Homestay – why stay?

Staying in a Homestay is an ideal introduction to living in London, and also provides newcomers with the opportunity to speak the experience of being part of a British home and learn about their culture first hand

 

How is my homestay location picked?

When you book a Homestay option, we recommend you only book 2-4 weeks at a time; you will need to pay this upfront. It is just the way the way works.

You will have the opportunity to request extend my stay on a week by week basis, thus making the room unavailable. Please note is you do not, the room will show as availably to book by other travellers. You will need to vacate if this is the case.

Location

Families are selected based on your employment internship or study location. We will provide you with a post code of our central London hotels at the time of your booking, families nearest to your location will be sent to for review

It's that simple 

 

What to expect

The host will provide accommodation and meals as booked. Rooms will be cleaned and bed linen and towels changed at least once a week. You will be provided with your own house key and the host is there to offer help and advice as well as to take an interest in your well-being.

We aim to match your requirements as closely as possible with a suitable host. English is always the main language spoken in the home. Homestays can accommodate a maximum of 4 travellers at any one time, depending on the size of the home. Houses or apartments which accommodate more than 4 travellers are known as ‘Private Homes’

We have an exceptionally good choice of homestay accommodation offering hundreds of great rooms throughout London (zones 1-5). All our homestays are conveniently located, close to public transport and offer a high standard of accommodation.

 

Accommodation zones

Homestays are located in London, mainly in zones 2, 3, 4 and 5 of the London transport system. Hosts do not usually live in the town center as much of central London is commercial and not residential. Zone 4 and 5 often offer more spacious accommodation in a less crowded area. The London transport system is very convenient and if you use the Underground, travel from zones 4 and 5 may only take a few minutes longer.Further information on London’s transport system can be found here: http://www.tfl.gov.uk/

 

Homestays – Standard

Comfortable homes of a high standard located in zones 2-5.

The following choice of meal plans is available:

  • Bed and Breakfast (BB) – Includes continental breakfast, which normally consists of cereal, toast or bread with butter and marmalade/jam, fruit juice and tea or coffee. Light kitchen use (microwave and toaster), is sometimes available.
  • Half Board (HB) – Includes continental breakfast and an evening meal of main course (usually meat or fish) with vegetables or salad and potatoes, rice or pasta followed by a dessert or fruit. Special diets (e.g. vegetarian, halal, etc.) can be catered for – just let us know at the time of booking.
  • Self Catering (SC) – Includes full use of the kitchen, as no meals are provided.

 

What will my room be like?

This is your own private area for sleeping, relaxing and studying. Bedrooms in family homes do not usually have their own key. Your privacy will be respected, but (if there is a bedroom key) please do not lock your room when you leave the home.

 

Do I need to bring bed linen or towels?

No, both bed linen and a towel will be provided. Your host will change your bed sheets and pillowcases once a week. You should also be provided with a new towel weekly.

 

Can I use the rest of the house?

You will be able to use the main living areas of the house such as the sitting and dining rooms. Most students watch TV or converse with the family in one of the communal rooms. If you have booked half board accommodation, your meals will be taken with the family.

Some hosts may have a private study room, which is not for the use of other family members and guests. Bedrooms are always private.

 

Will I need to clean my room?

Your host will clean your room once a week but it is your responsibility to keep it tidy. Your host is responsible for cleaning the communal areas of the house, but you should help keep the home tidy by not leaving your belongings around.

 

What are the bathrooms like?

English bathrooms may be different from what you are used to in your own country. For example, some may have a hand held shower attachment instead of an overhead shower. It is not common for bathrooms to have bidets. Your host is responsible for cleaning the bathrooms and ensuring that they are always clean, but please leave the bathroom as you would wish to find it as there may be someone waiting to use it straight after you. Please take care not to leave a wet floor and your personal toothbrush and other items should be left tidy out of respect for others.

 

Will I have to share the bathroom with others?

The number of bathrooms per home will vary and, unless you have booked a room with private bathroom, you will usually have to share a bathroom with other people. It is important to be considerate and not to spend a long time bathing or showering if others are waiting to use the bathroom. As there will be some busy times during the day (such as early in the morning) for bathroom use, it is best to agree bathroom usage times in advance with your hosts. This way you can be sure to be on time for classes and other family members can get to work or school.

