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Old 16.02.2012, 20:16
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Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

Hi, I am due to come to Zurich next month and have been told it is very expensive, could you tell me if 1800 swiss franc per month is enough for me to be able to entertain myself, buy clothes etc??
Thanks
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:23
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Re: Au Pair Salary

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Hi, I am due to come to Zurich next month and have been told it is very expensive, could you tell me if 1800 swiss franc per month is enough for me to be able to entertain myself, buy clothes etc??
Thanks
If you have all your food & housing paid for then 1800 sounds ok. If you had to rent a room & buy food 3500 is probably subsistance level.
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:38
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

A sign of the times..."Is 21.6K enough to live on". Last year it was 120K.
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:40
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

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A sign of the times..."Is 21.6K enough to live on". Last year it was 120K.
Thanks for your reply although Im unsure what you mean??
I literally have no idea how expensive we're talking when it comes to dining out, drinks at bars, clothes shopping, excursions etc...
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:43
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If you're living with the family you will au pair for I would think you'd be ok. But if you have to pay rent + health insurance + food + mobile + dinner/drinks out + clothes + transport? I don't know if CHF 1800 will get you that far.

But that seems like an awfully high salary for a proper au pair....
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:43
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

Some useful threads for your research:

Average cost of living in Zurich or Geneva for single person?

What is the Cost of living in Zurich?

Average Cost of Living in Zurich

Is Zurich really more expensive than London?

Salaries in Switzerland - These and other questions answered before you ask!

http://www.englishforum.ch/daily-lif...f-library.html

There are more when searched.
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:45
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

What is your home country ? How long are you coming for ? How do you feel about buying second hand clothes or borrowing things from friends ?

Yes, things are very expensive here. However, it's also possible to live much more cheaply if you don't mind second-hand - the affluence means that there is plenty of stuff being given away for free or almost free through charity type shops.

Same for 'eating out' - I guess your host family will provide lots of food, so it all depends on whether you feel the need to 'eat out' a lot - or are more than happy to take a home-made sandwich or picnic when you go out and about...

The main thing is to be resourceful, and adapt. Find friends who are in the same situation, (either that, or a rich boyfriend ).... and you won't feel too 'disadvantaged'.

I run a shopping tour via the forum, and love to go second-hand shopping, and you are very welcome to sign up or PM me when you get here and I can organise to show you around the town a bit for 'shopping' purposes....
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Old 16.02.2012, 20:51
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

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What is your home country ? How long are you coming for ? How do you feel about buying second hand clothes or borrowing things from friends ?

Yes, things are very expensive here. However, it's also possible to live much more cheaply if you don't mind second-hand - the affluence means that there is plenty of stuff being given away for free or almost free through charity type shops.

Same for 'eating out' - I guess your host family will provide lots of food, so it all depends on whether you feel the need to 'eat out' a lot - or are more than happy to take a home-made sandwich or picnic when you go out and about...

The main thing is to be resourceful, and adapt. Find friends who are in the same situation, (either that, or a rich boyfriend ).... and you won't feel too 'disadvantaged'.

I run a shopping tour via the forum, and love to go second-hand shopping, and you are very welcome to sign up or PM me when you get here and I can organise to show you around the town a bit for 'shopping' purposes....
That sounds great and right up my street! Thanks and will do...
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Old 16.02.2012, 21:03
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

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What is your home country ? How long are you coming for ? How do you feel about buying second hand clothes or borrowing things from friends ?

Yes, things are very expensive here. However, it's also possible to live much more cheaply if you don't mind second-hand - the affluence means that there is plenty of stuff being given away for free or almost free through charity type shops.

Same for 'eating out' - I guess your host family will provide lots of food, so it all depends on whether you feel the need to 'eat out' a lot - or are more than happy to take a home-made sandwich or picnic when you go out and about...

The main thing is to be resourceful, and adapt. Find friends who are in the same situation, (either that, or a rich boyfriend ).... and you won't feel too 'disadvantaged'.

I run a shopping tour via the forum, and love to go second-hand shopping, and you are very welcome to sign up or PM me when you get here and I can organise to show you around the town a bit for 'shopping' purposes....
Sorry Swisspea, but this post makes it seem like she needs to live frugally (or close to a pauper) for 1800 chf a month.
I first came to Switzerland as an au pair, and my salary was slightly less than 1800 a month (in 2003). I lived with the family (so paid no rent) and ate the majority of my meals with them (the mom was an awesome cook, so why spend money on crap take out?).

I had plenty of money for going out to bars, eating out with friends when I wanted, nice clothes... oh, and I ALWAYS went somewhere nice for my 4 weeks of vaction. All that and STILL managed to saved a few thousand every year.

So, it is not only do-able, but you will not feel like you need "borrow things from friends" to get by.
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Old 16.02.2012, 21:14
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

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Sorry Swisspea, but this post makes it seem like she needs to live frugally (or close to a pauper) for 1800 chf a month.
I first came to Switzerland as an au pair, and my salary was slightly less than 1800 a month (in 2003). I lived with the family (so paid no rent) and ate the majority of my meals with them (the mom was an awesome cook, so why spend money on crap take out?).

I had plenty of money for going out to bars, eating out with friends when I wanted, nice clothes... oh, and I ALWAYS went somewhere nice for my 4 weeks of vaction. All that and STILL managed to saved a few thousand every year.

