Au Pair advice for the coronavirus

Novel Corona Virus affects the Au Pair program worldwide. It is already clear that it will have a major impact on international travel, cultural exchange programmes in general and of course our au pair programmes.

The Novel Coronavirus dominates all conversations these day. The Au Pairs, who are far away from home, have a lot of worries, concerns and fear. These feelings are normal emotions to experience during the event like pandemic. Please accept that, stay informed with accurate facts, and remember that we’re all in this together. Strong bonds are formed during times like these that probably wouldn’t have formed under normal circumstances. Check in on your au pair friends and spend some times together online.

 Stay flexible with your changing schedule and duties and talk to your host family if you need anything. You should work up to 10 hours per day and up to 45 hours per week, but your schedule will likely change more often. However, some Au Pairs like that they do not need wake up early because the schools are closed.

Go outside with the children in this beautiful weather, but keep space from others (experts recommend at least 10 feet. Keeping distant from other people is how we can slow/avoid virus infection. It’s one of the greatest acts of kindness we each can do for others. If one person in the home is not respecting social distancing, it lessens the safety for the others.

Take some alone relaxation time – go for a walk, skype with family back home and friends daily. Stay active. Make sure to get enough sleep and rest, stay hydrated and eat healthy foods when possible.

Stay safe and try do not worry much. In case you will need a medical help, we have been informed by Caremed insurance that treatment and testing for COVID-19 are covered as any other illness under your health insurance policy. 

Good news- you can now complete your education requirement by taking classes online from the best college for free using many online courses, for example https://www.coursera.org/ If you decided to complete online education for your educational requirement please contact Go Au Pair at educoord@goaupair.com for written approval of this exception.

Au Pairs favorite meeting -volunteering in the USA!

This year we are going to volunteer again for the International Spring Festival for the fifth time! However, for many Au Pairs volunteering will be a first-time experience.

Many Au Pairs from the Bucks County and Philadelphia area cluster chose to volunteer and help the community while being Au pairs with Go Au Pair. Au Pairs are very enthusiastic and motivated to make a difference in another’s life.  Instead of taking the easy roads, spending time for their pleasure, many Au Pairs had chosen to volunteer their time and skills while they are in the USA.

This year Au Pairs are volunteering face painting, twisting balloons,  making crafts with kids, and etc.  They are looking forward to entertaining the kids. However, the festival is interesting for the entire family. The address is North Penn High School, 1340 Valley Forge Road, Lansdale, 19446, and the hours are from 11.00 am to 5.00 pm.  The event is free.

The Go Au Pair agency will support our team by providing the supplies. Au Pairs not only volunteer, but also a few Au Pairs will perform on the stage! You can see their dances, listen the songs and musical performances.

The Festival features multi-cultural exhibits and vendors, food tasting, and fabulous performances of dance and music. Many Au Pairs said that exploring the festival and volunteering for the community was their favorite meeting. <3.

Please join the International Spring Festival and a Host Family Day Conference on Saturday, April 18th , 2020. If you want to meet other families and learn about the Au Pair program from their experience, please come to the Go Au Pair table at 1:00 pm.

Au Pair Taxes for 2019.

The Au Pairs are required to file U.S. individual income return. They should file form 1040NR-EZ by April 15, 2020 and report their stipend for the previous calendar year. The amount Au Pairs owe depends largely on when they arrived in the US. The Au Pairs don’t need W-2 form to file their tax return.

Au Pairs should provide their Social Security Number to fill their tax return. They should use the instructions for 1040NR-EZ to fill out a 1040NR-EZ (U.S. Income Tax Return for Certain Nonresident Aliens With No Dependents). To calculate how much an Au Pairs have earned during 2019, they should multiply the number of weeks they worked as an Au Pair in the USA in 2019 with the amount of their weekly stipend or use their Wages log.  Than, Au Pairs will be able to file a 1040NR-EZ and send payment to IRS for any taxes owed.

According to IRS, Au Pairs are not eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit, The Hope Credit or the Lifetime Learning Credits. If the Au Pairs have to report the types of income other than stipend, like bank interests, tips , etc, they need to file 1040NR form (not a 1040NR-EZ). Please, consult a tax professional.

Au Pair taxes can be confusing. H&R Block Expat Tax Services offers an easy way for Au Pairs to file their U.S. taxes with promotional pricing of $99 for the Au Pairs who will register and complete their tax organizer by February 28. Please visit H&R Block’s Au Pair Tax page, email them at aupair.support@hrblock.com or call them at 816-504-1665.

Au Pairs can use free file software options:

I will be able to provide some general information and basics of tax returns to our cluster Au Pairs during our Au Pair meeting on Sunday, March 22, 2020 in Parkway Central Library. However, it is best to consult a tax professional with the questions.
If Au Pairs don’t file Au Pair income tax return, they risk incurring costly interest and penalties, and it may complicate obtaining a U.S. visa in the future.

Here are some useful links:

Good luck with your income tax return!

