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Study Abroad accommodation

A variety of accommodation is offered to our Study Abroad students, including living with a family in our homestay programme or in halls (dorms) on campus. All rooms have internet access.

We aim to provide our students with a happy and safe environment in which to study and socialise and are confident that you will enjoy your time at St Mary's.  

We cannot guarantee campus accommodation as availability may be limited. To increase your chances of being allocated your first choice, we encourage you to apply early in the application process. Please be sure to meet all accommodation deadlines.

Campus accommodation

St Mary’s University offers different types of accommodation according to budget.

Please note: there is a different pricing structure for study abroad students so please refer to the Factsheet for further information

Acecssible accommodation

We do have accessible rooms; if you have any specific requirements please ensure you raise them when you apply for accommodation so they can be taken into consideration when allocating rooms.

You can seek advice from our Accommodation team in advance of applying if you need additional information.

Meal plans

Two meals per day are included with all campus and homestay accommodation. This comprises breakfast and dinner during the week and brunch and dinner at the weekend, all taken at the Refectory, only a few minutes’ walk from halls. 

Students living in homestays receive breakfast from their hosts and evening meals at the Refectory.

We cater for most dietary requirements but if you have specific needs, please discuss them with the catering team before you arrive to ensure we can provide you with what you need.

Applying for accommodation

After you have been accepted to study at St Mary’s, you will receive an email from the Accommodation Office inviting you to apply for accommodation.

The email will be sent out shortly after the application deadline has passed.  Please note you will not be able to apply for housing until you receive this.  We will then allocate the rooms on the basis of your preferences and you will receive an offer through the Accommodation portal.  When you accept your room you will be asked to pay a deposit of £300 which will be returned to you at the end of the semester/ year.  

If there are damages to your room or you do not return your key, these costs will be deducted from your deposit as outlined in your rental agreement.

Support services in halls

You must attend a safety and fire briefing during the first few days in halls as well as regular meetings that will be publicised ahead of time. You will have a Senior Resident, a St Mary’s student whose role is to assist and support you during your time on campus. They will help you settle in to campus life when you arrive, and you can seek their advice any time.

Your hall will also have a Resident Mentor, a member of staff who resides in a hall of residence. Their role is to support, guide and assist students living on campus. Resident Mentors can also issue disciplinary action against students who breach the hall’s rules.

Hall and room entry

You receive keys and/or an ID card that allows you to enter your accommodation when you arrive. We recommend that you don’t mark your key ring with your name or room location in case it goes missing. If you lose your keys, you will be charged for replacements and possibly for replacement locks. 


Rooms are cleaned weekly by the University cleaning staff. You will be advised on which day your cleaner will visit. You should tidy up the previous night so that the room is available for cleaning by 9 am.


Fire-retardant duvets (comforters) and pillows will be provided, together with a duvet cover, pillow cases and sheets. Please bring your own towels. You will be responsible for laundering your bed linen and personal clothing. There are launderette facilities on campus.


All rooms come furnished a wardrobe, drawers, desk, chair, shelf space and a notice board. Posters or photographs can only be displayed on the designated boards.

Electrical Appliances

Most small electrical items can be purchased cheaply in the UK after you arrive. If you bring any electrical items with you, you’ll probably need a plug adaptor. You may also need a converter or transformer. Check out this handy guide to plug and voltage information.

Communal kitchen facilities

These include snack making facilities such as fridge, microwave, kettle and toasters. Each student is responsible for their own washing up and must provide their own crockery and cutlery. The kitchens also have irons and ironing boards

Personal possessions insurance

This is provided free of charge only to those students living in halls.

Candles / naked flames

The use of these is strictly prohibited due to the potential fire risk. 

No-smoking policy

Smoking is not permitted in halls of residence or any university buildings.


No visitors are allowed to stay overnight in halls. 


We have 24-hour security near the main reception where students can go for assistance. The Security phone number is 020 8240 4335 for routine calls or 020 8240 4060 for emergencies. 

Meal Plan

All campus accommodation include a meal plan that covers breakfast from Monday to Friday, brunch on Saturdays and Sundays, and seven evening meals in the St Mary’s Refectory. Evening meals these cannot be swapped for lunches, but you can buy lunch or make your own. 


Any mail sent over to students in halls will be delivered to the student mail room in the main building. If the item is too big to fit into your mailbox, you will be asked to collect it from the University postroom. Your address will be: 

Name // Regnum
Room number // Hall
St Mary’s University
Waldegrave Road
Strawberry Hill
Twickenham TW1 4SX

Homestay accommodation

Homestay Accommodation offers you the opportunity to stay with a single female or a family close to campus. This is a great opportunity to meet local people and in some cases learn about the local culture and norms. This is our most affordable type of accommodation and it has been very popular with previous students.

