Gap Year, Accommodation
Gap Year

Accommodation

Long term study in immersion: Accommodation

In each school, various accommodation options offering a rich and attractive extra-curricular life may be booked according to your aims and desires. We consider the accommodation to be a very important part of any language study trip abroad. For this reason, during the selection of our partner schools, we have only kept the institutions who are able to guarantee a standard of quality of accommodation as high as that of the courses. We are glad to advise you in order to help you find the type of accommodation corresponding best to your expectations.

Host family

Host families are carefully chosen by our partner schools and are regularly monitored by student feedback. In general, students with the same mother tongue are not accommodated together, unless requested. Specific requests concerning the host family (children, teenagers, animals, special diets, non-smokers, etc.) are taken into account whenever possible. It is very important to let us know if you suffer from any allergies or medical conditions so that we can inform the host family. Your interests and hobbies will also a factor in choosing the most suitable family for you. Host families generally live near the school. There is no doubt that staying with a family is the best type of accommodation for language studies. Daily contact with the family enables you to practise the language regularly, as well as to explore the language, customs and way of life of the country. This great experience is an excellent complement to the courses. Friendships are often forged and many students keep in touch with their host families long after their stay has ended.

Residential accommodation

Residential accommodation facilities are hotels/hostels that offer very attractive prices because of their links with our partner schools. You will stay with other students as well as tourists and other foreign clients of the school. Residence dining rooms and bars are excellent places to meet people.

Shared apartment

Comfort and independence

In a shared student apartment, you will stay with other students and/or locals. You will have a single room to yourself and enjoy complete independence, including use of a kitchen, while living with people sharing a similarly independent outlook. This option is very popular in Germany (WG or Wohngemeinschaft) and England (student house), but is also offered in Australia, Canada, Spain, Ireland, Malta, Italy, Austria and Latin America.

Campus

An ideal option for students aiming to enjoy maximum independence, this type of accommodation is the best way to meet other students. You can choose a single or (more commonly) a double room, and you will usually have to share the bathroom and kitchen with other students. The level of comfort in campus accommodation depends on the general standard of living in the country you have selected.

Hotels / apartments

It is also possible to plan a stay in the comfort of a hotel room or a rented apartment. In most cases our partner schools offer a hotel or apartment reservation service. This type of accommodation is obviously more expensive than the other options.

Courses without accommodation

It is possible to enrol with ESL for the courses only and make your own accommodation arrangements. If you have friends abroad or wish to arrange your own accommodation, please let us know. You will only pay the price of the course without any supplement. If you are interested in renting an apartment alone or with other students, the best way is to enrol in one of the accommodation plans for the first week(s), giving you time to make friends and make the necessary arrangements.

Deposit

Most partner schools require a deposit if you wish to stay in halls of residence or a shared apartment. If that is the case, you will find details of the deposit on our website, in the "options, extras" section of each school’s price list. The deposit is EUR 170 on average, payable on arrival with cash or credit card, just like when you check into a hotel. It will be refunded upon your departure, once it has been confirmed that everything is in order.

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  2. ESL – LANGUAGE STUDIES ABROAD IS EUROPE’S STAR AGENCY  

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    If you find our programmes cheaper with another language travel agency, you will be refunded 100% of the price difference.

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    We offer you free and personal advice before, during and after your language course abroad.

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TESTIMONIALS

After spending 3 months of pure happiness, it’s sad that I have to leave this incredible place with the head full of good memories and magical experiences like Niagara Falls, basketball game, visits in downtown, ice skating and celebrations far from our families like Christmas organized by the school. In addition to that I enjoyed participating in the after school clubs allowing me to learn even more and have a great time. Thanks to this experience I met incredible people (Brazilians, Asians, Russians, Mexicans, etc.) from all over the world that I want and will visit. The supervisors are excellent and always listen to my requests. I definitely recommend to everybody to live the same experience as me but all good things have an end and now it’s my time.

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Sirine Tounsi

In October 2017, I decided to go to Toronto for 2 months. I had just finished my studies, and I had always dreamt about going to Canada. I wanted to improve my English, so I decided to take an 8-week intensive course at OHC – a school I highly recommend. I became friend with students from all over the world and with very nice teachers. I was surprised to see how fast I improved; I passed 2 levels in 8 weeks! In order to be in total immersion, I chose to live with a host family. If you don’t like rules, I suggest staying in a student residence – you’ll have more freedom. I loved the style of the city (I’m Parisian, so everything looked very different). Toronto has the advantage of being close to French-speaking Québec and to the US – you should visit New York, as I did! If I could do it all over again, I would! Thank you ESL for making my dream come true in a few days only.

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Sara Mateos Arévalo

My name is Sara and I decided to take a course in Lyon to improve my level of French. I had started to take French classes again in Barcelona and I thought it would be a good idea to give them a boost.

I wasn’t very clear on my destination, but I finally chose Lyon because it’s a city that has everything but it’s not as big as Paris. And, as the language travel advisor that I am, and knowing the academic quality of the Alpadia school, I thought it would be a good option.

After having been there, I can say that Lyon is an ideal destination for linguistic immersion. As a city, it has everything: shops, good public transport, restaurants, bars, tourism, parks, etc. What’s more, you’re constantly surrounded by events, culture and French cuisine, and it’s a city where a lot of French natives live. That’s why you can also learn about its customs and lifestyle in addition to the language.

The first day when I arrived to my host family’s home, it was a little difficult for me to speak even though I understood Sylvie (the woman who was hosting me) very well. In the mornings, she was already working, but I enjoyed waking up and having a leisurely breakfast. In the afternoons after the activities, I went home and she was preparing dinner. I sat in the kitchen with her while she taught me French recipes. Every night we cooked a different dish, and she even taught me how to make French crêpes! I stayed in her daughter’s room who was studying in Toulouse. To this day, we still write to each other.

With regard to the school, the first day they had me arrive half an hour early to show us new students the school, city, etc. and introduce us to each other. We had 4 and a half hours of class, but the time flew by, as the teaching method that they use is very dynamic and you have two different teachers. My morning teacher made the classes very exciting and helped us improve our weaknesses. The afternoon teacher, on the other hand, gave us a topic to debate and she made us talk a lot while she provided us with useful, daily vocabulary.

There were only 6 students in class, perfect for learning more easily. At school there was a great atmosphere with a good group of students open to meeting new people and making plans after class. I felt like a part of the group from day one. The mix of nationalities was very good with few Spanish-speaking students. In the whole school, there were only two Spanish and two Mexican students, although we weren’t in the same class. Almost all of them were Swiss (from different regions), and there were students of all ages (18-22, 25-28 and 40+).

Every afternoon, the school offered an activity for whoever wanted to participate (movie, visits around Lyon, wine tasting, etc.). At the beginning of the week, they posted a schedule of the week’s activities on the bulletin board. You just needed to sign up and show up at the meeting point at the time specified (even though almost all of us went there together directly from school). The activity I liked the most was wine tasting because we went to a really authentic wine cellar where they gave us different wines and cheeses. For me, this was a very French experience!

To sum up, I’d like to say that for me, it was a great decision to take an intensive course and stay with a host family, since I learned a ton and at the end of my stay, I noticed that I really improved my fluency when speaking French. The truth is that I had a great experience and I would have liked to be able to stay for another week.

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THE ESL COMMUNITY

Check out our blogs, social network pages and various online platforms to read travel stories, articles and reviews from our students on language courses abroad.

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