Educational Credits for Au Pairs with Cultural Hi-Ways

Au pairs are required to earn 6 (or 12 for EduCare program) educational credits during their year in the United States. Many Au Pairs enjoyed the Learning Across America program with Cultural Hi-Ways and Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC).

99% of Cultural Hi-Ways’ guests are Au Pairs. Au Pairs can sign up to join any of the weekend tours and have a great time. You can review all the details of the Learning Across America program here.

The program offers local classes and when Au Pairs choose a Learning Local, they have the opportunity to attend class locally and participate in a Cultural Hi-Ways tour to the destination they are studying, the cost of which is included in Au Pairs tuition.  Students travel to “must see” destinations like Amish Country, Montreal (Canada), Niagara Falls and Washington, DC.

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Au pairs participating in BMCC’s Learning Local courses attend class locally (generally ranging from the New York City metropolitan area to Washington, DC) and then take part in a Cultural Hi-Ways tour to the destination they’re studying, the cost of which is included in the tuition price.  In choosing this option, they have the entire tour weekend to explore destinations like Montreal, Niagara Falls and Washington, DC.

BMCC’s Learning Express courses provide au pairs across America with the opportunity to study, explore and earn their educational credits over a long weekend in amazing cities like Chicago, Houston, Miami, Nashville, New Orleans, New York City, Niagara Falls, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington, DC.

According to the Department of State requirement, host families have to reimburse tuition costs and costs of related materials up to $500 and $1000 for EduCare. Please, plan ahead, speak with your host family and don’t wait until the last minute to register for your class.

Au Pair Tati became a genuine friend and member of her host family.

Many Au Pairs turned out to be all what that the host families were looking for: playmate, sister, daughter, teacher, helper, friend and much more. Many host families love their Au Pairs and nominate them to #LoveMyAuPair Contest with Go Au Pair to share their amazing experience.

Au Pair from Colombia Tatiana Andrea Matiz Calderon (Tati) joined her host family in the Philadelphia area only four months ago. However, her host family wrote already in their nomination that, “Tati has quickly become a genuine friend and member of our family. I think that is one of the greatest things about having an Au Pair: having that real person to person connection.”

“Tati is a very dedicated worker, and very dependable. She has a very adaptable/flexible personality and view on her role as a caretaker for our children. She has been teaching our children Spanish; our youngest (18 months) can now count the steps as she goes up and down the stairs in both English and Spanish. We try to keep to a schedule as best we can, but inevitably, things often come up that require us to change things on the fly, or some other plan arises midweek for which we must accommodate, and in all cases, Tati has always been there for us when those changes arise, and always with the same wonderful attitude about things.

The most striking thing about Tati is that she is just a wonderful, kind person. She is a joy to be around, and she truly loves our children. Her general way of being has made it so that we are very comfortable with her with our children, and we always know that she is there for our family. We consider her to be a member of our family, and we are so fortunate to have found her.”

Many families participate in Love My Au Pair contest with Go Au Pair for a reason to thank and recognize the Au Pairs for all the wonderful things the Au Pairs do for the host families. 

2020 Au Pair meetings

Hello 2020! Here’s to another year full of joy, laughter, and unforgettable memories with unforgettable friends!

We are ready for you- a new Au Pair meetings schedule for Au Pairs with Go Au Pair in the Philadelphia and Bucks County cluster set and it helps make even more memories in 2020.

The Au Pair meetings give the Au Pairs an opportunity to meet new Au Pairs from around the word and form friendships. The cluster meetings also create a sense of unity and belonging to the group of Au Pairs.

The cluster meeting give Au Pair a chance to talk to a Local Area Representative if there are any concerns or questions and prevent many issues.

Go Au Pair requires all Au Pairs to attend at least 4 meetings for each 12-month program year. We will have two meetings every quarter of 2020, eight meetings during the year. Be sure to mark your calendar ahead.

On February 15, 2020, we will join AFRICAN CULTURES CELEBRATION at Penn Museum, 3260 South St, Philadelphia, PA 19104. Au Pairs welcome to attend a class on  filing 2019 tax return and the Library tour,  Parkway Central Library in March 2020.

The Department of State requires that host families attend at least one activity each year. Every April Host families join a Family Day Conference at The Lansdale International Spring Festival, North Penn High School, Lansdale, PA 19446. Host family welcome to join us at any of our Au Pair activities.

The Au Pair meetings promote cultural awareness and help gain a new experience and make new friends. I hope you will enjoy our upcoming meetings!  

Former Au Pairs and host kids choose the Au Pair Program for their families.

The concept of the Au Pair originated in Europe after World War II. The Au Pair Program, according to Wikipedia,  started in the United States in 1989, it means 30 years ago. Many American parents today know about the Au Pair program because they had been an Au Pair in France, Germany, China and other foreign countries and/or their parents hosted the Au Pair.

Interest in an Au Pair Program in the US began when two agencies applied to the United States Information Agency (USIA) to conduct a program. Then, in 1989, the program was expanded to include six additional government designated companies. Go Au Pair is one of the originally designated Au Pair Agencies and has been administering the program for 30 years.

