Will it cost us to host?
So many things to consider when Hosting an Exchange Student! Now you are probably wondering, "Will this cost us to host?" The answer is sort of mixed. I will explain...
Never pay to have a student come to your home
You should not have to pay to have a student come to your home. The costs of their flights and the use of the program are paid by the student's family. They also pay for their insurance. While they are in your home they are required to have anywhere from $200-$400 available to them montly by their families, this cost is determined and set by the Company they are going through. This money is to be used for toiletries, items needed for school supplies, and clothing and extra fun activities they might do with friends. And to pay for lunch at school instead of bringing one from your home.
Costs of being a part of the family
While they are in your home they are a part of your family. One of your children. Something to think about is what would you expect your own child of that age to pay for? You are expected to provide breakfast and dinner. And if they choose not to pay for lunch at school you are expected to provide the items needed for them to make a lunch for school. I know from what I have heard and experienced, most families do not all eat breakfast, so you just provide food for them to eat and a lot of families eat dinner together so you would fix that meal and your student would eat with you. But every family is different. Just make sure they have food to eat that is provided by you.
If you choose to go out to eat, your student will of course wish to go. With all family activities you should pay for them. They are a part of your family. Nothing will make them feel like an outsider more than if you pay for you and your other kids and ask for a seperate bill for them. The same applies to any trips and activities you might plan. You know you have this student staying with you, so make sure you budget for them as well. Don't ask them to join you and then expect them to pay for themselves.
If your student is wishing to take classes outside of school or to do sports, those costs are for them to pay. Unless you choose to pay them.
Again as I have stated before communication is key to everything. Make sure when you have your first initial "sit down" talk that you cover finances. This way you know what they are expecting and what you are expecting. If you are lucky you are on the same page. If not talk it out. And there is always your local rep if you need help.
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What to read next:
Every household has their own set of rules. The Exchange Programs also have rules. Discussing all of these with your Student will be very important.
Tell them about what their child is doing, tell them about a funny face they made when they tried some new foods. They will love hearing this.
Now that your student has been home for a couple of months or maybe even a year, you might now find yourself wondering if you would want to host again..
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