Our homestay option – learn about British culture and practise your English Enrol now
The advantages of homestay
Most of our students choose our homestay option. Living with Oxford residents is a great way to learn more about the UK and British culture, and of course it's a lot easier in many ways than living in an apartment, as the host does all the food shopping and cooking, the cleaning, and even your laundry!
300 homestay families
We have some 400 homestay families in and around Oxford. Every homestay is different and we always do our very best to place students in a homestay that matches their needs as closely as possible – though of course, to do this we need clear and accurate information from students at the time of booking.
Please also consider that the earlier you book your homestay, the easier it is for us to find what you’re looking for. In the summer especially, there is great demand for homestay places, and last-minute requests are more difficult to meet.
What you get
In a homestay your breakfast and evening meal are provided (lunch at weekends, too); your laundry is done for you (although you can usually do it yourself too, if you prefer); and you have a warm, safe home to come back to after an exhausting day in school!
What you need to bring with you
Just as if you're going on holiday, you need to bring your own toiletries (shampoo, shower gel, shaving equipment, hairbrush etc). Everything else – including towels – will be provided by your homestay.
Location of homestays
Our homestay families are located all over Oxford, although most of them are in the north. This is one of the best parts of the city for homestay and there is an excellent bus service, with dedicated bus lanes.
Students sometimes request a homestay in the city centre, but as the city centre is mostly university colleges, shops and businesses, very few local residents live here. So it's usually impossible to find homestay places in the city centre itself. A small number of our homestay places are within walking distance, and most of our homestay places are only 15 – 25 minutes by bus.
Our Accommodation Manager is based in our school reception area, in the heart of the school and next to our student lounge, and throughout the day she is always available to answer students’ questions, deal with requests and to help with any problems.
Our homestay places range from single pensioners to families with several children, over a wide range of ages. Everyone is different, and individual students have their own preferences – some would like to be in a busy house with lots of people, while others prefer quiet; some like pets, some don’t, and so on.
What to consider when you book
Our booking form asks students about some of these preferences, but if there are any other special requests you would like to make, please note these separately. We can never guarantee to match exactly any special requests, but we will always do our best!
Please note that we can usually satisfy any special dietary requests, but if this means the homestay host has to buy and prepare different food, in most cases there is an extra charge for this.
After you have booked
We will usually reserve a homestay for you as soon as you have booked and paid, although if there are any special requests or unusual circumstances it may take longer.
As soon as we have reserved a homestay for you, we will send you full details of the homestay, including their address and a link to a map.
Unexpected events – illness, perhaps – can mean that students and homestay hosts alike have to change their schedules. Please be aware of this, but you can be sure that if a homestay becomes unavailable at the last minute, we will book another homestay for you and let you know immediately.