Preparing for Group Homestays
Group accommodation bookings can be difficult to organise, but homestay accommodation in London can be simple and more affordable than hotel rooms. Students or young interns often need to be staying in the same location, yet they don’t need to be in the same building. HFS London’s wide range of group homestays offer large homes in nearby locations so large group can stay together in London suburbs for a reasonable price.
If you’re considering booking a large group homestay, organisation and forward planning is key. Here are some top tips:
1. Book early
It’s essential to book early to ensure availability. While finding a room and a host family for one student is fairly straightforward, with a large booking we need to know as far in advance as possible to secure minimum distances between properties. A lot of our properties offer more than one bedroom but we need time to arrange a large number of bookings.
2. Know where they need to be based
London is a huge city and it’s important we place your group in a suitable location for their activities. For example, if it’s a school trip or a group of language students you may need properties close to a certain campus or places you’ll be visiting during your stay. Alternatively, if you are making an accommodation booking for a group of interns who are all placed at different companies, the exact location may not be as important. Due to availability, expect to be placed in zones 3 or 4 as it is difficult to put groups in central areas of London. We find that these areas have larger homes which can accommodate up to four students in the same homestay so less properties are required.
3. Ratio of students per homestay
Decide what ratio you would prefer for your group. British Council allow up to four students in one homestay, but your group may be a little old for sharing rooms. If you are happy with four per home, this will give you more choice, but you will need to let us know in advance.
4. Under 18s requirements
If your group booking is for under 18s, or some of the students are in the under 18s category, you need to inform us at the time of enquiring. Under 18s are classed as children and therefore we need to factor in safeguarding requirements. We follow British Council guidelines and ensure that any of our hosts housing under 18s have an enhanced DBS check and sign a safeguarding declaration. This can also limit our availability so once again, booking ahead is crucial.
If you have any questions about our group homestay packages, get in touch.