There is a wide variety of homestay accommodation, for instance in a house or apartment. All rooms are furnished with a bed, desk, chair, lamp, hanging storage and chest of drawers as a minimum. The room may be a single or double (with single or double bed). Some rooms may have their own bathroom and others share with their hosts.   

Hosts may be single women or couples, with or without children. Many hosts have pets, often cats or dogs. We place students with animal allergies in pet-free homes, so please be sure to indicate this on your application. 

Students staying in homestays should keep in mind that they are living in someone else’s home and be considerate and sensitive to the family’s lifestyle. 

St Mary’s staff have visited all homestays to meet the hosts and ensure the homes are clean and well-maintained.

Breakfast and kitchen use

Breakfast will be provided by your host and will usually be cereal, toast, coffee, juice etc. Many hosts will ask you to make yourself at home and help yourself. Let your host know if there is anything in particular that you like having for breakfast, and, in most instances, they will be pleased to provide it for you (within reason). Please confirm breakfast times with your host. 

Most hosts will be happy for you to make a drink or prepare food that you have bought yourself. Please talk to your host to make sure this is acceptable and tidy up after yourself in the kitchen and dining room. 

Meal plan

You are entitled to eat your evening meal St Mary’s Refectory seven nights per week. This is included in your accommodation fees. Evening meals cannot be swapped for lunches, but you can buy lunch or make your own.


Please agree bathing and showering times with your hosts to ensure no one has to queue, particularly first thing in the morning. Please tidy up after yourself and leave the bathroom in the condition in which you found it.


You may have your own bedroom or share it with another student. Your host will provide bed linen that will be changed each week. It is courteous to offer to strip and remake the bed. Please make an effort to keep the room clean and tidy.

Electrical Appliances

Most small electrical items can be purchased cheaply in the UK after you arrive. If you bring any electrical items with you, you’ll probably need a plug adaptor. You may also need a converter or transformer. Check out this handy guide to plug and voltage information.


Please clarify with your host about using the home’s telephone. Most hosts are happy for you to receive brief incoming calls from your family and to make outgoing calls with the use of a prepaid card. Local calls are NOT free in the UK.

Washing machines

Some lucky students will get their laundry done for them! Many hosts will allow the use of the washing machine for a small charge, though some will state ‘light use’ only (e.g. t-shirts and underwear), as drying space may be at a premium. If this is the case, you should bring jeans and other heavy items to the laundrette on campus to wash. You may wish to offer to buy your own washing powder and softener.  

Many households do not have tumble dryers, and they are expensive to run. If your host does, make sure it’s alright with them before you use it.

Keys and security

Your host will provide you with a set of keys when you arrive that you will return before you leave. If you are the last person to leave in the morning or arrive at night, please check what you need to do to secure the house.

Use of the house

Most hosts will invite you to join them in their ‘family room’ and other parts of the house, but you should wait to be invited initially and respect that sometimes it may not be convenient for you to join them. 

Guests and travel

Please do not invite anyone to stay overnight or at the weekend without the advance permission of your hosts. If your host agree, you may wish to offer to pay for your guest to cover the cost of extra laundry, breakfast etc.

If you plan to travel during your time in London, please let your hosts know when you will be away so they don’t worry about you.


Most home stays are non-smoking. If you do smoke, please check with your host where this is permissible.

For more information on accommodation, please contact

Almost all of our homestay accommodation is close to our campus in the pleasant, suburban locations of Twickenham, Teddington and Hampton Hill.  

Our homestay hosts generally live within a 25-minute walk to campus, though this depends on availability. Many of our hosts are very close to campus, as students eat their evening meals in the Refectory on campus every day.

Sometimes, students may need to take a short bus ride from their homestay to campus. After you purchase an Oyster card, a single bus journey is currently £1.50 anywhere along a bus route.

The University places students with hosts on the understanding that this will be for the whole semester.

The majority of students living in homestay enjoy the experience. However, occasionally issues arise between a student and their host. We encourage to discuss differences directly with your host, but please be in touch with the Accommodation Office if you have any concerns.

You will receive an invitation to apply for accommodation by email. You may choose homestay as one of your options. The Accommodation Office will send you details of your homestay and arrange for your host to meet you on campus on international arrivals day. We make every effort to offer students their preferred accommodation but cannot guarantee it. Please ensure you meet all accommodation deadlines.

"I cannot imagine my accommodation any other way than with my wonderful host family! To experience British culture in the comfort of a home is tranquil and enjoyable. It's a great opportunity to learn more about the conventional lifestyle of the British home. I know I'll recommend the homestay option to students back at my home university."
"I would definitely recommend living in a homestay. What I've heard from my friends living on campus is it can be a little noisy. It's nice and quiet here and I like having my own space and having the freedom to come and go as I please. My host mom is very nice and is always here to help me if need be."