More About a Homestay

Living in an English home provides an ideal opportunity for practising the language. You may need a day or two to settle into your new environment, but this is likely to lead to a most beneficial and enjoyable experience. Most English people live in small houses with gardens rather than in flats. Towns may be larger in area and distances may be greater than you are accustomed to at home. You will probably therefore travel by public transport between your home and the teaching centre.

Your hosts

Remember that you are a guest in the home of your hosts. Please be polite to members of the household, punctual for meals and home by the agreed time. Please keep your room tidy and remember that you are probably sharing the bathroom with other members of the family. Don’t be too long in the bathroom, especially in the mornings when other family members are probably also getting ready for work or for school!


Hostesses are pleased to do small amounts of washing. Please mark each item of clothing clearly with your name.


Please always ask your hostess before making telephone calls on their landline phones and be sure to pay for any calls made.

It will be very helpful for you to give your mobile number to your hosts.  

Going out

For safety and security, each student completes a student card at the beginning of the course, which includes the student’s name, the course address and telephone number, the name address and telephone number of the hosts, and an emergency phone number.

You should always let your hostess know where you are going and at what time you expect to be back.

English law protects young people under the age of eighteen very carefully. Although your own family may allow you to go out in the evenings, while you are in this country we are responsible for you. The following arrangements are for your protection:

  • Students of under thirteen do not go out unaccompanied
  • Students of thirteen to seventeen may go out unaccompanied if they have written permission from their parents and their hosts; thirteen to fourteen year olds must be home by 9.00pm; fifteen to sixteen year olds by 10.00pm. The only exceptions are journeys to and from the course and to the evening programmed activity. Hosts usually collect their students at the end of the evening activity
  • Seventeen year olds must be back home by 11.00pm
  • Students who are over eighteen may go out as they wish but we encourage them not to stay out late and obviously also to respect the wishes of their hosts
  •  All students going out in the evenings will need to know the times of the last buses
  • Students never spend the night away from the home of their hosts

Medical care

We hope you won’t feel unwell during the stay, but if this were to happen, your hostess would arrange a visit to the doctor or to the local hospital as appropriate.

Please remember that by English law, we cannot give you any non-prescription medicines unless your parents have sent us a completed Medical Consent Form giving us permission to do so. Pease make sure that you let us have this completed form before you come to England or, alternatively, bring it with you.

If you come from a European Economic Area  (EEA) country and have brought Form E128 or your European Health Insurance Card, you may receive free UK National Heath Service (NHS) treatment. 

If you are from a country outside the EEA, you may have to pay for treatment from a doctor and then claim the cost from your insurance when you return home. It is important that you keep any receipts and records for anything you pay for.

Emergency hospital treatment is free of charge.

It will be necessary for you to pay for any dental or optical treatment you may need.

Please tell your hostess about any special medication your doctor has asked you to take during your stay or about any advice your doctor has given to you.


English summers can be unpredictable so do bring a few items of warm clothing and items to protect you from the rain! A swimsuit, towels and sports shoes are also important. Outdoor shoes aren’t allowed in the sports hall. Please mark each item of clothing clearly with your name.

Pocket money

You should allow £15 - £20 per week for bus tickets to and from the teaching centre. Our Local Organiser will help you with buying passes or season tickets.

Everything on our programme is included in the course price. However, you will also want some extra money for such items as shopping for yourself and presents to take home. The amount will vary from student to student but we would suggest £50 per week as reasonable (in addition to the £15 - £20 for transport to and from the course).

You should keep your money locked in your suitcases and only take with you what you will need during the day. 


In the unlikely event of your causing any damage in the home of your hosts, we would expect you to pay for it. We strongly advise you to take out adequate insurance before coming to England.

Smoking, alcohol and recreational drugs 

In England, young people of eighteen years of age and under are not allowed to buy cigarettes. Smoking is now illegal inside all public buildings such as cinemas, food shops, clubs, pubs, restaurants, schools and leisure centres.

It is illegal for people under eighteen years to buy alcohol or to drink it in public places. It is also illegal for a person who is eighteen or over to buy alcohol for another person who is under eighteen years of age.

It is illegal and dangerous to take any drugs that have not been prescribed


Sadly, theft is on the increase everywhere. You should keep valuable items such as mobile phones, cameras, ipods, computer games, jewellery, money and keys locked in your case when you are not using them. 

Electrical appliances

Electrical sockets in England are different from those abroad and you will need a special international adaptor for such items as mobile phone chargers, hairdryers and electric shavers. These are not expensive and readily available in most airport shops.


We do not insure students against illness, accident, theft or loss of personal belongings or damage. It is essential to make sure that you have adequate insurance for your visit to England.