So, it is not only do-able, but you will not feel like you need "borrow things from friends" to get by.
Oooh! That sounds good! haha hope youre right!
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Old 16.02.2012, 21:14
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

I wouldn't mind 1800 disposable a month
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Old 16.02.2012, 21:29
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

Sounds ok to me.

Have you got a work contract? Are your host family paying your contributions, health ins and german courses etc...??
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Old 16.02.2012, 21:49
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

Depends on the lifestyle you want (and of course, make sure that includes your health insurance, pension, language course, train/tram pass). When I was an Au Pair I made 700 francs a month, and was able to go to a weekend market at least once a month, take a weekend trip somewhere and drink wine (never went to a bar and bought more than one drink though). When I was an Au Pair, I had a friend that made 3000 CHF a month, my friends and I that were all on 700 we jealous beyond belief, but I survived just fine.

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Hi, I am due to come to Zurich next month and have been told it is very expensive, could you tell me if 1800 swiss franc per month is enough for me to be able to entertain myself, buy clothes etc??
Thanks
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Old 17.02.2012, 00:14
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

My impression is that the standard au pair compensation in Switzerland is 1800 CHF, but this consists of two parts:

- 1100 CHF spent by the host family towards your rent, food, obligatory insurances etc. (although the actual amount is often more than that)

- 700 CHF pocket money for the au pair to spend on hobbies and such

To avoid any disappointments, I suggest you confirm with the host family what exactly does the 1800 CHF cover - i.e., is that the amount you actually receive, or the amount they spend.

(On the other hand, and as hinted by others already, there are quite a few people with real full-time jobs who have less than 1800 CHF to spend after their monthly bills...)
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Old 17.02.2012, 08:36
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

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My impression is that the standard au pair compensation in Switzerland is 1800 CHF, but this consists of two parts:

- 1100 CHF spent by the host family towards your rent, food, obligatory insurances etc. (although the actual amount is often more than that)

- 700 CHF pocket money for the au pair to spend on hobbies and such

To avoid any disappointments, I suggest you confirm with the host family what exactly does the 1800 CHF cover - i.e., is that the amount you actually receive, or the amount they spend.

(On the other hand, and as hinted by others already, there are quite a few people with real full-time jobs who have less than 1800 CHF to spend after their monthly bills...)
This is an excellent point - as I thought in the US and Germany, the pocket money an au pair received was around the $/€ 400 a month - so the 700 CHF seems more in line with this amount. It definitely is something you need to look into and understand.
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Old 17.02.2012, 08:59
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

Either you come here as a live in in Nanny which is of course not the same thing as an Au Pair or you took by mistake the 1800chf as your monthly salary but in fact you receive 700chf-800chf (for Zurich) and the rest from 1800 chf is for your room, food and bills.
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Old 17.02.2012, 09:21
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

This is true. The guideline for pocketmoney is 600-800 CHF (at least it was in 2009-2010 when I was an Au Pair).

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Either you come here as a live in in Nanny which is of course not the same thing as an Au Pair or you took by mistake the 1800chf as your monthly salary but in fact you receive 700chf-800chf (for Zurich) and the rest from 1800 chf is for your room, food and bills.
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Old 19.02.2012, 14:30
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

OMG! that's the most I've ever heard of a live-in au pair getting paid. You must mean that you are going to be a Nanny, which is different than an au pair. They are not the same thing! My guess is Julia Margaret is right ^. If you are indeed an Au Pair and the family said you will make 1800, they are taking into account how much it would theoretically "cost" you to live there, eat their food and use their electricity and water. Although that is stupid and I feel it's kind of a trick. Why would they not just say, you are a live-in au pair who lives with us and you make 800 a month? Very silly way to quote the salary. If you are in fact a nanny though, I feel that that salary is WAY too low!!! Lol. Au pairs knowingly work for less than minimum wage, that is why they get paid so badly. They are only supposed to work around 30 hours a week and are here in Switzerland for cultural and language exchange. Nannies are career babysitters, so to speak, and therefore get paid a lot more (closer to what the Swiss make for such jobs). Good luck!! If you are indeed an Au Pair only working around 30-35 hours a week and really making that much a month, you are the luckiest, richest au pair in Switzerland! lol.
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Old 19.02.2012, 15:28
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

if the CHF 1800 are groos salary I would say it is fine since you will not have to pay for housing and food, but make sure you will receive the total CHF1800 per month, not sure if you have to pay taxes and social security? I would investigate if you would have any deductions in your salary just to make sure what would be your final salary per month.
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Old 20.02.2012, 11:10
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Re: Au Pair Salary CHF1,800 and costs of living - possible ?

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This is true. The guideline for pocketmoney is 600-800 CHF (at least it was in 2009-2010 when I was an Au Pair).

I'm an Au Pair and have been for 1 year and a half. I live in Kanton Aargau and the Au Pair salary is lower than in Kanton Zurich. BUT in Zurich the salary is between 700-900 (900 the most, unless you are at some hidden agreement with the host family and you do more and they pay you more). In 2011, the Au Pair salary went up with 100chf (at least in Kanton Aargau), I don't know about the other ones.
You are from UK so here you have some info.
http://www.awa.zh.ch/internet/volksw...17/aupair.html
http://www.awa.zh.ch/internet/volksw...gestellte.html
There are some links on the second link, down. Somewhere it says that you should be paid between 700chf-800chf but that paper is from 2009. As I said, in 2011 in the Kanton that I live , the Au Pair salary went up with 100chf. If this is a general rule then now you should be paid 800chf-900chf.

Last edited by princessduck; 20.02.2012 at 11:28.
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