5 Homestay Gift Ideas

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Jill Kruidenier
January 21, 2014

You’ve received your homestay assignment and are almost ready for your upcoming semester abroad. But wait – there’s one more thing to pack! Many students stress over what type of gift is appropriate as a thank-you for their hosts’ hospitality. One thing is for certain – you don’t want to arrive empty-handed. Here are five simple gift ideas for ways to show your gratitude:

  1. Decorative Kitchen Towels
    Anyone with a kitchen can appreciate a new set of stylish dish towels!
  1. Hand Soap and Lotion Set 
    Who wouldn’t want to display a lovely set of hand soap and lotion on their bathroom sink?
  1. Coffee Table Book
    Nervous about a language barrier? Why not show your hosts where you’re from, instead of trying to find the words to describe it?
  1. Cheese Serving Set
    Especially in locations where cheese is a local delicacy, one can never have too many serving sets. Just make sure you pack it in your checked luggage!
  1. Local Treats
    Does your hometown have a unique candy shop or chocolatier? Maybe it's known for its maple syrup, like Cape Town Blogger, Alexa Szotka's. Support your local economy, while simultaneously sharing part of your culture.

Feel free to get creative and think beyond this list, especially if it means showing your own personality. Another consideration is whether your homestay includes children. Perhaps they might enjoy an age-appropriate toy or book. It is also wise to research and adhere to your host culture's customs and norms as they relate to gift-giving. In any case, this small gesture can go a long way in helping you integrate into your new home.

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Jill Kruidenier

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