What you need to know about becoming a homestay provider
Have you ever thought about the possibility of unlocking the door to your spare room and hosting an international student? LanguageUK can help you earn an additional weekly tax-free income for that holiday or special occasion.
Could you be a homestay provider?
Do you have a spare room that is clean, private, and decorated to a good standard?
Do you enjoy meeting people from all over the world?
Could you provide a warm welcome to an international guest?
Would you welcome an additional weekly income?
Would you welcome some extra company?
Would you like to host for only part of the year without the inconvenience of a long-term lodger?
Who are our homestay providers?
Our homestay providers come from various ethnicities and are carefully selected for their friendliness, hospitality, and willingness to welcome international guests into their home and family.
Our homestay hosts are made up of some of the following:
Couples with or without children
Our students are offered two types of homestay accommodation:
Standard and Premier
All rooms must have
a table or desk large enough for studying, plus a chair
a chest of drawers or drawers in the wardrobe
good lighting – ideally with good natural light
a comfortable bed, bedside table, and lamp
wireless broadband internet
space for a suitcase
This means a well-appointed room with easy access to a private bathroom
What do we ask of our homestay hosts?
We ask that our hosts welcome their guests into their home as a member of the family and not simply as a paying guest.
On your guests’ arrival at your home and during their stay, please take the time to give them an orientation of your local area, including how to use Canterbury transport and how to purchase a mega rider, mobile phone or sim card, for example. We also ask that our hosts exchange mobile numbers with their guests in case of emergency, especially in the first few days of their arrival to the UK. This is also a good way to keep in touch with your student for evening meal plans.
We request that our hosts have their evening meals with their guests and engage in conversation with them daily.
It is very important that hosts do not accommodate two guests with the same native language at the same time unless agreed with LanguageUK.
Provide a warm welcome and treat the student like family
Advise the student about the homestay neighbourhood and their route to school
Allow access to common areas in the house (e.g. kitchen, living room, garden) and to keep these shared areas clean and tidy
Furnish bedrooms with a comfortable, standard bed, wardrobe, drawers, and study desk
Student rooms should be cleaned weekly and fresh bed linen.
Give access to the laundry facilities so students can launder their own clothes
Where provided meals should be shared with the family and be varied and nutritional
Keep the school informed about any problems the student may be experiencing
Respect students’ different cultural backgrounds and to be sensitive to their needs
Encourage the students to practise their speaking at home
Be present in the home during the student’s stay
Supply a key so the student can have easy access to the homestay
Provide adequate bathing facilities so students can take a daily bath or shower
Handle invoicing and student payment for all accommodation costs
Remunerate homestay hosts on a weekly basis direct to their bank accounts
Give feedback from student’s evaluations regarding their homestay
Provide details of student arrival times where students have booked an airport transfer
Liaise (through our Accommodation Officer) between the student and homestay host when issues arise and will find alternative accommodation for the student where issues cannot be resolved
Provide an emergency phone number so that students and homestay hosts can speak to LanguageUK staff outside office hours and aid where necessary
How we place students
For LanguageUK it is essential that hosting students is a positive experience for both our students and homestay hosts. When students apply for homestay accommodation, they are asked to fill out their requirements and preferences. The accommodation officer will then find the best homestay match. Whatever the request, whether it is a special dietary need, a wish to stay in a family with young children or a home with no pets.
Similarly, our homestay hosts can also express their preferences. Some hosts prefer to have older students, or maybe are only able to offer B & B or self-catering. The school’s accommodation officer uses their knowledge of homestay providers to place the students in the most appropriate accommodation.
Once LanguageUK receives a student’s registration form, the student will usually be placed with a homestay host no later than two weeks before the student’s arrival date. Hosts are provided with basic information about the student including their age and nationality and students are sent a profile of the homestay host they will be staying with.
At busy times and with late bookings, homestay hosts may be contacted at very short notice.