The Au Pair Program has been very successful and there are 16 Au Pair agencies and approximately 18,000 Au Pairs in the United States today. It means that many host kids had the opportunity of having cultural exchange experience firsthand.

The former Au Pairs and host kids become great host parents. There are three former Au Pairs who are now host moms in the Philadelphia cluster: Tatiana K., Natalie R., and Andreea A. The host families love the program so much from their personal experience, that they have considered using Au Pair childcare for their children. 

The Go Au Pair agency always asks the potential host families, in their applications, the reason for joining the Au Pair program. I was pleased to read that a new host mom keeps great memories of the time with her Au Pair,  “My mom and dad had an Au Pair when I was first born and I would love to provide the same experience for my family now.”

The host moms know from their personal experience that the Au Pairs will provide meaningful loving childcare and a culturally enriching experience for the whole family.

The Au Pair program builds global families by bringing together international visitors with American host families and the connections. between them become priceless.  Au Pairs seem increasingly common in Philadelphia and the surrounding area. In addition to cultural exchange, families name benefits such as flexible scheduling, and more one-on-one attention for their children.

Do you have the best Au Pair ever?

Tell the world about your experience and recognize your Au Pair for all the wonderful things your Au Pair does for your family by participating at 2020 #LoveMyAuPair Contest with Go Au Pair. That recognition makes each Au Pair a winner already!

Every year many Host Families from Go Au Pair participate in Love My Au Pair Contest and love to share their experience with their truly amazing Au Pairs.

The winners is determined by an essay nomination provided by Host Families and they all get recognition and prizes. In addition, top 3 eligible Au Pairs will be entered to win the worldwide Au Pair of the Year Award and FREE trip to Malta! The International Au Pair Association (IAPA) will present the Au Pair of the Year Award to one outstanding Au Pair in March 2020 during Work Exchange Travel Market and IAPA Annual Conference.

Last year five Go Au Pair Host Families from the Philadelphia and Bucks County area  nominated their outstanding Au Pairs for the 2019 Love My Au Pair Contest and Ukrainian Au Pair Mariia Belous and her Host Family- the Gerzon family became the runner up of 2019 Love My Au Pair contest with Go Au Pair and won a lot of prizes.

Do you feel that your Au Pair is “the world’s best au pairs and deserve to win the IAPA Au Pair of the Year Award?” Please submit the nomination for the 2020 #LoveMyAuPair Contest with Go Au Pair. The Au Pairs with Go Au Pair were the winners of the IAPA Au Pair of the Year Award a few times, ❤

2020 Love My Au Pair Contest

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Thanksgiving is a special American holiday where we eat turkey and give thanks.

At this time of Thanksgiving we pause to count our blessings and express a special greeting of Thanksgiving to the people we sincerely appreciate. There is so much to be thankful for: big things, small things…and all those things in between.

This is my favorite times of the year because it’s a time to get together with the people I love, give back and focus on all the wonderful things we’re thankful for and the people who really bless us everyday. Today all the thanks are going to our amazing Au Pairs who just celebrated the first International Au Pair Day!

There are many reasons to give thanks to Au Pairs for what they have given to host families

…for cooking delicious dishes from their countries and sharing with us the secrets
…for willingness to help when we were too timid to ask you
…for capturing the treasured memories and pictures of our families
…for unforgettable cultural experience they brought into our home

Here is a special opportunity to thank and recognize the Au Pairs for all the wonderful things the Au Pairs do for the host families. Please submit the nomination for the 2020 #LoveMyAuPair Contest with Go Au Pair.

Time to say thank you to your Au Pair for being outstanding an Au Pair and nominate your Au Pair

The International Au Pair Day is almost here.

Au Pairs make host family life less stressful and more fun, bring loving and devoted childcare to families home, share their passion and culture with their host families.

Managing the kids and invisible load of housework and child related tasks can be very overwhelming and tough. For Au Pairs it is important to know that their hard work is noticed and appreciated. The International Au Pair Day is a great opportunity to recognise your Au Pair for a job well done everyday and to say thank you.

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On  Sunday, November 24, 2019, the Philadelphia Bucks County cluster of Go Au Pair is going to celebrate the International Au Pair Day at Bowlero Feasterville  for the first time in history. Go Au Pair agency will sponsor the event, so it will be free for our cluster Au Pairs

The celebration of this Day with new friends and the host family is very important! If you are not sure how to celebrate the International Au Pair Day with your Au Pair,  International Au Pair Association (IAPA) recommends host families:

  • Surprise your au pair with a thank you note or video
  • Organise a surprise celebration for him/her
  • Take your au pair somewhere nice
  • Show your appreciation with a small gift
  • Give him/her a day off to have a fun day with other au pairs.

Our Au Pairs deserved to be recognized and the International Au Pair Day is another occasion to say thank you and celebrate. We will celebrate the International Au Pair Day with former and present Au Pairs, host families, and friends of the Au Pair program for the first time in history!

Please join the Philadelphia Bucks County cluster of Go Au Pair in celebrating the International Au Pair Day at Bowlero Feasterville on Sunday, November 24, 2019, at 3:00 pm. Mention Go Au Pair to get a group discount.

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