The answer to this question is… it depends. Specific, I know, but each situation is different. Really, host families are not required to get their au pair a cell phone but they also cannot require that their au pair get a cell phone either. Most host families do provide a cell phone for their au pair because they want to be able to get in touch with their au pair throughout the day. I recommend to host families that they talk with their au pair about what both they and the au pair would like to do before the au pair arrives in the host families home. Some au pairs might have their own phone they would like to use and others might want to upgrade the phone or the plan that the family was planning on getting. I also recommend not putting your au pair on the family plan unless you have a lot of minutes and texts (especially texts!) You can get a prepaid cell phone for a pretty reasonable rate and then your au pair can top off the minutes if she runs out. Finally, if you do not have a home phone, you really should have some way for your au pair to call during the day. This is both for safety reasons and so Au Pair International can reach your au pair if we need to.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.