Housing in Aix
Students in Aix will live in a French homestay, which is a challenging yet enriching experience. Students must learn to adapt to the family's personal and cultural lifestyles, which are naturally quite different from student's own habits.
IAU's hosts come from a cross section of society; some are families with young or grown children, others are single retirees. Some work busy schedules while others may spend most of their days at home. Some of our hosts have several rooms that they rent out to students, and some have just one room.
Hosts are selected for their interest in sharing a cultural exchange with students, and IAU alumni consistently remark on the growth and insight offered by the homestay experience. Students must be flexible and accepting within their French household, and will in all likelihood find the attitude rewarded.
Students in a host family receive daily breakfast and six dinners per week. Breakfast is a typical French style meal and dinners vary by family, but students can be expect to be well-fed and are encouraged to communicate with their hosts about food preparation and planning as this can be a wonderful way to integrate into a French family! Students are responsible for their own lunches and for dinner on Sundays. Students have access to the kitchen for meal preparation and are provided with linens.
PLEASE NOTE: Homestay schedules are aligned with the IAU academic calendar. Students should be aware that they will need to vacate their homestay during the December/January holiday period and at the conclusion of the Spring term in May. If a student is enrolled in a summer session, they will need to vacate the homestay at the conclusion of that session in mid-July.
Student Reviews of Homestays
- Sydnee Greenberg
"My homestay experience opened my ears to the French language, my nose to the Provencal cooking, and my heart to new people, whom I soon referred to as my family for four short months."
- Mary Claire Gustafson
IAU does not offer independent housing in Aix. If students choose to rent an apartment, those arrangements will have to be made on their own and with the permission of their home university (if enrolled). Be aware that apartments are hard to find in a crowded university town such as Aix-en-Provence and rent is very high. One month’s rent, plus a deposit equal to one, sometimes two, months’ rent (reimbursed if there are no outstanding bills or damage at the end of your stay) must be paid in advance to the apartment owner. Heating, electricity, gas, and telephone are additional. Those in independent housing will also not be provided with linens or cookware. For students who choose this situation, it is best that arrangements be made before arriving in France, as housing can be difficult to find after arrival.