How to Apply

COVID-19 *IMPORTANT INFORMATION*

Following the UK Governments advice on avoiding all non-essential travel within the UK, and the need for social distancing, there will be no HOST visits going ahead and we are not accepting any applications presently. HOST is closely following the government’s guidance and we will hopefully be able to re-open for applications soon.

 

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What happens on a HOST visit?

Every HOST visit is different. But there are some things which always happen:

  • Your hosts will meet you at their local railway or bus station.
  • You will have your own bedroom (unless you have agreed to share with another student).
  • You will eat meals with your host, provided by your host.
  • Your hosts will spend time chatting with you and will answer your questions about life in the UK.
  • Your hosts will be interested in you and your country
  • Your hosts will return you to the station at the end of your visit.

And some of these things will happen:

  • Your hosts may take you out to see the area where they live (most hosts do this).
  • You may meet your hosts’ family or friends.
  • You may take part in the life of their local community
  • Your hosts may have a special interest which they will share with you.
  • You may play cards or board games, especially at Christmas.
  • You may be invited to attend a church service.
  • You may offer to cook anational dish for your hosts
  • You may do something you have never done before!

Apply

Before applying, please check if you have to pay an application fee, and read the information and advice in the boxes on this page.

 

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How will I be treated by my hosts?

Your hosts will treat you as a friend of the family. Everything will be informal and relaxed, and they will want you to feel comfortable and ‘at home’ with them. They want you to benefit from your stay, and they also want to enjoy your visit themselves.

Your hosts will be happy to answer your questions about life in this country, and they will be interested to learn about you - your passions, your studies, your country and culture - anything you want to share with them.

Your hosts will almost certainly want to show you something of the area where they live, and they may introduce you to friends, or take you to a community event.

Your hosts will respect you and your culture, and  they hope you will respect them in the same way. If you are sometimes a little bit surprised by something, or if you are not sure about the right thing to do, please remember that everybody understands there are interesting differences between cultures, and we can enjoy learning from each other.

 

Where will the visit be?

HOST is about meeting people and learning about their way of life. It is not about being a tourist.

You tell us your travel budget and then we choose the region where your visit will be. We have hosts all over the country, but we do not have large numbers of hosts all in the same place.

You can tell us if you want to stay near your place of study (that means no more than about 2 hours on public transport).

Or you can tell us that you will go anywhere within your travel budget.

With HOST, you will meet lovely people, and you will discover interesting parts of the UK which you have never heard of before.

How is the visit arranged?

First, we ask your university to confirm that you are a registered student.

Then we  send your application to one of our regional organisers (RO). Our ROs are unpaid volunteers who give their free time to find the best invitation for you. Please respond promptly to messages from your RO.

The RO will inform you as soon as a suitable invitation is found.

HOST's policy on refunds.

If we are unable to find a suitable invitation for you on any of the dates you have given, we will ask you for more dates. If you are unable to give us more dates, your application fee will be refunded.

No refund will be possible: 

if you do not respond to our messages;

if you reduce your availability to fewer than 3 dates and we are unable to find an invitation for your remaining dates;

if you decline an invitation which corresponds to the terms of your application;

if you cancel a visit after accepting an invitation;

in circumstances beyond our control - such as extreme weather interrupting transport services - although in this case we will always try to re-arrange your visit.

When will the visit happen?

We need at least 3 weeks to process your application and find your invitation.

We ask you to give us at least 3 dates when you will be available for your visit. This is essential, so please do NOT give one valid date and 2 dates when you are not really free. And please inform us if your availability changes after you have applied.

Weekend visits normally start on Friday evening and finish on Sunday evening (2 nights).

Day visits can be on Saturday or Sunday.They start in the morning and continue until the early evening of the same day (no overnight stay).

Christmas visits are from 24-27 December (3 nights).

What happens after the visit?

After your visit, PLEASE call your host or send a message, to tell them that you appreciated their hospitality. It only takes a few minutes of your time but it makes a HUGE difference. Hosts whose students do not thank them after a visit sometimes stop giving us invitations, because they think their guests have not enjoyed the visit.

We will send you a feedback form to fill in. This is for us, not for your host. Please answer honestly, so we can improve our service if necessary.

The nice things you say and the photos you send us might be used in our publicity, with your permission.

Some students stay in contact with their hosts – you are very welcome to do that.

After your visit, you can apply for another one!

Please recommend HOST to your friends.

Contact us

HOST UK, Sylvia Adams House, 24 The Common, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 0NB

 

Tel: 0207739 6292

 

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