HOST - Homestay with a UK family

James Ballantyne Regional Program Manager


December 21, 2014

We are extremely keen for you to experience British life outside of your campus, which is why we pay the application fee for HOST - a home stay with a British family. In the Fall semester, Megan, a student from Suffolk University took advantage of this offer and stayed with a lovely family from Beccles. Megan has been kind enough to write about her experience below. 

As a student studying abroad in England, one of my main goals was to get a feel for the British culture as much as I could. When the opportunity for a homestay came about, I knew I had to take advantage of it. My homestay took me to a quaint town, approximately two hours from London, called Beccles. My hosts Caroline and Nigel were lovely, and made me feel as if I were staying with family! They were eager to answer any questions I had concerning British culture, and introduced me to local culture within Suffolk county. An exciting part of my weekend was going to the pub two nights in a row to watch Nigel play with his band, "Baku and Beyond". They were great, mixing jazz classics with pop and rock hits, and I had a fun time at the pub interacting with locals and getting to know Caroline and Nigel's friends!

One of the highlights of my homestay was visiting Southwold Pier. Caroline and I took a walk along the beach and looked at the Beach Huts, which are places for families to store their beach gear in the Summer months. These huts are unique to Southwold and are decorated to represent the owners in some way. However, their convenience comes with a price and most of the huts are hundreds of pounds to buy and are often passed down through generations, as Caroline explained to me. The pier itself had many cute little shops, but it is most famous for a water clock designed by artist, Tim Hunkin. Along with the water clock, there was also the arcade to make a difference by Tim Hunkin as well, filled with games that left a lasting impression. A great thing about the seaside as well as the gorgeous views...the fish and chips! I got proper fish and chips wrapped in newspaper and everything and this was another great addition to a nice day by the sea.

All in all, this homestay was a relaxing and fun weekend that I am truly happy I got to experience! I would recommend it to anyone, as it is an amazing chance to connect with people from the UK and to learn about British and local culture.

To find out more about HOST please email