One of your housing options is staying in a private home with a host family. We work with different kinds of host families: single women with /without children, young couples, and more traditional families with children. Some of them live within walking distance of campus; others live in the city center; and others are in more residential areas within the city with an easy commute to campus.

Staying with a family is the recommended option for students who would like to immerse themselves in the Spanish lifestyle, improve their Spanish language skills and make the most of their time in Spain. Students who choose this option have highly positive experiences and benefit from supportive family environments while enjoying great independence. Our families are handpicked to ensure quality interaction with our students, many of whom develop lasting friendships with their hosts.

This option includes a half-board meal plan (14 meals per week – daily breakfast and either lunch or dinner); a double or single room; laundry and cleaning services; and internet access. Host families tend to be more flexible than residences when it comes to schedules, dietary preferences, laundry needs, etc.

SEE: Guidelines for living in a host family (PDF)


Meal plan: your housing fee covers a half board meal plan, which means that you’ll have to plan and budget for the other daily meal (lunch or dinner). You may take advantage of the student prices you will find in cafeterias and restaurants near the SUMC campus.

While meals usually feature Spanish cuisine, students are free to indicate personal food preferences, eating schedules should be arranged between students and their families by mutual consent. Students do not have kitchen privileges.

A note on Spanish meals: Breakfast (el desayuno) in Spain is light compared to what you might be used to. The norm is coffee (café con leche) or hot chocolate (colacao), toast, cereal, cookies or muffins and maybe a glass of juice. Lunch (la comida) is usually the main meal of the day. Dinner (la cena) is usually lighter affair. In any case, SUMC students get a full meal (starter, main dish and dessert) regardless of the meal time, lunch or dinner.

The sobremesa, or time spent conversing during and at the end of a family meal, is quite important in Spain. Unless you have an important appointment and must ask to be excused, you should take advantage of this time if the family eats together.

Visitors and overnight guests are not allowed in host family accommodations.

If you would like to connect with Spanish culture firsthand, this is the option for you.