a confused boy

How much does an au pair cost in South Africa?  Depending on an au pair’s experience level, you can expect to pay an au pair between R4000 to R8000 per month for a part time au pair working between 6 to 30 hours per week, and R8500 to R16000 per month for a full-time au pair working between 35 to 50 hours per week. The working hours for an au pair can vary dependent on the needs of the family. For this reason, an au pair salary can be a set monthly wage or an hourly rate that varies each week. Most au pairs will prefer to get a set monthly salary which is determined according to their level of experience, what qualifications they hold and how many hours they work.

One of the many deciding factors for most families who’d like to employ an au pair, is whether or not they can afford to.

Determining what to pay an au pair can be complicated:

If you pay an au pair too little, you run the risk of employing someone who may not be qualified enough for the job, or, if you pay too high, you might not feel you getting enough value for the service.

Unfortunately, the complicated issue of how much to pay an au pair is driven by the fact that each family’s requirements are unique, and therefore, there is no general amount of hours that an au pair works each month. Au pair salaries will vary according to the amount of experience or qualifications they have, but also according to the number of hours your family needs them for.

The more hours you require an au pair in a week, the higher the salary will be. With a higher salary, you can be certain you will attract good quality candidates. We do recommend that if you want a high-quality candidate, that you consider offering a salary slightly above market value, to ensure a long-term commitment to your family. It can be unsettling for both children and parents to constantly have to deal with a high turnover of nonchalant au pairs.

While many au pair agencies will work according to an hourly rate, we don’t believe this is the correct approach to use:

A South African au pair is different to the global definition of an au pair, which is often referred to as a foreign, travelling woman, happy to help out in a home in exchange for a room, food and some pocket money. Instead, in South Africa, an au pair is someone who is studying either fulltime or part-time, a teacher, or someone whose specifically chosen a career as an au pair. For this reason, they seek a permanent and stable monthly salary as opposed to an ever-changing monthly income based on the amount of hours they work. By paying an attractive and stable monthly salary, you can be sure to attract high-calibre professional au pairs who will be committed to your family on a long-term basis.

An au pair salary will depend on many factors:

  • Their age
  • How much childcare experience they have
  • What relevant qualifications and courses they hold
  • The amount of hours they are required to work each week
  • A valid drivers licence (and in some cases, their own car)
  • The area you live in

Use our guide* to help you determine what to pay your au pair:

*This table serves as a rough guide for monthly au pair salaries in the Sandton area.

Full-time au pair salary:

An au pair with only a small amount of childcare experience working full-time for your family (minimum of 35 hours per week) can earn around R8500 per month. Whereas, a highly experienced au pair, such as someone  who has many years’ experience working with different families and with babies can earn around R15000 per month when working a minimum of 35 hours per week.

Part-time au pair salary:

A high-calibre au pair, such as a qualified Early Childhood Development teacher, looking for part-time work will usually expect a minimum of R7,000 per month. If you are looking for an au pair of this standard, you’ll need to ensure you have enough hours to employ them for in order to justify a salary of this level.

On the other hand, a part-time au pair with less experience, working roughly 6-12 hours per week, can earn around R4000 per month and a more experienced part-time au pair could earn about R5500 per month.

Here at Au Pair Extraordinaire, we are dedicated to helping South African families find the perfect au pair to suit your family’s needs as cost-effectively as possible. If you need help to find au pair, or need guidance on au pair rates, then please don’t hesitate to contact us.