Staying with a host family is the perfect way to experience British hospitality and culture. We have friendly host families throughout the city, and they will provide you with home-made meals and a safe and comfortable place to stay whilst you study here. For those looking to improve your English, then staying with a host family is a brilliant way to improve your language skills.
Please take some time to look through the following information to find out if staying with a host family is right for you. There is lots of information to help you make your decision. We then look forward to hearing from you to answer any last questions and to match you with the right family.
What we can do for you
We want you to have an incredible time in Swansea; in your studies, the places you visit and the friendships you make. To help you in this, we want to provide you with a fabulous home with a caring family.
When you enquire, we’ll send you an application form with lots of questions about yourself. This will help us match you to your ideal host family. We’ll spend some time going through all these details and then email you the details of the family we suggest you stay with. When you’re happy, we’ll then book your stay to secure your place with the family. Before you come, we’ll put you in touch with your hosts so you can start to get to know each other over email. During your stay, we’ll remain in close touch with you, checking that everything is going well for you and we’ll be here if you have any questions or concerns.
Staying with in a homestay guarantees you a safe and comfortable place to stay, whilst getting to know a British family. It is different to staying in a hotel as you will become part of the family and will need to fit in with the family routine. So, you’ll need to be flexible and enjoy getting to know new people. Staying with a host family is a fantastic cultural experience and something you’ll remember for the rest of your life.
Your room is for sleeping, relaxing and studying. It will be fully furnished with a bed, bed linen, wardrobe, drawers, desk and chair. It is your private area but the door will not have a lock. It is your responsibility to keep the room clean and tidy during your stay. You should always ask your host before inviting friends to visit you in the house.
Your host will change your bed linen once a week.
In general, you will be able to use the main living areas of the house such as the sitting room. Its important to check if there are certain times your hosts would like privacy. Your meals will be taken with the family.
The number of bathrooms per home will vary and you will usually have to share a bathroom with members of the family. It is important not to spend a long time showering if others are waiting to use the bathroom.
It might be best to agree times to use the bathroom with your hosts, specially in the morning when they may need to get to work.
Your host is responsible for cleaning the bathrooms, but always leave it tidy after you finish using it.
Your host will either do your laundry for you once a week or show you how to operate their machine. They will not do ironing for you.
If you need to have washing done more than once a week, you should ask your host if this would be possible – a small charge may be made for this.
Meal times in the UK vary and so it is important to check with the family when you’ll be eating. If these times conflict with your studies then you need to discuss this with your host. You should always let your host know if you won’t be arriving home in time for the evening meal so they can leave you some aside for you to reheat when you get back.
It is likely that you will prepare your own breakfast and packed lunch and eat your main evening meal together with your hosts. It is important that you tell your hosts if there is anything you particularly dislike.
You should be prepared to help clear away and wash dishes after meal times.
Your host’s telephone is for you to receive calls from family and close friends only. You are not entitled to use your host’s telephone to make calls without permission. 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 Swansea). We advise you to buy a SIM card for your mobile phone and make and receive calls from this instead.
If you wish to use internet then you will need your own laptop. We cannot guarantee that every home will have wireless internet. If it is really important for you that you have internet access at all times, we recommend you purchase a USB dongle.
Neither Swansea Homestay, nor your host, are responsible for your personal possessions. Current advice is to take out a student insurance policy to cover you in case your belongings are lost or stolen in or out of the home. Do not keep large amounts of cash in your room or on your person.
Conversation with the Host
Hosts know that you would like to practise your English and are happy to help you with your English conversation but please remember that they are not teachers. They might not be able to answer every question! Also, they have their own schedule and won’t always be available to chat when you are. The main time to have conversation will be at meal times.
Arrivals and departures
You’ll need to discuss your arrival details with your host family. Please give as much notice as possible to your host, to enable them to arrange to be at home to greet you upon arrival.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate get in touch. We want to ensure your stay in Swansea is an amazing experience for you!