Homestay FAQ

> Will my homestay provider meet me at the airport?

> Can I book an airport transfer to be taken to my Homestay?

> Will my host take me to school on my first day?

> How do I get to the International House London school?

> What is the difference between the 3 different categories of Homestay?

> What happens with meals?

> Can I use the kitchen in my homestay accommodation?

> Do I have to share a bathroom?

> I’m a smoker, what should I do?

> Who does the laundry and cleaning?

> Is bedding provided?

> Are towels provided?

>Will my room be cleaned for me?

> Is there free wifi in my accommodation?

> Can I have guests stay with me overnight?

> I’m going away for the weekend. Can I get a refund for this time away?

> When does my accommodation start and finish?

> Can I come a day early on a Saturday instead of a Sunday?

> Do I have to arrive at my accommodation at a certain time on the first day?

> How will you choose my homestay accommodation?

> I want to leave my accommodation how do I give notice?

> Availability of accommodation

Will my homestay provider meet me at the airport??


No, your homestay provider will not be at the airport to meet you. We can arrange a transfer for you from the airport to your accommodation. Please select this option during checkout. You will need to provide your flight details (airline code, flight number, arrival airport).

You can take a taxi from the airport but it will always be cheaper to use public transfer (trains, coaches, buses, etc.). 

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I book an airport transfer to be taken to my Homestay?


Yes. Please send your flight details (airline code, flight number, arrival airport) to the accommodation office as soon as possible.

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Will my host take me to school on my first day


No, your host can help you with directions and travel advice but will not accompany you to school.

Your confirmation letter provides a map which shows the location of your accommodation, how to get to the nearest station, and how to get from the station to the school. If you get lost on your first day, please phone the school and we’ll be happy to give you directions. 

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How do I get to the International House London school?


London is well serviced by public transport: bus, over-ground train or London Underground (Tube) train. Buying a weekly Travel or Oyster Card will help to keep costs down. Visit www.tfl.gov.uk for more information.

Alternatively your host can advise you on buying your travel ticket and giving you directions to the school.

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What is the difference between the 3 different categories of Homestay?


Standard room is the budget option.

Superior rooms will often be in larger houses and the rooms themselves may be larger than those in standard accommodation.  There may also be more than one bathroom in the house.

Executive room is the option to choose if you want to have your own private bathroom.

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What happens with meals?


Meal times and the food provided will vary between homestay hosts. Breakfast usually includes cereal, toast, fruit juice and tea or coffee and evening meals typically take place between 18.00 and 20.00, with some hosts setting a specific time for dinner.

If you’re going to miss a meal or arrive late, please let your host know as early as possible. You will need to provide your own lunch. There are many shops and cafés close to the school and food and drink can be purchased at our own café.

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Can I use the kitchen in my homestay accommodation?


If you book the bed, breakfast and evening meal option you will not be permitted to use the kitchen; the host will prepare all meals for you.

If you book bed and breakfast only (no evening meal) your host will often let you have limited use of the kitchen for making snacks like soup, salad or toast. You will not, however, be able to cook a full meal. 

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Do I have to share a bathroom?


In most homestays the bathroom will be shared with the host(s) unless you have chosen an en-suite bathroom option. Please be polite: ask your host when the best time to use the bathroom is and try to leave the bathroom in the same condition as you found it.

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I’m a smoker, what should I do?


Make sure you inform our Accommodation Office if you're a smoker. Many homestays are non-smoking and you may be asked to smoke outside the house. If you are happy to smoke outside, please let us know.

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Who does the laundry and cleaning?


Hosts may offer to provide one wash per week, or will show you how to use their washing machine. An iron and ironing board will be made available. Your room will be cleaned once a week and your sheets and towels changed. Please help your host by keeping your room tidy.

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Is bedding provided?


Yes, bedding (sheets, pillows, duvets etc) is provided with all the accommodation we offer.

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Are towels provided?


Towels are provided with homestay accommodation and laundered weekly.

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Are towels provided?


Homestay rooms are cleaned, and have sheets and towels changed, on a weekly basis.

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Is there free wifi in my accommodation?


All of our homestays come with free wifi.

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Can I have guests stay with me overnight?


In a Homestay this is not usually permitted. However, once you know your host you may feel comfortable asking them if a guest can stay over. Please be aware that there may be an extra charge for this and if so you will have to pay the host directly.

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I’m going away for the weekend. Can I get a refund for this time away?


We cannot offer refunds for any short periods that you are away from your accommodation during your course.

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When does my accommodation start and finish?


Accommodation can only be arranged for the duration of your course from the Sunday before the course starts to the Sunday after it finishes.

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Can I come a day early on a Saturday instead of a Sunday?


July and August are busy months so we have less flexibility. You will need to find alternative accommodation if you want to arrive early during these months. If you find it is cheaper to fly into the UK on a Saturday don’t forget to factor in the additional cost of a hotel and the extra transfer from hotel to your accommodation.

During other months of the year we can be more flexible and will try to help you where we can. Please check with our accommodation office before you confirm your flights

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Do I have to arrive at my accommodation at a certain time on the first day?


Please make sure you let your homestay host know in advance what time you’re arriving. This way you can arrive at any time of the day or night (within reason) and they can be there to let you in and welcome you. 

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How will you choose my homestay accommodation?


Your accommodation is chosen on room availability and special needs and requests. If you indicate an area of London you’d prefer to stay in, we’ll try very hard to place you there. Please remember that July and August are busy months and choice is limited.

We will always try to provide accommodation with the shortest travelling times to the school.

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I want to leave my accommodation how do I give notice?


Please speak to us if you are unhappy with your accommodation. We may be able to help.

If you decide to change or leave your accommodation you must give a week’s notice to your host and the IH London Accommodation Office. If you leave before the week is finished you will still pay for the full week. After the week notice period the balance of you accommodation will be refunded.

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Availability of accommodation


For up-to-date information about the availability of accommodation see our accommodation availability checker or contact our accommodation office.

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