indian candy or smoked salmon as a “gift from home” always goes over really well.


Smoking is seen as a masculine activity and very few think of it as a health threat or as offensive. Often people will smoke in restaurants with little or no regard for smoking or non-smoking sections. Chinese men constantly offer cigarettes and alcohol to other men. The type of cigarettes a person smokes establishes a class system. To decline an offer of a cigarette or alcohol say gently, “Wo bu hui. Xie xie.”


Today, attitudes towards tipping are changing in China. Although the practice is not officially recognized, tips are now frequently offered to and accepted by travel guides, tour bus drivers, porters and waiters in top-class hotels and restaurants. However, tipping is still not expected in most restaurants and hotels. Consumer taxes are included in price tags on goods but big hotels and fine restaurants may include a service charge of 10% or more.

Physical Contact/Holding Hands in Public

Chinese are not big on public displays of affection. You will rarely if ever see couples kissing in public. Shake hands but refrain from hugging, kissing, winking, patting or making physical contact.
 As a “friend,” you will find that men will hold hands with men and women will hold hands with women and walk on the street. This may be “weird” in the west, but it is a common friendly practice for young people/adults in China. You may even have a friend of the same sex try to hold your hand at some point.

Eye Contact

In Western countries one expects to maintain eye contact when we talk with people. This is a norm we consider basic and essential. This is not the case among the Chinese. On the contrary, because of the more authoritarian nature of the Chinese society, steady eye contact is viewed as inappropriate, especially when subordinates talk with their superiors.

Chinese students are not brought up to maintain constant eye contact with their teachers. Eye contact is sometimes viewed as a gesture of challenge or defiance. When people get angry, they tend to maintain steady eye contact. Otherwise, they keep talking looking elsewhere or nonchalant. Also, try to avoid physical content and eye contact with the opposite sex.


Bowing or nodding is the common greeting; however, you may be offered a handshake. Wait for the Chinese to offer their hand first.

Inviting People Home

You are definitely welcome to invite Chinese people to your home. Expect that if you invite them that you will be required to supply everything, just the same as if you invite them to dinner in a restaurant.


Be prepared to be asked your age, or why you are not married or don’t have any children. This is not considered prying but rather friendly and expressing interest in your life.

Chinese Hosts Offering Something

Usually when a Chinese host offers a guest refreshments, if the guest declines, the host will ask again twice. Remember this if you entertain at your place. If someone declines they may really want something so you should really ask a couple more times. It makes it look like you are really concerned with their comfort.

Au Pairs in China Must
  • Be between 18 and 30 with at least a high school diploma.
  • We can currently take au pairs from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland.
  • Have previous childcare/babysitting experience, and a genuine love of children.
  • Be able to commit to at least 3 months as an au pair.  We can accept au pairs in China year ’round and for periods of 3, 6, 9 and 12 months.
  • Provide a medical reference and a background check.
  • Be interviewed by phone or Skype to be accepted by the family.
  • Meet the China Visa requirements.
  • Have references from childcare experience, interest in working with children and have a love of children.
Au Pairs in China Receive
  • A private room and full board.
  • Placement with a carefully screened family.
  • A stipend of approximately $450 US per month for 25 hours of childcare and English tutoring.
  • Airport transfers and most local transportation.
  • Health and accident insurance for the duration you are in China.
  • Orientation.
  • Assistance with airfare, according to how long you will stay in China.
  • Help and support as needed from GeoVisions’ partner au pair agency in China.
  • 60 hours of language classes per three months.
  • At least 1 and ½ day off per week.
Au Pair Responsibilities Include
  • Living with the host family as a member of the family and the desire for a strong cross-cultural relationship.
  • Helping with babysitting, child care and light household duties.
  • Assisting Chinese family with English language as desired.
  • Adjusting to the Chinese culture and customs, while sharing your culture and language with the host family.
  • Occupying the children in an interesting and creative way, reading books to them, taking them for a walk, taking them to bed, preparing simple meals, taking them to school, etc.

  • We have families available year round.

  • Au Pairs in China will work up to 25 hours each week.  They also receive 1 and ½ days off each week.

    After your arrival, you will receive a timetable with duties and working days/hours, so you know exactly the working time. The family must respect your time off. Should the family require you to work outside the usual working hours this must be agreed by both sides and any extra hours worked must be paid.

  • Included. Au pairs will receive a pre-departure orientation online (approximately 2 hours). There will also be an in-country orientation, usually on the second day in China, that focuses on customs, expectations, weekly schedule, etc.

  • You must be a native English speaker.

  • Included.  China is one of the world’s oldest and richest cultures; over 5000 years old. China is the most populous nation in the world, with 1.28 billion people. One fifth of the planet speaks Chinese. Mandarin Chinese is the mother tongue of over 873 million people, making it the most widely spoken first language in the world. In addition to the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan, Mandarin Chinese is also spoken in the important and influential Chinese communities of Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines, and Mongolia.

    Language classes are provided to au pairs.  Each 3 month period will include 60 hours of language classes.

  • 18-30 years old and must have at least a high school diploma.  We have placements for both males and females.

  • Throughout China. Mostly in cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, or Shenzhen.

  • Depending on how long you can be an Au Pair in China, your host family will contribute towards the cost of your plane ticket.

    The family will pay:

    • $370 (approx.) toward your airfare if you commit to 3 months.
    • $725 (approx.) toward your airfare if you commit to 6 months.
    • $1,090(approx.) toward your airfare if you commit to 9 months.
    • $1,450 (approx.) toward your airfare if you commit to 12 months.
  • Au pairs are responsible for the cost of their visa.

    Each Au Pair receives an invitation letter, which is needed for an entry Visa.  It is possible to receive a one-year multiple entry Visa.  If you are staying less than a year, it is possible that you will receive a 90-day multiple entry Visa.  If you need to renew the Visa because you’re staying longer than 90-days or you decide while you are in China to extend your Visa, you will need to travel to Hong Kong for a Visa renewal.  Your flight to Hong Kong for the Visa renewal will be covered by your host family.

  • Insurance is required and is paid for by your host family.  Your coverage begins upon arrival in China.

    Your continued good health and safety during your time abroad is of critical importance to GeoVisions, and to the success of the program.

    With the new healthcare and insurance laws in the United States, GeoVisions cannot legally provide travel, health and accident insurance on our group plan for any participant who resides outside the US. If that is you, we hope you will still participate with us. We struggle to understand these insurance laws in our country every day.

    For US Citizens, GeoVisions has arranged accident and health insurance services through STA Travel.  You will be sent details of the plan appropriate to you before departure.  Please read the information about the plan carefully.

    If you reside outside the US, please find out if your current health insurance plan covers you when you travel. If it does not, you will need to purchase an insurance plan separately. Then, simply send us a scan or photo of your insurance card. It’s that simple. And for the record, we don’t understand or agree with these laws either. Your host family will cover this cost.

    GeoVisions takes your health very seriously. We have specially trained staff on duty 24 hours a day, 7-days a week to assist you wherever you are.

  • Included by your host family or our in-country partner.

  • Included if you are with the children.

  • Included.  You will have a private bedroom at your host family.

  • Meals while at the host family are included.

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