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Reviews and Ratings of Individual Au Pair Agencies
Au Pair 2013 Expert Ratings and Quality Reviews
We Rate All of the Au Pair Agencies on the Following Features:
- Phone Service Ratings: “Secret shopper” calls to each agency measure friendliness, usefulness and helpfulness. Do they answer with a live person or a machine? Do they use a hard sales approach?
- Specialized Programs: What are the best agencies that offer programs with graduated levels of au pair expertise with infants and special needs children?
- Yearly Overall Customer Service Rating: Host parents choose the TOP 3 Agencies!
- Matching Services: Not all agencies are the same! Each has different matching services—find out which ones are better and more efficient than others.
- Au Pair Quality Screening: We identify the agencies that recruit the best au pairs and what kind of psychometric testing they use.
- Strengths & Weaknesses: Comprehensive list of agency highlights and what they get 'right' and where they fail.
- Best Au Pair Drivers.
- Best Local Counselors.
- Best English Speaking Au Pairs.
- Best Childcare Experience: Agencies that find the most experienced au pairs.
- Geographical Location and Services Areas: Not every agency services all parts of the United States. Find out each agency’s geographic focus and boundaries.
- Fee Structure: We identity application fees, program fees across specialized au pair programs, domestic travel fees and hidden costs.
Located in San Francisco, this small "boutique" agency is starting to grow and now services over 500 families a year. Smaller agencies often give great customer service - does this agency deliver? Find out how Au Pair Clearinghouse rated their costs, phone service and au pair screening methods. If you don't want to get an au pair who smokes, this agency may be for you! Newly upgraded website.
Au Pair Care has a 20-year reputation and status as an industry leader is was one of the first au pair agencies designated and regulated by the U.S. Department of State. Au Pair Care has placed more than 40,000 au pairs from more than 40 countries with families nationwide. Read how host parents rate them on customer service and well-screened au pairs and more! In 2013, they received more negative comments from our host family survey respondents and their phone service is less than stellar.
This smaller agency, located in Novata, California, receives mixed ratings for phone service - but they are trying to improve their services despite several management changes in the past 2-3 years. They just updated their au pair screening methods and are now using a standardized psychometric au pair test. They recruit Japanese au pairs, who are known for their patience, hard work and love of children.
One of the larger agencies, this New England based program has mixed reviews and ratings. Find out what their strengths and weaknesses are before you sign up. Website is not easy to navigate and information is not organized as well as it could be. One of the more expensive agencies in the country.
Located in Colorado, this small, 'boutique' agency focuses on customer service and are one of the mid-range priced programs. You can match with an Au Pair Professional - an au pair who has either a formal childcare degree or a minimum of 2 years documented childcare experience. Host parents give them mixed ratings.
Their phone service and host family ratings are mixed. Located in New York, they offer their au pairs a 5 day training orientation in the Big Apple, near Times Square and the Empire State Building. Au pairs love this feature. Newly updated website includes a new look and easier navigation. One of their Japanese au pairs won the prestigious Au Pair of the Year Award for 2010!
Located in San Anselmo, California, this smaller agency has knowledgeable and friendly staff who is more than happy to spend lots of time explaining the au pair program to new parents. They are one of the few programs that offer male au pairs and the office will send you au pair applications to review before you even apply. No other agency does this! Their motto is "One-on-one, quality customer service."
The largest agency in the industry, Cultural Care is located in Cambridge, MA. They are one of the oldest agency (established in 1989) and they enjoy a high level of brand name recognition here in the U.S., and abroad. Great website and lots of user friendly features. VP Natalie Jordan has been very approachable and willing to share news about her agency with us - we have interviewed her twice! Find out why they have mixed reviews for both customer service and quality of au pairs.
Located in Laguna Beach, California, EurAuPair received mixed ratings from their host parents, but in 2013 they were rated highly for Best Drivers.
One of the newer agencies (2006) that services all of Florida, this program focuses on great customer service and recruiting quality au pairs. They do service other parts of the United States, but their CEO, Mark Gaulter, said they want to grow slowly so they don't lose sight of their goal of "providing quality service to their host families."
Located in Murray, Utah and founded in 1989, this mid-size agency is growing. They have several programs, including Au Pair Plus, Educare and Premiere Au Pairs. Host parents give them high marks on several criteria, including Best English Skills. Read our exclusive interview with Go Au Pair's Director, Tanna Wilson.
A new au pair agency that opened in 2011 and based in San Clemente, California, Pro Au Pair’s speciality is recruiting older, experienced au pairs, many of them who have professional degrees in pediatric nursing, teaching and early childhood education, etc. Susan Asay, Founder & CEO of Pro Au Pair, has a keen interest in matching au pairs with families who have a special needs child.
There is an increase in families with special needs children, particularly as the number of children diagnosed with autism climbs, parents are frantic to find the appropriate childcare. Pro Au Pair’s Susan Asay says their mission is to “match experienced, bilingual au pairs from Germany and other European countries with host families.”
The International Au Pair Exchange (TIAPE)
THIS AGENCY APPEARS TO BE CLOSED. AS OF JUNE 15 2013, NO ONE IS ANSWERING THE PHONES. THEIR WEBSITE IS STILL UP AND RUNNING BUT THE 800 # IS NO LONGER WORKING. The newest member of the Department of State regulated au pair agencies, TIAPE was located on the West Coast, a highly desirable destination for au pairs. They received their designation in June, 2010. Host parents gave this new agency mixed ratings.
A smaller, 'boutique' agency that services under 100 host families a year. Because of their small size, the contact you have with their staff should be above par. In 2011, they were sued by one of their German au pairs for one million dollars related to alleged sexual abuse by host father. They are located in Oregon and their fees are among the lowest in the au pair industry.