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Accommodation guidelines

LIVING IN A HOMESTAY

We believe that your stay with an English family is one of the most important parts of your time in Oxford. To help you learn as much as possible in school and out, we want you to feel happy and relaxed in your host family. We choose our families not only for the quality of accommodation but also for the personal interest they have in your progress and welfare. Here are a few guidelines about what to expect during your stay with your family.

When should I arrive at my host family?

It is important that you inform the school of your expected arrival time well in advance so the host family know when to be at home to welcome you. You should plan to arrive at your host family after 07:00 in the morning and before 23:00 in the evening. If you cannot arrive by 23:00, you should arrange a hotel near your arrival airport for the first night and travel to Oxford the following day. It is also important to let the family know if you have been delayed on your journey. If you have difficulty getting to your host family and cannot contact them, please contact one of the school emergency numbers you have been given.

How do I get to school on my first day?

Your family will show you where to catch the bus to school. They will also give you a map to show you the location of the school.

What will my accommodation be like?

You will be staying with a carefully selected family, whose main language will be English. They will provide you with a room containing a bed and storage space for your clothes. You will have access to a table or desk and chair for private study with a table lamp, either in your room or in a quiet area. You will have access to the bathroom and can take a bath or shower each day. Please ask your family about convenient times to use the bathroom. Laundry (one or two loads per week) is included. Your family may wash your clothes for you or they may show you how to use the washing machine. Bed linen and towels are provided and are changed each week. The family will clean your room once a week but you are responsible for ensuring it remains tidy. You should make your own bed and put your clothes away. Most families accommodate more than one student, although we try to ensure that if you share, it will be with somebody of a different nationality.

What meals will I get in my host family?

Breakfast, evening meals and a light lunch at weekends are included. You may be asked to make your own breakfast if the family have to leave early to go to work. Breakfast is usually toast and/or cereal. You will normally eat your evening meal with your family. They will let you know at what time they eat their evening meal. It is important and polite to tell the family 24 hours in advance if you plan to miss a meal. It is not normal to be allowed to use the kitchen to store your food or cook for yourself. If you require a special diet you must tell the school when you book your accommodation so we can select a family who can offer this. Please note that there may be a supplementary charge for special dietary needs, and that our families are unable to cater for Kosher or Halal diets. People requesting these will normally be given vegetarian meals.

Am I allowed to use the telephone?

You are not permitted to use the family's telephone without their permission and all calls must be paid for. A number of mobile phone companies offer cheap pay-as-you-go phones and sim cards, and most newsagents sell international phonecards giving you cheap international calls.

Will there be internet facilities at my homestay?

Families do not provide internet access. You may use the facilities at school or at one of the many internet cafes in Oxford. In addition, a number of mobile phone companies offer cheap pay-as-you-go internet access.

What will I need to provide in my homestay?

You should bring all items for personal use, such as toiletries, hairdryers and plug adaptors (in the UK, we use three-pinned plugs). All of these items can be purchased easily in Oxford.

Will I have keys for my homestay accommodation?

Your host family will give you a key to their home. Please use it responsibly and return it to them before leaving.

Can I bring friends into my host family?

Please discuss this with the family first as they will want to know who is visiting their home.

Can I stay with my family after the end of my course?

This is sometimes possible but please check with the School Administration staff first as the room may be reserved for another student.

What should I do if I want to change my family?

You should speak to the School Administration staff about availability of another family and the reasons for the request. At least one week's notice should be given to the family. If you feel you have identified a genuine problem with your host family please tell the school immediately. We cannot know of a problem if you don't tell us.

Will I need insurance?

We strongly advise all students to take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance for the duration of your stay in England. Please do not keep large amounts of cash in your bedroom and only carry a small amount around with you. If you have arrived with a large amount of cash please ask the school for advice. The school and family cannot take responsibility for loss of money or expensive belongings.

Family privacy

Staying with a family is not the same as staying in a hotel. You will be able to join them at appropriate times. However, it is important to remember there may be times when the family wish to entertain at home or relax in private areas of the home. If you are not sure what you can and can't do in the family home, please ask. It is the family's responsibility to make you feel welcome but it is your responsibility to treat them and their home with respect, and to follow their house rules.

We hope this information has been helpful. If there are other things you would like to know, please contact us and we will do our best to help you.

LIVING IN RESIDENTIAL ACCOMMODATION

Here are a few guidelines about what to expect during your stay in residential accommodation.

When should I arrive at my accommodation?

It is important that you inform the school of your expected arrival time well in advance so the warden knows when to expect you. You must print a copy of your accommodation confirmation and bring it with you to show the warden on arrival. You should plan to arrive at the residence after 10:30 in the morning and before 21:00 in the evening. If you cannot arrive by 21:00, you should arrange a hotel near your arrival airport for the first night and travel to Oxford the following day. If you have difficulty getting to your accommodation please contact the residence or one of the school emergency numbers you have been given.

How do I get to school on my first day?

You can ask the warden where to catch the bus to school. You can print a copy of the map to show you the location of the school.

What will my accommodation be like?

You will be staying at a residence in carefully selected self-catering accommodation. Your bedroom will contain a bed, desk, chair, reading lamp, wardrobe and hand-basin. Rooms are arranged in flats of 6 or 7 with shared kitchens and bathrooms. You will be responsible for doing your own laundry during your stay. There are shared laundry facilities with coin-operated machines and dryers. Although bedding is provided, towels are not you will need to bring your own . You are responsible for ensuring your room remains tidy. You should make your own bed and put your clothes away.

What meals are provided?

Residential accommodation is usually self-catering, so no meals are provided. There are shared kitchens where you can cook and eat your own meals. The kitchen contains a fridge/freezer cooker, microwave and kettle.

Will I have use of a telephone?

There is no telephone in our residential accommodation. However, a number of mobile phone companies offer cheap pay-as-you-go phones and sim cards, and most newsagents sell international phonecards giving you cheap international calls.

Click here for further information.

Will there be internet facilities in my residence?

Residential accommodation does not include internet access. You may use the facilities at school or at one of the many internet cafes in Oxford. In addition, a number of mobile phone companies offer cheap pay-as-you-go internet access.

What will I need to provide in my residence?

You should bring all items for personal use, such as towels, toiletries, hairdryers and plug adaptors (in the UK, we use three-pinned plugs). All of these items can be purchased easily in Oxford.

Will I have keys for my residential accommodation?

The warden will give you a key to your accommodation. Please use it responsibly and return it to the warden before leaving.

Can I bring friends into my accommodation?

Please discuss this with the warden first as they will want to know who is visiting the accommodation.

Can I stay in my accommodation after the end of my course?

This is sometimes possible but please check with the School Administration staff first as the room may be reserved for another student.

What should I do if I want to change my accommodation?

You should speak to the School Administration staff about availability of other accommodation and the reasons for the request. At least one week’s notice should be given. If you feel you have identified a genuine problem with your accommodation please tell the school immediately, we cannot know of a problem if you don’t tell us.

Will I need insurance?

We strongly advise all students to take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance for the duration of your stay in England. Please do not keep large amounts of cash in your bedroom and only carry a small amount around with you. If you have arrived with a large amount of cash please ask the school for advice. The school and family cannot take responsibility for loss of money or expensive belongings.

We hope this information has been helpful. If there are other things you would like to know, please contact us and we will do our best to help you.

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  • Guest - G

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  • Guest - Chia Wei

    Hello, My name is Chia Wei from Taiwan. I would like to know if it is find that I arrive at the residence early like Thursday or Friday?
    Thank you.

    from Taiwan

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