 

Will I need to buy toiletries?

Your host will provide toilet paper and hand washing soap, but you should purchase your own ‘toiletries’ such as toothpaste, body soap/shower gel, shampoo, etc. Please do not help yourself to other peoples’ toiletries. Toilet paper should not be removed from the bathroom for cosmetic use. Chemist shops, such as Boots, offer a wide choice of good, inexpensive bath products and cosmetics. Used toilet paper should be disposed of in the toilet (not in the rubbish bin) while feminine sanitary/hygienic products and cotton wool should be disposed of in the bathroom rubbish bin (not in the toilet).

 

Will there be laundry facilities?

If your host has a washing machine they will either allow you to use it once a week or do your laundry for you on a weekly basis, free of charge. It is a good idea to check laundry facilities with your host soon after arrival as some hosts do the weekly wash on a specific day each week. Hosts do not normally do ironing for you but can usually lend you an iron and ironing board. You should offer to buy washing powder for your laundry if you are doing it yourself. If you need to use the washing machine or have your washing done more than once a week, you should ask your host if this would be possible. Some hosts may make a small charge for additional loads of laundry. If doing your own laundry, you should ask your host where you can hang your clothes to dry. Clothes should not be dried in bedrooms or bathrooms.

 

What will be provided for breakfast?

Breakfast times are normally arranged according to the time that your host has to get to work. If breakfast time is too early or late for you, you may have to prepare your own breakfast. This should be discussed with your host who will explain where to find the breakfast ingredients. It is important to note that few English families still provide a traditional English cooked breakfast. Your accommodation includes Continental Breakfast. Continental Breakfast normally consists of fruit juice, cereal, toast or bread with butter and marmalade or jam and tea or coffee. Cheese, yoghurt, fruit and cold meat are not normally part of a Continental breakfast in England, and hosts are not expected to provide it. If you should wish to purchase extra breakfast items for yourself, please check with your host first and arrange to keep them in the refrigerator.

 

What about other meals?

English food may be different from what you are used to. It may be necessary for you to adapt to the new flavours or way in which food is cooked. It is unlikely you will be provided with bottled (mineral) water as most British families drink the tap water, which is safe and palatable. Dinners will usually consist of meat or fish with vegetables (unless you have requested to stay with a vegetarian family) followed by dessert, fruit or cheese and coffee. If there is anything you particularly dislike or cannot eat, please discuss this with your host or Britannia. If you should require help with homework, please do not bring books to the dinner table. It is better to ask for help either before or after meal times. Lunch is not provided either on weekdays or at weekends unless special arrangements have been made in advance. Please do not take any food from your host’s kitchen without asking first. Your host will provide you with the meals booked but this does not include snacks throughout the day.

 

Do I have kitchen facilities?

You will not be entitled to use the kitchen except to make tea or coffee, unless you have booked self-catering accommodation. If you have booked bed and breakfast accommodation, you are expected to eat your lunch and dinner outside the home. However, some hosts will permit ‘light kitchen use’ by prior arrangement only. This is normally restricted to microwave use, boiling pasta or reheating of ready meals and not major cooking such as frying or roasting. If your host permits light kitchen use, you should first discuss what time you may use the kitchen, which will depend upon the host’s schedule, and it should only be used to prepare your own meals. Please do not invite friends to eat with you. You will be expected to wash all dishes, pots and pans and clean the kitchen thoroughly after use. If you need to keep food in the refrigerator, please ask your host’s permission and restrict it to small quantities, and please do not store or eat food in your bedroom without first checking with your host. You are strongly advised NOT to bring food which requires refrigeration from your home country, as there is no guarantee that your host will have the space to store it. Please note: it is illegal to import meat products into the UK.

 

Can I use the telephone?

