Host Family FAQ 

Group Students Smilling

What are the responsibilities of the host families?

  • Plan to meet your exchange student at the airport on the day of arrive and bring your exchange student to school on the day of departure to the designated meeting area.

  • Make transportation arrangements to get your exchange student to and from school every day.

    • If you intend to send them on the bus, you will need permission from the school to do so

    • If your sons or daughters have their driver’s license, the exchange student may be in the car with them when they drive

    • If you require assistance with transportation, please reach out to other parents on the contact sheet who can carpool.

  • Send a packed lunch everyday with your exchange student

  • Include the exchange student in your daily activities so they have a greater understanding of American life!

    • Show them local attractions

    • Cook meals with them or go to popular restaurants with Mexican, Chinese, or Thai food, or popular steakhouses! Don’t forget to take them to a good hamburger spot!

    • Take them to the movies or watch TV with them (don’t forget to put English subtitles on, just in case!)

  • Exchange students bring their own spending money

    • Take them shopping! Exchange students love to shop at outlet malls and stores such as “Marshalls,” and “Target.” Most of them have an idea of what they would like to buy so ask them and they will tell you.

  • Provide an authentic cultural experience in which students actively use the English language.

    • Most exchange students must take English as a foreign language in school. It is a requirement to graduate. Communication has rarely been an issue during the hosting experience.

  • Supervise your exchange student and your own child with great care

    • They will have teachers traveling with them, so any questions or concerns should be shared with them and their teachers.


What will the students be doing all day?

  • Exchange students will travel to school with their host every day. They will either be shadowing your student at school or will be going on excursions to the local area attractions

  • On the days the exchange students shadow their hosts, they will have a chance to learn what an American school is like

  • On excursion days, exchange students will see the local and popular sights. They will leave from the school and travel with a private coach. French teachers accompany the students on all of their excursions.

  • Weekends will be spent with the host families.

  • You will receive a day-by-day program including an agenda with flight details, sights the students will be visiting and their return to school. We kindly request that you make arrangements to pick up your student at the times indicated on the program or to make alternative arrangements for him/her.


What if there is an emergency/problem/concern?

  • All exchange students are covered under medical insurance and will have a copy of their insurance with them.

  • If it is a life-threatening emergency, please take them to the hospital and call A La Carte Travel immediately! If it is not life-threatening, call A La Carte  Travel and we will determine the best course of action.

    • The students are traveling with two chaperones who can also assist if there is a problem.

    • If there is any sort of problem, you need to contact A La Carte Travel immediately. We will do everything in our power to help the visit go smoothly. If we are told at the end of the stay that it was unpleasant, it will be too late for us to do anything.


Who is A La Carte Travel?

  • A La Carte Travel has specialized in educational group travel to and from Europe, Canada, and Latin America for over 20 years.

  • We are committed to providing educational institutions affordable access to a priceless opportunity and the chance to experience other cultures and languages. Our goal as an organization is to promote the values of understanding through experiencing and learning about other cultures.