Accommodation

Having a comfortable place to live while you study is important. North Island College offers a variety of housing options to suit your lifestyle and preferred living arrangements.

We advise you to plan where you live ahead of time so you know where you are staying when you arrive. A short outline of your accommodation options and costs are listed below. More detail is listed in the handbooks on the right hand side of this page.

If you have any questions, or would like to speak to our accommodations officer, email accommodations@nic.bc.ca.

Family Homestay or Peerstay:
Living With a Canadian Host

Living with a Canadian host is a big advantage for some students. Host families help students learn about the community and culture on Vancouver Island; they include students in family activities, and best of all, they offer lots of opportunity for conversation practice.

We understand that you need to feel welcome, safe and comfortable in your new home. Homestay and Peerstay hosts are screened and selected because they are interested in sharing their homes with you and helping you settle in your new community. They want to learn about your country and share Canada with you!

Homestay

Cost:

Students interested in homestay must commit to three full months.

Application fee: $250

Non-refundable homestay fee: $2,400 ($800/month for 3 months)

NIC will transfer payment from the student’s account to their host family for the first three months of homestay. After the first three months, students are responsible for paying their host families directly.

Homestay accommodation includes a private room, laundry facilities, and three meals a day. Internet access is provided in your host family's home. A homestay is your home away from home and an excellent choice for students who are apart from their families for the first time.

Peerstay

Cost:

Students interested in peerstay must commit to three full months.

Application fee: $250

Non-refundable peerstay fee: $1,500 ($500/month for 3 months)

NIC will transfer payment from the student’s account to their host family for the first three months of peerstay. After the first three months, students are responsible for paying their host families directly.

Peerstay is similar to homestay except students buy their own groceries and cook their own meals. Your host can help you with information or assistance. This is a good choice if you want more independence or you prefer a specific kind of food.

How Does Homestay/Peerstay Work?

Host families and students complete an application form and OGE staff complete a screening process. Students are then placed in homestay or peerstay homes according to their needs. We introduce students to their hosts via email. Students and host families can share photos and learn about each other online before they meet in person.

Students: when you arrive on Vancouver Island, your Canadian host will meet you at the Comox or Campbell River airport and take you to your new home!

To Apply for Homestay/Peerstay:

Students:

1) Read the Student Accommodation Handbook. This is an important step. Students are expected to be aware of the policies and procedures in the handbook.
2) Complete the application form and email it to accommodations@nic.bc.ca or fax it to: 1-250-334-5287. You will be contacted by our Accommodations Officer.

Hosts:

We welcome people interested in providing homestay or peerstay for international students. Please complete the host family application form and fax it to 1-250-334-5287, or email it to accommodations@nic.bc.ca. You will be contacted by our Accommodations Officer.

Living with a student roommate

If you would like to live with another student, you can search for roommates on the OGE Facebook page. Locally, most people advertise for roommates on Comox Valley Craigslist. You can also put up a notice on college bulletin boards when you arrive.

Renting an apartment, house, or room

If you prefer to live in an independent rental (apartment), there are several ways to find one: Check out local listings on Comox Valley Craigslist and the Comox Valley Record. Rentals are also posted on bulletin boards on campus.

Short-term Accommodation

Most students secure accommodation before they arrive because it’s easier to prepare and plan a budget. When it's not possible to get living arrangements organized before arrival, a student needs short-term accommodation. There is a hostel and several affordable hotels in Courtenay. Please see the following list of off-campus accommodation.

Questions? Find out more about living on Vancouver Island in Beautiful British Columbia!