Have you heard of this rhyme? “A pinch and a punch for the first of the month”. This is a funny tradition we do in England on the first day of every month. When you say it to someone, you need to give them a small pinch and a light punch on the arm. This is mainly done by children but you will see many adults doing it too just for fun (be careful not to pinch and punch too hard!). Do you have any traditions for the first day of every month?
Are you planning on coming to London soon to be a student? Being a student in London can be quite scary, especially if it is your first time in London or your first time living abroad. One of the most important factors is the type of accommodation you stay in – this could make your trip unforgettable or a complete nightmare!
A very popular type of accommodation is with a homestay (or host family). This involves staying in a flat or a house with a local person, couple or family. Homestay accommodation isn’t just a place to sleep – you will meet and get to know the locals who can help you to experience ‘real London’. This is an excellent way to learn about life in the UK and English culture while practising your English!
If you would prefer to have some independence while staying in London, student residences might be the best option for you. You will usually have your own room and share the facilities (e.g. kitchen, common room) with other students. This is a great way to make friends from all over the world, practise your English and experience what it is really like to be a student in London.
Did you know that Bloomsbury International has its own student residences? They are located in quiet residential streets and just a short distance from busting Archway. All of the residences have communal areas so you feel like you are living in a friendly house and not just renting a room! There is also free Wi-Fi and a freeview TV in each room. Please contact us if you would like more information.
If homestays and student residences don’t appeal to you, you can always book to stay in a hotel or hostel. These are usually more expensive but are often a good option for short-term students who would like some luxury while they are studying.
If you are staying in London for a long time and you choose not to book your accommodation with Bloomsbury, you may wish to search for rented accommodation in a shared flat or house. If you do wish to rent privately, there are many factors to consider before you pay any money. You should find out about the area first, check how much the rent is and whether or not there are any extra bills you will need to pay, such as electricity, water and Council Tax. It is also advisable you go with someone when viewing any accommodation.
One last tip regarding rented accommodation: it is not advisable to book this before you come to London. You should always view the accommodation first to check that it is really what the advert says! There are also many scams – a friend of mine thought that he’d found a fantastic deal and quickly sent £1000 to reserve the room, only to find out that it was a scam! When he arrived in London, he discovered that the address was fake and he couldn’t contact anyone to get his money back!
I hope this doesn’t put you off renting private accommodation though – it can be a lot of fun and it has many benefits: you can live completely independently with no supervision and it is great practise for when you will be renting or buying a house in the future!
Good luck with your accommodation search and let me know if you have any questions!
Have fun with English
Accommodation vocabulary – Adverts
If you are looking for rented accommodation in London, you will probably read many adverts in newspapers and online. Very specific vocabulary and abbreviations are used in these adverts so it’s important to understand what they mean.
For the following adverts, choose the correct word or abbreviation:
Room available in quiet house. £400 pcm plus £400 _______.
Wanted: easy-going girl for room in mixed house with new ________.
- mod cons
Room to let. £575 pcm. All ________ incl.
3 bed house to let. Suits students or young ______.
To let: 1 bed flat. Avail. ______ Dec. Rent negot.
You will find the answers in next week’s Bloomsbury Blog!
Last week’s answers
Homophones: Guest – guessed, mist – missed, brake – break, dear – deer, blue – blew, made – maid, through – threw, ate – eight.
Have a good week everyone!!