What exactly is a Homestay? Homestay programs arrange for international students to live with local families in their host countries. Living situations in homestay programs range from basic room-rental arrangements to complete family immersion. In a homestay program, you will typically have your own room, but join the family for meals and take part in their normal daily routine. In most cases, host families tend to be families that have younger or teenage children themselves, but homestays can actually be offered by anyone. Host families often choose to offer homestays because it’s a great way for their own children to meet with international students and be exposed to different cultures.