The interview process can feel pretty daunting, especially, I’m sure, if English isn’t your first language! It’s good to remind yourself that the interview process is most definitely a two way street. Not only will you be answering questions about your experience – make sure you definitely ask some back, because it’s imperative that it’s a good fit for both of you! You’ll either be well equipped and have a million and one questions to ask – or you’ll be the opposite and be totally stuck with nothing to say; so hopefully this helps!
Although it’s tempting to jump straight in and ask lots of questions about whether you can use the car for personal use and if you have to work weekends – try and keep your initial questions strictly child or family related! If you ask too many non-child related questions, the family will doubt your seriousness and commitment to the program, worrying that you’re using this experience as just an excuse to party it up in America instead! That being said however, after your first interview and initial questions – definitely ask anything else that’s on your mind before accepting your placement just incase something changes your mind!
The following questions are a good example of some of the generic things to consider asking when having your interviews with families. Naturally, after speaking to each family, you’ll have more specific questions reacted off any information you’ve already been given, but the below is a good guide as a starting point! Definitely make sure you read your potential host families profile and welcome letter very thoroughly as, from my experience, a lot of these questions get answered from those two without you even needing to bring it up! That being said, not everyone is as detailed as others on their profiles, so definitely consider at least some of the below before embarking your on your Au Pair adventure!
Questions About The Children & Family:
– What sort of things do your children enjoy doing/eating etc
– What are your families hobbies?
– What are the children like?
– Why did your host family decide to host an au pair?
– Has your host family had au pairs before?
– Do the children & family follow a diet sheet?
– What does your host parents’ work schedule look like?
– What do they do on their weekends?
– Do you eat dinner together?
– Do you like to travel?
– Are you religious and if so what do I need to be aware of?
– Do you enjoy sports?
– Do you celebrate typical American holidays?
– Can I speak to your current Au Pair?
Questions About The Job:
– What days would I generally work?
– What times would I generally work?
– Will the host family take me on a vacation? If so: what will your duties be?
– What does your host family expect from you?
– Do they want you to be an experienced driver?
– Do they expect you to prepare meals for the children?
– What will your everyday life look like?
– What will your tasks and duties be?
– Which days and evenings will you have off?
– How do you discipline your children?
– How do you reward your children?
– Who pays for the children’s activities/days out etc.?
– Is there a limited budget for activities/days out etc.?
– How do I get paid & how often?
– Are there many other au pairs around?
Question About Your Life There:
– Do I have a curfew
– Am I allowed friends visiting?
– Can I see your house and my potential bedroom?
– What are my allowances with the car?
– Do I have to pay for petrol at all?
– Do you provide a cell phone & phone plan?