Au pairs have traditionally been thought of as middle-class young women from Northern Europe, who are having a fun gap year in a foreign country. This collection, the first dedicated to examining the lives of au pairs, reveals that this is far from the whole story. Au pairing is now a global phenomenon and au pairs are just as likely to come from Asia and Latin America as from Sweden or France. They are an increasingly important form of very low waged, often unregulated, childcare and domestic labour enabling tens of thousands of families to meet the demands of both work and home life. Despite the importance of the work that they do, au pairs are not recognized as workers and are often excluded from even the most basic protections, such as a minimum wage. As young migrants living inside their employers' homes they are vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.