Are you considering a foreign education program in the US but concerned about the standard of accommodation once you get there? Your choice may be a college summer program, a second language school, or a university degree course. The problem still remains. How do you go about finding safe, comfortable AND cheap accommodation for the duration of your studies?
University accommodation and specially designated students apartments, although often very close to your place of study, do not always offer the comfort and security of a home environment.
An increasingly popular solution is to find a homestay family who will accommodate you whilst
you are attending the local educational facility. You may be wondering ‘what exactly is a homestay?’ Simply put, a homestay is a household that offers a room, or rooms, in their home to visitors usually from another country.
There are many advantages to staying in somebody’s house instead of the usual type of student accommodation. Firstly it’s likely to be very comfortable and secure. You’ll have access to many facilities that would not be found in the average student apartment. Secondly, you don’t have to worry about going home to an empty room every night. Student host families realize that it can be quite a daunting experience for foreign students who are living away from home for the first time, so they will do everything they can to make you feel a part of their family. You’ll also get the benefit of your host’s local knowledge and help in adjusting to the customs and culture of a new environment. Last but to some the most important feature, student homestay’s often work out cheaper than other forms of accommodation.
So now you know a bit about the benefits, the next question is how do you find a homestay? We all know that you can search the Internet and find cheap international flights for students. The same is true for homestay accommodation. You’ll find many websites on the Internet offering homestay accommodation. With such a large selection of sites to choose from, how do you ensure that you select the best homestay? Discover as many details as possible about the homestay in advance. Look for photographs of the family and accommodation. Make sure you know exactly what is included in the price. For example, does the property have Wi-Fi Internet access? Can you use the laundry facilities? Just as importantly, are there any specific rules that you need to know?
If possible, find out why the homeowner has decided to become a host family. Some householders specifically state that they want to provide a homestay environment for international students. Maybe they have experienced an international cultural exchange in the past or their offspring have. Or maybe they simply want to extend the hand of friendship to a visitor from overseas. Make sure you know exactly what is included in the price.