Your host’s telephone is for you to receive calls from family and close friends only. To preserve your host’s privacy, please do not give your host’s telephone number to casual acquaintances made in London. If you need to make and receive a large number of social calls, you are advised to consider purchasing a ‘pay-as-you-go’ mobile (cell) phone once you have arrived. It is advisable to check with your host on the earliest and latest times each day, which are convenient for you to receive calls and then advise your family and friends accordingly. In order not to inconvenience your host, you are advised to limit the number of calls you receive and restrict them to a reasonable length, so as not to tie up the telephone lines for long periods. You are not entitled to use your host’s telephone to make outgoing calls without permission. There are many public telephones all over London. Some hosts will permit you to make outgoing calls using a phone card to call out (which can be purchased easily at many outlets in London). Please ask permission to do this. It is, however, advisable to make your calls from public telephones outside the home. Unlike in some countries, local calls are not free in the U.K.

 

Will I have use of the internet?

When booking with Britannia, please let us know that you are interested in an internet connection, as not all hosts may be connected. As with telephone usage, you must ask your host’s permission before accessing it.

 

What happens if I wish to stay out late?

If you are planning to stay overnight with a friend or return home very late, please advise your host so they do not worry. When returning home late, please be as quiet as possible so as not to disturb your host. It is usually inadvisable to use the kitchen or to shower or bathe late at night as this may also cause disturbance.

 

Will I be given a key to the house?

Upon arrival you will be given a key to the family home. Please keep this key safe and do not lend it to anyone or make additional copies. Your host’s address should NOT be attached to the keys in case they get lost. If you should lose your key, you should report it to your host immediately. Please take great care to lock the door of the home behind you whenever you go out. If you are uncertain as to how the locking system works, please ask.

 

Will I be given a key to the house?

Upon arrival you will be given a key to the family home. Please keep this key safe and do not lend it to anyone or make additional copies. Your host’s address should NOT be attached to the keys in case they get lost. If you should lose your key, you should report it to your host immediately. Please take great care to lock the door of the home behind you whenever you go out. If you are uncertain as to how the locking system works, please ask.

 

Are my valuable items protected?

Neither Britannia, nor your host or school are responsible for your personal possessions. You are advised to take out a student insurance policy to cover you in case your belongings are lost or stolen in or out of the home.

If you have brought valuable items such as jewellery, computers, cameras or cash with you, you are advised to ask your host where they can be stored for safekeeping. You are not advised to keep large amounts of cash in your room or on your person. If you are staying for a fairly long period, your school should be able to assist you in opening a bank account. Otherwise, you may wish to consider bringing travellers cheques or converting your cash into them after arrival.

 

Can my friends come to visit?

If you should wish to invite a friend over to visit, you must first ask your host’s permission. Please bear in mind that the entertaining of friends by students in a family home is not an entitlement of your stay as some families feel it is an invasion of their privacy. If they allow you to have visitors, they will expect your guest to leave by 11 p.m. (or earlier).

 

What can you expect to pay?

SINGLE BB/SC

  • ZONES 4 & 5 - £135.00
  • ZONE 3 - £155.00
  • ZONE 2 - £170.00

(BB= Room & Continental Breakfast, HB= Room, Continental Breakfast and Dinner, SC= Room only with use of kitchen). Superior supplement, all zones, per person per week – add £25. Private bathroom supplement per person per week subject to availability – add £15.

 

Booking requirments 

  • Surname
  • First name
  • Age / date of birth
  • Gender
  • Nationality/first language spoken
  • Home Address
  • Telephone number
  • Arrival date
  • Departure date
  • Details of person to be contacted in case of emergency
  • Location and name of work.
  • Allergies or disabilities, relevant medical conditions etc.


Our terms and conditions 

Homestays:

  • Minimum stay 4 weeks.
  • Stays must begin and end on Saturdays or Sundays.
  • Cancellation, postponement or curtailment of stay received less than 4 weeks prior to arrival will incur a cancellation charge of 4 weeks.
  • A refundable deposit of £250.00 will apply.
  • No refund for curtailment of stay after arrival or no-show. Bookings departing in November and December will not be accepted. Minimum age 18.
  • Rates are valid from 01 January – 31 December 2017, but are subject to change

 

 

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We would love to hear from you. 

  • Find out more

    From Australia : 1300 295 579
    From New Zealand: 099735913
    From UK/Europe: 0333 800 1833
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We would love to hear from you. 

  • Find out more

    From Australia : 1300 295 579
    From New Zealand: 099735913
    From UK/Europe: 0333 800 1833
  • image description  Call Us
  • image description Research
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