Key factors to consider when searching for accommodation as an international student

Where you choose to stay when you travel can either make or break your experience. While searching for accommodation as an international student, researching the suburbs around the university or college you’re going to study is key, especially if you haven’t been to that area before.

We have listed some factors you must consider: 

  1. Location is one of the most important aspects you should always keep in mind. Try to stay closer to the main centres of interest as your college and the local library, this way, you’ll be able to enjoy the activities in the centre and not miss out on any networking opportunities.
    Sometimes, room-prices in those areas are more expensive than in the suburbs, but you if you also consider the price of public transport and work out how much money you will be saving then you might find that living in the city is actually cheaper than staying elsewhere.
  2. Parking spaces or public transport: Are you buying a car or are you commuting to class? If you depend on public transport, check your alternatives in advance using Google Maps. Is there a bus or train station nearby? Are those services very frequent or do you have to wait for it more than an hour? Otherwise, if you are driving, keep in mind that many places in the most important cities in our top student destinations don’t have a parking space and renting a garage may be almost as expensive as renting a room; in this case, living on the suburbs is a better option as street parking is usually allowed. 
  3. Extra fees: Your accommodation may have everything included or may also have some extra fees, usually for the following services: Internet connection, water, gas, electricity, cleaning fees. Ask the owner or someone living in the property how much do they spend so you can get a real estimation.  If the price is one of your concerns, read our post how much does it cost to study abroad to learn some tips on how to save money.
  4. Facilities: take into account the facilities each type of accommodation offers in order to enjoy the comfort you need. For example, are you travelling to a cold destination? If so, a heater, hot water and a drying machine are a must-have. 
  5. Your personality: Do you like socializing or do you prefer to be on your own? Do you stay up late or go to sleep early? Do you set an alarm or wake up naturally? Do you like to have a set routine or be spontaneous? How do you deal with stressful situations? Hostels are wonderful options for laid-back individuals who love constant stimulation and meeting new people while rentals are ideal for those who enjoy a peaceful environment and the comforts of home.
    If you’re a combination of the two, opt for a hotel or a private room in an apartment or hostel. Consider what brings you comfort and what causes you frustration when travelling, then factor that in when you decide which stay is right for you.
Photo by Tobias Nii Kwatei Quartey on Unsplash

We know it doesn’t matter where you live, the experience of being on your own, in a new destination, will be life-changing and you will learn many things in the process.  

Please, if you have more doubts while searching for accommodation as an international student, don’t hesitate to reach your Sofiri expert if you need a hand while searching for accommodation. 

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