My stay at the Lake School was amazing. The lessons were all great. I learned a lot and we had fun as well, the perfect combination. They matched exactly my level and helped me improve my English.

- Chloe Schenkel, Switzerland
Exam Preparation

Lake School of English: Home > Accommodation > Homestay

Living in a friendly home

Homestay accommodation

Living with a friendly host is a great opportunity to talk and exchange cultures.

Most students ask us to find homestay accommodation for them and really enjoy the experience. We personally arrange this for you so you feel really at home here in Oxford.

Quite a lot of our homestays host more than one student at the same time, but no more than 4 students. In this case, no students speak the same first language (unless requested).

All hosts offer welcoming, clean and comfortable accommodation on the same basis.

Usually students share the bathroom with the homestay. Some homes have rooms with private bathroom, these may be inside or outside the bedroom.

Almost all homestay accommodation is in single rooms with space for your clothes, and a place to study. We can provide twin rooms for people booking together. 

What are your special requirements?

We choose your accommodation carefully, so when you enrol, we will ask you to tell us the things that are important for you.

All our hosts:

  • provide half-board Monday to Friday and all meals at the weekend
  • give you a key to the house so you can be independent
  • live a local bus ride away from the school or within walking distance
  • are carefully chosen for their friendliness and are regularly revisited
  • promise never to have 2 students of the same first language unless requested
  • give you appropriate washing facilities and bathroom access
  • clean your room and provide a regular change of towels and bed linen
  • do some of your laundry or allow you to use their laundry facilities
  • offer free WiFi internet access 
  • are interested in looking after students of all ages and nationalities
  • eat with you in the evenings and encourage you to speak English

A genuine, warm welcome and a clean, comfortable home

We try to place students in suitable accommodation and to find the right host for everyone. Many British people have pets and many are non-smokers. You may have to adapt to a different way of life, when you are living in the UK.  Our hosts come from different backgrounds, but most importantly, they offer a genuine, warm welcome and a clean, comfortable home.

Before you arrive in England you receive a profile of the homestay that you are going to stay with. We also give the host some information about you. We ask you to contact your host and tell them your approximate arrival time in Oxford, so that they can be home to welcome you.They will help you to settle in and explain the best way to come to school on your first day.

Homestay Accommodation


Cost per week 


Single room, half-board (full-board weekends)


Standard Twin

(only available for people booking together)

Twin room, half-board (full-board weekends)



Single room, private bathroom, half- board (full-board weekends)


En-suite Twin

(only available for people booking together)

Twin room, private bathroom, half-board (full-board weekends)or 2 single rooms sharing a private bathroom.


If you pay your accommodation direct to the homestay, in cash (GBP) there are no extra charges. If you pay your accommodation through the Lake School, we will add a service charge of 30 GBP to your invoice.

Travelling to school on your first day

If you are staying in homestay accommodation, your host will help you to settle in and explain the best way to come to school on your first day. When you arrive at the school, you will receive a map of Oxford in your Welcome Folder. 

Oxford is a small city. The Lake School is in the centre, near the bus and train stations. The centre is mainly university and public buildings, shops, offices, restaurants, theatres and parks. Most people travel to work and school by bus. Some go by bicycle or on foot. The average journey time from home to the centre is 25 minutes. This can be longer or shorter, depending on the traffic conditions. Most students travel by bus. On your first day, just buy a one-way ticket from the bus driver.

Then when you are in the city centre, you can buy a SmartZone Bus Card. This costs £5 for the card and £16 or less, for one week's travel. You can buy this from the Oxford Bus Company travel shop.We will explain this in your Welcome Meeting.

Accommodation Arrival and Departure Days 

Homestay accommodation check in is the Sunday before your course starts and check out is the Saturday after your course finishes.

If you arrive in Oxford or leave Oxford on different days, you must arrange your own extra nights’ accommodation. It may be possible to stay for an extra night in your homestay - please contact us to check availability.There is an extra charge for this.

Hosts cannot accept students between 23.00 and 07.00. If you are arriving in Oxford late, please make alternative arrangements to stay in a hotel.

Lunch Monday - Friday

You will have to buy your own lunch on weekdays. However, Lake School is in the city centre and there is a wide range of cafes/snack bars/restaurants/supermarkets where you can buy something to eat and drink. We'll make some suggestions in your Welcome Meeting.

You can expect to spend around £7 per day for a sandwich with a drink and piece of fruit/chocolate bar/crisps. Main meals such as pizza, noodles, a burger, salad or pasta will cost a little more.

Accommodation changes and holidays

It is important that you enjoy your experience and that you feel "at home" with your host. Students very rarely ask us if they can change/leave their accommodation.Please come to the office to talk about your request with the Accommodation and Welfare Manager. It may be possible to change, however we must give your current host at least one week's notice (except in the case of an emergency). In this case she may be able for you to visit other hosts and help choose the best one for you.

Sometimes because of situations beyond our control, we may need to change your accommodation either before you arrive or when you are here. We promise to provide accommodation for the period you have booked but this may not be with the same host for the whole period.

If you decide take a holiday during your course, you may be charged a room retainer fee or asked to change to different accommodation on your return. Please ask the school for details before booking your holiday.

Answers to frequently asked questions

Homestay accommodation is booked by the week, not by the day.

Check in is Sunday and check out is Saturday.

If you choose to pay your homestay yourself, you must pay this in cash GBP on arrival. You must pay for 2 weeks in advance, and then every 2 weeks going forward.

If you stay for an extra night, you must ask the school, in advance, if this is possible, when you make the accommodation booking. This must be arranged by the school. There is a charge for an extra night's stay.

If you want to leave your homestay, you must tell the school no later than 1 week before you want to leave. You must leave the homestay on a Saturday. This means you must tell the school by the Friday of the week before you want to leave.

If you want to leave the homestay earlier than 1 week, this is possible, but you must pay for the full week.