5 Steps to Study Abroad Success
Step 1 Research
Types of Housing
Homestay / Host Family
What is a Homestay?This is the most popular housing option of students living abroad. On a homestay, you will have the opportunity to experience life with a native family and experience first-hand the culture of the country where you are studying.
Depending on the location and availability of your school, home stay families provide international students with either a private or a shared bedroom with another family member. Most host families accept one international student at a time while others accept more. The members of your host family will vary in ages. There are some families with children, some without, and others with elderly members. Different host families also differ in religious background.
Benefits of a HomestayLiving together with a family native to your host country is the epitome of the study abroad experience. You will have the opportunity to actively participate in your host country's everyday lifestyle as a family member.
Through the homestay experience you can build a trusting relationship with your host family, who are equally as excited to communicate and learn with you as you are with them. Through daily interaction you will be able to practice what you have learned at school and further improve your English abilities. Homestay families will also teach you about the culture of your host country, which is invaluable in making the most out of your study abroad experience.
What is Life with a Host Family?Homestay families are usually selected after careful consideration by the school. They are friendly and welcoming of international students. Many host families have a member that had a good homestay experience abroad when they were younger and wish to return the courtesy. Host families are excited to learn about another culture and put forth great efforts to provide an environment that is comfortable for the student.
Living together with a host family includes the same type of responsibilities that are found in any respectful relationship. You may ask your family for assistance just as they may ask of you. Students usually find this exchange to be very beneficial. The homestay is often the start of a relationship that will continue even after the student has moved out. The host family will willingly assist you in making your study abroad experience a memorable one.
Changing your Homestay FamilySchools select the homestay families very carefully so that students will have positive experiences. However, if you wish to change your family it is definitely possible. Arrangements can be made by informing your school's housing counselor. Some students wish to live on their own in a private apartment after first living with a homestay family and successfully adjusting to the new surroundings.